North Carolina Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle

Though most vehicle accidents are treated as civil lawsuits, defendants may face criminal charges if they are found to have grossly violated the rules or maliciously acted, causing the accident. For instance, driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a gross violation. Another example of such criminal charges one may face in North Carolina is Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle.

Though criminal charges don’t automatically lead to conviction, failure to have a strong defense may lead to stern consequences or even conviction. As such, retaining an experienced North Carolina criminal defense lawyer is crucial. Contact the defense lawyers at King Law today if you or a loved one are facing Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle charges. We’ll do everything in our power to defend you and may get charges against you dismissed or reduced.

What Is Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle in North Carolina?

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense in North Carolina. DWI serves as a basis for various misdemeanor and felony charges in NC, including Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle.

Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle is where the defendant is charged for causing serious injuries by vehicle to the plaintiff because they were driving while impaired. Serious injuries, in this case, may mean serious bodily injuries that cause permanent disfiguring or those needing a significantly long period to recover and may have nearly resulted in the victim’s death.

The prosecution must first prove DWI charges against the defendant beyond reasonable doubt for Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle charge to stand. DWI is when the defendant is found to be driving under the influence of an impairing substance, with a BAC of 0.08% (or higher), or with their bloodstream showing the existence of a Schedule I Controlled Substance.


Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle is a Class F felony in North Carolina with severe consequences if convicted. However, before conviction, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:

  • There was an unintentional cause of serious bodily injury to another
  • The defendant was driving while impaired
  • The DWI is the “proximate cause” of the serious injury

A proximate cause is any cause that might have worked solely or in combination with other cause(s) to cause the serious injury in this scenario. DWI may be proved to be a proximate cause in an accident since a driver under an impairing substance may act or not act normally, causing the accident.


Under North Carolina Criminal Law, Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle is a Class F Felony offense with severe penalties if found guilty. A conviction may result in jail time for a maximum of 59 months. The defendant’s criminal record or previous convictions affect the jail term and other penalties the judge or jury may approve. Additionally, the respondent may face Aggravated Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle if they are found to have another DWI conviction within seven years of the current crime.

Other penalties may include fines, probation, community service, electronic monitoring, house arrest, SCRAM, and revocation of the driver’s license, among others. Our criminal defense lawyers may help avoid conviction or get your charges reduced by employing proven defense tactics against Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle charges.

Defenses for North Carolina Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle

If law enforcement officers have apprehended you for DWI or related charges, you have a right to remain silent and get to talk to an attorney under Fifth Amendment Rights. Therefore, it’s crucial to retain an experienced criminal defense lawyer to defend you.

As we mentioned, if the defense can successfully prove that the defendant was not driving while intoxicated, the Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle charge cannot stand. Our North Carolina DWI criminal defense attorneys have years of experience representing residents charged with DWI-related misdemeanors or felonies. We may be able to prove that the driver is innocent by showing the following:

  • Non-operation of a vehicle
  • Lack of serious injury
  • Non-impairment
  • Lack of causality—DWI wasn’t a proximate cause

An example is when one gets involved in a multi-vehicle accident that results in serious injuries to another. In this case, one may not be found guilty of Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle if the defense can prove they were not the cause of the accident that caused the injury to another even though they were intoxicated. In other words, DWI is not a proximate cause of harm to the other party.

Contact an Experienced North Carolina Criminal Defense Lawyer

Dealing with criminal charges is not easy. The distraction and the potential for the accusations to cause lifelong repercussions cannot be ignored. We understand how overwhelming it can feel to be or have a loved one facing allegations of Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle in North Carolina. As a rule of thumb, you’re innocent until proven guilty under the law. Therefore, it’s essential to do everything in your power to avoid conviction or lessen the penalties. First on the line is to retain an experienced North Carolina defense attorney to fight on your behalf.

The DWI and criminal defense lawyers at King Law have worked with North Carolina residents accused of various crimes for many years. We know both the law and the tactics prosecution uses to prove guilty against the accused. As such, we have built tried and proven methods to counter these tactics. Please call (888) 748-5464 or (888) 748-KING to arrange a consultation. You can also fill out our contact form.