Making you whole again after someone else's selfish decision left you to pick up the pieces

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Bloomingdale, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Bloomingdale, IL. If you or a loved one was injured because someone else did not respect your safety and got behind the wheel drunk, call the Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a no-risk, no-obligation consultation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Bloomingdale and throughout Illinois by defending their rights.

You can do everything you are supposed to to keep other drivers, passengers and pedestrians safe, but careless drivers can still cause unimaginable damage. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or just running errands, all of a sudden your entire life was completely disrupted through no fault of your own. The Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law truly care about out clients and their cases and families mean something to us. We know the medical bills keep coming in, you you cannot earn a living right now and it is hard to get the same enjoyment out of life that you did in the not-too-distance past. We will fight for you until there is nothing left to fight. With the commitment, knowledge and tenacious legal representation of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our over 30 years of experience, we have secured over $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Bloomingdale, IL clients. Talking to us is free, and you do not owe us a thing until you receive the settlement check you deserve.

If you were harmed by a reckless drunk driver, see how much your claim may be worth by filling out our free personal injury calculator.

Chicago

Chicago

22 W Washington St
Suite 1500 A
Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: (312) 500-4878

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What Can Bloomingdale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

Law enforcement will likely hold a drunk driver accountable in criminal court. But, a personal injury lawyer is still necessary to get you the monetary reimbursement you are owed. Knowledgeable, seasoned and aggressive drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation by:

At Burger Law, we know auto accident claims and how to fight back against bullies.

Do I Need Bloomingdale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers for My Claim?

The only way to know when to hire a personal injury lawyer is by having a professional examine the details of your accident. If the driver accepts culpability and your injuries are minor and only require a quick trip to the emergency room, a lawyer likely will not be able to add much value to your claim. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • The drunk driver will not take responsibility for their actions. Drunk drivers who cause injuries are likely looking at criminal charges as well, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not face fines, a suspended license and possibly jail time. While drunk driving charges can sometimes be dropped or reduced, you can still sue a drunk driver if they were found not guilty in criminal court. Experienced drunk driving accident lawyers will know how to utilize the law in order to prove that the defendant were drunk and injured you.
  • The insurance adjuster refuses to offer a full settlement. Ideally insurance companies would recognize their responsibility when one of their policyholders drives drunk and injures you, an insurance adjusters real job is to save the company money, not fairly compensate you. Even in the event that the driver does take responsibility, the insurance company might try to say that your injuries are pre-existing or they only have to pay for some of your medical care. Those are all deceptions aimed at devaluing your claim, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will fight back and let the insurance adjuster know we mean business.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is clearly liable, other entities may be at fault, such as a restaurant that overserved the driver. Drunk driving accident lawyers will perform a comprehensive investigation and identify anyone who bears responsibility for the accident. Finding other liable parties is crucial when your damages exceed the driver's insurance policy limits.
  • Your injuries are severe. The more grave your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes valuing your damages more difficult, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to minimize your injuries as much as possible. Persistent and dedicated drunk driving accident lawyers will not only fight hard to get you the compensation you need and are owed, but we will ensure you receive all of the medical you need to recover.

At Burger Law, our consultations and initial investigations are free. Reach out to us now at (314) 500-HURT to speak for a candid conversation with a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be straightforward with you about whether we can add to your claim.

How Common is Drunk Driving in Bloomingdale, IL and the U.S.?

Understanding just how bad the problem of drinking and driving can be incredibly sobering. Every day 28 people are killed in accidents caused by drunk drivers, adding up to roughly one fatality in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and deaths have steadily become less common since 1982, drunk drivers still account for 29 percent of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving and strict punishments for drunk driving have definitely done a lot to make our communities safer, some selfish Bloomingdale, IL individuals still decide to put others at risk just so they can have a good time and skip on paying for an Uber. When that happens and you or a loved one are injured, you deserve to be fairly reimbursed with a maximum recovery and the reckless driver needs to be held accountable for breaking the rules. The Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will make sure both of those things come true.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts reported that almost one-fifth of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved a drunk driver. Alcohol was found in the symptoms of over a third of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Bloomingdale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

While it is only illegal to drink and drive if your blood alcohol concentration is more than .008 percent, a level of even .02 percent is enough to considerably reduce someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in visual functions, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and poor judgment. At .05 percent - the product of roughly three drinks - a person experiences reduced coordination, reduced ability to trace movement, difficulty steering and not being able to respond in enough time to unexpected things on the road. It is key to exercise great caution and always have someone else drive if you have had too much to drink. Regrettably, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still be left reeling from the horrible and unfair consequences of a dangerous Bloomingdale, IL motorist disregarding your safety, getting behind the wheel drunk and injuring you or someone you love. Just knowing that the person who hurt you will face harsh consequences in a criminal case cannot truly compensate you and your family for all of the ways they have impacted your life. You need the savvy and skilled Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to get you the full financial recovery you deserve. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to find out the best way to proceed and start on the path to recovery.

Drunk Driving Laws in Bloomingdale and Illinois

Pursuant to 625 ILCS 5/11-501 of the Illinois Vehicle Code, drunk or drug impaired driving is a Class A Misdemeanor. However, a driving under the influence becomes "aggravated driving under the influence" and a Class 4 Felony if:

  • The driver had more than two previous DUI offenses
  • An accident occurred that resulted in great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to someone else
  • The driver caused an accident in a school zone that resulted in personal injury

Third and fourth violations are Class 2 Felonies, a fifth violation is a Class 1 Felony, and sixth and subsequent violations are Class X Felonies.

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How Do You Prove a Drunk Driving Accident Claim in Bloomingdale, IL?

Generally, when you are proving negligence in a personal injury claim, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers must prove the five elements of negligence:

  1. Duty of Care That the defendant had a responsibility to avoid harming you.
  2. Breach of Duty That the driver did not use reasonable care.
  3. Cause in Fact That your injuries are a direct result of the accident.
  4. Proximate Cause That the defendant's failure to use reasonable care was the direct cause of the accident.
  5. Damages That you have sustained losses, such as monetary damages like lost wages as well as mental anguish. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were also monetary losses.

There are two aspects that set drunk driving accidents apart from the majority of personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 specifically states that people who get behind the wheel of a vehicle have an obligation to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with other cars, pedestrians and bicyclists. Meaning a driver automatically owed you a duty of care. Secondly, the legal theory of negligence per se states that anyone who breaks the law is negligent as a matter of law. Therefore, in drunk driving cases the first two elements are taken care of under the condition that you can demonstrate that the driver was driving drunk. All your drunk driving accident lawyers will need to show is that the driver caused the accident and that that is how you sustained your injuries.

Negligence per se does not mean you will automatically receive the money you are owed; the insurance company will still be motivated to pay you as little as possible. That is why it is vital to have dedicated and talented Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to stand up to bullies and get the best results in your claim.

Who Else Can I Sue for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Bloomingdale, IL?

It is important to find all liable parties, especially if the driver has policy limits that do not fully compensate you for your damages. Depending on the specifics of your case, you may be able to make a claim against:

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Many states have what is known as a dram shop law, under which you may be able sue a licensed alcohol vendor after a drunk driving accident if you were injuries. Illinois' dram shop laws are specified in 235 ILCS 5/6-15 of the Illinois Liquor Control Act. Illinois' dram shop law easier to apply than many other states' in that the drunk driver did not have to show significant impairment when they were sold alcohol in order for the vendor to be liable. You just have to demonstrate:

  • That the establishment sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate through security footage, receipts or eyewitness or employee testimony
  • That the patron they sold to was responsible for your injuries
  • That the vendor is responsible for the patron being drunk

You can only sue a social host — meaning someone who supplies their private guests with alcohol — if the drunk driver was not old enough to drink legally and became drunk at the party.

Every year the Illinois Comptroller stipulates dram shop liability limits on how much a vendor or social host is required to pay out. As of Jan. 20, 2022, those limits are $77,787.30 for each person making a claim for the accident, or $95,073.37 if the accident resulted in loss of support or loss of society a family member's wrongful death.

The Owner of the Vehicle

If you were injured by a vehicle that was not being driven by the owner, you may be able to make a claim against the owner. According to the practice of negligent entrustment, someone may owe you damages if they permit a third person to engage in an activity which is under the control of the actor if if permitting the activity creates an inherent risk. In a drunk driving accident suit in Bloomingdale, IL, that means that you must show that the owner of the vehicle purposely gave the keys to the drunk driver, and that the owner knew or should have known that the driver had had to much too drink.

The Driver's Employer

If you were injured by a commercial driver, such as in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, you may be able to make a claim against the company that hired and directed the driver. Examples of negligence on the part of the employer could include:

Experienced Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers like those at Burger Law have seen all of these types of claims and know how to hold the appropriate parties liable. When you hire us, we start investigating your case immediately to find everyone who is responsible for your injuries.

What Compensation Can I Recover for My Bloomingdale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

The civil court system in the United States is based on the doctrine of making one whole. The concept is that when a person or organization is at-fault for your damages, you should receive a financial recovery that is equal to the economic loss and physical pain their negligence put you through. In many car accident claims, for example a simple fender-bender, that might mean paying money you lost from work while recovering, chiropractic appointments and the physical strain that is a result of rehabilitating from a neck injury for a few months. In the most tragic cases, for example if you or a loved one loses a limb, no amount of money can be expected to compensate you, but the settlement or verdict should be high enough to encapsulate the terrible loss you have sustained.

There are three categories of damages in a personal injury claim:

  1. Economic damages — This refers to the total sum of the money you either lost out on or had to spend because of your injuries. It is a non-arguable dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the injury, operations, prescription or over-the-counter meds, chiropractic appointments and in-home care. You will also be reimbursed for any medical bills that will arise in the future.
    • Lost wages and lost earning capacity — You will be reimbursed for full amount of the wages you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. If your injury caused a long-term or permanent injury that no longer allows you to earn a living as you once did, you will also be compensated for the wages you would have made in the future, but for the injuries.
    • Out-of-pocket expenses — If you had to pay for transportation to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to invest in childcare while you were recovering, you need a financial recovery for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical bills or lost earning capacity, drunk driving accident lawyers will refer to their network of economic experts to be able to precisely account for inflation.

  2. Noneconomic damages 735 ILCS 5/2-1115.2 refers to noneconomic damages as "intangible" damages, "including but not limited to":
    • Pain and suffering refers to the physical and mental tribulations you have been put through, which can include anything from pain when sleeping in certain positions to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability for any life-long physical or cognitive challenges the irresponsible driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if your injuries caused lasting scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries impede you and your partner from the affection and intimate relationships you grew accustomed to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your family can no longer share the same counsel and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are typically not included in personal injury compensation, and are intended to punish the drunk driver and discourage others from making the same mistakes. Punitive damages can — and should — be sought when making a civil claim against a drunk driver. Not only does that increase your financial recovery, but it also helps secure a fair settlement from the insurance company as punitive damages are not covered under insurance policies Pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-604.1, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers can argue in favor of punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially appalling behavior. At Burger Law, we believe that anyone who drives under the influence is very aware of the danger their actions pose.

In addition, we have extensive experience winning the following cases for our Bloomingdale, IL clients:

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Bloomingdale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We hate bullies, including irresponsible drivers who do not want to take responsibility for their actions and resistant insurance companies whose prioritize more think it is acceptable to withhold the compensation you are owed. For that reason, each of our Bloomingdale-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their education and abilities to fighting on behalf of the injured and vulnerable. We are not on TV commercials or billboards. When we are not investigating claims or in the courtroom defending the rights of our clients, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently fine-tuning our negotiation and trial skills to secure the best results for our clients in Bloomingdale and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's irresponsible decisions did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Bloomingdale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT or fill out our online form.

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“Gary and his team provided us with effective, efficient and highly professional service. Gary provides sound advice and is a trustworthy and ethical attorney. I highly recommend the team!”

David and Fran Schneider

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