Getting you the compensation you deserve after someone else's reckless decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Champaign, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Champaign, IL. If a selfish drunk driver hurt you or a loved one, call the Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a free consultation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Champaign and throughout Illinois by securing them the maximum compensation they are owed.

You can do everything you are supposed to to keep other drivers, passengers and pedestrians safe, but reckless drivers can still put you in harm's way and unfairly injure you. Whether you were on your way home for your in-laws or lazily driving around on a Saturday, your life was immediately completely disrupted through no fault of your own. The Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law to getting the best possible outcomes for our clients and seeing them made whole again. We know the medical bills are accumulating, you you cannot earn a living right now and it is hard to get the same enjoyment out of life that you did just a short while ago. You do not have to go through this alone. With the dedication, skill and aggressive legal representation of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our more than 30 years of defending the rights of the injured, we have secured more than $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Champaign, IL clients. Our case reviews are no-risk, no-obligation, and we do not charge any fees until we win your case.

If you were hurt by a thoughtless drunk driver, see how much your injuries may be worth by utilizing our free personal injury calculator.

Chicago

Chicago

22 W Washington St
Suite 1500 A
Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: (312) 500-4878

View Location

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

Law enforcement will likely do everything they can to convict a drunk driver criminally. However, you will still need a personal injury lawyer to stand up to the drunk driver in civil court and get you full compensation for your injuries. Knowledgeable, experienced and tenacious drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get justice by:

At Burger Law, we know the ins-and-outs of every type of auto accident claim and know how to get great compensation.

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

That depends on the particulars of your case, and if you have never had to hire an attorney before it may be difficult to gauge when to hire a personal injury lawyer. If the driver is taking responsibility for his actions and your injuries are minor and only require an appointment with your primary care physician, it may not be worth it to hire an attorney. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • The other driver will not admit fault. Drunk drivers who cause injuries will probably be prosecuted, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not face the harsh penalties of a DUI. While a capable defense lawyer may be able to get a drunk driver off on criminal charges, you can still sue a drunk driver if they were found not guilty in their criminal case. Experienced drunk driving accident lawyers will know how to obtain key evidence in order to get you the results you deserve.
  • The insurance adjuster refuses to offer a full settlement. In a perfect world insurance companies would fulfill their duty when one of their policyholders injures you in a drunk driving accident, an insurance adjusters real job is to save the company money, not fairly compensate you. Even if the driver admits liability, the insurance company might try to say that your injuries were not actually caused by the accident or you only have a limited amount of time to accept their low offer. Those are all lies, and a talented drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to combat those deceitful tactics and get you the financial recovery you deserve.
  • The drunk driver is not the only one responsible. While a drunk driver is obviously at fault, other entities may be at fault, such as a friend of the driver who knowingly lent them the vehicle while drunk. Drunk driving accident lawyers will thoroughly investigate your claim and identify everyone whose negligence contributed to your injuries. Finding other liable parties is vital when the policy limits are not sufficient to fully compensate you.
  • Your injuries need extensive medical treatment. The more grave your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes valuing your damages more complex, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to minimize your injuries as much as possible. Tenacious and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only ensure you receive the entirety of your damages, but we will help you receive all of the appropriate medical care.

At Burger Law, we answer all of your questions for free. Reach out to us now at (314) 500-HURT to talk directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be straightforward with you about whether it is worth it or not for you to hire an attorney for your claim.

How Often Do Drunk Driving Accidents Happen in Missouri and the U.S.?

Seeing how many people choose to drink and drive can be pretty sobering. Every day 28 people are killed in accidents caused by drunk drivers, adding up to roughly one death in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and deaths have steadily become less common in the last 40 years, drunk drivers still account for 29 percent of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While awareness campaigns and harsh punishments for drunk driving have certainly helped, some careless Champaign, IL individuals still make the terrible decision to disregard others' well-being just so they can have a good time and skip on paying for a taxi. If you are hurt as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the reckless driver needs to pay for the harm they have caused. The Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will use or skills and dedication to see wrongs made right.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts states that 19.7 percent of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved alcohol. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, over a third tested positive.

Alcohol's Impact on Driving Abilities | Champaign, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

While it is only illegal to drink and drive if your blood alcohol concentration is over .008 percent, a level of just .02 percent is enough to considerably impair someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in visual functions, inability to perform two tasks at the same time, an altered mood and poor judgment. At .05 percent - the product of roughly three drinks - a driver experiences reduced coordination, inability to trace movement, difficulty maneuvering and a slower response to emergency situations. It is vital to do you part in protecting other drivers, passengers and pedestrians and find other ways of transport if you have been drinking. Regrettably, sometimes you can follow all the rules ourselves and still experience the horrible and unfair consequences of a dangerous Champaign, IL motorist making a selfish decision, driving while intoxicated and hurting you or someone you care about. Just knowing the harsh penalties that come with a DWI conviction does not make you whole again. You need the accomplished and talented Champaign, 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 go over your case and start on the path to being made whole again.

Drunk Driving Laws in Champaign and Illinois

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

  • It is a third or subsequent violation
  • 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 lead to personal injury

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

View More FAQs

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

There are five elements needed in order to prove negligence in a personal injury claim:

  1. Duty of Care That the defendant was required to act in a certain, safe way.
  2. Breach of Duty That the defendant failed or was negligent in that duty.
  3. Cause in Fact That your injuries are a direct result of the accident.
  4. Proximate Cause That the accident would not have happened but for the defendant's failure to use reasonable care.
  5. Damages That the negligence was the reason you sustained a loss, such as monetary damages like lost wages as well as noneconomic damages. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were associated economic damages.

There are two factors that make drunk driving accident lawsuits different from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that drivers are required to to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with other cars, pedestrians and bicyclists. Meaning the first element is a given. Secondly, the legal philosophy of negligence per se states that anyone who violates a state statute is negligent as a matter of law. Therefore, in drunk driving cases you only need to show that the driver was drunk in order to prove the first two elements. All your drunk driving accident lawyers will need to show at that point is that the accident caused your injuries and that you incurred losses as a result.

None of that means you should take the success of your case for granted; drunk drivers often do not want to be held accountable and their insurance companies do what they can to help their bottom line. That is why it is imperative to have tenacious and skilled Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers by your side to get the compensation you are owed.

Are Any Third Parties Liable for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Champaign, IL?

The driver is clearly liable for their reckless decision making, but drunk driving accident lawyers experienced with Illinois law will be able to conduct a full investigation and determine if anyone else is at fault:

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Dram shop laws permit you to sue a bar or restaurant after a drunk driving accident if the accident caused you injuries. Illinois' dram shop laws are explained in 235 ILCS 5/6-15 of the Illinois Liquor Control Act. Illinois' dram shop law is different from many other states' in that your drunk driving accident lawyers do not have to prove the vendor did anything wrong, such as sell alcohol to a visibly intoxicated person. You just have to demonstrate:

  • That the bar or restaurant sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate with security footage, receipts or eyewitness or employee testimony
  • That the patron they sold to caused 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 driver liable for your injuries was not old enough to drink legally and became intoxicated at the private residence.

Annually, the Illinois Comptroller places dram shop liability limits on how much compensation you can receive in a dram shop case. As of Jan. 20, 2022, those limits are $77,787.30 for each person incurring damages, or $95,073.37 if the accident caused loss of support or loss of society a family member's wrongful death.

The Owner of the Vehicle

If the driver of the vehicle was not the owner of the vehicle, you may be able to file a suit against the owner. According to the doctrine of negligent entrustment, it is negligent to permit a third person to use a thing which is under the control of the actor if if permitting the activity creates an inherent risk. In a drunk driving accident suit in Champaign, 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 was in no condition to operate a vehicle.

The Driver's Employer

If your accident was caused by a commercial driver, for example in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, the driver's employer may have some liability. Negligence that could result in liability could include:

Experienced Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers like those at Burger Law have experience with all of these types of cases and know how to hold the appropriate parties liable. When you hire us, we start investigating your case right away to determine everyone who is responsible for your injuries.

What Damages Are Available for My Champaign, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Tort claims in the United States are based on the theory of being made whole. "Being made whole" means that when another party is responsible 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, being made whole means recovering compensation for lost wages, physical therapy appointments and the pain that comes with rehabilitating from a whiplash injury for a little while. In the worst cases, for example if you or a loved one loses a limb, no financial recovery can be expected to make you whole, but the amount should be great enough to provide a least some sense of comfort.

You can typically recover three types 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 an unbiased dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the accident, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical rehabilitation appointments and assistive devices such as crutches. You will also be reimbursed for any medical bills that will arise in the future.
    • Lost wages and lost earning capacity — Lost wages refer to the pay you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. If your injury resulted in a disability that no longer allows you to work, we will also help you receive compensation for the money you would have earned but are no longer able to.
    • Out-of-pocket expenses — If you had to pay for Uber to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to send your child to daycare because you could not look after them, you need to be repaid for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical bills or lost earning capacity, drunk driving accident lawyers will make sure the compensation adjusts for inflation as well.

  2. Noneconomic damages 735 ILCS 5/2-1115.2 defines noneconomic damages as "intangible" damages, "including but not limited to":
    • Pain and suffering refers to the physical and mental effects on your well-being, which can include anything from difficulty turning your head to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability if you have permanent physical or cognitive difficulties due to the accident.
    • Disfigurement if your injuries result in permanent scarring or loss of limb.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your partner from the love and intimate relationships you grew accustomed to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries impede you from giving or your loved ones from receiving the same guidance and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are not common in personal injury compensation, and are intended to punish the defendant and discourage future misbehavior. We are aggressive in our pursuit of punitive damages in drunk driving accident claims. Not only does that help win you the money you are owed, but it also makes the insurance company nervous because there is no coverage for punitive damages Pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-604.1, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers can seek punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially appalling conduct. It is clear to us that anyone who gets behind the wheel while under the influence is demonstrating a brazen lack of respect for your safety.

In addition, our Champaign, IL attorneys have decades of experience winning cases in:

Call Burger Law Now

Champaign, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including selfish drivers do not respect other people's safety and resistant insurance companies whose prioritize more their profits than doing the right thing. That is why each of our Champaign-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has devoted their careers to defending the rights of the injured and vulnerable. We have no interest in TV or billboards. When we are not investigating and litigating cases, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently sharpening our negotiation and trial skills to deliver great recoveries for our clients in Champaign and throughout Illinois. We know your actions did not cause this trying time; someone else's irresponsible decisions did. For knowledgeable, passionate and tenacious representation, call the Champaign, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT or fill out our online form.

Request a Free Consultation


“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

Hurt? Hire Us Today or call (314) 500-HURT

Other Locations

Schema