Getting you the compensation you deserve after a drunk driver's reckless decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Des Plaines, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Des Plaines, IL. If a selfish drunk driver injured you or someone you love, call the Des Plaines, 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 Des Plaines and throughout Illinois by defending their rights.

You can do everything right to protect yourself and your loved ones, but reckless drivers can still cause incredible devastation. Whether you were driving home from dinner or just running errands, all of a sudden your entire life was turned upside down when you did nothing wrong. The Des Plaines, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law have devoted their careers to helping people like you get peace and great compensation when they may be feeling like no one could help them. We know the medical bills are piling up, you are losing time off work and everything seems different than it was before your accident. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the commitment, skill and aggressive 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 that the vulnerable in Des Plaines and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Our case reviews are no-risk, no-obligation, and you do not owe us a thing until you receive the settlement check you deserve.

If you were injured by a thoughtless drunk driver, see how much your claim 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 Des Plaines, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

Law enforcement will likely file charges against the drunk driver who caused the accident. Still, only a personal injury lawyer can get you a financial recovery for all of your damages. Knowledgeable, seasoned and tenacious drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation 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 Des Plaines, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers for My Claim?

Every accident is unique, and you can only truly know when to hire a personal injury lawyer by seeking a consultation with one. If there is no dispute about who is at fault 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, there are often many good reasons you will want a drunk driving accident lawyer on your side:

  • The other driver will not admit fault. Drunk drivers who cause injuries will go in front of a judge in criminal court, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not face fines, a suspended license and possibly jail time. While while not every drunk driver is found guilty, 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 their investigative and litigation skills 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 fulfill their commitment when one of their policyholders decides to make a irresponsible decision that ends up injuring you, an insurance adjusters real job is to save the company money, not fairly compensate you. Even in the event that the driver is willing to be held accountable, the insurance company might try to persuade you that your injuries were not actually caused by the accident or that they do not have to pay for lost wages because you had paid time off available. Those are all lies, and an accomplished drunk driving accident lawyer will fight back and let the insurance adjuster know we mean business.
  • The drunk driver is not the only one responsible. While a drunk driver is obviously to blame, other parties may be at fault, such as a friend of the driver who knowingly let them use the car while drunk. Drunk driving accident lawyers will conduct a detailed investigation and identify everyone whose negligence contributed to your injuries. This is especially important when the policy limits are not sufficient to pay for the full scope of your injuries.
  • Your injuries are severe. The more grave your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes calculating the full value of your damages more challenging, and will cause the insurance company to fight back against giving you a fair settlement. Skilled and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only ensure you receive the entirety of your damages, but we can connect you to trusted physicians to make sure you get the medical treatment you need.

At Burger Law, we answer all of your questions for free. Call 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 it is worth it or not for you to hire an attorney for your claim.

Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Seeing how many people choose to drink and drive can be pretty sobering. Every day there are about 28 fatal drunk driving accidents, adding up to roughly one death in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have steadily declined since 1982, drunk drivers are still responsible for 29 percent of all auto related fatalities. While safe driving campaigns and stiff punishments for drunk driving have certainly done a lot to make our roads safer, some careless Des Plaines, IL individuals still make the irresponsible decision to jeopardize others' safety while not understanding or not caring about the potential consequences of their actions. When that happens and you or a loved one are injured, you deserve to be justly compensated with a maximum recovery and the reckless driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Des Plaines, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will fight to make sure that you receive maximum compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts reported that almost 20 percent of the 1,088 accidents that caused fatalities in the state involved a drunk driver. Alcohol was found in the symptoms of 37.1 percent of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

Alcohol's Impact on Driving Abilities | Des Plaines, 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 sufficient to significantly impede someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and poor judgment. At .05 percent - reached after roughly three drinks - a driver experiences lowered coordination, reduced ability to track movement, difficulty steering and not being able to respond quickly to unexpected things on the road. It is crucial to follow proper road safety and find other means of getting home if you have had too much to drink. Unfortunately, sometimes you can follow all the rules ourselves and still experience the horrible and unfair consequences of a reckless Des Plaines, IL motorist making a selfish decision, getting behind the wheel while intoxicated and harming you or a family member. Just knowing the harsh penalties that come with a DWI conviction cannot truly compensate you and your family for all of the ways they have impacted your life. Trust in the accomplished and skilled Des Plaines, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to make sure you recover fair compensation for all of your damages. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to find out the best way to proceed and start on the road to recovery.

Drunk Driving Laws in Des Plaines and Illinois

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

  • It is a third or subsequent violation
  • The driver caused a motor vehicle accident that resulted in great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to another
  • The driver caused an accident in a school zone that resulted in personal injury

Other instances in which it is a more serious crime are:

View More FAQs

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the driver was required to act in a certain, safe way.
  2. Breach of Duty That the driver failed or was negligent in that duty.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident resulted in your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the driver's failure to act in a way that avoided hurting you caused the accident that caused your injuries.
  5. Damages That the accident led to tangible loss, such as monetary damages like damage to your car as well as pain and suffering. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were also monetary losses.

There are two aspects that make drunk driving accident cases different 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 pedestrians or other vehicles. Meaning the first element is a given. Secondly, the legal philosophy of negligence per se states that anyone who violates a state statute is automatically considered to have breached their duty of care. 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 prove is that the driver caused the accident and injured you.

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 vital to have aggressive and skilled Des Plaines, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to fight on your behalf and fight until you get the best results in your claim.

Is Anybody Else Liable for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Des Plaines, IL?

The driver is clearly to blame for their irresponsible decision making, but drunk driving accident lawyers well-versed in Illinois law will be able to conduct a full investigation and determine if any of the other following parties share liability:

A Bar, Restaurant 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 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 more liberal than 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 someone underage. You just have to demonstrate:

  • That the establishment sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate through surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness or employee testimony
  • That the customer they sold to was responsible for the drunk driving accident
  • That the vendor is responsible for the patron being drunk

You can only sue a social host — meaning someone who furnishes liquor to a guest in a private residence — if the driver liable for your injuries was under the age of 21 and became intoxicated at the party.

Annually, the Illinois Comptroller stipulates 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 making a claim for the accident, or $95,073.37 if the accident led to 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 make a claim against the owner. In a negligent entrustment case, someone may owe you damages if they permit someone else 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 case in Des Plaines, IL, that means that you must show that the owner of the vehicle purposely allowed the other driver to use their car, 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 someone who earns a living as a driver, for example in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, the driver's employer may be partially to blame. Negligence that could result in liability could include:

Experienced Des Plaines, IL drunk driving accident lawyers like those at Burger Law have experience with all of these types of cases and know how to get results in them. When you hire us, we start investigating your case immediately to determine everyone who is responsible for your injuries.

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

Civil claims in the United States are based on the principle of making one whole. "Being made whole" means that when another party is responsible for your injuries, 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 rear-end accident, that might mean paying for lost wages, follow-up doctors' appointments and the physical strain that comes with rehabilitating from a whiplash injury for a little while. In the worst cases, for example if you lose a loved one, no amount of money can genuinely compensate you, but the amount should be great enough to provide a least some sense of justice.

Damages in a personal injury claim are broken down into three distinct groups:

  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 firm dollar figure. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any urgent care, surgeries, medications, chiropractic appointments and in-home nursing. You will also be reimbursed for any medical expenses that will arise in the future.
    • Lost wages and lost earning capacity — Lost wages refer to the pay you lost from not being on the job as you were healing. If your injury caused a disability that no longer allows you to earn a living as you once did, you will also be compensated for the salary 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 chiropractic appointments, or had to invest in childcare while you were recovering, you deserve a financial recovery for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical bills or lost earning potential, 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 effects on your well-being, which can be anything anything from difficulty standing up and sitting down to the emotional impact of not being able to engage in the same activities anymore.
    • Disability if you sustained permanent physical or cognitive impairments due to the accident.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in lasting scarring or loss of limb.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your partner from the companionship and intimate relationships you grew accustomed to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your loved ones can no longer share the same counsel and camaraderie they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are not common in personal injury claims, and are intended to punish the drunk driver and deter 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 help win you the money you are owed, but it also motivates the insurance company to be fair as there is no coverage for punitive damages Pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-604.1, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers may be awarded punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially appalling conduct. At Burger Law, we have learned that anyone who gets behind the wheel while under the influence how much of a potential threat they are to other people on the roads.

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

Call Burger Law Now

Des Plaines, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including irresponsible drivers who do not want to take responsibility for their actions and resistant insurance companies focus more on think it is acceptable to withhold the money you are owed. For that reason, each of our Des Plaines-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has devoted their careers to defending the rights of the injured and vulnerable. You will not see us 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 constantly fine-tuning our lawyer skills to deliver the best results for our clients in Des Plaines and throughout Illinois. We know your actions did not cause this trying time; someone else's selfish decisions did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Des Plaines, 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