Securing justice after someone else's terrible decision left you to pick up the pieces

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Dover, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Dover, IL. If an irresponsible drunk driver injured you or a loved one, call the Dover, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a free case review. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Dover and throughout Illinois by defending their rights.

You can follow all the rules of the road, but irresponsible drivers can still change your life without warning. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or lazily driving around on the weekend, all of a sudden your entire life was completely disrupted through no fault of your own. The Dover, 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 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 just a short while ago. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the dedication, skill and unshakable 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 gotten over $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Dover, IL clients. Our case reviews are no-risk, no-obligation, and we do not charge any fees until you get the great compensation you deserve.

If you were harmed by a reckless drunk driver, see how much your damages 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 Dover, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

Law enforcement will likely do everything they can to convict a drunk driver criminally. Still, only a personal injury lawyer can get you the monetary reimbursement you are owed. Knowledgeable, accomplished and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation by:

At Burger Law, we have over 30 years of experience handling all types of auto accident claims and getting full compensation for our clients.

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

Every auto wreck is different, and you can only truly know when to hire a personal injury lawyer by seeking the advise of one. If there is no dispute about who is at fault and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, you may very well be able to get a fair settlement offer from the insurance company. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • The other driver will not admit fault. Drunk drivers who cause injuries are likely looking at criminal charges as well, and may not want to admit liability in order to not face the harsh penalties of a DUI. While drunk driving charges can sometimes be dropped or reduced, 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 utilize the law in order to prove that the defendant were drunk and injured you.
  • The insurance company refuses to offer a full settlement. While you would like to think insurance companies would fulfill their duty when one of their policyholders injures you in a drunk driving accident, far too often that does not happen. Even if the driver is willing to be held accountable, the insurance company might try to say that your injuries are the result of other trauma or that a lawyer will only take money from you. Those are all deceptions aimed at minimizing your claim, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will fight back and let the insurance adjuster know we mean business.
  • There are multiple parties at fault. While a drunk driver is clearly to blame, other parties may bear partial responsibility, such as a friend of the driver who knowingly lent them the car while drunk. Drunk driving accident lawyers will thoroughly investigate your claim and identify anyone who bears responsibility for the accident. This is especially important when the policy limits are not sufficient to fully compensate you.
  • Your injuries will incur future medical expenses. The more severe your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes putting a dollar amount on your damages more challenging, and will cause the insurance company to fight back against giving you a fair settlement. Aggressive and compassionate drunk driving accident lawyers will not only ensure you receive the entirety of your damages, but we will ensure you receive all of the medical you need to recover.

At Burger Law, we answer all of your questions for free. Contact us now at (314) 500-HURT to speak directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be straightforward with you about whether you need an attorney to get the best results in your case.

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

Understanding just how bad the problem of drinking and driving can be quite sobering. Every day there are about 28 fatal drunk driving accidents, adding up to roughly one death every 52 minutes. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have steadily declined in the last 40 years, drunk drivers still account for three-tenths of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving and harsh punishments for drunk driving have definitely helped, some selfish Dover, IL residents still decide to disregard others' well-being because of a misplaced self-centeredness. If you are injured as a result, you deserve to be justly compensated with a full recovery and the negligent driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Dover, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will use or skills and dedication to see wrongs made right.

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

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Dover, 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 just .02 percent is sufficient to considerably impede someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and inadequate judgment. At .05 percent - reached after roughly three drinks - a motorist experiences reduced coordination, reduced ability to trace moving objects, challenges maneuvering and a slower response to emergency situations. It is vital to exercise great caution and always have someone else drive if you have been drinking. Regrettably, sometimes you can commit to protecting others on the road and still be left reeling from the devastating consequences of a dangerous Dover, IL motorist making a selfish decision, driving drunk and hurting you or someone you love. Just knowing the harsh penalties that come with a DWI conviction does not make you whole again. Trust in the experienced and proficient Dover, 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 feeling that true justice was achieved.

Drunk Driving Laws in Dover and Illinois

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

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

Other instances in which the penalty is more severe are:

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the driver had a responsibility to keep you safe.
  2. Breach of Duty That the defendant did not do what they should have in order to avoid hurting you.
  3. Cause in Fact That your injuries are a direct result of the accident.
  4. Proximate Cause That the driver's negligence is the reason for the accident.
  5. Damages That you have sustained losses, such as economic damages like lost wages as well as pain and suffering. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were associated monetary losses.

There are two factors that make drunk driving accident cases different from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 stipulates that motorists are to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with anyone else on the road. Meaning a driver automatically owed you a duty of care. Secondly, the legal doctrine of negligence per se states that anyone who violates a state statute automatically did not act in a reasonable manner to avoid injuring you. Therefore, in drunk driving cases the first two elements are granted automatically 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 compensation you are owed; 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 key to have tenacious and accomplished Dover, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to stand up for you and get the financial recovery you deserve.

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

A driver is not the only one who may be held responsible in your case. Other third parties include:

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Many states have what is known as a dram shop rule, 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 stipulated in 235 ILCS 5/6-15 of the Illinois Liquor Control Act. Illinois' dram shop law less strict 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 prove:

  • That the vendor sold the driver alcohol, which you can show through surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the customer they served caused your injuries
  • That the the patron became inebriated because of the alcohol that was sold to him

You can only sue a social host — meaning someone who furnishes liquor to a guest in a private residence — if the driver responsible for your injuries was not of legal age to drink and became intoxicated at the party.

Each year the Illinois Comptroller sets 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 injured party, 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 you were injured by a vehicle that was not being driven by the owner, the owner may be responsible for percentage of your damages. In a negligent entrustment case, someone may owe you damages if they permit a third person to use a thing which is under the control of the actor if that would create an unreasonable risk of harm to others. In a drunk driving accident claim in Dover, 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 was too drunk to drive.

The Driver's Employer

If you were injured by someone who earns a living as a driver, such as in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, you may be able to make a claim against the company that contracted and directed the driver. Reasons they are liable could include:

While drunk driving accident claims can seem pretty cut-and-dry, it is imperative to hire an experienced Dover, IL drunk driving accident lawyer so they can conduct an exhaustive investigation into your accident. Doing so will not only make sure every at-fault party is held responsible, but will also increase your compensation and secure you the full financial recovery you are owed.

What Damages Are Available for My Dover, 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 injures you, you should be paid a dollar amount commensurate to the extent of your damages. In many car accident claims, for example a a low-speed crash in a parking lot, that might mean paying for lost wages, chiropractic appointments and the physical strain that comes with rehabilitating from a lower back injury for a relatively short period of time. In the most tragic cases, for example if you or a loved one has permanent disability, no amount of money can genuinely make you whole, but the settlement or verdict should be great enough to provide a least some sense of restitution.

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 an unbiased dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any urgent care, surgeries, medications, physical therapy appointments and assistive devices such as wheelchairs. You will also receive compensation for any treatment, joint replacements or replacement assistive devices you may need 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 long-term or permanent injury that no longer allows you to perform the tasks required of your job, 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 gas to and from chiropractic appointments, or had to send your child to daycare because you could not look after them, you deserve to be compensated for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical expenses 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 effects on your well-being, which can include anything from difficulty bending over to tie your shoes to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability if you have permanent physical or cognitive impairments after the accident.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in lasting scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries impede you and your significant other from the companionship and intimate relationships you grew accustomed to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries prevent you from giving or your loved ones from receiving the same guidance and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are rarely awarded in personal injury recoveries, and are intended to punish the defendant and deter others from making the same mistakes. When we file a lawsuit against drunk drivers, we always seek punitive damages. Not only does that increase your compensation, but it also makes the insurance company nervous as their policyholders do not pay for punitive damages in their policies Under 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 behavior. At Burger Law, we have learned that anyone who sits in the drivers seat while drunk knows exactly how reckless they are being.

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

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Dover, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including selfish drivers do not value other people's safety and resistant insurance companies focus more on think it is acceptable to withhold the financial recovery you are owed. That is why each of our Dover-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their careers to standing up for the injured and vulnerable. We have no interest in TV or billboards. When we are not working tirelessly on one of our client's claims, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently fine-tuning our negotiation and trial skills to get great recoveries for our clients in Dover and throughout Illinois. We know you did nothing to become injured; someone else's horrible decisions did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Dover, 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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