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

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Farmer City, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Farmer City, IL. If you or a loved one was injured because someone else broke the rules of the road and got behind the wheel drunk, call the Farmer City, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a free case evaluation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Farmer City and throughout Illinois by fighting on their behalf so they can focus on healing.

You can do everything possible to protect yourself and your loved ones, but thoughtless drivers can still cause unimaginable destruction. Whether you were on your way home for your in-laws or just running errands, all of a sudden your entire life was turned upside down when you did nothing wrong. The Farmer City, 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 are losing time off work and your life is not the same as it just a short while ago. You do not have to go through this alone. With the dedication, skill and unshakable legal representation of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our over 30 years of experience, we have recovered over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Farmer City 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 careless drunk driver, discover 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

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

A prosecutor will likely hold a drunk driver accountable in criminal court. Still, you will still need a personal injury lawyer to stand up to the drunk driver in civil court and get you the monetary reimbursement you are owed. Knowledgeable, veteran and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get the best possible financial recovery by:

At Burger Law, we know auto accident claims and how to stand up to bullies.

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

Every injury case is different, and you can only truly know when to hire a personal injury lawyer by seeking a consultation with one. If the driver accepts culpability and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, it may not be worth it to hire an attorney. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • The drunk driver refuses to be held accountable for their actions. Drunk drivers who cause injuries will probably be prosecuted, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not be sentenced in criminal court. 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 their investigative and litigation skills in order to hold the negligent driver accountable.
  • The insurance company is not being fair. Ideally insurance companies would realize their responsibility when one of their policyholders drives drunk and injures you, that is not always the case. 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 you waited too long to seek medical treatment. Those are all deceptions aimed at devaluing your claim, and an accomplished drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to combat those deceitful tactics and get you the financial recovery you deserve.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is obviously at fault, other entities may be at fault, such as a restaurant that overserved the driver. Drunk driving accident lawyers will conduct a thorough investigation and identify all liable parties. Finding other liable parties is crucial when the policy limits are not sufficient to pay for the full scope of your injuries.
  • Your injuries require ongoing care. The more serious your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes valuing your damages more complex, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to devalue your damages as much as possible. Tenacious and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only be able to calculate and demand full compensation, but we will help you receive all of the appropriate medical care.

At Burger Law, our consultations and initial investigations are free. Reach out to us now at (314) 500-HURT to talk 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.

Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

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 fatalities as of 2018. While organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving and harsh punishments for drunk driving have certainly done wonders for reducing drunk driving, some selfish Farmer City, IL individuals still make the irresponsible decision to put others at risk while not understanding or not caring about the potential consequences of their actions. If you are harmed as a result, you deserve to be justly compensated with a complete recovery and the negligent driver needs to be held accountable for what they did. The Farmer City, 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 almost 40 percent of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

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

While the legal limit for alcohol consumption before driving is .08 percent blood alcohol concentration, a level of only .02 percent is enough to substantially impede someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in sight, inability to do two things at once, a change in mood and poor judgment. At .05 percent - the product of roughly three alcohol beverages - a motorist suffers from lowered coordination, reduced ability to track moving objects, difficulty steering and not being able to respond quickly to unexpected things on the road. It is key to follow proper road safety and find other means of transport if you are not in the best condition to drive. Regrettably, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still be left to pick up the pieces after the terrible consequences of a thoughtless Farmer City, IL motorist making a selfish decision, driving drunk and hurting you or someone you love. Just knowing that the negligent driver will likely face criminal charges, steep fees, restrictions on their license and possibly jail time is not enough. You need the savvy and proficient Farmer City, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to to see things made right. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to discuss your options and begin on the road to feeling that true justice was achieved.

Drunk Driving Laws in Farmer City and Illinois

According 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 it 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 lead to great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to someone else
  • The driver caused an accident in a school zone that lead to bodily harm

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.

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How Do You Prove a Drunk Driving Accident Claim in Farmer City, 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 driver did not act in a way that kept you safe.
  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 damage to your car as well as emotional distress. 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 most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that motorists are legally compelled to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with anyone else on the road. Meaning you do not have to prove the driver owed you a duty of care, as it is already stipulated under the law. Secondly, the legal doctrine of negligence per se stipulates that anyone who breaks the law is automatically considered to have breached their duty of care. Therefore, in drunk driving cases the first two elements are taken care of under the condition that you can demonstrate that the driver was inebriated. All your drunk driving accident lawyers will need to demonstrate is that the driver caused the accident and that that is how you sustained your injuries.

None of that means you should take the success of your case for granted; the truth is that many drunk drivers try to avoid taking responsibility and their insurance company will do what they can to help them. That is why it is crucial to have aggressive and talented Farmer City, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to fight on your behalf and get the best results in your claim.

Is Anybody Else Liable for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Farmer City, IL?

The driver is clearly to blame for their horrible 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

Dram shop rules permit you to sue a bar or restaurant 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 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 demonstrate:

  • That the bar or restaurant sold the driver alcohol, which you can show with surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the customer they served caused 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 drunk driver was not old enough to drink legally and became inebriated at the party.

Every 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, the maximum is $77,787.30 for each injured party, or $95,073.37 if the accident led to loss of support or loss of society due to the wrongful death of a loved one.

The Owner of the Vehicle

If the driver was driving someone else's car, the owner may be liable for a portion of your damages. According to the doctrine of negligent entrustment, it is negligent to permit a third person to use something which is under the control of the actor if that would create an unreasonable risk of harm to others. In a drunk driving accident suit in Farmer City, 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 your accident was caused by someone who earns a living as a driver, for example 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. Negligence that could result in liability could include:

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

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

The civil court system in the United States is based on the principle of making one whole. The concept is that when a person or organization injures you, 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 money you lost from work while recovering, physical therapy appointments and the physical strain that is a result of rehabilitating from a neck injury for a few months. In the worst cases, for example if you lose a loved one, no financial recovery can genuinely compensate you, but the settlement or verdict should be great enough to provide a least some sense of comfort.

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

  1. Economic damages — This the totaling of all the bills and lost income related to your injury. It is a firm dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the accident, operations, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical rehabilitation appointments and in-home care. 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 — You will be reimbursed for full amount of the wages you lost from not being physically able to work. If your injury resulted in a long-term or permanent injury that no longer permits 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 physical therapy 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 defines noneconomic damages as "intangible" damages, "including but not limited to":
    • Pain and suffering refers to the physical and mental pain you have been put through, which can include anything from pain when bending over to tie your shoes to the emotional impact of not being able to pick up your kids anymore.
    • Disability for any life-long physical or cognitive difficulties the irresponsible driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if the accident caused lasting scarring or loss of limb.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your spouse from the love and intimate relationships you grew accustomed to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your loved ones can no longer share the same advice and camaraderie that was once offered.
  3. Punitive damages These are rarely awarded in personal injury recoveries, and are intended to punish the drunk driver and discourage others from making the same mistakes. When we sue drunk drivers, we always pursue punitive damages. Not only does that increase your financial recovery, but it also puts the insurance company on their heels as there is no coverage for punitive damages According 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 egregious conduct. It is clear to us that anyone who gets behind the wheel while drunk is demonstrating a blatant lack of respect for your safety.

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

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Farmer City, 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 money than morals. For that reason, each of our Farmer City-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their education and abilities to standing up for the injured and vulnerable. We are not on TV or billboards. When we are not investigating and litigating cases, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently fine-tuning our negotiation and trial skills to deliver maximum compensation for our clients in Farmer City and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's selfish behavior did. For knowledgeable, compassionate and aggressive representation, call the Farmer City, 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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