Making you whole again after someone else's terrible decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Grand Ridge, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Grand Ridge, 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 Grand Ridge, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a complimentary case evaluation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Grand Ridge and throughout Illinois by fighting on their behalf so they can focus on healing.

You can follow all the rules of the road, but careless drivers can still put you in harm's way and unfairly injure you. Whether you were driving home from dinner or lazily driving around on a Saturday, your life was unexpectedly completely disrupted through no fault of your own. The Grand Ridge, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law have devoted their careers to helping individuals and families like you get peace of mind and great financial recoveries when they may be feeling like there was no light at the end of the tunnel. We know the medical bills are piling up, you may not be able to work because of your injuries and it is hard to get the same enjoyment out of life that you did just a short while ago. We will fight for you until there is nothing left to fight. With the compassions, expertise and unshakable legal counsel of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our more than 30 years of experience, we have won over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Grand Ridge and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Talking to us is free, and you do not owe us a thing until you receive the settlement check you deserve.

If you were injured by an irresponsible 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

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What Can Grand Ridge, 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 full compensation for your injuries. Talented, experienced and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get justice by:

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

Do I Need Grand Ridge, 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 case. If the driver accepts liability and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, it may not be worth it to hire an attorney. However, there are many situations in which a drunk driving accident lawyer is the only way to get fair compensation:

  • There is a dispute about liability. Drunk drivers who injure people will go in front of a judge in criminal court, and may not want to admit fault 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 on state charges. Experienced drunk driving accident lawyers will know how to utilize their investigative and litigation skills in order to get you the results you deserve.
  • The insurance company does not want to pay for all of your damages. Ideally insurance companies would fulfill their duty 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 if the driver admits liability, the insurance company might try to persuade you that your injuries are the result of other trauma or that a lawyer will only take money from you. Those are all lies, and an experienced drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to combat those deceitful tactics and get you the financial recovery you deserve.
  • There are multiple parties at fault. While a drunk driver is obviously to blame, other parties may bear partial responsibility, such as the driver's employer. Drunk driving accident lawyers will carry out a detailed investigation and identify everyone whose negligence contributed to your injuries. Finding other liable parties is crucial when the policy limits are not sufficient to fairly compensate you.
  • Your injuries need extensive medical treatment. The more severe your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes putting a dollar amount on your damages more complex, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to minimize your damages as much as possible. Persistent and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only fight hard to get you the compensation you need and are owed, 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 speak directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer experienced with Illinois laws who will be direct with you about whether you need an attorney to get the best results in your case.

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

Drunk driving statistics can be pretty sobering. Every day 28 people die in accidents caused by drunk drivers, or about one death every 52 minutes. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have consistently declined since 1982, drunk drivers are still responsible for almost a third of all auto related fatalities. While safe driving campaigns and stiff punishments for drunk driving have certainly done wonders for reducing crashes, injuries and deaths, some selfish Grand Ridge, IL individuals still choose to jeopardize others' safety because of a misplaced self-centeredness. If you are injured as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the careless driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Grand Ridge, 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 found that 19.7 percent of the 1,088 accidents that caused fatalities in the state involved alcohol. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, almost 40 percent tested positive.

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

While the legal limit for alcohol consumption before driving is .08 percent blood alcohol concentration, a level of even .02 percent is enough to considerably impair someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in visual functions, inability to perform two tasks at the same time, exaggerated confidence and loss of judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three drinks - a driver experiences decreased coordination, inability to trace movement, difficulty maneuvering and a slower response to emergency situations. It is crucial to do you part in protecting other drivers, passengers and pedestrians and find other means of getting home if you are not in the best condition to drive. Unfortunately, sometimes you can commit to protecting others on the road and still be left reeling from the catastrophic consequences of a dangerous Grand Ridge, IL motorist disregarding your safety, driving while intoxicated and hurting you or a loved one. Just knowing the harsh penalties that come with a DWI conviction is not enough. You need the accomplished and skilled Grand Ridge, 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 begin on the path to feeling that true justice was achieved.

Drunk Driving Laws in Grand Ridge 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 drunk driving 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 lead to great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to someone else
  • The driver caused an accident in a school zone that resulted in bodily harm

Other instances in which the class of felony increases include:

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the driver needed to use reasonable care to avoid injuring you.
  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 act in a way that avoided hurting you.
  5. Damages That the accident led to tangible loss, such as economic damages like lost wages as well as mental anguish. It is important to mention that in personal injury claims you cannot make a claim for for noneconomic damages if you have not sustained a monetary loss.

There are two aspects that make drunk driving accident claims different from the majority of personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that drivers have an obligation 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 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 taken care of as long as you have evidence that the driver was inebriated. All your drunk driving accident lawyers will need to prove is that the driver caused the accident and injured you.

While it may seem like that makes a drunk driving case a slam-dunk, 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 talented Grand Ridge, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to fight on your behalf and fight until you get the financial recovery you are owed.

Who Else Can I Sue for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Grand Ridge, 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 Bar, Restaurant or Social Host

Dram shop laws allow you to sue a bar or restaurant after a drunk driving accident if you were hurt. 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 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 establishment sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate through surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness or employee depositions
  • That the customer they supplied alcohol to caused your injuries
  • 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 person who caused your accident was not of legal age to drink and became inebriated at the party.

Each year the Illinois Comptroller places dram shop liability limits on the maximum amount of money a person or organization can be required to pay in a dram shop claim. As of Jan. 20, 2022, the maximum is $77,787.30 for each person making a claim for the accident, or $95,073.37 if the accident caused loss of support or loss of society because of the wrongful death of a loved one.

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 theory of negligent entrustment, a person may be liable if they permit a third person to engage in an activity which is under the control of the actor if it would not be safe to do so. In a drunk driving accident case in Grand Ridge, 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 your accident was caused by someone who works 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 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 Grand Ridge, IL drunk driving accident lawyer so they can conduct an exhaustive investigation into your claim. Doing so will not only make sure every liable party is held accountable, but will also increase your compensation and secure you the full financial recovery you are owed.

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

The civil court system in the United States is based on the doctrine of being made whole. The concept is that when a person or organization is responsible for your damages, you should be compensated to the extent that returns you to your state before the other person's negligence. 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 is a result of rehabilitating from a neck injury for a little while. In the most destructive cases, for example if you or a loved one loses a limb, no financial recovery can be expected to compensate you, but the financial recovery should be great enough to provide a least some sense of peace.

You can typically recover three types of damages in a personal injury claim:

  1. Economic damages — This the totaling of all the bills and lost income related to your injury. It is an objective dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the injury, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical rehabilitation appointments and assistive devices such as vehicle improvements. You will also be paid for any medical bills that we expect to arise in the future.
    • Lost wages and lost earning capacity — You will receive the full amount of the wages you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. If your injury resulted in a disability 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 transportation to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to hire a nanny to be able to take care of your kids, you need to be reimbursed for that too.

    In the case of future medical costs or lost earning potential, drunk driving accident lawyers will ensure 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 emotional burdens you have been put through, which can include anything from pain when carrying groceries in to the emotional impact of not being able to pick up your kids anymore.
    • Disability for any life-long physical or cognitive difficulties the reckless driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if your injuries result in lasting scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your spouse from the love and intimate relationships you once had.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your loved ones can no longer share the same guidance and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are typically not included in personal injury claims, and are meant to punish the defendant and deter others from making the same mistakes. When we make a claim against drunk drivers, we always pursue punitive damages. Not only does that maximize your compensation, but it also helps secure a fair settlement from the insurance company because 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 can seek punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially reckless conduct. At Burger Law, we believe that anyone who sits in the drivers seat while intoxicated knows exactly how reckless they are being.

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

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Grand Ridge, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including reckless drivers who do not want to take responsibility for their actions and resistant insurance companies focus more on money than morals. For that reason, each of our Grand Ridge-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has committed their careers to defending the rights of the injured and vulnerable. You will not see us on TV or billboards. When we are not working relentlessly on one of our client's claims, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently honing our negotiation and trial skills to secure the best results for our clients in Grand Ridge and throughout Illinois. We know you did nothing to become injured; someone else's horrible decisions did. For skillful, empathetic and aggressive representation, call the Grand Ridge, 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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