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

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Hillsboro, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Hillsboro, IL. If a reckless drunk driver injured you or a family member, call the Hillsboro, 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 Hillsboro and throughout Illinois by securing them the maximum compensation they are owed.

You can follow all the rules of the road, but reckless drivers can still put you in harm's way and unfairly injure you. Whether you were on your way to a sports game or just running errands, all of a sudden your entire life was turned upside down when you did nothing wrong. The Hillsboro, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law have committed their careers to helping individuals and families in similar circumstances get peace of mind and the best possible financial recoveries when they may be feeling they have nowhere to turn. We know the medical bills keep coming in, you you cannot earn a living right now and your life is not the same as it in the recent past. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the dedication, expertise and forceful legal counsel of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our over 30 years of litigating and trying cases, we have recovered over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Hillsboro and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Talking to us is free, and you do not owe us a thing until we win your case.

If you were harmed by a selfish drunk driver, find out 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 Hillsboro, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

Law enforcement will likely seek a guilty verdict in criminal court. But, a personal injury lawyer is still necessary to get you the monetary reimbursement you are owed. Skilled, accomplished and persistent 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 Hillsboro, 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 accident. If there is no dispute about who is at fault and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, a lawyer likely will not be able to add much value to your claim. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • The drunk driver will not take responsibility for their actions. Drunk drivers who injure people will go in front of a judge in criminal court, and may avoid communicating with you and the insurance company 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 cross-examine the drunk driver in a deposition 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 realize 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 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 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 are owed.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is clearly at fault, other parties may bear partial responsibility, such as a friend of the driver who knowingly lent them the vehicle while drunk. Drunk driving accident lawyers will perform a comprehensive investigation and identify all liable parties. Finding other liable parties is vital when the policy limits are not sufficient to fairly compensate you.
  • Your injuries will incur future medical expenses. The more serious your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes putting a dollar amount on your damages more difficult, and makes it more likely the insurance company will try to claim they do not have to pay for all of your medical expenses. Aggressive and dedicated 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, there is no risk or obligation when talking to us. Contact us now at (314) 500-HURT to talk directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be honest with you about whether the insurance company is offering a fair settlement.

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

Drunk driving statistics can be incredibly sobering. Every day there are about 28 fatal drunk driving accidents, which is approximately one death every 52 minutes. While drunk driving accidents and deaths have consistently become less common in the last 40 years, drunk drivers are still responsible for 29 percent of all auto related deaths. While awareness campaigns and harsh punishments for drunk driving have certainly done a lot to make our communities safer, some careless Hillsboro, IL individuals still make the irresponsible decision to disregard others' well-being while not understanding or not caring about the potential consequences of their actions. If you are injured as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the careless driver needs to be held responsible for what they did. The Hillsboro, 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 almost one-fifth of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved alcohol. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, 37.1 percent tested positive.

Alcohol's Impact on Driving Abilities | Hillsboro, 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 sufficient to significantly hinder someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, an altered mood and inadequate judgment. At .05 percent - the product of roughly three alcohol beverages - someone suffers from lowered coordination, reduced ability to track movement, challenges steering and not being able to respond quickly to emergency situations. It is vital to exercise great caution and have a back up plan if you are intoxicated. Regrettably, sometimes you can follow all the rules ourselves and still experience the terrible consequences of a reckless Hillsboro, IL motorist not caring about the rules, driving while intoxicated and harming you or someone you care about. Just knowing that the negligent driver will likely face criminal charges, steep fees, restrictions on their license and possibly jail time does not make you whole again. Trust in the savvy and tenacious Hillsboro, 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 find out the best way to proceed and begin on the road to recovery.

Drunk Driving Laws in Hillsboro and Illinois

According 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 DUI 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

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

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How Do You Prove a Drunk Driving Accident Claim in Hillsboro, 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 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 monetary 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 aspects that make drunk driving accident claims different from the majority of personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that people who get behind the wheel of a vehicle have an obligation to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with other cars, pedestrians and bicyclists. Meaning the first element is a given. Secondly, the legal doctrine of negligence per se means that anyone who violates a state statute is automatically considered to have breached their duty of care. 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 prove 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 crucial to have passionate and accomplished Hillsboro, IL drunk driving accident lawyers by your side to fight until you get the compensation you are owed.

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

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

A Bar, Restaurant or Social Host

Many states have what is called a dram shop rule, under which you may be able sue a bar or restaurant after a drunk driving accident if you sustained injuries. 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 someone underage. You just have to prove:

  • That the bar or restaurant sold the driver alcohol, which you can show through surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness or employee depositions
  • That the patron they sold to was responsible for your injuries
  • That the the patron got drunk 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 drunk driver was not of legal age to drink and became intoxicated at the party.

Annually, 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 person making a claim for the accident, 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 also owe you compensation. According to the doctrine of negligent entrustment, a person may be liable if they permit someone else to use something which is under the control of the actor if if permitting the activity creates an inherent risk. In a drunk driving accident case in Hillsboro, 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 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 contracted and directed the driver. Examples of negligence on the part of the employer could include:

Experienced Hillsboro, IL drunk driving accident lawyers like those at Burger Law have seen all of these types of claims and know how to hold the appropriate parties liable. When you hire us, we start investigating your case right away to determine as many liable parties as possible.

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

Civil claims in the United States are based on the principle of making one 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 simple fender-bender, that might mean paying money you lost from work while recovering, chiropractic appointments and the physical strain that is a result of rehabilitating from a neck injury for a little while. In the worst cases, for example if you lose a family member, no amount of money can truly make you whole, but the financial recovery should be high enough to encapsulate the terrible loss you have sustained.

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 accident. It is a firm dollar amount. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the accident, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical therapy appointments and in-home care. You will also be reimbursed 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 on the job as you were healing. If your injury caused 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 gas to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to hire a nanny to be able to take care of your kids, you need a financial recovery for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical costs or lost earning potential, drunk driving accident lawyers will ensure the settlement or verdict amount 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 hardships you have been put through, which can be anything anything from difficulty bending over to tie your shoes to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability if you sustained life-long physical or cognitive impairments because of 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 are used to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries prevent you from giving or your loved ones from receiving the same advice and camaraderie they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are typically not included in personal injury claims, and are meant to punish the drunk driver and deter future misbehavior. We are aggressive in our pursuit of punitive damages in drunk driving accident claims. Not only does that help secure you the money you are owed, but it also motivates the insurance company to be fair as there is no coverage for punitive damages According 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 behavior. It is clear to us that anyone who drives drunk is demonstrating a blatant disregard your safety.

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

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Hillsboro, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including selfish drivers who do not want to take responsibility for their actions and resistant insurance companies focus more on their profits than doing the right thing. For that reason, each of our Hillsboro-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has dedicated their lives to fighting on behalf of the injured and vulnerable. You will not see us on TV or billboards. When we are not investigating and litigating cases, our drunk driving accident lawyers are regularly fine-tuning our abilities to deliver maximum compensation for our clients in Hillsboro and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's terrible behavior did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Hillsboro, 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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