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

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Lombard, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Lombard, 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 Lombard, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a complimentary consultation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Lombard and throughout Illinois by standing up to bullies and getting them the financial recovery they deserve.

You can do everything you are supposed to to keep other drivers, passengers and pedestrians safe, but reckless drivers can still change your life without warning. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or just running errands, your life was immediately turned upside down when you did nothing wrong. The Lombard, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law truly care about out clients and their cases and families mean something to us. We know the medical bills keep coming in, you are losing time off work 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 compassions, knowledge 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 won over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Lombard and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Our case reviews are no-risk, no-obligation, and you do not owe us a thing until the final verdict or settlement has been reached.

If you were harmed by a thoughtless drunk driver, discover 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

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

Law enforcement will likely hold a drunk driver accountable in criminal court. However, you will still need a personal injury lawyer to confront the drunk driver in civil court and get you full compensation for your injuries. Talented, accomplished and relentless 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 fight back against bullies.

Do I Need Lombard, 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 the driver is taking responsibility for his actions and your injuries are minor and only require an appointment with your primary care physician, it probably will not be too difficult to get fair compensation. However, many other circumstances require an attorney for the best results:

  • There is a dispute about liability. Drunk drivers who cause accidents will probably be prosecuted, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not face the harsh penalties of a DUI. While a knowledgeable defense lawyer may be able to get a drunk driver off on criminal charges, 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 obtain key evidence in order to hold the negligent driver accountable.
  • The insurance adjuster refuses to offer a full settlement. Ideally insurance companies would realize their responsibility 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 if the driver is willing to be held accountable, the insurance company might try to persuade you that your injuries are pre-existing or that a lawyer will only take money from you. Those are all lies, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will not let them get away with them.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is obviously liable, other entities may be at fault, such as a alcohol vendor that overserved the driver. Drunk driving accident lawyers will carry out a detailed investigation and identify all liable parties. Finding other liable parties is vital when the policy limits are not sufficient to pay for the full scope of your injuries.
  • Your injuries require ongoing care. The more severe your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes valuing your damages more challenging, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to devalue your injuries as much as possible. Persistent and compassionate 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. Contact us now at (314) 500-HURT to talk directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer experienced with Illinois laws who will be direct with you about whether it is worth it or not for you to hire an attorney for your claim.

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

Understanding just how bad the problem of drinking and driving can be pretty sobering. Every day 28 people die in accidents caused by drunk drivers, or about one death in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and deaths have steadily been on the decline since 1982, drunk drivers are still responsible for three-tenths of all auto related fatalities. While safe driving campaigns and stiff punishments for drunk driving have definitely helped, some selfish Lombard, IL individuals still decide to disregard others' well-being 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 complete recovery and the negligent driver needs to be held accountable for the harm they have caused. The Lombard, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will use or skills and dedication to see wrongs made right.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts states that almost 20 percent of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved a drunk driver. Alcohol was found in the symptoms of over a third of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

Alcohol's Impact on Driving Abilities | Lombard, 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 hinder someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in visual functions, inability to do two things at once, an altered mood and poor judgment. At .05 percent - reached after roughly three alcohol beverages - a person experiences reduced coordination, reduced ability to trace moving objects, difficulty maneuvering and not being able to respond in enough time to emergency situations. It is crucial to follow proper road safety and always have someone else drive if you are not in the best condition to drive. Regrettably, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still experience the horrible and unfair consequences of a thoughtless Lombard, IL driver not caring about the rules, getting behind the wheel while intoxicated and injuring you or someone you care about. 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 experienced and aggressive Lombard, 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 discuss your options and begin on the road to healing.

Drunk Driving Laws in Lombard 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 it 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 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 are:

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

Typically, when you are proving negligence in a personal injury claim, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers must prove the five elements of negligence:

  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 injuring you.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident caused your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the accident would not have happened but for the driver's failure to use reasonable care.
  5. Damages That you have sustained losses, such as economic damages like damage to your car as well as noneconomic damages. It is important to note that in personal injury claims you cannot make a claim for for noneconomic damages if you have not sustained economic damages.

There are two aspects that set drunk driving accidents apart 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 anyone else on the road. Meaning a driver automatically owed you a duty of care. Secondly, the legal doctrine of negligence per se means that anyone who breaks the law is negligent as a matter of law. 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 that that is how you sustained your injuries.

While it may seem like that makes a drunk driving case a slam-dunk, 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 accomplished Lombard, IL drunk driving accident lawyers by your side to get the financial recovery you deserve.

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

The driver is clearly liable 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 anyone else is at fault:

A Bar, Restaurant or Social Host

Dram shop laws allow you to 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 less strict than many other states' in that the drunk driver did not have to be visibly drunk when they were sold alcohol in order for the vendor to be at fault. You just have to show:

  • That the bar or restaurant sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate with recordings, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the patron they sold to 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 drunk driver was not old enough to drink legally 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, those limits are $77,787.30 for each injured party, or $95,073.37 if the accident resulted in 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, the owner may also owe you compensation. In a negligent entrustment case, it is negligent to permit a third person 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 suit in Lombard, 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 in no condition to operate a vehicle.

The Driver's Employer

If you were injured by a commercial driver, such as in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, the driver's employer may be partially to blame. Examples of negligence on the part of the employer could include:

While drunk driving accident claims can seem pretty cut-and-dry, it is imperative to hire an experienced Lombard, 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 Lombard, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Tort 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 be paid a dollar amount commensurate to the extent of your damages. In many car accident claims, for example a rear-end accident, that might mean paying money you lost from work while recovering, follow-up doctors' appointments and the pain that comes with rehabilitating from a whiplash injury for a few months. In the worst cases, for example if you or a loved one becomes paralyzed, no amount of money can truly 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 the totaling of all the bills and lost income related to your accident. It is an unbiased dollar figure. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any urgent care, surgeries, medications, chiropractic 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 physically able to work. If your injury caused a disability that no longer permits 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 Uber to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to send your child to daycare because you could not look after them, you deserve a financial recovery for that too.

    In the case of 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 burdens you have been put through, which can be anything 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 selfish driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in permanent scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries impede you and your significant other from the affection and intimate relationships you once shared.
    • Loss of society if the injuries prevent you from giving or your loved ones from receiving the same counsel and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are typically not included in personal injury compensation, and are meant to punish the drunk driver and discourage future misbehavior. We are aggressive in our pursuit of punitive damages in drunk driving accident claims. Not only does that help get you the money you deserve, but it also helps secure a fair settlement from the insurance company 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 can argue in favor of punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially appalling behavior. It is clear to us that anyone who gets behind the wheel while intoxicated is demonstrating a brazen lack of respect for your safety.

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

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Lombard, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including irresponsible drivers think they can do whatever they want and resistant insurance companies whose prioritize more think it is acceptable to withhold the money you are owed. That is why each of our Lombard-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their education and abilities 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 constantly fine-tuning our lawyer skills to get great recoveries for our clients in Lombard and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's horrible decisions did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Lombard, 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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