Making you whole again after a drunk driver's terrible decision left you to pick up the pieces

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Macomb, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Macomb, IL. If an irresponsible drunk driver injured you or a loved one, call the Macomb, 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 Macomb and throughout Illinois by fighting on their behalf so they can focus on healing.

You can do everything right to protect yourself and your loved ones, but irresponsible 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 through no fault of your own. The Macomb, 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 are piling up, you are losing time off work and your life is not the same as it in the not-too-distance past. You do not have to go through this alone. With the compassions, skill and aggressive legal representation of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our more than 30 years of litigating and trying cases, we have gotten more than $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Macomb, IL clients. Our case reviews are no-risk, no-obligation, and we do not charge any fees until we win your case.

If you were harmed by a careless drunk driver, find out how much your damages 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 Macomb, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

Law enforcement will likely do everything they can to convict a drunk driver criminally. But, 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, accomplished and tenacious drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation 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 Macomb, 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 a consultation with one. If there is no dispute about who is at fault and your injuries are minor and only require a quick trip to the emergency room, you may very well be able to get a fair settlement offer from the insurance company. However, there are often many good reasons you will want a drunk driving accident lawyer on your side:

  • There is a dispute about liability. Drunk drivers who cause injuries are likely looking at criminal charges as well, and may be motivated not to cooperate in order to not face fines, a suspended license and possibly jail time. 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 the law in order to hold the negligent driver accountable.
  • The insurance company does not want to pay for all of your damages. In a perfect world insurance companies would recognize their commitment when one of their policyholders decides to make a selfish decision that ends up injuring you, an insurance adjusters real job is to save the company money, not fairly compensate you. Even in the event that the driver does take responsibility, the insurance company might try to say that your injuries are the result of other trauma or you waited too long to seek medical treatment. None of that is true, and a knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyer will not let them get away with them.
  • There are multiple parties at fault. While a drunk driver is obviously at fault, other entities may bear partial responsibility, such as a alcohol vendor that overserved the driver. Drunk driving accident lawyers will perform a detailed investigation and identify anyone who bears responsibility for the accident. Finding other liable parties is crucial when the policy limits are not sufficient to fairly compensate you.
  • Your injuries will incur future medical expenses. The more severe your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes calculating the full value of your damages more complex, and motivates the insurance company to try to devalue your injuries as much as possible. Tenacious and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only fight hard to get you the compensation you need and are owed, but we can connect you to trusted physicians to make sure you get the medical treatment you need.

At Burger Law, there is no risk or obligation when talking to us. Reach out to us now at (314) 500-HURT to speak directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be direct with you about whether we can add to your claim.

Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Drunk driving statistics can be incredibly sobering. Every day 28 people are killed in accidents caused by drunk drivers, or about one death in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have steadily been on the decline in the last four decades, drunk drivers still account for 29 percent of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving and stiff punishments for drunk driving have definitely done a lot to make our communities safer, some reckless Macomb, IL individuals still choose to jeopardize others' safety while not understanding or not caring about the potential consequences of their actions. If you are harmed as a result, you deserve to be fairly reimbursed with a full recovery and the careless driver needs to be held responsible for what they did. The Macomb, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will make sure both of those things come true.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts found that 19.7 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.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Macomb, 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 sufficient to greatly impede someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in visual functions, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and poor judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three drinks - a driver suffers from decreased coordination, reduced ability to trace moving objects, difficulty maneuvering and a slower response to unexpected things on the road. It is key to follow proper road safety and let someone else take the wheel if you have been drinking. Regrettably, sometimes you can commit to protecting others on the road and still experience the catastrophic consequences of a reckless Macomb, IL driver disregarding your safety, driving drunk and harming you or a loved one. Just knowing the harsh penalties that come with a DWI conviction does not make you whole again. Trust in the experienced and aggressive Macomb, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to to see things made right. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to find out the best way to proceed and begin on the path to healing.

Drunk Driving Laws in Macomb and Illinois

Pursuant 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 DUI 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 class of felony increases include:

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the defendant had a responsibility to keep you safe.
  2. Breach of Duty That the defendant failed or was negligent in that duty.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident led to your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the driver's breach of duty caused the accident that caused your injuries.
  5. Damages That the accident led to tangible loss, such as monetary damages like damage to your car as well as pain and suffering. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were also economic damages.

There are two aspects that set drunk driving accidents apart from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 stipulates that people who get behind the wheel of a vehicle are legally compelled to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with pedestrians or other vehicles. Meaning a driver automatically owed you a duty of care. Secondly, the legal philosophy of negligence per se means that anyone who breaks the law is negligent as a matter of law. Therefore, in drunk driving cases the first two elements are taken care of under the condition that you have evidence that the driver was inebriated. 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.

Negligence per se does not mean you will automatically get the compensation you are owed; 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 dedicated and experienced Macomb, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to fight on your behalf and get the best results in your claim.

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

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

A Bar, Restaurant or Social Host

Dram shop rules permit you to sue a bar or restaurant 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 more liberal than many other states' in that the drunk driver did not have to show significant impairment when they were sold alcohol in order for the vendor to be liable. You just have to show:

  • That a vendor-patron relationship existed, which you can show with security footage, receipts or eyewitness depositions
  • That the patron they supplied alcohol to 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 holds a private party — if the drunk driver was not of legal age to drink and became intoxicated at the private residence.

Each year the Illinois Comptroller stipulates 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 due to 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 file a suit against the owner. According to the practice of negligent entrustment, someone may owe you damages if they permit someone else 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 case in Macomb, 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 your accident was caused by a commercial driver, such as 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:

While drunk driving accident claims can seem pretty cut-and-dry, it is imperative to hire an experienced Macomb, IL drunk driving accident lawyer so they can conduct an exhaustive investigation into your claim. Doing so will not only make sure every negligent 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 Macomb, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Tort claims in the United States are based on the doctrine of making one whole. The idea behind the doctrine is that when someone injures you, 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 rear-end accident, being made whole means recovering compensation money you lost from work while recovering, physical therapy appointments and the physical strain involved with rehabilitating from a neck injury for a relatively short period of time. In the most destructive cases, for example if you or a loved one loses a limb, no amount of money can be expected to make you whole, but the amount should be great enough to provide a least some sense of restitution.

There are three categories of damages in a personal injury claim:

  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 emergency room visits, operations, medications, chiropractic appointments and assistive devices such as braces. 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 — You will be reimbursed for full amount of the wages you lost from not being physically able to work. If your injury caused a disability that no longer permits you to work, you will also be compensated for the wages 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 medical appointments, or had to send your child to daycare because you could not look after them, you deserve to be compensated for that too.

    In the case of future medical costs 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 emotional effects on your well-being, which can include anything from pain when sleeping in certain positions to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability if you have life-long physical or cognitive impairments due to the accident.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in permanent scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your significant other from the companionship and intimate relationships you once had.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your loved ones can no longer share the same advice and camaraderie they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are not common in personal injury compensation, and are intended to punish the defendant and deter others from making the same mistakes. When we make a claim against drunk drivers, we always seek punitive damages. Not only does that help secure you the money you are owed, but it also motivates the insurance company to be fair as punitive damages are not covered under insurance 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 conduct. It is clear to us that anyone who drives under the influence is demonstrating a blatant disregard your safety.

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

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Macomb, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We hate bullies, including selfish drivers who do not want to take responsibility for their actions and resistant insurance companies who care more about money than morals. For that reason, each of our Macomb-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has devoted their careers to defending the rights of the injured and vulnerable. You will not see us on TV or billboards. When we are not investigating claims or in the courtroom defending the rights of our clients, our drunk driving accident lawyers are regularly honing our negotiation and trial skills to get maximum compensation for our clients in Macomb and throughout Illinois. We know you did nothing to become injured; someone else's horrible behavior did. For accomplished, empathetic and tenacious representation, call the Macomb, 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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