Getting you the compensation you deserve after someone else's reckless decision left you to pick up the pieces

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Midlothian, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Midlothian, IL. If a reckless drunk driver hurt you or someone you love, call the Midlothian, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a no-risk, no-obligation consultation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Midlothian and throughout Illinois by securing them the maximum compensation they are owed.

You can follow all the rules of the road, but careless drivers can still change your life in a heartbeat. Whether you were on your way to a sports game or lazily driving around on a Saturday, your life was unexpectedly turned upside down through no fault of your own. The Midlothian, 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 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. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the dedication, expertise and aggressive legal counsel of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our more than 30 years of litigating and trying cases, we have won more than $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Midlothian 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 injured by an irresponsible drunk driver, find out how much your injuries may be worth by using 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 Midlothian, 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 a financial recovery for all of your damages. Skilled, seasoned and tenacious drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get the best possible financial recovery by:

At Burger Law, we have over 30 years of experience handling all types of auto accident claims and getting full compensation for our clients.

Do I Need Midlothian, 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, 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:

  • There is a dispute about liability. Drunk drivers who cause injuries will go in front of a judge in criminal court, and may not want to admit fault 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 in criminal court. 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 is not being fair. Ideally insurance companies would realize their obligation 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 does take responsibility, the insurance company might try to convince you that your injuries are the result of other trauma or they only have to pay for some of your medical care. None of that is true, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will fight back and let the insurance adjuster know we mean business.
  • There are multiple parties at fault. While a drunk driver is clearly to blame, other parties may bear partial responsibility, such as a alcohol vendor that overserved the driver. 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 your damages exceed the driver's insurance policy limits.
  • Your injuries will incur future medical expenses. The more severe your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes valuing your damages more difficult, and motivates the insurance company to try to devalue your damages as much as possible. Tenacious and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only ensure you receive the entirety of your damages, 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 straightforward 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 Midlothian, IL and the U.S.?

Drunk driving statistics can be quite sobering. Every day 28 people are killed in accidents caused by drunk drivers, which is approximately one fatality every 52 minutes. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have consistently been on the decline since 1982, drunk drivers still account for three-tenths of total traffic fatalities as of 2018. While awareness campaigns and stiff punishments for drunk driving have definitely done a lot to make our roads safer, some reckless Midlothian, IL residents still decide to disregard others' well-being because of a misplaced self-centeredness. If you are harmed as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the reckless driver needs to pay for the harm they have caused. The Midlothian, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will make sure both of those things come true.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts states that almost 20 percent of the 1,088 accidents that caused fatalities in the state involved alcohol. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, 37.1 percent tested positive.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Midlothian, 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 impair someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in visual functions, inability to perform two tasks at the same time, an altered mood and loss of judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three drinks - a motorist experiences reduced coordination, inability to trace moving objects, difficulty maneuvering and a slower response to unexpected things on the road. It is imperative to follow proper road safety and find other means of transport if you are intoxicated. Unfortunately, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still be left reeling from the terrible consequences of a thoughtless Midlothian, IL motorist making a selfish decision, getting behind the wheel while intoxicated and harming you or a loved one. 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. You need the savvy and skilled Midlothian, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to to secure the financial settlement you and your family need and are owed. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to go over your case and start on the road to being made whole again.

Drunk Driving Laws in Midlothian 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 drunk driving 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 resulted in personal injury

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 Midlothian, IL?

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

  1. Duty of Care That the driver had a responsibility to keep you safe.
  2. Breach of Duty That the driver failed or was negligent in that duty.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident caused your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the defendant's negligence is the reason for the accident.
  5. Damages That you have sustained losses, such as economic damages like lost wages as well as emotional distress. It is important to mention that in personal injury claims you cannot make a claim for for noneconomic damages if you have not sustained economic damages.

There are two factors that set drunk driving accidents apart from the majority of personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 stipulates that drivers are 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 theory 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 granted automatically 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.

While it may seem like that makes a drunk driving case a slam-dunk, the insurance company will still be motivated to pay you as little as possible. That is why it is critical to have committed and experienced Midlothian, IL drunk driving accident lawyers by your side to fight until you get the compensation you are owed.

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

The driver is clearly to blame for their irresponsible decision making, but drunk driving accident lawyers experienced with Illinois law will be able to conduct a full investigation and determine if any of the other following parties share liability:

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Many states have what is called a dram shop law, 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 more liberal 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 show:

  • That the establishment sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate through security footage, receipts or eyewitness or employee 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 inebriated at the private residence.

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, 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 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 be responsible for a portion of your damages. According to the theory of negligent entrustment, someone may owe you damages if they permit a third person 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 Midlothian, 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 you were injured 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 Midlothian, 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 Midlothian, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Personal injury claims in the United States are based on the principle of being made whole. The concept is that when a person or organization 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 simple fender-bender, being made whole means recovering compensation 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 little while. In the worst cases, for example if you or a loved one loses a limb, no financial recovery can truly make you whole, but the amount should be high enough to encapsulate the terrible loss you have sustained.

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 a firm dollar figure. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any emergency room visits, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical therapy appointments and in-home nursing. 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 on the job as you were healing. If your injury resulted in a long-term or permanent injury that no longer allows you to perform the tasks required of your job, 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 gas to and from medical appointments, or had to invest in childcare while you were recovering, you need to be repaid for that too.

    In the case of future medical bills or lost earning capacity, drunk driving accident lawyers will make sure the compensation adjusts for inflation as well.

  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 emotional effects on your well-being, which can include anything from pain when bending over to tie your shoes to having PTSD anymore.
    • Disability for any permanent physical or cognitive impairments the accident caused.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in lasting scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your significant other from the affection and intimate relationships you are used to.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your family can no longer share the same advice and camaraderie that was once offered.
  3. Punitive damages These are not common in personal injury claims, and are meant to punish the defendant and deter future misbehavior. We are aggressive in our pursuit of punitive damages in drunk driving accident claims. Not only does that maximize your financial recovery, but it also motivates the insurance company to be fair 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 argue in favor of punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially egregious behavior. At Burger Law, we believe that anyone who sits in the drivers seat while drunk how much of a potential threat they are to other people on the roads.

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

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Midlothian, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including irresponsible drivers do not respect other people's safety and resistant insurance companies whose prioritize more money than morals. For that reason, each of our Midlothian-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their lives to standing up for the injured and vulnerable. You will not see us on TV or billboards. When we are not working tirelessly on one of our client's claims, our drunk driving accident lawyers are consistently honing our lawyer skills to deliver maximum compensation for our clients in Midlothian and throughout Illinois. We know you did nothing to become injured; someone else's irresponsible behavior did. For knowledgeable, passionate and relentless representation, call the Midlothian, 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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