Securing justice after someone else's reckless decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Moline, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Moline, 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 Moline, 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 Moline 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 on your way to a sports game or lazily driving around on a Saturday, your life was immediately turned upside down through no fault of your own. The Moline, 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 you cannot earn a living right now and it is hard to get the same enjoyment out of life that you did before your accident. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the commitment, expertise and unshakable 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 over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Moline and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Our initial consultation and investigation is free, and we do not charge any fees until we win your case.

If you were harmed by an irresponsible drunk driver, find out how much your claim may be worth by filling out 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 Moline, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

A prosecutor will likely file charges against the drunk driver who caused the accident. But, only a personal injury lawyer can get you full compensation for your injuries. Talented, seasoned and persistent 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 Moline, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers for My Claim?

That depends on the particulars of your case, and if you have never had to hire an attorney before it may be difficult to decide when to hire a personal injury lawyer. If the driver is taking responsibility for his actions and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, it probably will not be too difficult to get fair compensation. However, many other circumstances require legal representation for the best results:

  • There is a dispute about liability. Drunk drivers who cause accidents 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 in their criminal case. Experienced drunk driving accident lawyers will know how to cross-examine the drunk driver in a deposition in order to prove that the defendant were drunk and injured you.
  • The insurance company is not being fair. Ideally insurance companies would realize their obligation when one of their policyholders drives drunk and injures you, far too often that does not happen. Even if the driver does take responsibility, the insurance company might try to persuade you that your injuries are pre-existing or that they do not have to pay for lost wages because you had paid time off available. None of that is true, and a knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to combat those deceitful tactics and get you the money you deserve.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is obviously liable, other entities may bear partial responsibility, such as the driver's employer. Drunk driving accident lawyers will conduct a thorough investigation and identify everyone whose negligence contributed to your injuries. This is especially beneficial when the policy limits are not sufficient to properly compensate you.
  • Your injuries require ongoing care. The more grave your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes valuing your damages more complex, and will cause the insurance company to fight back against giving you a fair settlement. Aggressive and compassionate drunk driving accident lawyers will not only ensure you receive the entirety of your damages, but we will ensure you receive all of the medical you need to recover.

At Burger Law, there is no risk or obligation when talking to us. Reach out to us now at (314) 500-HURT to speak for a candid conversation with a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be honest with you about whether it is worth it or not for you to hire an attorney for your claim.

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

Understanding just how bad the problem of drinking and driving can be quite 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 fatalities have consistently declined since 1982, drunk drivers are still responsible for three-tenths of all auto related deaths. While awareness campaigns and strict punishments for drunk driving have definitely done a lot to make our communities safer, some careless Moline, IL residents still decide to disregard others' well-being because of a misplaced self-centeredness. If you are hurt as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the reckless driver needs to be held responsible for breaking the rules. The Moline, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will use or skills and dedication to see wrongs made right.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts found that almost 20 percent of the 1,088 accidents that caused fatalities in the state involved a drunk driver. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, over a third tested positive.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Moline, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

While it is only illegal to drink and drive if your blood alcohol concentration is more than .008 percent, a level of just .02 percent is enough to significantly reduce someone's driving skills. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in sight, inability to do two things at once, exaggerated confidence and poor judgment. At .05 percent - the product of approximately three alcohol beverages - a person experiences decreased coordination, inability to follow movement, difficulty maneuvering and not being able to respond quickly to emergency situations. It is key to exercise great caution and find other ways of getting home if you have had too much to drink. Regrettably, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still be left to pick up the pieces after the catastrophic consequences of a dangerous Moline, IL driver not caring about the rules, driving drunk and injuring 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 is not enough. You need the savvy and proficient Moline, 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 start on the path to healing.

Drunk Driving Laws in Moline 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
  • The driver caused a motor vehicle accident 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

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 Moline, IL?

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

  1. Duty of Care That the defendant was required to act in a certain, safe way.
  2. Breach of Duty That the driver did not use reasonable care.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident led to your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the accident would not have happened but for the driver'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 damage to your car as well as emotional distress. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were also monetary losses.

There are two aspects that make drunk driving accident lawsuits different from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that drivers are legally compelled 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 principle of negligence per se stipulates 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 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 your injuries.

Negligence per se does not mean you will automatically get the money 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 committed and skilled Moline, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to stand up to bullies and fight until you get the compensation you deserve.

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

The driver is clearly at fault 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 Bar, Restaurant or Social Host

Dram shop rules permit you to sue a licensed alcohol vendor after a drunk driving accident if you were hurt. Illinois' dram shop laws are laid out 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 the drunk driver did not have to show significant impairment when they were sold alcohol in order for the vendor to be at fault. You just have to demonstrate:

  • That the vendor sold the driver alcohol, which you can show with surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the patron they sold to caused 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 person who caused your accident was not of legal age to drink and became intoxicated at the private residence.

Every year the Illinois Comptroller stipulates dram shop liability limits on how much a bar, restaurant or social host is required to pay out. As of Jan. 20, 2022, the maximum is $77,787.30 for each injured party, or $95,073.37 if the accident resulted in loss of support or loss of society because of the wrongful death of a loved one.

The Owner of the Vehicle

If the driver was driving someone else's car, the owner may also owe you compensation. In a negligent entrustment case, a person may be liable if they permit someone else to use something which is under the control of the actor if that would create an unreasonable risk of harm to others. In a drunk driving accident claim in Moline, 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:

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

The civil court system in the United States is based on the principle of making one whole. "Being made whole" means that when another party injures you, you should receive a financial recovery that is equal to the economic loss and physical pain their negligence put you through. In many car accident claims, for example a simple fender-bender, that might mean paying money you lost from work while recovering, physical therapy appointments and the pain and inconvenience 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 has permanent disability, no amount of money can be expected to compensate you, but the amount should be high enough to encapsulate the terrible loss you have sustained.

There are three categories 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 urgent care, operations, medications, chiropractic appointments and in-home nursing. You will also receive compensation 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 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 money you would have made in the future, but for the injuries.
    • Out-of-pocket expenses — If you had to pay for transportation to and from medical appointments, or had to hire a nanny to be able to take care of your kids, you deserve to be repaid for that too.

    In the case of future medical costs or lost earning capacity, drunk driving accident lawyers will ensure the recovery 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 pain you have been put through, which can include anything from difficulty sleeping in certain positions to the emotional impact of not being able to exercise the same way anymore.
    • Disability if you have permanent physical or cognitive impairments due to the accident.
    • Disfigurement if the accident caused permanent scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries impede you and your partner from the companionship and intimate relationships you once shared.
    • Loss of society if the injuries prevent you from giving or your loved ones from receiving the same guidance and care they once did.
  3. Punitive damages These are rarely awarded 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 increase your financial recovery, but it also puts the insurance company on their heels as their policyholders do not pay for punitive damages in their policies According to 735 ILCS 5/2-604.1, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers may be awarded punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially egregious behavior. It is clear to us that anyone who sits in the drivers seat while under the influence is demonstrating a shameless lack of respect for your safety.

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

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Moline, 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 who care more about think it is acceptable to withhold the money you deserve. For that reason, each of our Moline-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has committed 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 working relentlessly on one of our client's claims, our drunk driving accident lawyers are constantly fine-tuning our lawyer skills to deliver great recoveries for our clients in Moline and throughout Illinois. We know your actions did not cause this trying time; someone else's dangerous decisions did. For knowledgeable, passionate and aggressive representation, call the Moline, 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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