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

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Palos Hills, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Palos Hills, 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 Palos Hills, 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 Palos Hills and throughout Illinois by securing them the maximum compensation they are owed.

You can do everything possible to protect yourself and your loved ones, but careless drivers can still put you in harm's way and unfairly injure you. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or lazily driving around on a Saturday, your life was unexpectedly turned upside down through no fault of your own. The Palos Hills, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law have dedicated their lives to helping people like you get peace and the best possible compensation when they may be feeling like no one could help them. We know the medical bills are accumulating, you may not be able to work because of your injuries and everything seems different than it was in the not-too-distance past. We will be by your side until things are made right again. With the commitment, knowledge and tenacious legal advocacy of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our over 30 years of defending the rights of the injured, we have gotten over $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Palos Hills, IL clients. Our initial consultation and investigation is free, and you do not owe us a thing until we win your case.

If you were hurt by a thoughtless drunk driver, find out 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

View Location

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

The criminal justice system will likely file charges against the drunk driver who caused the accident. Still, only a personal injury lawyer can get you the monetary reimbursement you are owed. Talented, experienced and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation by:

At Burger Law, we know auto accident claims and how to stand up to bullies.

Do I Need Palos Hills, 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 claim. If there is no dispute about who is at fault and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, it may not be worth it to hire an attorney. However, many other circumstances require an attorney for the best results:

  • The drunk driver refuses to be held accountable for their actions. 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 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 utilize the law in order to hold the negligent driver accountable.
  • The insurance adjuster does not want to pay for all of your damages. While you would like to think insurance companies would realize their duty when one of their policyholders decides to make a reckless decision that winds up injuring you, 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 say that your injuries were not actually caused by the accident or you waited too long to seek medical treatment. Those are all deceptions aimed at minimizing your claim, and a knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyer will fight back and let the insurance adjuster know we mean business.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is clearly to blame, other entities may bear partial responsibility, such as a bar that overserved the driver. Drunk driving accident lawyers will thoroughly investigate your claim and identify anyone who bears responsibility for the accident. This is especially vital when the policy limits are not sufficient to fairly compensate you.
  • Your injuries will incur future medical expenses. The more severe your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes putting a dollar amount on your damages more difficult, 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 fight hard to get you the compensation you need and are owed, but we will ensure you receive all of the medical you need to recover.

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 the insurance company is offering a fair settlement.

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

Drunk driving statistics can be pretty sobering. Every day there are about 28 fatal drunk driving accidents, adding up to roughly one fatality in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have consistently become less common since 1982, drunk drivers still account for three-tenths of total traffic fatalities as of 2018. While safe driving campaigns and strict punishments for drunk driving have certainly helped, some reckless Palos Hills, IL residents still choose to disregard others' well-being just so they party and skip on paying for a taxi. If you are hurt as a result, you deserve to be justly compensated with a complete recovery and the careless driver needs to be held accountable for the harm they have caused. The Palos Hills, 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 one-fifth of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved alcohol. Alcohol was found in the symptoms of over a third of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

Alcohol's Impact on Driving Abilities | Palos Hills, 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 impede someone's driving skills. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, a change in mood and poor judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three drinks - a motorist suffers from reduced coordination, inability to track movement, challenges using the steering wheel and a slower response to unexpected things on the road. It is crucial to exercise great caution and let someone else take the wheel if you are intoxicated. Regrettably, sometimes you can commit to protecting others on the road and still experience the devastating consequences of a dangerous Palos Hills, IL driver not caring about the rules, driving drunk and injuring you or someone you love. Just knowing that the negligent driver will likely face criminal charges, steep fees, restrictions on their license and possibly jail time cannot truly compensate you and your family for all of the ways they have impacted your life. You need the experienced and tenacious Palos Hills, 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 discuss your options and begin on the path to feeling that true justice was achieved.

Drunk Driving Laws in Palos Hills and Illinois

Under 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 driving under the influence becomes "aggravated driving under the influence" and a Class 4 Felony if:

  • The driver had more than two previous DUI offenses
  • The driver caused a motor vehicle accident 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

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.

View More FAQs

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the driver needed to use reasonable care to avoid injuring you.
  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 accident would not have happened but for the defendant's failure to use reasonable care.
  5. Damages That the negligence was the reason you sustained a loss, such as monetary damages like medical bills as well as noneconomic damages. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were associated economic damages.

There are two factors that set drunk driving accidents apart from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 dictates that drivers are to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with anyone else on the road. Meaning the first element is a given. Secondly, the legal philosophy 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 granted automatically as long as you can demonstrate 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.

None of that means you should take the success of your case for granted; 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 key to have committed and accomplished Palos Hills, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to stand up to bullies and fight until you get the best results in your claim.

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

It is important to find all liable parties, especially if the driver has policy limits that do not fully compensate you for your damages. Depending on the specifics of your case, you may be able to make a claim against:

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Many states have what is referred to as a dram shop rule, under which you may be able sue a licensed alcohol vendor after a drunk driving accident if the accident caused you 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 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 the vendor sold the driver alcohol, which you can demonstrate through surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness or employee depositions
  • That the patron they supplied alcohol to caused the drunk driving accident
  • 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 holds a private party — if the driver at fault for your injuries was not old enough to drink legally and became inebriated at the private residence.

Each year the Illinois Comptroller stipulates dram shop liability limits on the maximum amount of money someone 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 because of the wrongful death of a loved one.

The Owner of the Vehicle

If the driver was driving someone else's car, you may be able to file a suit against the owner. In a negligent entrustment case, it is negligent to permit a third person to use a thing which is under the control of the actor if it would not be safe to do so. In a drunk driving accident suit in Palos Hills, 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 you were injured by someone who works as a 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. Reasons they are liable could include:

While drunk driving accident claims can seem pretty cut-and-dry, it is imperative to hire an experienced Palos Hills, IL drunk driving accident lawyer so they can conduct a comprehensive 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 Damages Are Available for My Palos Hills, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Personal injury claims in the United States are based on the principle of making one whole. The idea behind the doctrine is that when someone injures you, 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 for lost wages, chiropractic appointments and the pain and inconvenience involved with rehabilitating from a neck injury for a little while. In the most destructive cases, for example if you or a loved one becomes paralyzed, no financial recovery can truly make you whole, but the financial recovery 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 unbiased dollar figure. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any urgent care, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, chiropractic 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 — Lost wages refer to the pay you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. If your injury resulted in a long-term or permanent injury that no longer permits you to perform the tasks required of your job, 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 transportation to and from physical therapy appointments, or had to invest in childcare while you were recovering, you need to be reimbursed for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical costs 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 effects on your well-being, which can be anything anything from difficulty sleeping in certain positions to the emotional impact of not being able to engage in the same activities anymore.
    • Disability for any life-long physical or cognitive difficulties the reckless driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if your injuries result in lasting scarring or loss of limb.
    • 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 had.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your family can no longer share the same counsel and care that was once offered.
  3. Punitive damages These are rarely awarded in personal injury compensation, and are intended to punish the drunk driver and deter future misbehavior. When we file a lawsuit against drunk drivers, we always seek punitive damages. Not only does that maximize your compensation, but it also makes the insurance company nervous 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 may be awarded punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially dangerous behavior. At Burger Law, we have learned that anyone who gets behind the wheel while intoxicated is very aware of the danger their actions pose.

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

Call Burger Law Now

Palos Hills, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including selfish drivers do not value other people's safety and resistant insurance companies focus more on money than morals. That is why each of our Palos Hills-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 working tirelessly on one of our client's claims, our drunk driving accident lawyers are regularly honing our negotiation and trial skills to secure maximum compensation for our clients in Palos Hills and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's selfish behavior did. For the highest standard of legal advocacy, call the Palos Hills, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT or fill out our online form.

Request a Free Consultation


“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

Hurt? Hire Us Today or call (314) 500-HURT

Other Locations

Schema