Getting you the compensation you deserve after a drunk driver's selfish decision left you to pick up the pieces

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Pilsen, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Pilsen, IL. If an irresponsible drunk driver hurt you or someone you care about, call the Pilsen, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a no-risk, no-obligation case evaluation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Pilsen 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 without warning. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or lazily driving around on the weekend, all of a sudden your entire life was upended when you did nothing wrong. The Pilsen, 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 may not be able to work because of your injuries and your life is not the same as it just a short while ago. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the dedication, skill and forceful legal counsel of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our over 30 years of experience, we have won over $175 million in verdicts and settlements that the vulnerable in Pilsen and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Talking to us is free, and we do not charge any fees until the final verdict or settlement has been reached.

If you were injured by a careless drunk driver, see 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 Pilsen, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

A prosecutor 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. Knowledgeable, accomplished and tenacious drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get maximum compensation 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 Pilsen, 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 the advise of one. If the driver is taking responsibility for his actions and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, a lawyer likely will not be able to add much value to your claim. However, there are many situations in which a drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to significantly add value to your claim:

  • The drunk driver refuses to be held accountable for their actions. Drunk drivers who cause injuries will probably be prosecuted, and may not want to admit fault in order to not face fines, a suspended license and possibly jail time. While while not every drunk driver is found guilty, 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 adjuster is not being fair. Ideally insurance companies would recognize their responsibility when one of their policyholders injures you in a drunk driving accident, that is not always the case. Even in the event that the driver does take responsibility, the insurance company might try to say that your injuries were not actually caused by the accident or that they do not have to pay for lost wages because you had paid time off available. Those are all deceptions aimed at devaluing your claim, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will be able to combat those deceitful tactics and get you the money you are owed.
  • There are other parties you can make a claim against. While a drunk driver is clearly at fault, other parties may bear partial responsibility, such as the driver's employer. Drunk driving accident lawyers will thoroughly investigate your claim and identify everyone whose negligence contributed to your injuries. This is especially important when the policy limits are not sufficient to fairly compensate you.
  • Your injuries require ongoing care. The more severe your injuries the higher your medical bills will be, which makes putting a dollar amount on your damages more complex, and motivates the insurance company to try to minimize your damages 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, we answer all of your questions for free. Call us now at (314) 500-HURT to speak for a candid conversation with a drunk driving accident lawyer experienced with Illinois laws who will be straightforward 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 die in accidents caused by drunk drivers, or about one fatality in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have consistently been on the decline in the last four decades, drunk drivers still account for 29 percent of total traffic fatalities as of 2018. While safe driving campaigns and strict punishments for drunk driving have certainly done a lot to make our communities safer, some careless Pilsen, IL residents still make the irresponsible decision to jeopardize others' safety because of a misplaced self-centeredness. If you are harmed as a result, you deserve to be fairly reimbursed with a full recovery and the reckless driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Pilsen, 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 almost 40 percent of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Pilsen, 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 even .02 percent is sufficient to significantly impede someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in sight, inability to do two things at once, exaggerated confidence and loss of judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three alcohol beverages - a driver suffers from lowered coordination, inability to trace moving objects, difficulty maneuvering and not being able to respond quickly to unexpected things on the road. It is vital to follow proper road safety and let someone else take the wheel if you are not in the best condition to drive. Regrettably, sometimes you can follow all the rules ourselves and still experience the catastrophic consequences of a reckless Pilsen, IL driver disregarding your safety, getting behind the wheel drunk and harming you or someone you care about. Just knowing that the negligent driver will likely face criminal charges, steep fees, restrictions on their license and possibly jail time is not enough. Trust in the accomplished and talented Pilsen, 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 begin on the road to being made whole again.

Drunk Driving Laws in Pilsen and Illinois

Under 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 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 resulted in great bodily harm, permanent disability or disfigurement to someone else
  • The driver caused an accident in a school zone that lead to personal injury

Other instances in which the class of felony increases are:

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

Generally, 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 was required to act in a certain, safe way.
  2. Breach of Duty That the defendant did not use reasonable care.
  3. Cause in Fact That the accident caused your injuries.
  4. Proximate Cause That the driver's breach of duty is the reason for the accident.
  5. Damages That the negligence was the reason you sustained a loss, such as economic damages like damage to your car as well as emotional distress. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were associated economic damages.

There are two factors that make drunk driving accident lawsuits different from most other personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 specifically states that motorists 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 philosophy of negligence per se stipulates that anyone who breaks the law automatically did not act in a reasonable manner to avoid injuring you. 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.

While it may seem like that makes a drunk driving case a slam-dunk, drunk drivers often do not want to be held accountable and their insurance companies do what they can to help their bottom line. That is why it is critical to have dedicated and experienced Pilsen, IL drunk driving accident lawyers by your side to fight until you get the compensation you are owed.

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

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

A Licensed Alcohol Vendor or Social Host

Many states have what is known as a dram shop rule, under which you may be able sue a licensed alcohol vendor after a drunk driving accident if you were hurt. Illinois' dram shop laws are stipulated in 235 ILCS 5/6-15 of the Illinois Liquor Control Act. Illinois' dram shop law less strict 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 a vendor-patron relationship existed, which you can show with surveillance video, receipts or eyewitness depositions
  • That the patron they supplied alcohol to caused your injuries
  • That the vendor is responsible for the patron being drunk

You can only sue a social host — meaning someone who supplies their private guests with alcohol — if the person who caused your accident was under the age of 21 and became intoxicated at the party.

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 person making a claim for the accident, or $95,073.37 if the accident led to loss of support or loss of society due to the wrongful death of a loved one.

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, a person may be liable if they permit a third person to engage in an activity 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 Pilsen, 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, for example in a truck accident, bus accident or rideshare accident, the driver's employer may also owe you damages. Reasons they are liable could include:

While drunk driving accident claims can seem pretty cut-and-dry, it is imperative to hire an experienced Pilsen, 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 responsible, but will also increase your compensation and secure you the full financial recovery you are owed.

What Compensation Can I Recover for My Pilsen, 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 is at-fault for your injuries, 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 rear-end accident, being made whole means recovering compensation money you lost from work while recovering, follow-up doctors' appointments and the physical strain that comes with rehabilitating from a whiplash injury for a few months. In the most tragic cases, for example if you lose a family member, no financial recovery can be expected to make you whole, but the financial recovery should be great enough to provide a least some sense of peace.

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 accident. It is an objective dollar figure. Examples include:
    • Medical expenses — That includes any treatment the day of the injury, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical rehabilitation appointments and in-home care. You will also be paid for any medical expenses that we expect to arise in the future.
    • Lost wages and lost earning capacity — You will be reimbursed for full amount of the wages you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. If your injury caused a long-term or permanent injury that no longer allows 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 send your child to daycare because you could not look after them, you need to be compensated for that too.

    In the case of future medical costs or lost earning potential, 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 the emotional impact of not being able to exercise the same way anymore.
    • Disability if you sustained permanent physical or cognitive difficulties because of the accident.
    • Disfigurement if the accident result in lasting scarring or loss of limb.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your spouse from the affection 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 recoveries, and are intended to punish the drunk driver and discourage future misbehavior. When we make a claim against drunk drivers, we always pursue punitive damages. Not only does that maximize your financial recovery, but it also puts the insurance company on their heels as there is no coverage for punitive damages 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 reckless behavior. It is clear to us that anyone who gets behind the wheel while under the influence is demonstrating a flagrant disregard your safety.

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

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Pilsen, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We hate bullies, including selfish drivers think they can do whatever they want and resistant insurance companies whose prioritize more money than morals. For that reason, each of our Pilsen-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has dedicated their education and abilities to standing up for the injured and vulnerable. We have no interest in TV commercials or billboards. When we are not investigating claims or in the courtroom defending the rights of our clients, our drunk driving accident lawyers are constantly honing our negotiation and trial skills to secure the best results for our clients in Pilsen and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's horrible actions did. For skillful, passionate and aggressive representation, call the Pilsen, 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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