Getting you the compensation you deserve after a drunk driver's reckless decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Will County, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Will County, IL. If you or a loved one was injured because someone else broke the rules of the road and got behind the wheel drunk, call the Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a free case review. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Will County and throughout Illinois by fighting on their behalf so they can focus on healing.

You can do everything you are supposed to to keep other drivers, passengers and pedestrians safe, but thoughtless drivers can still change your life in an instant. Whether you were coming back to town after a long weekend or just running errands, all of a sudden your entire life was upended through no fault of your own. The Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law have pledged their careers to helping people in similar circumstances get a sense of healing and maximum financial recoveries when they may be feeling they have nowhere to turn. We know the medical bills keep coming in, you are losing time off work and your life is not the same as it just a short while ago. You do not have to go through this alone. With the compassions, knowledge and tenacious legal advocacy 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 Will County and throughout Illinois and Missouri were owed. Our initial consultation and investigation is free, and we do not charge any fees until you get the best possible compensation you deserve.

If you were harmed by an irresponsible drunk driver, see how much your claim 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 Will County, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

The criminal justice system will likely hold a drunk driver accountable in criminal court. Still, a personal injury lawyer is still necessary to get you a financial recovery for all of your damages. Knowledgeable, accomplished and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get justice 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 Will County, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers for My Claim?

Every crash is unique, and you can only truly know when to hire a personal injury lawyer by seeking a consultation with one. If the driver accepts liability and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, 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:

  • The drunk driver will not take responsibility 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 company refuses to offer a full settlement. In a perfect world insurance companies would recognize their responsibility when one of their policyholders drives drunk and injures you, far too often that does not happen. Even in the event that the driver admits liability, the insurance company might try to convince you that your injuries were not actually caused by the accident or that a lawyer will only take money from you. None of that is true, and a skilled drunk driving accident lawyer will not let them get away with them.
  • The drunk driver is not the only one responsible. 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 your damages exceed the driver's insurance policy limits.
  • Your injuries are severe. The more significant your injuries the more medical treatment you will need, which makes calculating the full value of your damages more complex, and makes it more likely the insurance company will try to claim they do not have to pay for all of your medical expenses. Aggressive and compassionate 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 talk directly to a drunk driving accident lawyer familiar with Illinois laws who will be honest with you about whether you need an attorney to get the best results in your case.

Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Seeing how many people choose to drink and drive can be pretty sobering. Every day 28 people are killed in accidents caused by drunk drivers, adding up to roughly one death every 52 minutes. While drunk driving accidents and deaths have consistently become less common since 1982, drunk drivers still account for almost a third of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While safe driving campaigns and strict punishments for drunk driving have certainly done wonders for reducing drunk driving, some selfish Will County, IL residents still decide to disregard others' well-being just so they can have a good time and avoid paying for a rideshare. If you are harmed as a result, you are owed a full financial recovery and the negligent driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will fight to make sure that you receive maximum compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts found that almost one-fifth of the 1,088 accidents that caused fatalities in the state involved a drunk driver. Alcohol was found in the symptoms of almost 40 percent of 448 deceased drivers who were tested.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Will County, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

While the legal limit for alcohol consumption before driving is .08 percent blood alcohol concentration, a level of just .02 percent is enough to significantly impair someone's ability to drive. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration you experience a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and loss of judgment. At .05 percent - reached after about three drinks - a driver suffers from decreased coordination, reduced ability to trace moving objects, challenges steering and not being able to respond in enough time to unexpected things on the road. It is vital to follow proper road safety and have a back up plan if you have had too much to drink. Regrettably, sometimes you can do everything possible to stay safe and still experience the terrible consequences of a reckless Will County, IL driver not caring about the rules, getting behind the wheel while intoxicated and harming you or a family member. Just knowing that the person who hurt you will face harsh repercussions in a criminal case does not make you whole again. You need the savvy and talented Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to make sure you recover fair compensation for all of your damages. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to find out the best way to proceed and start on the path to feeling that true justice was done.

Drunk Driving Laws in Will County 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 it 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 lead to bodily harm

Other instances in which the penalty is more severe are:

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

Generally, when you are proving negligence in a personal injury claim, you and your drunk driving accident lawyers must demonstrate 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 driver did not do what they should have in order to avoid hurting you.
  3. Cause in Fact That your injuries are a direct result of the accident.
  4. Proximate Cause That the accident would not have happened but for the defendant's failure to act in a way that avoided hurting you.
  5. Damages That the negligence was the reason you sustained a loss, such as monetary damages like lost wages as well as noneconomic damages. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were also monetary losses.

There are two aspects that set drunk driving accidents apart from the majority of personal injury claims. Firstly, 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1 stipulates that drivers 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 theory of negligence per se means that anyone who violates a state statute automatically did not act in a reasonable manner to avoid injuring you. Therefore, in drunk driving cases you only need to show that the driver was drunk in order to prove duty of care and breach of duty. All your drunk driving accident lawyers will need to prove is that the driver caused the accident and injured you.

None of that means you should take the success of your case for granted; the insurance company will still be motivated to pay you as little as possible. That is why it is crucial to have dedicated and skilled Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to stand up for you and get the best results in your claim.

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

A driver is not the only one who may be held responsible 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 you sustained damages. Illinois' dram shop laws are explained 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 a visibly intoxicated person. You just have to prove:

  • That a vendor-patron relationship existed, which you can show with security footage, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the patron they sold to was responsible for 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 driver responsible for your injuries 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 a vendor 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 led to 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, the owner may also owe you compensation. In a negligent entrustment case, someone may owe you damages if they permit a third person to use a thing which is under the control of the actor if if permitting the activity creates an inherent risk. In a drunk driving accident claim in Will County, 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, the driver's employer may have some liability. Reasons they are liable could include:

Experienced Will County, IL drunk driving accident lawyers like those at Burger Law have seen all of these types of claims and know how to hold the appropriate parties liable. When you hire us, we start investigating your accident immediately to determine as many liable parties as possible.

What Compensation Can I Recover for My Will County, 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 a low-speed crash in a parking lot, that might mean paying for lost wages, follow-up doctors' appointments and the pain and inconvenience that is a result of rehabilitating from a lower back injury for a little while. In the most tragic cases, for example if you or a loved one has permanent disability, no amount of money can genuinely make you whole, but the settlement or verdict should be high enough to encapsulate the terrible loss you have sustained.

Damages in a personal injury claim are broken down into three distinct groups:

  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, surgeries, medications, chiropractic appointments and in-home care. 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 long-term or permanent injury that no longer permits you to work, 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 Uber to and from chiropractic appointments, or had to invest in childcare while you were recovering, you deserve to be repaid for that too.

    If your injuries result in future medical costs 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 defines noneconomic damages as "intangible" damages, "including but not limited to":
    • Pain and suffering refers to the physical and emotional hardships you have been put through, which can be anything anything from pain when going up and down the stairs to the emotional impact of not being able to engage in the same activities anymore.
    • Disability if you sustained life-long 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 impede you and your spouse from the love and intimate relationships you once shared.
    • Loss of society if the injuries your family can no longer share the same guidance and camaraderie that was once offered.
  3. Punitive damages These are not common in personal injury claims, and are intended to punish the defendant and deter others from making the same mistakes. We are aggressive in our pursuit of punitive damages in drunk driving accident claims. Not only does that help get you the money you deserve, but it also puts the insurance company on their heels because punitive damages are not covered under insurance 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 appalling conduct. It is clear to us that anyone who sits in the drivers seat while drunk is demonstrating a blatant disregard your safety.

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

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Will County, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including reckless drivers think they can do whatever they want and resistant insurance companies who care more about money than morals. For that reason, each of our Will County-based drunk driving accident lawyers in Illinois has pledged their education and abilities to fighting on behalf of the injured and vulnerable. We are not on 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 regularly fine-tuning our negotiation and trial skills to get maximum compensation for our clients in Will County and throughout Illinois. We know your actions did not cause this trying time; someone else's horrible behavior did. For skillful, empathetic and aggressive representation, call the Will County, 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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