Getting you the compensation you deserve after someone else's reckless decision left you injured

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Wood Dale, IL

Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in Wood Dale, IL. If a thoughtless drunk driver hurt you or someone you care about, call the Wood Dale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers immediately at (314) 500-HURT or contact us online for a complimentary case evaluation. We serve the injured and vulnerable in Wood Dale and throughout Illinois by standing up to bullies and getting them the financial recovery they deserve.

You can follow all the rules of the road, but reckless drivers can still change your life without warning. Whether you were driving home from dinner or lazily driving around on a Sunday, all of a sudden your entire life was completely disrupted when you did nothing wrong. The Wood Dale, 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 you cannot earn a living right now and everything seems different than it was before your accident. This burden is not yours to bear alone. With the dedication, knowledge and unshakable legal advocacy of our drunk driving accident lawyers, this too shall pass.

In our more than 30 years of experience, we have won over $175 million in verdicts and settlements for our Wood Dale, IL clients. 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 harmed by a thoughtless drunk driver, discover how much your damages 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 Wood Dale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers Do for My Claim?

A prosecutor will likely hold a drunk driver accountable in criminal court. Still, you will still need a personal injury lawyer to confront the drunk driver in civil court and get you full compensation for your injuries. Skilled, seasoned and persistent drunk driving accident lawyers can ensure you get the best possible financial recovery by:

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

Do I Need Wood Dale, 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 determine when to hire a personal injury lawyer. If the driver accepts liability and your injuries are minor and do not require much medical treatment, it may not be worth it to hire an attorney. However, there are often many good reasons you will want a drunk driving accident lawyer on your side:

  • The drunk driver refuses to be held accountable for their actions. Drunk drivers who injure people are likely looking at criminal charges as well, 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 criminal court. Experienced drunk driving accident lawyers will know how to obtain key evidence in order to prove that the defendant were drunk and injured you.
  • The insurance company refuses to offer a full settlement. While you would like to think insurance companies would realize their commitment when one of their policyholders drives drunk and injures you, that is not always the case. Even if the driver is willing to be held accountable, 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 not let them get away with them.
  • There are multiple parties at fault. While a drunk driver is clearly to blame, other parties may be at fault, such as a friend of the driver who knowingly lent them the vehicle while drunk. 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 appropriately 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 complex, and motivates the insurance adjuster to try to devalue your injuries as much as possible. Persistent and knowledgeable drunk driving accident lawyers will not only be able to calculate and demand full compensation, 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. Call 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.

Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Understanding just how bad the problem of drinking and driving can be incredibly sobering. Every day there are about 28 fatal drunk driving accidents, which is approximately one fatality in just under an hour. While drunk driving accidents and fatalities have consistently declined since 1982, drunk drivers still account for 29 percent of total traffic deaths as of 2018. While safe driving campaigns and harsh punishments for drunk driving have definitely done wonders for reducing drunk driving, some selfish Wood Dale, IL individuals still decide to disregard others' well-being just so they can have a good time and skip on paying for a rideshare. If you are injured as a result, you deserve to be justly reimbursed with a full recovery and the reckless driver needs to pay for breaking the rules. The Wood Dale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers at Burger Law will use or skills and dedication to see wrongs made right.

The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts states that almost 20 percent 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.

How Alcohol Affects Driving | Wood Dale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers

While it is only illegal to drink and drive if your blood alcohol concentration is over .008 percent, a level of even .02 percent is sufficient to greatly reduce someone's abilities behind the wheel. At .02 percent blood alcohol concentration the body undergoes a decline in sight, inability to multi-task, exaggerated confidence and poor judgment. At .05 percent - the product of roughly three alcohol beverages - a driver suffers from decreased coordination, reduced ability to trace movement, challenges maneuvering and a slower response to emergency situations. It is imperative to do you part in protecting other drivers, passengers and pedestrians and find other means of transport if you are intoxicated. 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 thoughtless Wood Dale, IL motorist not caring about the rules, getting behind the wheel drunk and hurting 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 savvy and proficient Wood Dale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers of Burger law to to see things made right. Call Burger Law today at (314) 500-HURT to go over your case and begin on the road to feeling that true justice was achieved.

Drunk Driving Laws in Wood Dale and Illinois

Pursuant 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 DUI 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

Other instances in which the class of felony increases include:

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

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

  1. Duty of Care That the defendant needed to use reasonable care to avoid injuring you.
  2. Breach of Duty That the defendant did not do what they should have in order to avoid injuring you.
  3. Cause in Fact That your injuries are a direct result of the accident.
  4. Proximate Cause That the driver's failure to act in a way that avoided hurting you 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 mental anguish. In personal injury claims you can only recover noneconomic damages if there were associated monetary losses.

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 motorists are legally compelled to "exercise due care to avoid colliding" with other cars, pedestrians and bicyclists. 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 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 demonstrate 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; drunk drivers often do not want to be held accountable and their insurance companies do what they can to help their profits. That is why it is crucial to have dedicated and talented Wood Dale, IL drunk driving accident lawyers to fight on your behalf and get the financial recovery you deserve.

Who Else Can I Sue for My Drunk Driving Accident Injuries in Wood Dale, 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 called a dram shop law, 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 laid out 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 demonstrate:

  • That a vendor-patron relationship existed, which you can demonstrate with recordings, receipts or eyewitness testimony
  • That the patron they sold 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 supplies their private guests with alcohol — if the person who caused your accident was under the age of 21 and became intoxicated at the private residence.

Each year the Illinois Comptroller places dram shop liability limits on how much a establishment or social host is required to pay out. 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 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 someone else to use something which is under the control of the actor if it would not be safe to do so. In a drunk driving accident claim in Wood Dale, 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 contracted and directed the driver. Reasons they are liable could include:

Experienced Wood Dale, 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 case right away to find everyone who is responsible for your injuries.

What Damages Are Available for My Wood Dale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Injuries?

Tort claims in the United States are based on the principle of being made whole. The idea behind the doctrine is that when someone is to blame for your damages, 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, follow-up doctors' appointments and the physical strain that is a result of rehabilitating from a lower back injury for a relatively short period of time. In the most tragic cases, for example if you lose a family member, no financial recovery can genuinely compensate you, but the settlement or verdict should be great enough to provide a least some sense of peace.

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

  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 urgent care, surgeries, prescription or over-the-counter meds, physical therapy appointments and in-home care. 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 — Lost wages refer to the pay you lost from not being able to work while you recovered. 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 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.

    If your injuries result in future medical expenses 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 tribulations you have been put through, which can be anything anything from pain when turning your head to the emotional impact of not being able to engage in the same activities anymore.
    • Disability for any permanent physical or cognitive impairments the reckless driver caused.
    • Disfigurement if your injuries caused permanent scarring.
    • Loss of consortium if you or a loved one's injuries prevent you and your spouse from the love and intimate relationships you once had.
    • 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 typically not included in personal injury claims, and are meant 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 increase 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 may be awarded punitive damagers in personal injury claims for especially egregious behavior. It is clear to us that anyone who drives under the influence is demonstrating a blatant disregard your safety.

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

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Wood Dale, IL Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Burger Law

We cannot stand bullies, including selfish drivers think they can do whatever they want and resistant insurance companies who care more about money than morals. That is why each of our Wood Dale-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 fine-tuning our abilities to get great recoveries for our clients in Wood Dale and throughout Illinois. We know you deserve it because we know you did nothing to put yourself in this situation; someone else's selfish decisions did. For knowledgeable, compassionate and relentless representation, call the Wood Dale, 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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