Car crashes can be caused by driving too fast, trying to make it through a yellow light or being distracted by the phone. However, when a person is involved in an accident with a drunk driver, the drunk driver often walks away suffering less harm than other drivers or passengers. This may leave the injury victim struggling to get compensation for his or her injuries.
Instead of leaving your accident claim in the hands of the insurance company, a Chicago and Aurora personal injury attorney will work to get you compensation for your injuries.
Impaired Driving Accidents in Illinois
Research indicates a driver’s reasoning and memory shows impairment with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of only 0.05%, below the legal limit. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), from 2003 to 2012, 3,866 people were killed in crashes involving a drunk driver in Illinois. In 2017, of the 998 fatal crashes in Illinois, about 1-in-3 fatal accidents involved alcohol.
Suspect the Other Driver Was Impaired
If you suspect the other driver in an accident was impaired by alcohol or drugs, you should contact law enforcement. An impaired driver may try and get the others involved to not report the accident, or even offer to pay out-of-pocket for any damages. However, once the driver leaves the scene without providing their insurance information, it may be more difficult to track the driver down to file a claim.
Drunk Driver Liability
Evidence that a driver is impaired in an accident may be used to show the driver was negligent or at fault for the accident. This is another reason why injury victims should contact the police if they suspect the other driver was impaired. If the police arrest the driver for a DUI, the courts will deal with the criminal charges. It is up to the injury victim to file a personal injury claim in civil court.
If the impaired driver is determined to be the cause of the accident, the driver will be liable for damages caused by the accident.
Getting Compensation After an Accident with a Drunk Driver
Even if a drunk driver caused the accident, the driver may not have insurance or enough money to pay for damages. Uninsured Motorist (UM) and Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage covers bodily injury claims for at-fault drivers who do not have insurance or do not have enough insurance to cover the damages.
There may also be other parties liable for damages in a drunk driver accident. For example, if a family member allowed the impaired individual to drive the family member’s car, the family member may share liability for the accident. Additionally, a vendor may be liable for damage caused by an intoxicated driver under Illinois “Dram Shop Acts.”
If you were involved in an accident with an impaired driver, talk to your personal injury lawyer about your rights and options to get compensation after the accident.
Injury Accident Attorney in Chicago and Aurora
An auto accident in the Aurora or Chicago area can cause vehicle damage and serious injuries. Your damages may include car repairs, medical bills, and loss of income. The driver responsible for causing the accident may be liable for your damages. Contact the Cullotta Bravo Law Group today at 630-898-7800 to schedule your free consultation.