Driving while intoxicated is a crime that can accompany serious criminal and civil penalties. Victims of drunk driving car accidents in Elgin have legal options for pursuing compensation from the at-fault party and holding them accountable for the harm they caused. However, collecting an appropriate damages award may be difficult without dedicated legal guidance.
If you or a loved one was injured by a drunk driver, reach out to an experienced attorney at the Law Offices of R.F. Wittmeyer, Ltd. Our team has a successful track record of handling these types of cases and could work tirelessly to pursue justice on your behalf.
Illinois Drunk Driving Statistics
Illinois faces a severe drunk driving problem that several different state agencies have tried to address. According to the Illinois Secretary of State, 93 percent of drivers pulled over for DUI in Illinois had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .10 or higher. Shockingly, seven percent of those pulled over had a BAC of .25 or more.
276 Illinois citizens were killed in DUI accidents in 2019, and 26,224 DUI arrests were reported to the Secretary of State.
Compensable Damages after a Drunk Driving Accident
A drunk driving accident can result in injuries, personal losses, and potential deaths. Victims and their families have the right to pursue compensation for these damages against the reckless driver. After any car accident, an injured plaintiff and their attorney must prove that the defendant had a duty of care to the plaintiff and directly caused them injuries by violating that duty. Intoxicated driving is a clear form of negligence, making victims of DUI accidents eligible to seek damages in a civil claim.
Damages for a DUI crash may include:
- Medical expenses, such as emergency medical bills, doctor’s appointment payments, and surgery costs
- Lost wages from missed time at work
- Lost earning potential
- Property or vehicle damage
In addition to these economic damages, compensation may also be available for losses that cannot be calculated as easily. A skilled lawyer at our Elgin office could help determine the value of a victim’s pain and suffering and pursue appropriate restitution.
Punitive Damages for a DUI
If an injured victim and their attorney can demonstrate that the defendant was malicious or egregious in their actions, punitive damages may be available. These damages are meant to punish the defendant for their behavior. A DUI accident case may warrant punitive damages, so it is recommended that injured Elgin residents consult an experienced attorney about this possibility. Under 735 ILCS 5/2-1115.05, punitive damages are not capped by Illinois Law.
Liquor Sale Laws in Elgin
The defendants in DUI crash cases are usually the drivers who chose to drive while intoxicated. However, dram shop laws in Illinois may call the actions of other parties into question. Under the Liquor Control Act (Dram Shop Act,) vendors may be responsible for the accidents caused by drunk drivers in certain circumstances. A knowledgeable local attorney at our law firm could further explain these laws and determine whether they are applicable in a specific DUI case.
Contact a Lawyer after Drunk Driving Car Accidents in Elgin
If you were the victim of a drunk driving car accident in Elgin, you may have options for recovering compensation from the reckless driver. At the Law Offices of R.F. Wittmeyer, Ltd., our attorneys have over thirty years of experience representing injured victims of DUI accidents. We are here to advocate for you and your family and seek justice on your behalf. Give us a call today to discuss your situation.