Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers St. Louis
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Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers in St. Louis. We all owe it to each other to follow the rules of the road and keep each other safe. When someone gets behind the wheel when they're drunk, they're making an incredibly selfish and reckless decision. If you or a loved one ended up injured because of that decision, you have a right to seek justice in the form of financial compensation. Car accidents and their related injuries are always unexpected, and the financial impact from medical expenses and lost wages is sudden and severe. Halvorsen Klote's St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers have dedicated their careers to giving the injured and vulnerable in Missouri and Southern Illinois the same high standard of legal representation that large insurance companies have. If you were injured because someone made the terrible decision to drive drunk, call HK Law today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online.
Drunk Driving Statistics | St. Louis Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers
While drunk driving fatalities have decreased 45 percent since 1982, there are still far too many people on the St. Louis and Southern Illinois roads who endanger others by drinking and driving. When they do and end up injuring you, the St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers of Halvorsen Klote will fight for you to make sure they are held accountable and you receive the full compensation you need to recover.
While drunk driving fatalities are still decreasing in St. Louis and nationally, the prevalence of drunk driving is still high. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 28 people die every day in drunk driving crashes, which adds up to one person every 52 minutes, and over 10,000 people a year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in both Illinois and Missouri, 2.2 percent of drivers admitted to driving after drinking too much within the last 30 days. The annual cost of drunk driving accidents in the United States totals over $44 billion.
The Missouri Traffic Safety Compendium reports that in 2021 alcohol and drug impaired driving contributed to 4,027 car accident injuries and 287 deaths, 8 percent and 28 percent of the states total traffic injuries and deaths, respectively.
The Illinois 2020 Crash Facts states that 19.7 percent of the 1,088 fatal crashes in the state involved alcohol. Of 448 deceased drivers who were tested for alcohol, 37.1 percent tested positive.
If you've been injured by a drunk driver in Missouri or Southern Illinois, call HK Law's drunk driving accident lawyers today at 866-382-4167.
What Are the Drunk Driving Laws and Penalties in My State? | St. Louis Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers
In both Missouri and Illinois, it is unlawful for a person to drive or be in ”actual physical control” of a motor vehicle:
- With a blood alcohol concentration of at least .08
- While under the influence of alcohol
- While under the influence of alcohol, intoxicating compounds, drugs, or a combination thereof to an extent that renders the person incapable of driving safely
The two states differ a bit in terms of consequences:
- First offense: Up to 6 months in jail, fines up to $1,000, a license revocation of 30 days and the possibility of having the ignition interlock device placed on your vehicle.
- Second offense: Up to 1 year in jail, fine of up to $2,000, a license revocation of 1 year and the ignition interlock device placed on your vehicle for a minimum of 6 months.
- Third offense: Up to 4 years in jail, fine of up to $10,000, a license revocation of 10 years and the ignition interlock device placed on your vehicle for a minimum of 6 months.
- First offense: Up to 1 year in jail, fines up to $2,500 and a license revocation of 1 year.
- Second offense: A range of 5 to 364 days in prison, fines up to $2,500 and a license revocation of 5 years.
- Third offense: A range of 10 days to 7 years in prison, fines up to $25,000 and a license revocation of 10 years.
While it may be encouraging that there are harsh penalties for drunk drivers, it doesn't help you get compensation for your injuries. Sometimes, drunk drivers can get out of a criminal conviction or plead guilty to a lesser charge. The St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers of Halvorsen Klote will still be able to hold them accountable in your civil case and get you maximum compensation for your injuries.
Below are some helpful links and FAQs from your HK Law Drunk Driver Accident Lawyers:
- Ultimate Guide to Missouri Drunk Driving Accident Laws
- Who Is Liable in a Drunk Driving Accident?
- Can I Sue if My Loved One Was Killed by a Drunk Driver?
- Damages for Victims of Drunk Driving Accidents
- Can I Sue if I Was Hit by a Drunk Driver?
- What Do I Do if I'm Injured by a Drunk Driver?
Who is Liable for My Injuries? | St. Louis Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers
While a drunk driver is clearly liable for your injuries under the negligence per se doctrine, there may be other parties who are liable. Missouri and Illinois both have what are called dram shop laws, whereby your drunk driving accident lawyers can help you hold a bar, restaurant, or other licensed alcohol vendor liable for your damages. Again, the rules are a little different in each state:
According to Missouri Revised Statute §537.053, your drunk driving accident lawyers must prove two things in order to win a dram shop case:
- If the patron was "visibly intoxicated," meaning they displayed:
- Significantly uncoordinated physical action
- Significant physical dysfunction
Revised Statute §167;537.053 also states that a blood alcohol content above .08% alone is not prima facie, or legally sufficient to support liability. You and your drunk driving accident lawyers will have to prove the establishment and their employees saw physical impairment, such as:
- Stumbling or falling
- Slurring when they talk
- Spilling their drink
- Knocking objects or other people over
- Significantly impaired motor movements
Illinois's Dram Shop Law is unusual in that the person who caused you injury did not have to be "visibly intoxicated" in order for a vendor to be found liable. 235 ILCS 5/6-21, the Illinois Liquor Control Act, allows an injured person to make a claim against a licensed liquor vendor if:
- A vendor-patron relationship existed, meaning you can prove that the vendor sold the drunk driver alcohol.
- You can prove that the alcohol sold by the vendor contributed to the drunk driver's intoxication.
- You can prove that the driver's intoxication was the proximate cause of your injuries.
Each year, the Illinois Office of Comptroller is required to set liability limits for Dram Shop claims. As of January 20, 2022 those limits are:
- $77,787.30 for each person incurring damages
- $95,073.37 per person when an injury or death resulted in either loss of support or loss of society.
What Compensation Can I Receive? | St. Louis Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers
The compensation you receive will depend on the severity of your injuries and the skill of your drunk driving accident lawyers. When you hire Halvorsen Klote, we'll fight to secure you a full financial recovery for:
- Economic damages, such as:
- Lost wages for time spent off work recovering
- Lost earning capacity if your injuries result in a disability that doesn't allow you to perform the tasks of your job anymore
- Medical expenses, including
- Emergency room visits
- Subsequent doctors appointments
- Physical therapy and/or rehabilitation
- Medication costs
- In-home medical care
- Assistive devices such as crutches, wheelchairs or necessary improvements to your home or vehicle
- Future estimated medical expenses, such as further physical therapy or medication, or replacement costs for assistive devices or joint replacements
- Transportation costs to and from medical appointments
- Property damage, such as damage to your car
- Noneconomic damages, including:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Physical impairment
- Loss of capacity to enjoy life
- Loss of consortium
The St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers of Halvorsen Klote have the experience, tenacity, and legal skills necessary to get you the maximum compensation that you are entitled to.
Other cases we take in St. Louis are:
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St. Louis Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers | Halvorsen Klote
You should not have to pay because somebody else made an irresponsible decision, and you do not have to go through this difficult process alone. The St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers of Halvorsen Klote are compassionate, talented, and experienced in holding drunk drivers accountable in St. Louis for their reckless actions. We keep you informed throughout the entire legal process, and give you every piece of information you need to make the best decision for you and your family. Call the St. Louis drunk driving accident lawyers of HK Law today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online.