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An Illinois Medical Marijuana Card Is Not a License to Drive High

Driving While High is Still a Crime in Illinois

Medical marijuana became legal in the State of Illinois on January 1, 2014. However, it is important to note that Illinois law applies strict regulations for using medical marijuana, especially when it comes to driving under the influence of marijuana.

Driving while drunk or drugged can significantly alter the driver’s perceptions and reaction times, leading to serious accidents and catastrophic injuries. If you have sustained injuries in a motor vehicle accident caused by a drugged driver, a lawyer can determine whether or not you are eligible to recover monetary compensation. The personal injury lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. may be able to represent you in your case and help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

Driving While Under the Influence of Medical Marijuana in Illinois

While an individual with trace amounts of medical marijuana technically can drive, it is best not to do so. Specifically, a medical marijuana card does not prevent the police from arresting the driver for operating the vehicle in a reckless or careless manner.

If a driver is operating their vehicle recklessly with marijuana in his or her system, Illinois DUI laws will still apply. Illinois had adopted a set of roadside tests designed to determine if the driver is impaired by marijuana, as well as threshold limits for blood and saliva levels of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Drivers who need to be taken somewhere while they are still under the influence of their marijuana prescription should consider letting a friend or neighbor drive them, or grabbing an Uber or Lyft. Another option is to take public transportation.

Medical Marijuana DUIs in Chicago

Chicago and the whole State of Illinois considers a medical marijuana card an automatic authorization to submit to field sobriety testing. If the officer reasonably believes that the driver is impaired, the test will go forward. If the driver refuses, the State may suspend or revoke the driver’s license. Moreover, if the State suspects that the cause of the DUI was medical marijuana, the State can prosecute the driver under the State’s normal DUI laws.

A police officer is also allowed to testify against the offending driver in court – and to confirm the driver’s level of impairment at the time the driver was pulled over. The offending driver may also be subject to the State’s reckless driving laws, and a conviction can result in criminal fines or penalties.

Reckless Driving while Driving on Marijuana

Drugs, including medical marijuana, can seriously impact a driver’s abilities while behind the wheel of a car. Drugs and alcohol can cause blurry vision and may also affect a person’s perception – including depth perception – while on the roadway. Other common symptoms associated with drugged driving include bloodshot eyes, dilated pupils, slurred speech, and a dazed look.

Operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs can result in collisions with roadway objects, including guardrails, walls, or buildings. Pedestrian collisions are also possible, as are collisions with other motor vehicles on the roadway.

Proving Reckless or Impaired Driving in Illinois

Reckless driving is one form of negligent driving. In reckless driving cases, the injured accident victim has the burden of proving negligence and damages. The injured accident victim must be able to show that, as a result of the presence of drugs in the driver’s system, the driver operated a vehicle in a careless or reckless manner. A driver must ordinarily operate a motor vehicle as a “reasonable” driver would under the same or similar circumstances.

Arguably, if the driver operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs, including medical marijuana, it violates the “reasonable person” standard of care. This is because an impaired driver poses a potential hazard to all other motor vehicle drivers on the roadway at that time.

The injured accident victim must also be able to show that the impaired driver’s violation of the standard of care directly resulted in certain injuries and damages. Available damages may include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are those types of damages that can readily be calculated in dollars and cents – such as medical bills and lost wages. On the other hand, non-economic damages, such as pain, suffering, inconvenience, and permanency, are more subjective and do not have a hard-and-fast number associated with them.

What should I do if a person who was high or on drugs caused my car accident?

If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident and suspect that the other driver was impaired by medical marijuana, there are several steps you can take. Immediately call the police and tell them that you were involved in an accident with a suspected drugged driver. When the police officer arrives on-scene, he or she may be able to administer the necessary tests and should also be able to compose a police report or incident report.

Moreover, if you have sustained an injury in the accident, it is best to travel in an ambulance to the nearest hospital. In the alternative, you should have someone drive you to an emergency room or urgent care facility. You should seek emergency medical care even if you do not believe that you sustained a serious injury in the accident. This is because many injuries do not come to light immediately, and it is usually best to have a medical professional diagnose your condition.

Contact a Chicago, Illinois Personal Injury Lawyer Today to Discuss the Facts and Circumstances of Your Case

Even though a driver may carry a medical marijuana card, that driver can still cause an accident if he or she drives while impaired. Motor vehicle accidents can produce serious injuries and damages, including soft tissue injuries, fractures, spinal cord injuries, head injuries, and even death.

10 Disturbing Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

Drunk Drivers Can Cause Serious Injuries on Chicago Roads

A drunk driving accident is a tragic event that Mothers Against Drunk Driving calls the “most frequently committed violent crime in America”. It seems that each new day brings another disturbing news story about the repercussions of getting behind the wheel after a few drinks. Drunk driving statistics help illustrate just how prevalent drunk driving accidents are in Chicago and across the US; but they also demonstrate how a drunk driver can cause injuries that could affect a DUI accident victim for the rest of their life.

10 Drunk Driving Accident Facts: Statistics that Result in Injuries

1. Drunk Driving Occurs Way Too Much

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adults consume too much alcohol and get behind the wheel about 112 million times a year. This adds up to nearly 300,000 incidents of drinking and driving each day.

2. Young People are Dying Because of DUI

One in every 7 drivers killed in a drunk driving accident in 2008 was under the age of 21 (and thus not even old enough to drink).

3. The Financial Cost of Drunk Driving

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has determined that these accidents cost the United States $132 billion a year and costs each adult in this country almost $500 per year.

4. Young People Tend to Drink and Drive More Often

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in fatal crashes in 2010, the highest percentage of drunk drivers was for drivers ages 21 to 24 (34%), followed by ages 25 to 34 (30%) and 35 to 44 (25%).

5. Children are Dying in DUI Accidents

More than 200 children are killed in drunk driving crashes each year. Out of those deaths, 62% were riding with the drunk driver while the other 38% were in a car that was struck by a drunk driver.

6. Lots of People Drive Drunk on Weekend Nights

An estimated 1 in 7 nighttime weekend drivers are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, according the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

7. Binge Drinkers tend to be Drunk Drivers

One in every ten binge drinkers admitted to driving the last time they consumed 5 or more drinks, according to a 2009 study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

8. Drunk Drivers are Not Always Caught

Additionally, according to studies by the CDC, an average drunk driver has driven drunk 80 times before first arrest.

9. Lots of Car Accident Deaths are Due to Drunk Driving

Drunk drivers caused 11,773 of the nation’s 37,261 traffic fatalities in 2008, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In other words, 32% of deaths caused by a car accident were due to drunk driving.

10. Nighttime is an Especially Dangerous Time to Drive

Over 70 percent of drunken driving fatalities occurred at night and 55 percent occurred during the weekend.

Drunk Driving Statistics Clarify the Danger and Risk

These drunk driving statistics make clear that drinking and driving can cause serious injuries and deaths. Fatal car accidents in the U.S. are caused by intoxicated drivers at an alarmingly high rate, and they affect everyone in one way or another.

Drunk driving can impair a driver’s ability to judge speed, timing, and distance. It can lead to dangerous driving behaviors such as failure to use turn signals, drifting, and failure to notice other vehicles or pedestrians on the roadway. Thus, not only are the roads more dangerous with drunk drivers, the financial toll of an alcohol-related accident extends to the average taxpayer.

Suing a Drunk Driver for Negligence

Fortunately, the individuals responsible for alcohol-related accidents often face serious criminal charges in addition to being held civilly responsible to innocent accident victims. For this reason, it is important that the victims of any drunken driving accident seek free legal advice from an experienced attorney.

The victims of automobile accidents caused by an intoxicated driver can see their lives torn apart in an instant by another person’s negligent actions. For this reason, the injury lawyers and wrongful death attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. take special care in fighting for clients who have been seriously injured or killed by the negligent acts of a drunk driver. We will work with you to seek just compensation from drunk drivers and their insurance companies.

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a drunk driving accident, request a Free Case Consultation or call (312) 924-7575 to speak with a lawyer now.

Seeking Compensation From a Drunk Driver

Being a drunk driving victim is stressful. You can face injuries and emotional trauma. You are the victim of someone else’s own unlawful and selfish actions. Illinois law, however, allows victims of a drunk driving accident to seek several types of compensation. Navigating and potentially collecting compensation under these laws can prove a complicated and lengthy process. The attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C., however, can assist in your review and possible claims against the drunk driver and other potentially negligible parties.

Under Illinois law, if a drunk driver injured you or someone you know, you have several potential sources from which to seek compensation for your injuries and damages.

Drunk driver’s insurance policy – If you sue a drunk driver for your damages and injuries, the first possible source of compensation is the drunk driver’s insurance policy. Illinois law may entitle you to recover for your actual damages and injuries up to the drunk driver’s policy limits. This might include recovery for medical damage, personal property damage, lost earnings, and pain and suffering.

Victim’s insurance policy (uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance) – If you are not made whole by the drunk driver’s insurance policy and you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, then you may file a claim against your own insurance policy.

Punitive Damages Against the Drunk Driver

The damages listed above are defined as compensatory damages. They compensate the victim for personal injury and property damage. However, in egregious cases, Illinois law may entitle a victim to punitive damages. Punitive damages are specifically meant to actually punish the actions of a negligent party (here, a drunk driver). In many ways, punitive damages are awarded to set an example, or deter others from similar behavior. Illinois sets out clear criteria that victims must meet before a court will award punitive damages. This includes:

  • The drunk driver must have engaged in reckless conduct—greater than ordinary negligence. This essentially means that the drunk driver must have acted with intent (that is, made a conscious choice to drive drunk)
  • The filed lawsuit must seek punitive damages and receive permission from the judge to pursue them
  • The court must award compensatory damages before considering the award of punitive damages.
  • Whether punitive damages are awarded depends on the facts of a specific case.

Compensation From Establishments That Served Drunk Drivers

Illinois has an extensive Dram Shop Act that allows a victim to file a lawsuit against the establishment (the bar, restaurant, or other licensed business) for injuries caused by a drunk driver whom they served to the point of intoxication. The law has specific limits about how much money a victim may recover, and it is updated annually. Victims must usually bring lawsuits against any such establishment within one year of the incident. The specific requirements that victims must prove to hold an establishment liable include:

  • The establishment actually sold alcohol to the drunk driver
  • The same drunk driver caused the victim’s injuries
  • The establishment is the proximate cause of the drunk driver’s intoxication (this means that the drunk driver’s intoxication was foreseeable from the sale by the establishment)
  • The drunk driver’s intoxication (as defined under Illinois law) was a major cause (that is, proximate cause) of the incident that resulted in the victim’s injury

Dram Shop Act lawsuits require a careful analysis of the facts and a complicated law, so hire experienced representation to guide you or your loved one. Having a good personal injury lawyer with knowledge about drunk driving recoveries for victims can make the difference between a successful recovery—or not.

Compensation for the Death of Drunk Driving Victims

In the horrible event that a drunk driver has killed a loved one, you or another (usually a personal representative of the loved ones estate) may file a civil lawsuit for wrongful death on behalf of the loved one’s estate. Illinois has a special law called the Wrongful Death Act. The rationale behind a wrongful death suit is to provide some financial stability for the surviving family members. This usually means a surviving spouse or children, but can also mean parents or siblings of the loved one. If criminal charges are pending in the death of your loved one, that will track separately from a wrongful death claim, which is filed in civil court.

The Wrongful Death Act allows the recovery of compensation related to:

  • Funeral and final burial costs of the loved one
  • Pecuniary losses (for example, loss of money, benefits, services, and society)
  • Lost inheritance
  • Emotional distress (including damages for grief, sorrow, and mental suffering)
  • Loss of companionship (for spouses)
  • Loss of parental guidance (for children)

There is no set amount of damages that a court can award in a wrongful death suit. Illinois law (740 ILCS 180/2) states only that the damages should result in “fair and just compensation.” This means the amount of compensation can vary greatly from case to case.

There are also time limits for when victims can file wrongful death cases. Depending on the facts of the case, this is usually only one or two years from the date of the loved one’s death. If you think you might have a claim, you will want to act quickly.

Contact a Chicago Attorney Today

After an accident occurs, it’s difficult to see past your immediate needs, which include rest and recovery. Seeking compensation as a victim for injuries and damages sustained by a drunk driver can daunt anyone. If a drunk driver injured you or someone that you care about, our law office can help guide you through the legal process. Contact us or call us at (312) 924-7575 today!

Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations Can Lead to Drunk Driving Accidents

St. Patrick’s Day brings a huge celebration to Chicago. The U.S. Census Bureau has reported that about seven percent of Chicagoans—approximately 201,500—are of Irish-American heritage. The rest of the city’s population, however, along with thousands of visitors, are ready and willing to join in the holiday and be “Irish for a day.” With the holiday falling on a Saturday in 2018, you can expect even more people will turn out for the hundreds of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations around the city.

The official party kicks off at about 9:00 a.m., when about 400,000 or so people will show up to watch the Chicago River turn green. Then, the St. Patrick’s Day parade will begin about noon, heading north from the Balbo and Columbus intersection. The afterparties will continue late into the night—and often into the next day, with the whole weekend becoming a celebration. The South Side and Wrigleyville are only a couple of the many popular spots to drink green beer and celebrate authentic or adopted Irish heritage.

St. Patrick’s Day provides a great celebration to bring the city together and have fun, as well as a boost for local businesses and tourism in Chicago. Unfortunately, it also marks a prime time for people to try to drive after drinking and for drunk driving accidents. The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that drunk drivers cause one-third of traffic fatalities on St. Patrick’s Day. In fact, the USDOT started a campaign to banish drunk driving, just like St. Patrick banished the snakes from Ireland. Despite the best efforts of government agencies and law enforcement, however, drunk driving continues to mar this holiday with accidents, injuries, and fatalities in Chicago and across the United States.

Drunk Driving on St. Pat’s

Chicago offers so many opportunities for safe travel after drinking: public transportation, cabs, Uber, and more. Unfortunately, many people still decide to put a damper on the day and get behind the wheel of their own vehicle after they have had one too many green beers or Irish coffees. Chicago traffic worsens and becomes even more of a nightmare on busy weekends such as St. Patrick’s Day, with the risks of crashes significantly increased with more drunk drivers on the road.

Many people do not realize how much alcohol is too much to drive. Even though they may feel in control, their reflexes, focus, and judgment may be impaired, which can lead to serious and dangerous mistakes on the road. Combine such impairment with the traffic in Chicago on a holiday and it should be no surprise that drunk driving accidents occur.

Holding Drunk Drivers Liable for Your Injuries

Drunk drivers can cause crashes that leave you suffering from serious injuries. You may feel pain, be limited in your ability to work or move around, and require extensive treatment before you can get back to normal. Once your injuries have healed, you may still face a mountain of medical bills, as well as lost income if you missed work. Often, the effects of a drunk driving accident can linger for months or years. In other situations, your injuries may leave you with permanent impairments or disabilities and the drunk driver’s decisions will completely change the rest of your life.

Because the losses from a drunk driving accident can be so severe, it’s important that you understand your rights and how to take action to hold the drunk driver liable for your injuries and losses. Each case will differ, however, and you should be aware of certain steps to take to protect and exercise your legal rights.

Call the police – While it is always wise to call 911 after a car crash, it is especially important if you believe that the driver who caused the accident may have been drinking. Do not confront the driver yourself, as drunk individuals can sometimes become combative and aggressive, especially if they feel defensive. Instead, call the authorities and have them use their own methods to determine whether the driver was impaired, including field sobriety and breathalyzer tests. If the police believe the driver violated Illinois law, they can arrest the driver and a prosecutor can issue charges of driving under the influence. A conviction in a DUI case will often help your claim that the driver was intoxicated.

Seek medical help – If you believe you’re injured, you should never wait to undergo a medical evaluation. A timely diagnosis can help prove the extent of your injuries and justify all of your future medical treatments and costs. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, so it cannot hurt to get checked out to ensure you receive a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Call an attorney – Finally, you should always discuss your drunk driving accident with an attorney who has experience handling this type of complicated case. The right lawyer will evaluate your rights and the value of your claim. We can help you file an insurance claim and handle the claim process. Insurance companies can be more difficult than you might think – even in cases involving drunk driving. We will advocate on your behalf to ensure drunk drivers are held fully accountable for their actions. If needed, we will file a personal injury claim in court on your behalf and fight throughout the litigation process for the settlement you deserve.

Contact a Chicago Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer for Help Today

The aftermath of a drunk driving accident can be traumatic. You may be facing devastating injuries and losses, while wondering how you can get justice and financial recovery from the drunk driver who caused your pain and suffering. The Chicago car accident attorneys at the law firm of Abels & Annes are here to help. Case evaluations are free, so you have nothing to lose by scheduling a consultation. Contact us online or call 312-924-7575 for more information about how we can assist you.

Did a Drunk Driver Injure You During Halloween?

Before you left for your outing, you may have checked your car’s safety equipment—lights, signals, tires. Everything was good, and you hit the road, trying to be as safe as possible.

And then a drunk driver hit you.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving reports that during the course of a year, someone dies in a drunk-driving accident every 53 minutes. During Labor Day weekend, the rate nearly doubles—to one death every 34 minutes. If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident with a drunk driver, whether during Labor Day weekend or at any other time, you should take some important steps. If you suffer an injury in that accident, it is critical that you protect your rights.

Steps o Protect Your Rights After an Accident Caused by a Drunk Driver

An automobile accident caused by a drunk driver presents unique issues for the sober driver who is injured by the intoxicated driver. Drunk driving is against the law and the intoxicated driver will likely be prosecuted in a criminal proceeding. While a conviction of the intoxicated driver might assist you in proving liability, the criminal case against the drunk driver will not likely result in your receiving compensation. The criminal court might order some form of restitution, but that may not cover even a fraction of your losses.

Your claim for compensation will have to come in a civil action independent of the criminal case. Your civil claim against the intoxicated driver will seek financial compensation for your injuries and damages. While a criminal conviction of the intoxicated driver can make your civil case easier, you can take steps at the scene of the accident to strengthen your case, injuries permitting. You should:

  • Call for emergency medical assistance, if needed.
  • Call the police to report the accident.
  • Avoid interacting with the driver you believe to be intoxicated. Stay in your car, lock the doors, and wait for the police.
  • Write down the other driver’s license plate number. Drunk drivers sometimes flee the scene of the accident.
  • Request a sobriety test for the other driver when the police arrive.
  • Take pictures of the scene if you are able.

Write down everything you remember about the accident as soon as you are able, including the time, location, and all other details you can remember about the accident. Include the names of any passengers or other witnesses if possible.

Evidence Commonly Used in a Drunk Driving Personal Injury Case

Most people may believe that it is relatively simple to prove that a driver who hit you and caused you injury was intoxicated. In some cases, this is true, as the driver may be clearly drunk, there may be witnesses, or the driver may be arrested and charged with driving under the influence. In other situations, it may not be as clear and there may be questions as to whether the driver was impaired at the time of the crash. In short, it is always imperative to have a law firm on your side who knows how to fully investigate an accident to determine when it is possible to hold a driver liable for drunk-driving crashes.

At an accident scene, one of the most important things you can do to protect your rights is call 911 and wait for law enforcement officers to arrive. Officers will investigate possible causes of the collision and should specifically try to determine whether any drivers involved were intoxicated. If there is any suspicion that a driver has been drinking, officers should perform field sobriety or breathalyzer tests to determine whether the driver’s abilities were impaired or whether the> blood alcohol content was above the legal limit of .08 percent.

Evidence gathered by officers that clearly indicates a driver was intoxicated can also be used in your civil claim to prove the driver should compensate you for your losses. In addition, if police determine that a driver was drunk, they should arrest that driver and the prosecutor will likely issue charges of driving under the influence.

If, for some reason, no police officers are called to the scene or the drunk driver leaves before they arrive, there are other ways to prove that a driver was intoxicated. It can be based on witness testimony if anyone saw the driver operating a vehicle in an erratic fashion. This can include swerving, driving the wrong way, departing a lane, driving too fast or slow, driving without lights at night, or other risky, dangerous or unusual behaviors. Witnesses who stopped at the scene or other motorists involved in the accident may also testify to the driver’s condition immediately following the crash. Common signs of intoxication include red or watery eyes, slurred speech, stumbling, the odor of alcohol, and disorientation.

Whether or not the driver was arrested, drunk-driving accidents can involve complex evidentiary issues. It is essential to seek help from a law firm that has specific experience handling drunk-driving cases. An attorney can handle the entire insurance process for you and fight against any questioning about the impaired driver’s liability. If needed, a car accident lawyer can represent you in a legal claim and take every step to ensure you receive the full amount you deserve for your losses.

Contact a Chicago Drunk Driving Lawyer for Help Today

If you have been injured in an accident with a drunk driver in the Chicago area, you should consult a car accident attorney as soon as possible to determine your rights under the circumstances of your accident. The attorneys of Abels & Annes can assist you in protecting your rights when you are involved in such an accident. You can reach us at (312) 924-7575 or through our website.

Be on the Lookout for Drunk Drivers This Memorial Day

It should come as no surprise that Chicagoans like to celebrate, and national holidays like the upcoming Memorial Day often provide the perfect opportunity to do so. Many people have long weekends from work and choose to get together with family members and friends to hit the water, barbecue, and enjoy the spring weather. Like many social gatherings, Memorial Day celebrations often involve indulging in alcoholic drinks.

Unfortunately, some people ignore the serious risks of drunk driving and decide to drive home after having too much to drink. For this reason, the risks of drunk driving increase over major holidays, and you and your family members should be particularly cautious if you are on the roads during these three days in May. Additionally, if you are hit by a drunk driver, you should know what to do to protect your legal rights.

Call the Authorities

Many people are unsure whether they should call 911 following a car crash or handle the aftermath of the accident on their own. Regardless of whether you suspect that the other driver might be intoxicated, you should always call the police after an accident. Officers can perform field sobriety tests, Breathalyzer tests, and make observations that may lead to an arrest and charges for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). While a criminal case will not provide you with compensation for your injuries, it can certainly make your claim easier if the driver is convicted of DUI.

Seek Medical Treatment

Seeking medical help as soon as possible after an accident is important for your health and for a legal claim arising from the accident. You want to make sure that all your injuries are properly diagnosed and treated as soon as possible to minimize complications for you. In addition, you want documentation of all your injuries by a medical professional who can prove the extent of your treatment-related losses.

Call a Chicago Auto Accident Attorney at Abels & Annes

Finally, you should always contact a drunk driving accident lawyer who understands how to hold intoxicated drivers liable for all your losses. At the Chicago law firm of Abels & Annes, we can help you obtain the compensation you need, so please call for a free consultation at 312-924-7575 today.

Watch Out for Drunk Drivers this Graduation Season

As we enter spring, many students are focused on summer and the end of the school year. For many high school and college seniors, this time will mark the end of a chapter of their lives, as they will walk across a stage at graduation and receive a diploma. Graduation is often a time to celebrate both a student’s past achievements and what he or she may look forward to in the future. Unfortunately, too many people have graduation season disrupted by a drunk driving accident.

Young Drivers and Alcohol

With graduation parties often comes alcohol, and this means that some people may make the dangerous decision to drive home after drinking. This practice is particularly common among young drivers, as they may not fully realize the risks of driving drunk. In addition, underage individuals may be hesitant to call a parent or another adult for a ride out of fear they will be punished for being intoxicated. For this reason, there may be an increase in the number of young and intoxicated drivers on the road in the coming months.

Young drivers are not the only ones who may indulge at a graduation party and then drive home. Some adult drivers will also make this decision. When it is a season of celebration, you can expect the risk of drunk driving accidents and injuries to increase.

Damage Caused by Drunk Drivers

Drunk drivers often lack focus and judgment on the road and can cause devastating crashes as a result. When a drunk driver collides with another vehicle, the victims of the accident can suffer severe and often life-changing injuries.

The law allows injured victims to hold drunk drivers accountable for their dangerous actions by filing a personal injury claim. This process is not easy, however, especially for someone who is dealing with a serious injury. Our drunk driving accident attorneys are here to guide you through the legal process, and they will ensure you receive the full amount you deserve from the drunk driver.

Contact Our Chicago Car Accident Attorneys for a Free Case Evaluation

If you have been injured by a drunk driver, please call the Chicago office of Abels & Annes at (312) 924-7575 as soon as possible. The sooner you call, the sooner our legal team can begin working on your case.

Watch Out for Drunk Drivers this St. Patrick’s Day

On March 17th, millions of people around the country will recognize St. Patrick’s Day by eating corned beef and cabbage, attending parades featuring bagpipers and floats, and generally celebrating Irish culture and heritage. In addition, like any other celebration in the United States, St. Patrick’s Day parties often involve the consumption of alcohol, particularly those with Irish roots such as Guinness and various brands of Irish Whiskey.

According to the International Business Times,1 Chicago has the 2nd largest St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the country and over one million people attend the parade. While dyeing the Chicago River green and celebrating the “Apostle of Ireland” may seem like harmless fun, the reality is that St. Patrick’s Day can result in significantly more drunk drivers on the road than on other days, putting all of us at risk.

Here are some of the ways you can reduce your risk of involvement in an accident caused by a drunk driver this St. Patrick’s Day.

  • While not feasible for everyone, staying off of the roads is the most effective way to make sure you are not involved in an accident with a drunk driver. Work from home if you can, and put errands off for another day.
  • Avoid areas around large celebrations.
  • If you see a vehicle driving erratically, make sure to put plenty of space between you and the other driver and call your local law enforcement agency.

In the unfortunate event that you are involved in an accident with a driver, you suspect is under the influence, make sure to have law enforcement respond to the scene of the accident. When police respond to the scene, if they share your suspicions, they will conduct sobriety testing to gather evidence of intoxication. In many cases, the fact that a driver was under drunk will be sufficient to establish liability,2 making it almost certain that you will be entitled to compensation for any losses you sustained because of the accident.

Contact a Chicago Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer Today to Discuss Your Options

The lawyers of Abels & Annes, P.C. are committed to protecting the rights of individuals who have been hurt in accidents by impaired drivers. To schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys, call our office today at 312-924-7575 or contact us online.

1 http://www.ibtimes.com/st-patricks-day-parade-2014-top-10-largest-parades-schedules-route-maps-new-york-boston-chicago-more
2 https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/liability