In Illinois, if you have been injured by the negligent actions of a drunk driver, you may have multiple avenues through which to obtain financial compensation for your injuries. In addition to receiving damages from the relevant car insurance policies, you may also be able to go after any commercial establishment that overserved the drunk driver by pursuing a Dram Shop Case.
Illinois Dram Shop Act
Bartenders and waitstaff are supposed to watch out for signs of intoxication in their patrons and “cut them off” accordingly, but some do not, sometimes with serious consequences. To address this problem, the State of Illinois passed Section 6-21 of the Liquor Control Act of 1934, more commonly known as the “Dram Shop Act.” Under the Illinois Dram Shop Act, someone who has been injured by an intoxicated individual can hold the bar, club, restaurant, or commercial vendor that supplied the alcohol liable and financially responsible for any damages, provided that the following conditions are met:
- The commercial vendor sold alcohol to the person who caused injury;
- The alcohol that the vendor sold to the intoxicated person either caused or materially contributed to his or her intoxication; and
- The intoxication that resulted from the vendor selling that person alcohol was the “proximate cause” of the victim’s injuries.
Do I Have a Dram Shop Case?
Like any personal injury claim, a Dram Shop case requires the careful collection of evidence and the proper identification of all parties responsible for both the incident and any injuries that result. Moreover, an injured party has a limited amount of time specified by law in which to file a lawsuit or resolve a personal injury claim – known as the Statute of Limitations. In Illinois, the Statute of Limitations for a Dram Shop case is one year. Failure to bring suit or resolve a Dram Shop case within that timeframe will likely result in an injured party being forever barred from doing so.
For this reason, many might find it helpful to consult with legal representation to ensure that all the necessary steps are taken in order to achieve a desirable outcome for a Dram Shop case, such as the Chicago drunk driver accident lawyers at GWC Injury Lawyers.
With over $2 billion recovered for our clients, offices throughout the state, and a proven track record of Dram Shop success, GWC has the experience and determination you need to help you get the compensation you deserve when you have been injured by a drunk driver.
Contact Illinois’ largest Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation law firm today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our Chicago Dram Shop attorneys. Call GWC at (312) 464-1234 or click here to chat with a representative at any time.