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Winnebago County wrongful death attorneysDrunk driving takes the lives of over 10,000 Americans each year. If your loved one was killed in a car accident involving a driver under the influence of alcohol, you may be interested in learning about your legal options. While no legal remedy can ever truly make up for your tragic loss, a wrongful death claim may enable you to recover compensation for the financial harm caused by your loved one’s death.

Compensation in a Wrongful Death Claim

Drunk drivers who cause fatal auto accidents can face significant criminal consequences. Surviving loved ones of those killed in drunk driving accidents also have the option of bringing a civil claim against the drunk driver. Through a wrongful death claim, you may be able to receive financial compensation for:

  • The loss of your loved one’s financial support
  • The loss of your loved one’s household services, including homemaking and caring for children
  • The medical bills incurred between your loved one’s accident and his or her death
  • The loss of your loved one’s companionship
  • The loss of parental guidance experienced by minor children of the deceased person
  • Mental suffering and grief experienced by surviving family members
  • Funeral and burial expenses

Wrongful death claims involving fatal drunk driving accidents may also include an award of punitive damages. Unlike damages intended to compensate a victim’s family for financial losses, punitive damages are intended to penalize the drunk driver for his or her actions.

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Rockford personal injury attorneysNews reports of fatal drunk driving accidents are sadly common. Poor road conditions and winter weather only increase the risk of alcohol-related traffic accidents. On average, approximately 30 people in the U.S. die as the result of drunk driving accidents each day. This adds up to over 10,000 lost lives per year. Monetary damages from accidents involving a drunk driver are estimated to be more than $44 billion annually. If you have been injured or a loved one has been killed in a car accident involving an intoxicated driver, you may be able to receive compensation.

Winter Weather and Poor Road Conditions Add to Danger of Intoxicated Drivers

Driving while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs is always a reckless move, but it is especially dangerous during winter road conditions. Icy roads can lead to rear-end collisions when a driver fails to stop their vehicle in time. Multiple car pile-ups may be more likely to occur during adverse weather as well. The combination of an intoxicated driver and slippery roads can also increase the likelihood of a pedestrian being struck and killed.

Negligent Drivers Can Be Held Liable for Damages

Everyone who gets behind the wheel of a car has an obligation to everyone else around him or her to drive with care and attention. When a driver chooses to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol level above the legal limit or while otherwise intoxicated, he or she is not fulfilling his duty to act with reasonable care.

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