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Hurt by a drunk driver? Don't rush to settlement

It's been more than 20 years since Illinois enacted its drunk driving law. That's the law that makes it illegal for a person to operate a motor vehicle if their blood alcohol level is 0.08 percent or higher. As we noted in a previous post, that law is credited by many with reducing the number of wrongful deaths caused by drunk drivers.

Unfortunately, it has not eliminated the problem. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than two dozen people in the U.S. die every day in accidents where alcohol impairment plays a role. Additionally, obtaining an optimal level of compensation isn't necessarily a slam dunk even when DUI evidence is clear. Insurers may still employ strategies and tactics to pay out as little as possible, even perhaps going so far as to try to blame the matter on the victim.

If you are the victim, your objective is to be sure you get the care and support you need to recover as fully as possible. If you suffer disabling injury, you deserve to be confident that you'll have financial support to make the most of your life going forward. The insurer's objective, meanwhile, is to minimize its financial obligation.

What often is lost in this scenario is that this is a legal matter. Insurers know that and have depth on the legal bench to protect their interests. Settlement efforts might start with arbitration or mediation. The next step might involve filing a formal legal claim – the start of months of litigation. Through it all, there are opportunities for negotiation, any of which could, and likely will, result in a settlement before the case reaches trial.

All of this takes time, however, so patience is important. What is equally clear is that the legal processes require unique skills that only come with experience, and consulting an experienced attorney is how to marshal those skills to protect your interests.

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Marquardt & Belmonte, P.C.

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Marquardt & Belmonte, P.C.
311 S. County Farm Rd
Wheaton, IL 60187

Phone: 630-517-3279
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