Abels & Annes

Chicago injury lawyer settles DUI accident lawsuit for $100,000 policy limits

Illinois personal injury lawyer Gary Annes has reached a $100,000 policy limits settlement on behalf of a client who suffered painful injuries in a car accident caused by woman who had smoked marijuana and consumed alcohol prior to the incident.

On August 2, 2008, the defendant was driving northbound, at an excessive rate of speed, in the leftmost lane of IL-53 in Rolling Meadows when she lost control of her vehicle, improperly crossed over all lanes of traffic to her right and the shoulder, impacted with the metal guardrail, swerved back left, and crashed into the passenger side rear quarter panel of the plaintiff’s 2000 Subaru Forrester.

The woman admitted to paramedics that she had been drinking, and the drug screen at the emergency room was positive for marijuana, cocaine, and valium. She later admitted to smoking marijuana on two separate occasions that day, including approximately 45 minutes before the incident.

The woman had a prior DUI conviction from less than a year prior to that date, as well as other prior arrests related to drugs and alcohol. She was issued several tickets for the incident and pled guilty to failure to reduce speed to avoid a collision, improper lane usage, and driving under the influence of drugs/alcohol. The accident was investigated by the Illinois State Police.

After impact, the victim’s car began to spin out of control, causing her to hit her head on the driver’s side window, hit her left arm, elbow, shoulder, knee, and ankle against the driver’s side door, and her right knee against the center console. When the paramedics arrived, she complained of headaches and hyperventilation.

Shortly after the accident she was treated at the Glenbrook Hospital emergency room. There, the woman complained of pain in her neck, left shoulder, elbow, arm, knee, and was suffering from a headache. Tests were performed and an MRI revealed that she had multiple disc protrusions. The pain and discomfort then worsened over the next couple days. Her primary care physician recommended a course of physical therapy.

On November 10, 2008, the victim followed up with her primary care physician as she was still experiencing pain, primarily in her head and neck. She was referred to a chiropractor and underwent physical therapy treatment from then until June of 2009. Despite these treatments, the plaintiff’s condition continued to worsen, especially with regard to her knees and ankles.

Her doctor ordered MRI’s for her knees, which revealed meniscus tears in both. The doctor related both injuries to her car accident and recommended bilateral knee arthroscopies with debridement. He then performed the surgery at Weiss Memorial Hospital in July 2010, which he reported was needed as a result of the motor vehicle collision. She was prescribed a course of treatment consisting of twenty-five physical therapy sessions.

As her knee problems became more manageable, she sought treatment for the pain in her foot and ankle. Bilateral MRI’s were performed, and showed sprain or partial tear of the distal posterior tibial tendon in both feet and an avulsion injury of the synchondrosis of the naviculare in the left foot. The doctor reported that the condition was caused by the motor vehicle accident and recommended surgery for both the foot and ankle, which the woman plans to undergoe in the near future.

As a result of the injuries caused by the intoxicated driver, the victim was unable to engage in many of the activities she enjoyed prior to the collision. In addition, most activities of her daily life, such as sitting, standing, cooking, shopping, cleaning, walking stairs, and going to work, were impossible for a time, and then later caused her pain when she did attempt to accomplish them.

She hired the lawyers our law firm shortly before the two-year statute of limitations, and we immediately began working to secure the maximum compensation possible for the life-altering injuries she sustained at the hands of a negligent driver. We obtained the defendant’s insurance policy limits. And we continue to work on the case, however, as the $100,000 is not adequate to compensate the victim for all the pain and suffering she has endured. We are now seeking additional monetary damages in the form of an underinsured motorist claim against her own insurance provider.


Tort liability is based on a simple notion, fairness. You have the absolute right not be subjected to harm at the hands of others, and if you are, you have the right to monetary compensation for your injuries. If you have been unfairly hurt by another person in a car accident, bicycle accident, work injury, slip and fall, or other situation, please call Abels & Annes. Our lawyers will consult you on your accident, free of charge. Call (866) 99-ABELS to speak to an attorney.

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