Illinois Motorcycle Accident Result of Drunk Driving: Leads to Liability On Behalf Of Driver and Liquor Store Under Illinois Dram Shop Act

In an Illinois motorcycle accident, a case involving a drunk driver shows how both the drunk driver and bar or liquor store are equally responsible for the ensuing actions.

After drinking at two different bars for about three and a half hours the defendant, Donald Adcock, took Jerica Klocke for a ride on his motorcycle. As they approached an intersection, Adcock lost control of his bike and crashed. He died at the scene. Klocke suffered severe injuries from which she died about 13 hours after the Illinois motorcylce crash. She survived by her parents and three brothers. She was 19 at the time of her death and was working as a medical receptionist with plans to go to college.

According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, “Approximately three out of ten Americans will be involved in an alcohol-related Illinois traffic accident in their lifetime.” While it is generally assumed it is wholly the fault of the drunk driver for an accident that may occur, this is not the case.

Under the Illinois Dram Shop Act, establishments serving alcoholic beverages are held liable for monitoring patrons’ alcohol consumption. According to the Dram Shop Act, bars and other venues for alcoholic consumption are responsible for withholding alcohol from impaired patrons.

A lawsuit was brought under the Illinois Dram Shop Act alleging that the service of alcohol to Adcock caused him to become intoxicated and that his intoxication was a cause of Klocke’s death. The Klocke estate sued Adcock and both bars Adcock drank at the night of the accident.

The jury found one of the bars, Thirsty’s Tavern liable and awarded $550,000 plus $500,000 for loss of society and a little less than $50,000 for medical and funeral expenses.

The Illinois Dram Shop Act limits liability to about $58,600 for claims involving people injured or killed by a drunk driver and about $71,700 for those claiming loss of means of support or loss of society. Therefore the verdict judgment was reduced to just over $100,000.

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling Illinois motorcycle accidents for over 30 years, serving those areas in and around Cook County, including Oak Park, Park Ridge, Calumet City, and Naperville.

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