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Illinois DUI defense lawyersDriving under the influence is considered a crime in the state of Illinois, and it carries heavy penalties for anyone who is convicted. When a minor passenger is involved, those consequences can become even greater. Learn more about the penalties of driving under the influence with a child in the vehicle, and discover how a seasoned criminal defense lawyer can help to improve the outcome in your Illinois drunk driving case.

What Classifies as a Child Passenger?

Illinois state law defines a minor as any child under the age of 16. As such, any child that is 15 or younger can lead to elevated charges in a DUI case. It is important to also note that the driver's relationship to the child is irrelevant in such cases. Instead, only the child's age is considered.

DUI Charges for Drivers with Child Passengers

Drivers who have a responsibility to safely transport children (i.e. school bus drivers) are held to a much higher standard than other drivers, so they may face penalties for any amount of alcohol in their bloodstream. For all other drivers, charges do not typically occur unless the driver registered with a BAC of 0.08 or more. However, it is important for drivers to keep in mind that there are still scenarios in which a charge may occur, even at a BAC that is lower than 0.08. For example, a driver that is under the legal drinking age (under the age of 21) can be charged with a DUI for a BAC that registers at 0.04 or higher.

DUIs with Minor Passengers Result in Elevated Charges and Consequences

The state of Illinois can convict even first-time DUI offenders with a Class A misdemeanor, which typically results in a suspension of one's driving privileges for at least one year. If a minor passenger was present at the time of arrest, that charge may also include up to a 6-month jail-term, a mandatory minimum fine of $1,000, and up to 25 days of community service. If the arrest involved a crash in which a minor passenger was injured, the charge may be elevated to an Aggravated DUI (a Class 4 felony). Convicted individuals may face a loss of their driving privileges for ups to two years, jail time, a fine of $2,500, and 25 days of community service. Subsequent convictions involving minor passengers may be elevated to a felony, as may any accident involving the death of a child passenger.

Contact Our Joliet DUI Defense Lawyers for Aggressive Legal Representation

If you or someone you love is facing a DUI charge involving a minor passenger, it is critical that you seek seasoned and aggressive legal assistance. With more than 60 years of experience in the Joliet and Plainfield areas, the Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C. are the ones to call. Schedule your free initial consultation with our Will County DUI defense lawyers by calling 815-666-1285 today.


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Illinois auto accident injury lawyersMotor vehicle crashes are one of the leading cause of both death and injury in the United States. It is also one of the most common reasons that people visit the emergency room. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 2.5 million of all non-fatal crash injuries are seen in emergency rooms each year, with around 7.5 percent resulting in hospitalization for the victim. What are the injuries most commonly seen, and what can injured victims expect over the next few weeks and months? The following information explains.

Most Commonly Sustained Auto Accident Injuries

Although every crash is unique, as are the injuries most commonly associated with them, some injury types are more frequently seen than others. These include:

  • Head injuries (traumatic brain injury),
  • Facial injuries,
  • Soft tissue injuries,
  • Whiplash,
  • Spinal injuries,
  • Sprains,
  • Strains,
  • Broken bones,
  • Lacerations,
  • Contusions, and
  • Abdominal injuries.

Many of these injuries do eventually heal, but some can result in death or long-term complications (i.e. head injuries, abdominal injuries, spinal injuries, etc.). Moreover, even a seemingly minor injury can result in serious complications or fatality. Examples might include an abdominal bleed that initially appeared to be nothing more than a bruise or a laceration that gets infected (which can lead to more serious complications, including sepsis).

Dealing with Car Crash Injuries

Because injuries can be more serious than they initially seem, accident victims are encouraged to always visit the emergency room after a crash. This step can reduce the risk that the victim will suffer devastating health effects from an insidious injury or delayed symptoms while also ensuring that the injuries are attributed to the accident, rather than some other event. Injured parties are encouraged to follow up with the recommended providers and specialists.

As victims obtain treatment, they are encouraged to keep a detailed record of any medical expenses that they incur (including transportation costs and expenses for medical equipment), as these can be used by an attorney to calculate how much a victim may be owed in compensation.

Contact Our Joliet Auto Accident Lawyers

If you or someone you love has been injured in an auto accident, do not speak with the insurance companies. Instead, refer them to Tedone & Morton, P.C., where your best interests and right to pursue full and fair compensation will be protected. Skilled and experienced, our Plainfield, IL car crash injury attorneys can handle all the details so that you and your family can focus on healing. Call 815-666-1285 and schedule your consultation with our offices today.


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premises-liabilityAccording to the Illinois Premises Liability Act, property owners are required to care for and maintain their premises. In the event an individual sustains an injury on their property, they may be liable. Therefore, property owners are encouraged to invest in premises liability insurance to protect themselves.If you have suffered from an injury as a result of a hazard on someone else's private or public property, you may be curious as to what their premises liability insurance covers and whether you are eligible to collect compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.

Types of Accidents Covered by Premises Liability Insurance

Premises liability insurance is designed to pay victims who sustain injuries by dangerous conditions on properties. Some of the most common types of accidents covered by premises liability insurance are as follows:

Slip and fall accidents; Dog bites and animal attacks; Swimming pool incidents; Insufficient lighting; Cluttered floors; Damaged walkways and entryways; and Negligent security.

How to Recover Compensation Under Premises Liability Insurance

If you get hurt on a private or public property, you are not automatically awarded compensation under the property's premises liability insurance. In order to recover compensation, the following elements must be established:

  • There was a hazardous condition on the premises;
  • The property owner was aware or should have been aware of the hazard;
  • The property owner did not maintain their premises in accordance with Illinois law; and
  • You sustained injuries because of the property owner's breach of duty.

Evidence Necessary for Premises Liability Insurance Claims

To increase your chances of collecting the fair and full compensation you may be entitled to, evidence is incredibly important. Some of the most common types of evidence used to support premises liability cases includes:

  • Photographs or videos of the accident scene;
  • Witness testimony;
  • Medical records that show the severity of your injuries and cost of treatment; and
  • Real estate deeds or leases.

It is important to note that while evidence is crucial in all personal injury cases, it is even more vital in premises liability cases. This is because victims likely have limited access to the property.

Contact Our Joliet Premises Liability Attorneys

If you have been hurt on someone else's property, reach out to our highly skilled Joliet premises liability attorneys. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at 815-666-1285. We can determine whether you have a valid case, help you gather evidence, and ensure that you receive the maximum compensation you may deserve.


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hit-runThe AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety discovered that at least one hit-and-run accident takes place in the United States every minute. In 2016, there were approximately over 2,000 hit and run related deaths. This is a 60 percent increase from the number of hit and run deaths that occurred in 2009.

Reducing the Risk of Bicyclist or Pedestrian Accidents

Hit and run deaths have been rising since by 7.2 percent since 2009. About 85 percent of those who lost their lives in a hit or run were hit by a bicyclist or pedestrian. Fortunately, there are certain steps you can take to reduce your risk of being involved in a crash with a bicyclist or pedestrian including:

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times;
  • Watch out for young children in areas that may be crowded with more pedestrians;
  • Get into the habit of yielding to pedestrians; and
  • Be patient when trying to pass a bicyclist or pedestrian.

Hit and Run Laws in Illinois

Although hit and run driving is illegal in all states, the penalties differ in from state to state. If a driver hits a vehicle in Illinois, they must contact the police and provide their personal information in addition to staying at the scene.

Drivers who flee the scene of a car crash with significant damage of over $1,000 may be left with a Class A misdemeanor and a driver's license suspension. If drivers flee the scene of an accident where others sustained injuries, they may face a Class 2 or Class 4 felony as well as a license revocation. In the event drivers flee the scene of a crash that resulted in a fatality, they may be subject to a Class 1 felony and license revocation.

Steps to Take After an Accident

Regardless of whether or not you believe you caused the accident, you should remain calm at the scene. Then, call the police so that a police report can be filed. Next, exchange contact information and insurance details with anyone involved in the accident. Lastly, seek medical attention and make sure your injuries and treatments are well-document.

Seeking Compensation for a Hit and Run Accident

Contrary to popular belief, you may be able to recover compensation from a hit and run driver. By consulting an experienced car accident lawyer, you can increase your chances of identifying the driver and securing the compensation you may be entitled to. A car accident lawyer will know how to look for evidence and protect your rights.

Contact Our Joliet Hit and Run Accident Attorneys

If you have been a victim of a hit and run accident, contact our highly skilled Joliet hit and run accident attorneys. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at 815-666-1285. We may be able to determine who hit your vehicle and help you obtain compensation.


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motorcycle-crashNow that the fall season has made its debut, motorcyclists are taking advantage of the brisk air and beautiful colors by riding more frequently. Although most motorcycle riders understand the importance of wearing helmets, many fail to wear them and sustain serious injuries in motorcycle accidents. Let's take a closer look at the parts of a helmet and benefits of helmets for motorcyclists.

Four Parts of a Helmet

A motorcycle is designed to protect the face and brain. In the event a motorcyclist is involved in an accident, a helmet can reduce their risk of suffering serious injuries. Here are the four main parts of a helmet:

  • Outer shell: The outer shell of a helmet is made of a durable material that compresses when it comes into contact with a hard surface. When it compresses, it is able to diffuse the force, before it can severely impact the head;
  • Absorbing liner: The absorbing liner is comprised of a cushion-like material called polystyrene. It is designed to absorb the impact in the event a motorcyclist hits their head;
  • Padding: The padding is the closest material to a motorcycle rider's head. It allows the motorcyclist to feel more comfortable in a helmet; and
  • Retention system: The chin strap on the helmet is called the retention system and keeps the helmet secured tightly during a crash.

All of these parts work together to ensure optimal head and brain safety for motorcycle riders.

Tips for Selecting the Right Helmet

When shopping for a helmet, motorcyclists should opt for one that offers the most comfortable fit and most amount of protection. Some of the most common helmets available include:

  •  Full-face helmet: Full-face helmets are designed to offer the most amount of protection because they completely cover the face and chin;
  • Three-quarter open face helmet: Motorcyclists who choose a three-quarter open face helmet should also invest in goggles or a face protector because it does not come with face and chin protection; and
  • Half helmet: Also known as a “shorty,” a half helmet offers the least amount of protection as it may come off from a motorcyclist's head in the event of an accident.

Although full-face helmets are more expensive than three-quarter open face helmets and half helmets, the extra protection they offer makes them well worth the extra cost.

Contact Our Joliet Motorcycle Accident Attorneys

If you have been involved in a fall motorcycle accident, contact our highly skilled Joliet motorcycle accident attorneys. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at 815-666-1285.


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