Barrington Injury Attorneys

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Cook County personal injury lawyerAfter a car crash, your instinct may be to focus on the people who were directly involved in the crash. This makes sense - certainly, the first thing you need to do is to check whether anyone is hurt and call an ambulance if it is needed. It is also important to speak with the other driver to exchange information. However, the people who could become most important in your car accident claim may not be in either crashed vehicle. Third-party witnesses can be extremely important, especially in the event that your case goes to trial. If you have been hurt in a car accident, you should contact an experienced attorney who can help you with collecting evidence. 

Why Are Uninvolved Witnesses so Important in Car Accident Claims?

Physical evidence alone does not always show who was at fault in a car accident. If two vehicles collided in an intersection and both drivers claim it was their turn at the stop sign, the case may turn into a “he-said, she-said” dispute. However, if someone who was not involved in the crash saw what happened, courts and insurance companies may be inclined to take their word for it. 

A witness who was not involved in the accident has no stake in the outcome of your claim, and therefore has no reason or motivation to lie. Bystanders make very credible witnesses, especially when the drivers give differing accounts. Neutral witnesses are typically believed.

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Barrington, IL personal injury lawyerRiding a bicycle is an eco-friendly, enjoyable means of transportation and leisure for many Cook County residents. Unfortunately, riding a bicycle can also be quite dangerous. Bicycle accidents resulting in significant injuries and deaths are not uncommon – especially on the busy streets of Chicago.

If you or a loved one were harmed in a bicycle accident, you should know that you may have the right to compensation. You could be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages during your recovery period, and more.

Legal Options After a Bicycle Collision

Bicycle accidents often leave victims with painful injuries and steep costs. Many bicycle accident victims require emergency room treatment, stitches, and other medical care. Some require a greater degree of medical intervention, including surgery and ongoing physical therapy. Sadly, some bicycle accident victims never recover from their injuries.

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Barrington Hills personal injury lawyerIllinois personal injury law, or tort law, deals with injuries against people and property. Personal injury lawsuits are often based on the legal theory of “negligence.” In the context of a lawsuit, negligence means the failure to uphold a legal duty. For example, the owner of a restaurant has a legal duty to ensure that the property is in reasonably safe condition and does not pose a risk of injury to restaurant guests. Similarly, the owner or possessor of a newly constructed building has a duty to ensure that the structure meets the relevant building codes. Negligence also applies to car accident and truck accident cases. A driver may act negligently by driving too fast for the weather conditions. A trucking company may act negligently by failing to maintain the trucks.

If you were hurt because of another party’s negligence, you may wonder, “What if the accident was partially my fault?”

Comparative Negligence in Illinois Accident Cases

States each handle personal injury cases involving shared fault differently. Most states follow some form of “comparative negligence.” The standard used for Illinois personal injury cases is “modified comparative negligence.” Under this standard, an injured person may still be entitled to financial compensation for damages as long as he or she is less than 50 percent at fault for his or her injury.

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Lake County personal injury lawyer

For many, one of the most enjoyable parts of summer is going for a dip in a swimming pool. Unfortunately, swimming pools can also be dangerous, and in some cases, even deadly. If you were injured or a loved one died while visiting a public swimming pool, waterpark, resort, hotel, or other establishment, you may have grounds for a legal claim against the liable party. You may be entitled to damages for medical bills, funeral costs, lost income or financial support, and more.

Injuries from Swimming Pool Accidents

When a party’s negligence leads to an injury, the injured person may be able to file a personal injury claim and recover financial compensation for damages like emergency room and hospital bills, medication, and lost wages from missed work. The injured person may also be entitled to compensation for non-financial losses such as his or her lost quality of life, physical pain, and disfigurement.

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Barrington pedestrian accident lawyerUnfortunately, pedestrian accidents are a daily occurrence in the United States. In fact, in 2019, 6,590 pedestrians were killed in accidents. If you were recently injured in a pedestrian accident, you should consult a personal injury lawyer promptly. Your lawyer can help you determine all the liable parties and pursue the compensation you deserve.

Responsible Parties for Pedestrian Accidents

If you were hit by a vehicle and suffered injuries, it is important to consider all the liable parties. Here are several parties that may be to blame for your injuries.

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Lake County personal injury lawyerBeing injured is not something that anyone expects to happen, but when it does, it can significantly affect your life. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were nearly 3.5 million workplace injuries that occurred in both private and governmental organizations in 2019. Most of the time when you are injured at work, you will be covered under workers’ compensation, which will typically pay for your medical bills and lost wages. In most cases, you will not be able to file a lawsuit against your employer for being injured at work. However, workers’ compensation benefits do not cover your full work wages, and this can leave you with expenses that you cannot afford to pay. In some rare cases, you might be able to sue your employer to help compensate for your injury.

Potential Reasons You Can Sue Your Employer

In most cases, you will not be able to sue your employer for a work injury because of protections given to them by the Workers’ Compensation Act. When an employee is hurt at work, workers’ compensation insurance is supposed to step in to protect the employer from a lawsuit. However, if an employer does not have the workers’ compensation insurance required by Illinois law, you can file a lawsuit against them to recover damages. You may also be able to sue your employer if they intentionally caused your injury.

Suing Third Parties

Although situations in which you can file a lawsuit against your employer are uncommon, there are many cases in which you can pursue compensation from third parties who are responsible for your work injuries. Anyone who is not considered to be your employer but who was involved in your incident may be liable for your injuries. Some common parties named in work injury claims include:

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Barrington personal injury lawyerWhen you are injured because of someone else’s carelessness, you have the right under the law to be able to claim compensation for your injuries and losses related to them. However, not everyone will be willing to compensate you, even if they know the injury was their fault. In those cases, you can benefit from filing a personal injury lawsuit to attempt to legally force them to compensate you. Before your case can be successful, however, you will need to prove that the other person involved is at fault for the accident. In most cases, this is done by proving that the other person was negligent in their actions.

What is Negligence?

In the context of a personal injury claim, Illinois defines negligence as a person doing something that a “reasonably careful” person would not do, or failing to do something that a “reasonably careful” person would do. Negligence is often left to the judge or jury to interpret, taking into consideration the circumstances surrounding the accident.

Proving Negligence

In order to recover compensation for a person’s negligent actions, you must do more than simply demonstrate that the person did not act reasonably carefully. There is a specific set of criteria that must be met in order to claim negligence. Typically, this includes the following four points:

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Barrington personal injury lawyerspersonal injury claim is a claim used to seek restitution after an injury caused by wrongdoing or negligence. Car crashestruck accidentsslip and fall accidentsdog bites, and many other situations can lead to a personal injury claim. The party responsible for the injury may be a property owner, business, trucking company, drunk driver, or another party. Personal injury claims not only hold the liable party answerable for the harm caused by their actions, they may also provide financial relief. The amount of compensation you can get in a personal injury case varies depending on the severity of the injuries and other factors.

Economic Damages You May Recover in a Personal Injury Case

Economic damages or financial damages are those that result in measurable financial hardship. You could be compensated for:

  • Medical expenses - Being hurt in an accident may require significant medical care. Medical bills from doctor’s appointments, hospitalization, surgery, and other medical needs may be recoverable through a personal injury case. You may also be compensated for medical devices or assistive technology you require because of your injuries.

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Barrington brain injury lawyerOf the different types of injuries that a person may experience, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are among the most serious. Unfortunately, injuries affecting the brain are not always recognized or understood. Following an incident such as a car accident or a slip and fall, a person will likely focus on forms of bodily harm that are immediately evident, such as broken bones. They may not even realize that they suffered a brain injury until several days or weeks later, and they may not associate their symptoms with the accident where the injury occurred. For those who have been injured, it is important to understand the effects that a brain injury can have, and by doing so, they can pursue compensation for the ways the injury has impacted their life.

Health Concerns Related to Traumatic Brain Injuries

Immediately following a concussion or other type of brain injury, a person may experience symptoms such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, difficulty sleeping, dizziness, or confusion. In mild cases, these symptoms may improve or go away after a few days or weeks. In moderate or severe cases, symptoms may persist or get worse, and a person may also experience long-term or permanent health issues, including:

  • Cognitive impairment - In addition to memory loss, damage to the brain may lead to a variety of other issues that affect a person’s ability to think, reason, and perform daily activities. They may struggle with problem-solving, paying attention to people or tasks, following directions, or managing daily activities such as household chores, driving or operating equipment, preparing food, or maintaining proper hygiene. A person may also experience language deficits that affect their ability to speak, read, write, or understand what others are saying.

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Lake County car accident attorneyMost people greatly underestimate the effect that being sleepy has on their ability to drive. According to the National Safety Council, being awake for 20 or more hours straight has the same effect on driving as being intoxicated. If you were injured in a car accident caused by a driver who was too fatigued to drive safely, it is important to know your rights. You may be able to hold the driver accountable and recover compensation through a personal injury claim.  

Negligent Driving Caused by Sleep Deprivation

Most adults have felt the effects of sleep deprivation at least once in their lives. Reduced attention span, increased reaction time, and difficulty making decisions are all common consequences of getting too little sleep. If a driver is too fatigued to pay attention to the road and drive cautiously, he or she should pull off at a rest stop or other safe location. Fatigued drivers may:

  • Drift between lanes
  • Run red lights or stop signs
  • React too slowly to avoid a collision
  • Fall asleep at the wheel

Truck Driver Fatigue Due to Falsified Logbooks

The drivers of commercial trucks are often especially at risk of fatigued driving. To reduce the incidence of truck accidents caused by sleepiness, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has instituted certain restrictions on how long truckers can drive. Truck drivers must keep track of the hours that they drive and when they take rest breaks in a logbook. However, some truck drivers lie about how many hours they have driven. If your accident was caused by a sleepy truck driver, the driver’s logbook and data from the truck’s electronic control module (ECM) may be used as evidence in your case.

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Barrington personal injury lawyerIn a split second, a slip and fall accident can cause agonizing injuries. If you or a loved one were hurt in a slip and fall or trip and fall accident, you may be interested in seeking compensation for your damages. Medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages may be recoverable through a premises liability claim. To receive compensation, however, you will need to prove that your injuries were caused by the property owner’s negligence.

Property Owner Negligence in a Slip and Fall Accident

Slip and fall accidents can lead to painful injuries that incur a massive amount of medical debt. Many slip and fall accident victims are also left unable to work or complete daily responsibilities because of their injuries. Financial compensation for these physical injuries and other losses may be available through a premises liability claim. However, the burden of proof in a slip and fall case is on the person seeking damages. This means that you and your attorney will need to demonstrate that the property owner or property occupier’s negligence caused the accident.

A property owner may be considered negligent if he or she allowed lawful visitors to the property to be exposed to unreasonable dangers. Some unsafe conditions that may lead to slip and fall accidents include:

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Barrington car accident lawyerBeing the victim of any type of car accident is stressful. However, when your accident is caused by an uninsured driver, the situation becomes even more complicated. If you or a loved one were in a car accident involving an uninsured motorist, you may be unsure of what to do next. You are likely concerned about how you will pay for vehicle repair costs, medical fees, and other costs incurred by the accident, and whether or not you are fully responsible for the costs. With the help of a reputable accident attorney, you will be informed of your options as an Illinois driver.

Car Accident Liability in Illinois

Typically, the insurer of the driver who is at fault for a car accident is responsible for paying the damages resulting from the accident. Car insurance is mandatory in Illinois, however, some people choose to drive without auto insurance and in violation of the law. Others forget to renew their policy or fall behind on payments and lose coverage. If an uninsured or underinsured driver causes an accident, the people who sustained injuries and vehicle damage may assume that they are on the hook for the accident costs. However, there are options available to car accident victims that they may be unaware of.

Options for Pursuing Reimbursement for Accident-Related Costs

One option you have after an uninsured driver accident is to sue the at-fault driver. However, if the driver does not have car insurance, it is unlikely that he or she has the funds to pay a personal injury claim settlement or award. Another option is to file a third-party claim with your own insurer under the uninsured motorist policy. Illinois auto insurance policies automatically include uninsured/underinsured (UM) motorist coverage. Unless you have specifically opted out of UM coverage, your policy should cover injuries resulting from an uninsured driver accident. Unfortunately, compensation from the insurance company may not be enough to cover the full extent of your past, present, and future damages. This is especially true if you sustained severe injuries that require considerable medical care and time off work. Furthermore, liability coverage may not include compensation for vehicle repair and replacement costs.

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Cook County personal injury lawyerDogs can be loving, loyal companions. However, dogs are also animals with sharp teeth and claws that are capable of causing severe injuries. If you or a loved one were bitten or otherwise injured by a dog, you may have questions about your legal rights. You may wonder, “Is the dog’s owner liable for my injuries?” or “Who will pay my medical bills?”. The laws regarding liability for dog attacks vary from state to state. In Illinois, there are many cases in which a dog owner is liable for damages caused in a dog attack.

Illinois is a Strict Liability State

State laws regarding injuries from dog attacks typically fall into two categories: laws based on strict liability and laws based on negligence. Some states do not hold a dog owner responsible for injuries caused in an attack if the owner did not know that the dog was dangerous. Dog owners in these so called “one-free-bite” states may avoid liability for injuries caused by their dog if their dog has never bitten someone before. However, Illinois is a strict liability state with regard to dog bites. An owner may be liable for injuries caused in a dog attack even if the dog has never bitten anyone or showed previous signs of aggression.   

Seeking Compensation for Injuries Caused by a Dog

If you were bitten by a dog, you may have sustained deep lacerations, bruising, fractures, and other painful injuries. You may have needed emergency room care, stitches, antibiotic medication, and even surgery. Through a personal injury claim, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses and other damages. Illinois law states that a dog owner is liable for damages caused by a dog bite or dog attack if:

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Barrington wrongful death attorneyRoughly 90 individuals tragically lose their lives in auto accidents every day in the U.S. If you have recently lost a loved one in a car accident, you may be interested in learning about your legal options. If your loved one’s death was caused by someone driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) or violating other Illinois laws, the at-fault driver may face criminal charges. You also have the option of bringing a civil claim against the at-fault driver. Before proceeding with your case, it is important to have a good understanding of what is considered a wrongful death and what the legal claim process involves.

Understanding The Term “Wrongful Death”

According to Illinois law, a wrongful death is one that is caused by the wrongful, malicious, negligent, or reckless actions of another party. Wrongful death claims often accompany criminal charges for DUI or reckless driving, but criminal charges are not a prerequisite for a wrongful death claim. Many wrongful death claims involve:

  • Speeding

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Cook County personal injury lawyerWhile most trucks are loaded properly and driven responsibly, sometimes, truck cargo is improperly secured. Loose or falling truck cargo creates a deadly hazard for other motorists, with the possibility that the debris may strike another vehicle and cause catastrophic damage. Motorists may also get into an accident while swerving out of the way of the fallen truck freight. Cargo that is loose can shift within a trailer causing a truck to become dangerously off-balance and out of the truck driver’s control. If you or a loved one were harmed in a truck accident caused by shifting or loose cargo, you may be entitled to compensation.  

Determining Who is Liable For Your Truck Accident

Liability for your accident may fall on several different parties. It is also possible that more than one party’s actions contributed to the severity of the accident. The party legally responsible for your injuries may be:

  • The truck driver;

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Lake County personal injury attorney car accident

In Illinois, any person found “at fault” in an incident involving bodily injury or physical damage to property will be held liable to pay the other party. This is common when determining liability for car accident damages and injuries. However, this does not always mean that a court will order one party to fully cover another’s losses. Instead, some limitations can greatly affect the amount of compensation the liable party will owe, so it is important to understand what those restrictions are. If you have any questions or concerns regarding a personal injury case, speak with an attorney knowledgeable in Illinois tort laws to protect your rights to compensation.

Illinois Code of Civil Procedure

The Illinois Code of Civil Procedure clarifies how Illinois’ tort liability laws are applied in a settlement. Although a theoretical definition of tort laws suggests that one party may be at fault while the other receives compensation from the responsible party’s insurance company, real-world cases tend to entail negligence from both parties involved in an accident. This does not instantly disqualify a plaintiff from receiving compensation after an accident. Instead, he or she just has to prove that the other party was more than 50 percent at fault. 

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Barrington car accident lawyerMany people understand the general process they must go through if they get into a car accident, but what if they were in a bus accident? Filing an injury claim to receive compensation from the party at fault is somewhat more complicated in cases like these. However, with a capable attorney and a thorough understanding of how public transportation liability works in Illinois, you will be able to pursue the compensation that you deserve.

Different Types of Bus Accidents

Unlike car accidents, the insurance claim process differs depending on whether you are a passenger on a bus or if a bus hits your car. If you are a passenger, you must first determine whether the bus driver or another driver was primarily responsible for the accident.

If another driver was at fault, the process is nearly identical to an ordinary car accident. You and your attorney must prove that the other driver did not drive with a reasonable degree of care. Pointing to any facts implying that the other driver was speeding, distracted, or under the influence will quickly prove that that driver is at fault.

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Barrington personal injury lawyerThe standard advice for new drivers is to drive defensively to prevent collisions. Following this advice helps keep the driver and others safe on the road. Still, there is more to avoiding car accidents than focus and caution alone. Worn-out or faulty vehicle components cause many vehicle crashes. Drivers are responsible for routine inspections at a trusted repair shop when they notice any warning signs or alerts from their vehicles. If you or your loved one is hurt in a car accident, it is important to speak with a skilled personal injury attorney. 

Car Maintenance Tips to Prevent Accidents

Since Illinois is not a no-fault state when it comes to car accidents, any damage or injury caused by a mechanical failure can get complicated. When trying to determine who is at fault, an attorney would have to conduct a full investigation into the person responsible for any recent repairs and the manufacturer to determine if either were to blame. This can be a lengthy process and can get expensive. For this reason, proper car maintenance is essential and can help motorists avoid this situation altogether.

Drivers should pay attention to the following to help determine when and what they may need to repair:

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Barrington car accident attorneyRecent reports reveal some startling car accident fatality statistics in Illinois. It is worth understanding them to adjust your driving accordingly and drive defensively to avoid any accidents. Even with a skilled attorney and good car insurance, it is never worth risking minor to fatal injuries or permanent damage to your vehicle, and an extra nudge of awareness can go a long way in helping to prepare you for the next time you get behind the wheel. With all of that said, never hesitate to reach out to a respected car accident attorney in Illinois if you or a loved one ever suffer the unfortunate circumstance of being in a car accident.

First Quarter Illinois Car Accident Statistics

You do not typically see such drastic changes in automotive fatality rates from year to year, but 2020 is shaping up to be a year like none other. The National Safety Council recently released a surprising statistic, revealing an 11 percent increase in the number of people who have died from car accident fatalities in the first quarter of 2020. Even though most Americans began quarantining in March this year, a nationwide increase of 14 percent in car accident fatalities was reported.

Experts speculate that there are a few reasons for this jump in numbers, but fortunately, awareness can increase your safety. First, since most people are not driving as much as usual, the roads are far less congested. For that reason, drivers are tempted to recklessly speed and pay less attention to the road than they normally do. Even if a driver is not particularly careless, many people are turning their keys in the ignition after not driving for weeks or even months. They may have already lost their sense of familiarity with their vehicles and are a bit rusty when it comes to responding to external cues on the road.

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Barrington car accident attorneyIt can be difficult to remain calm immediately after a car accident, but that time is crucial when trying to determine who is at fault. Without the proper information, you or a loved one could risk losing deserved compensation because you are unable to prove that the majority of the fault lay with the other driver. The statute of limitations on personal injury cases is two years in Illinois, making it critical for you to get in touch with a car accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident. While every accident is unique, it is important to heed the following guidelines when determining fault: 

Common Forms of Car Accidents and Who Is At Fault

Illinois is an “at fault” state, which means that both drivers in a car accident can try to make an argument that the other driver was more at fault. The court may then use percentages to determine where fault resides, and the party who is most at fault may be required to pay damages to the other party. If you were involving in any of the following types of accidents, you and your attorney can use a variety of forms of evidence to demonstrate that the other driver was at fault:

  • Turning Vehicle: If one driver was turning and the other was not, the former would typically be at fault, since it is their responsibility to make sure that it was safe to turn in the first place.  On the other hand, if the non-turning driver was speeding, ran a red light, or broke another traffic law, they could be found at fault.

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Barrington Injury Attorneys

224 West Main Street, Barrington, IL 60010

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