Can A Lawyer Help With Broken Bones From a Car Accident in Chicago?
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Chicago is home to one of the most convenient public transportation systems in the United States. You can get from point A to point B just about anywhere in the Windy City. Do you want to commute from Waukegan to the downtown loop? You can enjoy a relaxing ride on a Metra train to and from work. How about catching the Cubs at Wrigley Field from your home in Oak Park? The elevated train system (L) in Chicago gets you to where you want to go with just one connection required at a downtown station.
Despite Chicago’s world-renowned public transportation system, automobile traffic remains a problem on the major highways, as well as the back streets in neighborhoods such as Rogers Park and Armour Square. Auto collisions in Chicago dramatically increased in 2020, with much of the blame for the rise in auto accidents attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic. Fewer cars on the road gave drivers much more room to speed and take other risks while operating a motor vehicle.
Whatever the reasons for the rise in car collisions, one fact remains the same. Car accidents in Chicago often cause injuries that require immediate medical care, like fractured bones. Broken bones represent one of the most common types of injuries caused by a car crash. The cost of diagnosing, treating, and rehabilitating one or more broken bones can take several months, with medical bills exceeding $10,000. How do you recover from the financial losses generated by a car accident that produces broken bones?
The answer is by hiring an experienced car accident lawyer in Chicago who handles personal injury cases that include broken bones.
At Morgan & Morgan, we have helped clients recover financial losses for more than three decades in the Windy City. Our team of highly-rated car accident attorneys has recovered more than $14 billion in monetary damages. If you sustained one or more broken bones that were caused by a car accident in Chicago, one of our investigators determines whether another party should assume fault for causing the crash.
Schedule a free case evaluation to learn more about how a personal injury attorney from Morgan & Morgan can help you get an insurance claim approved, as well as win a legal judgment during a civil trial.
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What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in Chicago?
The heavy volume of traffic on Chicago streets means one thing: The risk of getting involved in an auto collision is higher than it is in smaller cities such as Rockford and Joliet. Let’s review the most common causes of car accidents in Chicago.
All you have to do is stand on a pedestrian overpass that overlooks the merging of the Eisenhower, Stevenson, and Dan Ryan expressways approaching downtown Chicago to see bumper-to-bumper traffic lined up for miles on end. Tailgating can cause a rear-end collision, which frequently produces serious injuries such as whiplash and brain trauma. Police officers responding to a tailgating accident typically issue a traffic citation to the owner of the vehicle that rear-ended another car.
One of the most common causes of auto accidents is not an exclusive cause for Chicago drivers. Distracted driving is a major issue for drivers all over the United States. Although Illinois law prohibits the use of hand-held communication devices, far too many drivers continue to tilt their heads to read and send text messages, as well as to reach for a cellphone to answer an incoming call.
Running Red Lights
In 2018, nearly 25,000 car accidents in Chicago resulted from an incident that occurred at a traffic signal. Vehicle collisions that happen at a traffic signal involve a wide variety of reasons, from running a red light to failing to pay attention to a changing traffic light. Because a driver who runs a red light applies more pressure on the accelerator, running red light crashes frequently cause serious, if not life-threatening injuries. They also cause a disproportionate number of broken bone injuries.
An Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) report released in 2018 reported that “crashes involving speed accounted for 33.7% of overall crashes, 36.1% of fatal crashes, and 38.2% of injury crashes.” Even for car accident cases in which speeding is not the primary cause of a collision, traveling at a fast speed exacerbates the damage done by another common cause of an auto collision.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol impairs judgment and significantly slows down reaction times. Drug and alcohol-related vehicle collisions cause more fatalities than any other cause of car accidents. Chicago is considered one of the premier nightlife cities in the United States, which ramps up the risk of drivers operating a vehicle while under the influence.
If another driver caused a car accident because of an act of negligence, you should contact one of the personal injury attorneys at Morgan & Morgan to build a strong enough case that gets you the compensation you deserve.
What Are Illinois Personal Injury Laws?
One of the most important reasons to hire a Chicago car accident lawyer who litigates personal injury cases involving broken bones is to learn about the laws enacted in Illinois that apply to personal injury incidents.
Statute of Limitations
Every personal injury case requires the filing of a civil lawsuit before the expiration of the statute of limitations. States have the legal power to establish the deadline for filing a civil lawsuit, with most states setting a statute of limitations between two and four years. Illinois requires plaintiffs to file civil lawsuits for personal injury cases within two years of the date when a personal injury incident took place.
If you do not file a personal injury lawsuit before the expiration of the statute of limitations, you can expect the court clerk processing your lawsuit to dismiss it from the court docket. Instead of waiting to file a civil lawsuit as the deadline approaches, you should act with a sense of urgency by hiring a Chicago car accident lawyer who specializes in handling cases that involve broken bones.
Comparative fault represents a legal principle that assigns the blame for a car accident to more than one party. Under the modified comparative fault doctrine, the judge hearing your case might find you partially responsible for causing the auto collision. For example, a driver who hit you while merging into highway traffic might not assume all the legal responsibility for causing the car accident. Maybe you were texting at the time of the collision and thus, did not see the driver trying to merge with traffic.
Using our example, let’s say the judge overseeing the case awards you monetary damages valued at $25,000. Because you were texting and driving at the time of the auto collision, the judge decides you should assume 20 percent of legal liability for causing the collision. This means your net financial award is just $20,000.
What Are the Types of Compensation Associated With a Personal Injury Case?
The primary goal of your Chicago car accident lawyer is to get you the compensation you deserve to recover the costs associated with broken bones. Your attorney seeks three types of monetary damages to help you recover from financial losses.
Often called economic damages, special compensatory damages cover tangible costs, such as medical bills, property damage, and the income lost because you could not work while injured. Medical bills include the expenses associated with diagnostic tests, treatment programs, and physical therapy sessions. Recovering from one or more broken bones often requires extensive physical therapy to help you regain strength in the area of the body that experienced a fractured bone. You also have the right to request compensation for other types of medical expenses, such as prescription drugs and the purchase of an assistive like crutches.
Since auto collisions typically result in some form of property damage, you include the costs associated with property damage in your insurance claim and civil lawsuit. Property damage can include repairs done to your vehicle, as well as replacing electronic devices like a tablet or smartphone. Sustaining a serious fractured bone injury can keep you out of work for several weeks. Filing an insurance claim and civil lawsuit can help you recover lost wages.
General Compensatory Damages
Vehicle crashes do much more harm than cause broken bone injuries. They also can trigger emotional distress issues because of the trauma experienced during and after a collision. General compensatory damages represent non-tangible costs that do not come with a price tag. Your Chicago car accident lawyer who specializes in litigating cases involving broken bones calculates the value of general compensatory damages by referring to a formula that includes the value of special compensatory damages.
Pain and suffering represents the most common type of general compensatory damages. An auto collision can trigger nightmares that make it difficult to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. You also might suffer from acute anxiety when you drive in heavy traffic and/or have trouble performing routine driving maneuvers such as backing out of a parking space.
Punitive damages penalize the defendant for committing one or more acts of negligence. The driver of the other vehicle who the judge rules as responsible for your broken bone injuries pays additional compensation. Judges award punitive damages to deter defendants from committing another act of negligence when operating a motor vehicle. You can receive a substantial award for punitive damages if your lawyer can prove the other driver committed at least one act of intentional negligence.
Get Help With a Car Accident Case in Chicago
Recovering from broken bones requires your full attention, from completing a treatment program to participating in physical therapy sessions. Instead of worrying about how you will recover from financial losses, an experienced Chicago car accident lawyer handles your case to get you the compensation you deserve for sustaining broken bones.
At Morgan & Morgan, our personal injury attorneys work cases from start to finish. We also respond promptly to all forms of communication. Read the positive reviews left on sites such as Yelp and Google to learn why Morgan & Morgan is considered the best personal injury law firm in the United States.
Schedule a free case evaluation today to determine the best course of legal action.