You need information right now. A car accident can be overwhelming and you might not know how to start your recovery. Should you hire a lawyer? Are your injuries bad enough to justify a lawsuit? Who should be paying for your damages? What damages can you recover? How do you even go about getting a recovery?
The personal injury lawyers of Hupy and Abraham have more than 200 years of combined experience representing people just like you. We are committed to giving everyone the information they need to answer the hard questions and we are dedicated to helping our clients recover from their Illinois car crash injuries.
Types of Illinois Car Accidents
There are many ways that a car can crash; however, some of the most common types of auto accidents include:
- T-bone accidents: When the front or back of one car collides with the side of another car, the cars form a “T” shape and serious injuries can result. This type of Illinois car accident typically happens when one car fails to stop at an intersection controlled by a stop sign or traffic light.
- Rear-end crashes: A driver who is following another vehicle too closely or who is distracted, speeding or otherwise negligent may hit the car in front of him. Illinois rear-end accidents are common and can result in serious injuries.
- Head-on collisions: Impaired driving, fatigue, and other factors can cause the driver of one car to hit the front end of another car. Head-on collisions are not the most common type of accident, but they often result in serious injuries or death.
- Pedestrian accidents: In 2013, the most recent year for which complete data is available, more than 4,400 people were hurt and more than 100 people died in Illinois pedestrian crashes.
- Bicycle crashes: Illinois has more bike accidents than most states in the nation and the number of bike wrecks may be rising. Often, it is the rider who is significantly injured when a car driver is negligent.
- Rollover accidents: Speeding, overcorrection of the vehicle, tire problems, and driver negligence are just some of the causes of these dangerous crashes.
Many times these crashes are caused by common factors.
Common Causes of Illinois Car Accidents
Car accidents can happen anytime a driver is negligent. Despite specific Illinois laws regulating some of the causes of accidents described below, these factors remain common reasons of accidents, injuries, and fatalities:
- Distracted driving: Using a cell phone—for any reason—while driving, eating, arguing with passengers, changing the music, and many other things can be distracting to drivers and dangerous for others on the road.
- Drunk driving: It is against the law to drive with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher in Illinois. Drivers who are drunk or under the influence of drugs can cause significant accidents.
- Speeding: A driver who is speeding may not have enough time to stop or react to driving conditions. This can result in a catastrophic crash.
- Complicated roadways: Confusing road designs, road signs, or road conditions can cause drivers to make dangerous mistakes and can result in crashes.
- Drowsy or fatigued driving: Drivers who are sleepy or fatigued may be among the most dangerous drivers on the road and they may not know it.
- Teen drivers: Illinois graduated license laws try to limit the number of teen driver accidents in our state; however, teen drivers are inexperienced drivers and that can make accidents more likely.
- Elderly drivers: Older drivers have experience that teen drivers don’t, but changes in their physical and cognitive functioning can result in dangerous accidents.
- Aggressive drivers: Every driver has somewhere to go, but it is the drivers who follow too closely, who weave in and out of traffic, and who try to beat red lights that lose control of their vehicles and may cause significant accidents.
These crashes result in different terrifying and painful injuries.
Types of Illinois Car Accident Injuries
Our clients have suffered some the horrible consequences of car accidents, including:
- Brain injuries: An Illinois car crash can cause a life changing brain injury such as a hematoma, a concussion, a blood clot, a laceration, a shearing or tearing of the white matter, or nerve damage.
- Spinal cord injuries: A complete spinal cord injury that resulted in paraplegia or tetraplegia may result from an Illinois car accident. Additionally incomplete spinal cord injuries such as anterior cord syndrome, central cord syndrome, posterior cord syndrome, Brown-Sequard syndrome or cauda equina lesion may also result.
- Broken bones: Any bone in the body is at risk of being broken in an Illinois car crash. Broken skulls, facial bones, necks, collarbones, ribs, backs, arms, hips, pelvises, legs, ankles and other bones can be physically painful and financially challenging.
- Burns: A car fire that results from an Illinois car crash can result in painful burns that require significant medical treatment, rehabilitation, and time away from work.
- Amputations: The amputation of a leg, arm, hand, or foot may occur during the collision or after if the injury is so severe that doctors can’t save the limb or extremity. The physical, emotional, and financial impact of an amputation may be life-long.
- Pregnancy complications: Pregnant women and unborn babies are both at risk of serious, life-threatening complications from Illinois car wrecks.
- Death: Illinois car accidents can take the lives of innocent victims. Surviving relatives may be able to pursue important legal recoveries for these tragic losses.
Anyone who has suffered one of these injuries because of someone else’s negligence deserves to make a full and fair recovery.
Illinois Auto Accident Recoveries
If you pursue a car accident settlement or court verdict then you may be able to recover for all of the harm that you have suffered. More specifically, you may be able to recover for your past, current and future:
- Medical expenses: All medical expenses including hospital stays, surgeries, doctors’ visits, medications, rehabilitation therapies, and other costs may be compensable after an accident.
- Out-of-pocket costs: Car crashes can result in a lot of day to day expenses such as property damage, transportation costs, household help and more. These expenses may be part of your recovery if you incur them because of your accident injuries. The out-of-pocket money you have to pay for your property damage, transportation costs, and other accident expenses may be part of your recovery.
- Lost income: If you can’t work at all or enough to make the same income that you did prior to the accident then you may recover for your lost income.
- Pain and suffering: The physical pain and emotional suffering that follows a car crash injury may be among your most significant damages and may be the hardest to value.
These damages are meant to make you whole and to compensate you for someone else’s negligence.
But You Have to Know How to Protect Your Recovery
As you work toward your physical and legal recoveries, you need to know the following tips and important information about Illinois personal injury cases. Specifically, you need to know:
- How to collect evidence at the accident scene: You may be able to gather important information that can help you prove your case and help you get the recovery you deserve.
- What to do if there is a baby or child in your car during an accident: You need to take special precautions if you have a baby or child in your car at the time of the crash, and you need to know about Illinois car seat laws before an accident occurs.
- How to get a copy of your police report: The police report may contain important information that can help with your recovery.
- How to avoid mistakes after a crash: If you make certain mistakes, then you may hurt your chances of making a fair recovery. However, you can learn to avoid these potential problems.
- What to do if you are in an accident with an uninsured driver: Illinois has minimum car insurance requirements, but not all drivers comply with these laws.
- How to deal with insurance adjusters: Insurance adjusters are not looking out for your best interests, so it is important to be cautious and prepared when talking to them.
- The statute of limitations: Illinois provides you with a limited amount of time to start a car accident case in court. If you fail to take action before the statute of limitations expires then you may never recover damages for your injuries.
- About standing to sue: Only people who were hurt, or have certain legal rights with regard to a person who was hurt or killed, may pursue an Illinois car accident claim.
- Comparative negligence rules: If you were partly to blame for the car accident that resulted in your injuries, then it could impact your right to recover damages.
- Using expert witnesses for your case: Different kinds of expert witnesses may help you prove your claim and get the recovery that you deserve.
- How settlements work: It takes work to get to a fair settlement. You can improve your chances of getting the recovery that you deserve if you understand the settlement process.
- How to decide whether you need an Illinois car accident lawyer: In order to know if you need a car accident lawyer, you need to know how a car accident lawyer can help you improve your chances of recovering fair damages.
The road ahead can be difficult—particularly if you do not contact an experienced Illinois car accident lawyer for help.
Our Illinois accident lawyers have a successful track record helping accident victims get the recoveries they deserve through settlement negotiations and at trial. We encourage you to learn more about the car accident recovery process in our FREE book, The Ultimate Guide for Automobile Accident Victims, and to call us at 1-800-800-5678 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced attorney today.