Chicago Personal Injury and Accidental Death Lawyers Serving Cook and DuPage Counties

Personal Injury: Insurance Companies Undervalue Claims

Personal injury and accidental death can happen at work, on the road, in the air and even at a hospital under high-quality care. No matter where the injury or death occurred, after suffering serious injuries or wrongful death, families are plagued with many questions and concerns. They need money to pay medical bills and lost wages and then they need to determine their future financial needs. Insurance companies will not want to adequately compensate those injured for their short or long-term needs and they will attempt to undervalue the claim to settle as “cheap” as possible. Having the right personal injury attorney in Chicago can make a significant difference in getting full compensation for the pain and suffering due to someone else’s carelessness.

Personal Injury Law

Personal injury law describes a wide range of cases based on physical or mental injury and/or damage to property. In the US, this right is known as the law on “tort claims.” The law permits private parties to sue, in a federal court, bodily injury or “tort claims” that allow the victim (or plaintiff) to seek compensation for someone else’s negligence, carelessness, recklessness and thus deliberate personal injury or property damage as a result of their actions or omission of actions. In cases where an accident results in the death of the victim, the plaintiff is the representative of the deceased’s estate.

Personal Injury Claims and Main Elements of Negligence

In most accident and injury cases, the issue of fault hinges on a legal concept defined as “negligence” and proving negligence is required in most claims. The four key elements required to prove a personal injury case of negligence include:

  • That the party at fault owed a duty of care
  • That the accused failed to meet their duty of care towards you
  • That the direct cause of your losses or injuries was because of the actions of the party at fault
  • That damages resulted from the at-fault party’s actions

Illinois Comparative Fault

If you’ve been injured in a car accident due to someone else’s negligence or fault, you have the right to seek financial compensation through a personal injury claim against the person and/or their insurance company. Should you fail to resolve the personal injury claim with the at-fault party, you may need to file a lawsuit to get the compensation you seek in a court of law. In order to achieve a successful outcome in any personal injury case, you need to prove that the other party was at fault for your injuries. Whether the case gets settled through the insurance claims process, a private settlement, or in court, the assignment of liability depends on who was more at fault. In Illinois, a comparative fault state, anyone who is less than 50% responsible for an accident can recover for their injuries and property damage.

    • Comparative Fault: Determines how the blame will be divided for any personal injuries or property damage for a given accident, as well as how the victim’s compensation will be impacted if he or she were judged to have contributed to the accident in some way.
    • Modified Comparative Negligence: A theory of comparative fault that holds that Plaintiff (injured) can obtain damages from a Defendant provided that the Plaintiff’s degree of fault is not more than 50%. If a Plaintiff is determined to have been 50% at fault or more for the incident, then he or she would not be able to obtain compensation for personal injuries from the Defendant.

Furthermore, Illinois’ modified comparative negligence laws will also reduce an injured Plaintiff’s compensation in proportion to his or her degree of fault.

Statute of Limitations

A statute of limitations is a law that sets the maximum time the parties involved have to initiate legal proceedings from the date of the alleged offense, whether civil or criminal. However, the length of time the statute allows for a victim to bring legal action against the suspected wrong-doer can vary from one jurisdiction to another and depending on the type of case:

  • Personal injury: Two Years from the date of the accident
  • Property damage: Five years from the date of the accident
  • Lawsuits that might have different time lengths per their statutes of limitations include the following:
  • Cases involving medical malpractice
  • Case involving breach of contract
  • Cases involving warranties
  • Cases involving products liability

Compensation in Personal Injury Cases

Our Chicago personal injury lawyers are aware of the profound changes that occur when a person is injured or their family experiences the sudden death of a loved one. The consequences go far beyond physical pain and disability. Serious injuries in accidents can lead to problems at work, financial destabilization of the family and inability to keep up with medical care costs. These injuries and troubles can also affect emotional well-being.

An injury sustained because of someone else’s carelessness is the basis of a personal injury claim. In legal terms, the carelessness that caused your injury is called “negligence.” Someone’s act of negligence can be devastating to the life of the victim and their family. Elements that must be present in a personal injury claim include:

  • Victim suffered an injury.
  • Someone else’s negligence caused the victim’s injury.
  • Injury caused the victim harm or certain losses.
  • An injury alone is not enough to show personal injury; the victim must have suffered some sort of loss or harm from the injuries.

The compensation awarded for these losses is called “damages.” These losses usually include:

  • Lost income
  • Medical expenses
  • Property damage
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of normal life

Contact an Illinois Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident due to the negligence of another person or entity, our experienced attorneys can help you receive compensation for the damages you have suffered. There is no fee unless we obtain compensation for you

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Chicago, IL 60641

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