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Winnebago County car accident attorney for insurance claimsSerious auto accident cases involve a variety of difficult problems. In addition to the damage done to your car, you may be badly injured. You will almost certainly have to deal with a complex insurance claim.

Nobody wants to handle an insurance claim, but having an experienced attorney on your side can help you navigate your car insurance accident paperwork. Here are some of the most common mistakes people make when they are dealing with a car accident insurance claim and how to avoid them:

Not Researching the True Value of Your Car

If your car has been totaled, your insurance company will have to pay you the amount of money your car is worth. However, insurance companies have an interest in paying you as little as possible – meaning they may try to lowball you on the value of your car. You are more likely to get a check for the true value of your car if you do your own research to find out what your car is worth. Then, if your insurance company offers you less than your research indicates you should receive, you can counter their offer with your own.

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Winnebago County car crash injury attorneysIt may seem obvious that you should seek medical attention if you are injured in a car crash, but the reality is that many injury victims choose not to do so in the immediate aftermath. Some are concerned about the costs of their treatment, while others may be unaware of the extent or severity of their injuries. Unfortunately, forgoing medical treatment can have serious repercussions for both the injury victim’s health and their chances of recovering full compensation in a personal injury claim.

Medical Reasons for Seeking Treatment

Regardless of how minor your injuries may seem, it is a good idea to get examined by a doctor who can help you better understand your condition. Some car accident injuries can be difficult to detect, and many have the potential to become more serious over time. For example:

  • What seems like a routine headache could be a sign of a traumatic brain injury like a concussion, which could have lasting physical and mental effects.
  • Pain in the chest or abdomen could be a sign of organ damage or other internal injuries, which if left untreated can lead to infection, excessive blood loss, or impairment of bodily functions.
  • Pain in the neck, back, or limbs could be a sign of soft tissue injuries, herniated disks, or fractured bones. Without the proper treatment and rehabilitation, these injuries could cause ongoing pain and mobility issues.

For any of these types of injuries, early intervention can be crucial to your ability to make a full or substantial recovery.

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Rockford personal injury attorneysNobody ever goes into their doctor’s office expecting them to make a mistake or harm you. However, that is exactly what happens to hundreds of thousands of people each year. There is no single reliable source that is used to gather medical malpractice statistics. However, one study from Johns Hopkins found that an estimated 250,000 people die every year because of medical mistakes. Other studies cite that number being as high as nearly double that. If you have been injured because of the negligence of your doctor, you might be eligible to file a medical malpractice case to help recoup some of your losses. In many cases, your attorney will utilize expert witnesses in various ways to gather information for the case and to help prove your point in court.

Requirements for Expert Witnesses

If you want to call an expert witness to testify during parts of your case, you will have to make sure that they are credible. You cannot just call up any person to testify for you -- they must meet certain requirements. According to the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure, in any case that brings into question the standard of care of a medical professional, there are a specific set of criteria that must be met before a witness qualifies as an expert witness and can testify as such in court.

When determining whether or not a person can testify in court as an expert witness, the court must consider:

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Rockford truck crash lawyersThere are many reasons why a semi-truck driver could lose control of their vehicle and cause an accident. Many of these reasons are related to the driver’s negligence, including in cases involving speeding, distracted driving, driver fatigue, and drunk or impaired driving. However, sometimes the root cause of a truck accident is something that happens before the truck enters the roadway. One common factor in many semi-truck crashes is improper loading of the truck’s cargo.

Cargo Loading and Truck Accidents

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enforces strict regulations for cargo loading and securement in commercial trucks. If these regulations are violated in any way, the risk of an accident tends to increase. Some cargo-related causes of truck accidents include:

  • Overloading - In general, heavier cargo makes it more difficult for a truck to accelerate, decelerate, or change directions. Many states, including Illinois, have a gross weight limit of 80,000 pounds for commercial trucks, and vehicles that exceed these limits can cause accidents due to the difficulty of reacting in time to avoid a collision.
  • Unbalanced loading - States also typically have per-axle weight limits for trucks, in part to ensure that cargo weight is evenly distributed. An unbalanced truck is more likely to roll over, especially when making a turn at higher speeds.
  • Shifting cargo - Cargo that is not firmly secured with the proper equipment can move while the truck is in motion, quickly turning a balanced truck into an unbalanced truck. Sometimes, cargo even falls off of the truck and onto the road, creating an additional accident hazard for nearby vehicles.

Liability in Truck Cargo Accidents

Truck drivers are typically required to thoroughly inspect their cargo to make sure it is safely loaded and secured. If there is evidence that the driver failed to perform the required inspections, they may be considered negligent and liable for damages to accident victims. However, it is common for other parties to share liability in an accident involving improperly loaded cargo. These can include the employees responsible for loading the truck, or the company that employs the driver or loading crew.

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Rockford birth injury attorneysThe birth of a new baby should be one of the most joyous days of a parent’s life. Unfortunately, some births are wrought with anxiety. If your baby suffered a birth injury during pregnancy, labor, or delivery, it is possible that this birth injury will cause lifelong medical concerns. Cerebral palsy is a condition that has been linked to substandard medical care during a child’s birth. If your child has cerebral palsy, it is possible that an avoidable birth injury may be to blame.

What Causes Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy can lead to profound physical and cognitive limitations. Muscle spasticity and rigidity, involuntary movements, difficulty walking, problems eating, and hearing and vision impairments are all known symptoms of this condition. There is still much about cerebral palsy that doctors do not understand. The condition is caused by abnormal development of the brain. Some children are born with the condition while others acquire the condition after suffering damage to the brain.

What Types of Medical Mistakes Can Lead to Cerebral Palsy?

Fetal stroke and lack of oxygen to an infant’s brain are two birth injuries that may cause a child to develop cerebral palsy. Fetal stroke occurs when blood vessels in the baby’s brain are blocked or damaged. This results in reduced blood flow to the baby’s brain tissue. Birth trauma and lack of proper medical care during pregnancy and birth may result in an avoidable fetal or perinatal stroke.

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Rockford injury lawyersThe majority of car accidents are caused by human error. Taking a turn too fast, running a red light, driving while intoxicated, or texting and driving may all lead to injury-causing crashes. However, not every collision is the result of poor driving. In some cases, a crash is caused or aggravated by defective vehicle components. If you or a loved one were harmed in an auto accident, it is important to understand how vehicle defects may have played a role.

When is a Vehicle or Vehicle Part Considered Defective?

Just like all other consumer products, motor vehicles cannot present unreasonable risks to buyers. If a vehicle or vehicle component is defective and that defect causes an individual to be injured or killed, the party responsible for the defect may be liable for damages.

Vehicle defects typically fall into one of two categories: design defects or manufacturing defects. A design defect occurs when a product was unreasonably unsafe from its inception. Every product in that particular line of products may need to be recalled and fixed or replaced.  A manufacturing defect occurs when a mistake during the manufacturing process causes a vehicle component to function incorrectly or contain unreasonable safety hazards.

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Rockford misdiagnosis attorneysMedical professionals attend years of rigorous schooling before they are licensed to practice medicine. They learn about thousands of medical conditions and the signs and symptoms of those conditions so that they can properly diagnose patients. However, doctors cannot always provide an immediate diagnosis. If a doctor fails to provide a diagnosis or misdiagnoses a patient, is he or she guilty of medical negligence? Does the patient have a right to compensation through a medical malpractice lawsuit? As with most personal injury matters, the answer depends on a variety of factors.

Delayed Diagnosis or Misdiagnosis of an Illness, Disease, or Other Medical Condition  

When we visit a doctor or medical specialist, we expect to receive answers. We need to know what condition is ailing us so that we can get the proper treatment. In many cases, the sooner a patient can start receiving treatment, the greater his or her chance of recovery. This is especially true of illnesses like cancer and heart disease. If a doctor does not diagnose a patient or diagnoses the patient with the wrong condition, that patient will not receive the potentially life-save medical care he or she needs.

Elements of Medical Malpractice

A doctor or other medical worker is not automatically guilty of medical malpractice if he or she fails to diagnose a patient’s condition properly. Malpractice occurs when the following components are present:

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Rockford personal injury lawyersBurns are some of the most agonizing injuries a person can suffer. If you or a loved one were the victim of a serious burn, you know just how awful these injuries can be. Many burn victims require significant medical treatment including surgery such as skin grafts. They may also require hospitalization and weeks or months of recovery. The financial and non-financial expenses associated with a serious burn injury can be staggering. Fortunately, a personal injury claim may be one way to recoup compensation for these and other losses.

Holding the Liable Party Accountable for a Burn Injury

A successful personal injury claim is possible when a party’s carelessness or wrongdoing causes someone else to be injured and sustain damages. Some examples of situations involving burn injuries that may justify a personal injury lawsuit include:

  • The owner of a nightclub fails to provide adequate exit signage causing patrons to suffer avoidable burns during a fire
  • A negligent driver causes a tanker truck accident in which someone is badly burned
  • Manufacturing defects cause a container containing corrosive chemicals to leak onto a worker
  • A property owner fails to install adequate smoke detectors, causing a tenant burns in an apartment fire

A personal injury lawsuit can help you hold a negligent individual or company liable for the party’s role in causing your burn injuries.

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Rockford truck accident lawyerDrowsy driving is a common issue across America. In a society where people want what they want when they want it, trucks - the way most consumer goods are transported across the country - run nonstop, causing many people not to get the sleep they need. Unfortunately, this has shown to be dangerous. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were an estimated 499,000 motor vehicle crashes involving large trucks in 2018, which is the latest information available. Of those, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that there were around 785 fatalities from drowsy truck drivers in 2018. Drowsy driving can be difficult to prove, but an Illinois truck accident injury lawyer can help.

Truck Drivers Must Abide By Rules

Even though you are just sitting in a seat, it can be exhausting to keep your attention on the road for hours at a time. If you drive for too long, it can dull your senses and almost lull you to sleep at times. This is why the FMCSA put rules into place that strictly govern the hours that a truck driver is allowed to drive. If a truck driver is only carrying cargo, they must adhere to rules including:

Rockford C-section errors lawyerCesarean sections or “c-sections” are used as an alternative to vaginal birth. Some individuals choose to have a c-section for personal or medical reasons while others are forced to under c-section delivery due to medical complications. Doctors, surgeons, and other medical professionals must use extreme caution during a c-section. Any mistake or oversight has the potential to harm the mother or the newborn baby. Sadly, some c-section errors are fatal. If you or a loved one were the victim of a surgical mistake during a c-section, you may be able to hold the surgeon or other at-fault parties accountable through a medical malpractice claim.

Examples of Medical Negligence During a C-Section

Medical negligence occurs when a surgeon or other medical professional fails to act as a reasonably prudent medical professional in the same situation would act. If a medical professional’s negligence causes a patient to be injured or killed, that doctor may be liable for damages.

Some examples of C-section surgical errors that may constitute medical negligence include:

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Winnebago County store injury attorneyThe last thing you probably expect when you visit a grocery store, big-box store, mall, or other retailer is to be injured. Whether you were hurt because of a slip and fall accident, parking lot accident, or another type of incident, you may be left with painful injuries and expensive injury-related costs. You may wonder if you can sue the store for failing to prevent your injuries. The answer depends on the circumstances of your injury and other factors.

Bringing a Premises Liability Claim for an Injury Sustained at a Retail Store

Premises liability is the area of law that deals with the expectations of property owners. In Illinois, store owners are responsible for keeping their properties reasonably hazard-free. A store owner or property owner is not responsible for every injury that occurs on the premises, but they are responsible for injuries caused by negligence. If a store allows a dangerous condition to exist on the property, the store may be liable for injuries caused by that condition.

A store may be liable for injuries caused by:

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Winnebago personal injury lawyersIllinois law allows individuals who are hurt by another party’s negligent or illegal conduct to file a personal injury claim and seek monetary damages. The injured person may be able to collect compensation for the financial and non-financial harm caused by his or her injuries including medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. Hiring a personal injury lawyer is not a requirement for seeking compensation through a personal injury claim. However, successfully recovering damages through an injury claim is a very complicated and legally demanding process. An experienced personal injury attorney is an invaluable resource.  

Investigating Your Accident and Gathering Evidence

There are four basic elements in an injury claim. Proving each of these elements using persuasive arguments and evidence is key to getting the compensation you deserve. The elements include:

  • Duty
  • Breach of duty
  • Injuries
  • Damages

A skilled personal injury attorney who has secured favorable settlements and awards for previous clients will know what is needed to successfully demonstrate each of these elements. Personal injury lawyers are adept at finding evidence and using this evidence to strengthen the case against the defendant. An experienced personal injury attorney will also have access to various experts including accident reconstruction specialists and vocational rehabilitation professionals who can provide compelling testimony to further improve your case. The more evidence you have to support your claim, the more likely you are to successfully recover compensation.  

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Rockford dangerous airbag injury attorneysAirbags represent an extremely important advancement in the field of automotive safety. During an accident, the airbag deploys in less than a second to cushion the passengers and prevent them from hitting their head on the steering wheel, dashboard, or windshield. While these devices are estimated to prevent vehicle occupant death by approximately 30 percent, airbags can also cause serious injuries during a crash. If you or a loved one suffered an airbag-related injury in a car accident, you may be entitled to monetary damages.

Injuries Caused by Airbag Deployment

Airbags often prevent much more serious and even life-threatening injuries from occurring during a crash, however, these devices do not prevent injuries entirely. An airbag works by using an ignitor to fill the bag with gas such as argon or nitrogen during a crash. The chemicals contained in an airbag can cause lung problems or burns. The bag may also cause injuries including to the eyes, face, torso, and arms including abrasions, lacerations, and fractures. If you suffered injuries in a car accident because of a functioning airbag, the party responsible for the accident is likely liable for your injuries. The liable party may be another driver, the employer of the driver, a commercial business like a trucking company, or even a government entity.

Injuries Caused by Defective Airbags

Airbags do not always work as intended. The most infamous example of airbag malfunctions is a defect that caused some Takata airbags to explode or underinflate during a collision. Over 400 injuries and 26 deaths have been linked to Takata airbags installed in dozens of different makes and models of passenger vehicles. Airbag defects that can cause injuries include:

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Rockford personal injury attorneysNursing homes and other long-term care facilities should be staffed with competent, compassionate employees. The facility should be reasonably safe and sanitary. Residents’ medical and personal needs should be attended to promptly and adequately. Unfortunately, many nursing homes do not meet these expectations. Issues like understaffing or poor staff training lead to resident neglect or even intentional abuse. If your loved one is living in a nursing home, it is important to be watchful for signs of neglect or abuse.

Red Flags of Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse

Knowing if your loved one is being mistreated in a nursing home is especially difficult if your loved one suffers from physical or mental impairments that limit his or her ability to communicate with you. In cases such as these, you must look for evidence such as:

  • Unexplained injuries – Cuts, bruises, welts, or other injuries are not always signs of resident neglect or abuse. However, if your loved one has injuries that staff cannot explain or is frequently getting hurt, this may be a sign that your loved one is not being properly cared for. In some cases, injuries are even signs of intentional physical abuse.  
  • Fear of being alone with staff – Residents should see nursing home staff as loving caretakers. If your loved one is afraid to be alone with staff or flinches when staff members come near, this can be a major red flag.
  • Medication mistakes – Your loved one should be getting his or her medications on time and in the correct dosage. Do not hesitate to speak up if your loved one is not receiving his or her medications.
  • Signs of physical or chemical restraint – Physical restraining a resident through ties, lap belts, or other means is only acceptable in very limited circumstances. Medication such as antipsychotic drugs should not be used as a means of chemical restraint. Residents should only receive the medications that they actually require.
  • Odd staff behavior – If staff refuse to talk to you, rush out of the room when you walk in, or exhibit other odd behaviors, this may be a sign that they have mistreated your loved one.
  • Unsanitary conditions –If you see trash, feces, or urine, unsanitary kitchen practices, signs of insect or animal infestation, or other unsanitary conditions, this may be a sign that the facility does not take residents’ health seriously.
  • Inadequate resident hygiene – Your loved one deserves to be treated with dignity. This includes being bathed regularly and having his or her adult diaper changed when needed. Residents should not be forced to tolerate soiled clothing or bed sheets.

Contact a Winnebago County Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse Lawyer

At Mannarino & Brasfield, A Division of KJS, our Rockford nursing home injury attorneys stand up for the rights of nursing home residents and their families. If your loved one was the victim of nursing home neglect or abuse, we can help you hold the nursing home accountable and pursue financial recovery. Call 815-215-7561 for a free consultation.

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Rockford personal injury lawyersThere is no question that construction workers have an extremely dangerous job. One out of every five worker fatalities in the United States occurs in the construction industry. Non-fatal injuries including traumatic injuries and receptive motion injuries are also common. These injuries can lead to steep costs – both financial and personal.  If you were injured or a loved one was killed during construction work, you may be able to seek compensation for your losses through a personal injury claim.

Workers Compensation Versus a Personal Injury Lawsuit

Businesses with one or more employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance by law. If you or your loved one’s construction accident occurred at work, you are likely entitled to compensation through workers’ compensation. However, the compensation you get through workers’ compensation may not even come close to fully compensating you for your losses. Furthermore, workers’ compensation only covers economic damages like medical bills and part of your lost income.

A personal injury lawsuit may allow you to recover your full lost wages, the damage to your earning capacity, and non-economic damages. You may be entitled to compensation for the physical pain caused by your injuries as well as the emotional and mental suffering you experienced. If your loved one died in a construction accident, you may be compensated for:

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Rockford personal injury lawyersOur brains control everything from speaking and moving to information processing and memory. Damage caused by a traumatic brain injury can affect every aspect of a sufferer’s life. If you or a loved one suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car accident, work accident, or other incident caused by another party’s recklessness or intentional malice, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. You could be compensated for the damages, or losses, that you experienced because of the injury.

Compensation for Medical Treatment in a Traumatic Brain Injury Case

Acquired traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when an object punctures the skull and directly injures the brain or, more commonly, when the brain strikes the inside of the skull. About half of severe TBI sufferers require surgery and many more require hospital treatment and other medical care. Most medical interventions cannot repair the brain damage that has already occurred, but it may prevent further damage. The medical costs incurred by a severe TBI can be astronomical. A personal injury case may allow a sufferer to recover costs related to:

  • Surgery
  • X-rays, computed tomography (CT) scans, and other imaging tests
  • Blood tests
  • Speech therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Vocational counseling
  • Psychological treatments
  • In-home medical care
  • Nursing care
  • Hospitalization
  • Appointments with physiatrists and other specialists  
  • Medications
  • Other medical needs

Lost Income and Missed Work  

Often, a large contributor to the financial burden created by a traumatic brain injury is the injured person’s lost income. Your TBI may have required you to miss work or the injury may have permanently reduced your ability to work. You may need to change careers, work fewer hours, or take on a less demanding workload because of the TBI. You may be able to recover compensation for your lost wages and the impairment to your earning capacity via a personal injury lawsuit.  

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Rockford birth injury attorneysEvery parent hopes for a problem-free pregnancy and birth. Sadly, this is not always the case. Doctors are trained not only to treat medical conditions, but they are also trained to recognize the risk factors for medical complications that can harm a mother or baby. Many birth injuries are caused by pre-existing medical issues. When a doctor or other medical professional fails to properly diagnose a medical problem, the mother or the baby can suffer dire consequences.

Failure to Diagnose Maternal Infection

The first step in preventing complications during a child’s birth is ensuring that the mother receives proper healthcare during pregnancy. Diagnostic errors during a mother’s pregnancy, labor, or delivery can lead to birth injuries and even fetal death. Failure to diagnose maternal infections is an especially dangerous mistake. Rubella, hepatitis B, syphilis, chickenpox, and toxoplasmosis can cause serious or even deadly injuries to an unborn child. A mother with an undiagnosed infection may give birth to a child who suffers hearing and vision problems, intellectual disabilities, and other problems for the rest of his or her life. Sadly, many infants who suffer birth injuries due to undiagnosed maternal infections do not survive. Early detection is often key to preventing severe complications from infections. Many maternal infections can be mitigated through vaccines, antibiotic medications, and other medical interventions.

Failure to Diagnose Risk Factors Such as Preeclampsia

There are known risk factors that greatly increase the chances of complications during a child’s birth. Doctors who are aware of these risk factors can take the appropriate medical actions to prevent or reduce the harm caused by these risk factors. Preeclampsia, or abnormally high blood pressure and urine proteins, occurs in about eight percent of pregnancies. Preeclampsia can cause placental abruption, placental insufficiency, hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, and other serious complications during birth. In many cases, a mother suffering from preeclampsia will need an emergency C-section. When doctors neglect to properly monitor a mother or a fetus before and during birth they are not prepared for the complications that may arise. This can lead to delayed treatment and other forms of medical negligence.

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Rockford truck accident lawyersCommercial trucks often measure up to 70 feet in length. Consequently, truck drivers must rely on mirrors and assistive technology like back-up sensors to see around the vehicle. Even with this equipment, it is hard for truck drivers to see vehicles or other objects in the truck’s “blind spots.” Blind spot truck accidents often lead to severe injuries and costly property damage. A personal injury claim may allow an injured person to recover compensation for these damages. However, determining liability for a blind spot truck accident is often a difficult task.  

Understanding Blind Spot Accidents

Truck blind spots are areas around the truck that the driver cannot see. If a car, motorcycle, pedestrian, or cyclist is in the truck’s blind spot, the driver may not even know that the person or vehicle is there. This can have disastrous consequences. Most driver education programs include information about truck blind spots or “no zones” and instruct drivers to stay out of truck’s blind spots if possible. Truck blind spots typically include the areas:

  • Directly in front of the truck
  • From the back of the truck to about 30 feet behind the truck
  • Behind the driver’s side window to approximately the middle of the trailer
  • On the passenger side of the truck including the two lanes to the right of the truck

Blind Spot Truck Accidents Often Involve Shared Fault

While it is hard for drivers to see objects in their blind spots, a truck driver is not automatically cleared of fault for an accident just because the other vehicle was in the blind spot. Truck drivers are expected to pay close attention to their surroundings, check mirrors before turning or changing lanes, and make adequate use of rear cameras, back-up sensors, and other technology.

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Rockford dog bite injury attorneysDogs can be lovable companions. However, they are still animals with sharp teeth and powerful jaws. Almost five million people are bitten by dogs every year in the United States. Dog bites can cause nerve damage, broken bones, infections, and other serious injuries. Non-bite injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries caused by being knocked to the ground by a dog, can also be severe. If you or a loved one were injured by a dog, you may be able to hold the negligent dog owner accountable and recover compensation through a personal injury claim.

Dog Bite Injuries Can Lead to Terrible Mental and Physical Scars

Being the victim of a dog attack is an extremely traumatic experience to go through. A dog bite victim may suffer severe tissue damage that requires significant medical treatment. Many dog bite victims sustain injuries to their face, which can leave them disfigured for months or years after the attack. A dog bite victim may require emergency room treatment, x-rays, and reconstructive surgery, psychological treatment, and other expensive medical care. These medical costs may be recoverable through a personal injury claim.

Illinois Dog Bite Laws

Dog owners should keep their pets on a leash or contained within their property. If a dog bites someone who is on public property or lawfully on private property, the dog’s owner may be liable for damages. In some states, a dog owner is only liable for dog attack injuries if the dog owner knew or should have known that the dog was dangerous. However, Illinois imposes strict liability on dog owners for dog attack injuries.

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Rockford personal injury attorneysWinter weather is in full force in the Rockford area, and icy roads and deep snow can make driving a treacherous task. “Pile-ups” or car accidents involving multiple vehicles are not uncommon during this time of year. These accidents cannot only lead to painful and often deadly injuries, they also present complex legal and financial issues. If you or a loved one were involved in a multi-car accident, you may have concerns about liability and damages. Will you be expected to pay for other motorists’ damages? Will you be compensated for your own damages? Read on to learn more about the unique issues involved in multiple-vehicle accidents.

Establishing Fault for a Multiple-Car Collision

Accidents involving three or more vehicles can cause severe and deadly injuries as well as costly property damage. Before a car accident victim can recover financial compensation for their damages, the liable party must be established. The greater number of factors that contributed to an accident, the harder it is to establish fault. A multiple car accident may involve situations such as:

  • A vehicle rear-ends another vehicle and causes it to collide with a third vehicle.  
  • Two vehicles collide and one of the vehicles is pushed into oncoming traffic where a secondary collision occurs.
  • Drivers swerve to avoid stopped vehicles on the road, fallen truck cargo, or other obstacles and cause an accident.
  • Establishing fault in accidents such as these is much harder than establishing fault in accidents involving only two motorists. Fault for a multi-car pile up may lie with one or more drivers, a commercial company such as a trucking company, or even a government entity such as a city or state.

Shared Liability in Pile-up Accidents

In many multiple-vehicle accidents, there is more than one liable party. Illinois follows a legal doctrine called “modified comparative negligence” in car accident injury cases involving shared liability. If a party is found to be more than 50 percent at fault for an accident, that party is prohibited from recovering compensation for damages. If the party is less than 50 percent responsible for the accident, the amount of compensation he or she may be entitled to is reduced by his or her portion of fault.

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