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IL injury lawyerIf you are like most people, you probably get lost in your thoughts from time to time. Whether you are thinking about a work obligation, family issue, or simply your grocery shopping list, getting lost in thought or “daydreaming” happens to everyone. However, when a motorist daydreams while driving, the consequences can be deadly. Inattention is consistently associated with an increased chance of being involved in a motor vehicle collision. In fact, some studies suggest that daydreaming behind the wheel is an even greater issue than cell phone use behind the wheel.

Study Shows that One in Ten Fatal Collisions Were Caused by Daydreaming

By the time a motorist has been driving for a few years, driving becomes second nature. Most drivers do not have to consciously think about applying the brake when they see brake lights ahead or flipping the turn signal when changing lanes – they simply do it automatically. Unfortunately, this automation can lead drivers to become disengaged from the driving process.

Drivers who are lost in through or dreaming are more likely to make driving mistakes that cause an accident. One study conducted by Erie Insurance Group found that over 60 percent of fatal accidents were attributed to daydreaming. Other forms of distracted driving including using an electronic device or reaching for items in the vehicle also lead to a high percentage of injury-causing and deadly auto accidents.

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IL crash lawyerIf you or a loved one were involved in a serious auto accident, you probably have questions about your legal rights. You may already know that a personal injury claim may allow you to recover financial reimbursement for your medical bills and other damages, but you are unsure of what your case is worth. You may ask, “How much compensation am I entitled to through a personal injury claim?” The exact amount of compensation that an injured person may be able to recover after a car accident varies dramatically from case to case. The amount you may be entitled to will likely be influenced by the severity of your injuries, whether there is shared liability for the accident, and several other factors.

The Severity of Your Injuries and Your Prognosis

In a car accident injury claim, damages often include medical bills, future medical care, and other injury-related expenses. If your injuries required significant medical treatment such as surgery or specialist treatment, this would likely increase your potential payout. If your injuries require ongoing care such as physical or occupational therapy, this too will likely increase the value of your claim. The severity of your injuries will probably affect the amount of work you will need to miss and therefore increase the amount you may be entitled to for lost income. Catastrophic injuries and injuries resulting in permanent disability often lead to higher payouts. However the severity of your injuries and your prognosis are just some of the many different factors that can influence the value of your claim.

Shared Liability for a Car Accident

If your actions partially caused the accident or worsened the injuries resulting from the accident, this may heavily influence your payout. Illinois is a “modified comparative negligence” state. This means that if an injured person is considered 50 percent or more at fault for the injury-causing incident, he or she is barred from recovery. If there is shared liability but the injured person’s fault is less than 50 percent, the damages he or she may be entitled to are reduced proportionate to his or her share of fault.

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Posted on in Car Accidents

IL injury lawyerRear-end crashes may be caused by countless reasons. In the vast majority of cases, the car behind the car that was rear-ended is at fault for the accident. When a vehicle is struck from behind, the vehicle occupants may be seriously injured – even if the rear vehicle was traveling at a relatively low speed. Neck injuries, head injuries, facial lacerations, broken bones, and many other injuries may result from a rear-end collision. If you were hurt in a rear-end accident, you may have a right to financial compensation.

Injuries Common Rear-End Accidents

Rear-end accidents can lead to injuries including:

  • Neck injuries such as whiplash
  • Damage to the spine including cervical spine injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Facial lacerations
  • Injuries to the chest
  • Broken bones

These injuries may be excruciatingly painful. They may also prevent the injured person from being able to work, complete household chores, or carry out everyday tasks. The injured person may be left with steep medical bills and other costs. If you were hurt in a rear-end accident, a personal injury claim may allow you to recover compensation for the financial costs incurred by your car accident injuries.

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IL accident lawyerA personal injury claim may be used to seek compensation for damages, or financial losses, resulting from an injury. In order to be eligible for compensation through a personal injury claim in Illinois, you and your attorney may need to show proof of the defendant’s negligence. If you were injured in a car accident, this may mean proving that another driver was at fault for your accident. Personal injury claims often become cases of “he said, she said” so proving that the other driver was to blame for your accident may be quite difficult. Accident reconstruction is one way that you may be able to demonstrate liability in a car accident injury claim.

Proving the Elements Needed to Win Your Case

Most personal injury claims are founded on an allegation of another party’s negligence. To win a claim based on negligence, you will need to demonstrate four main points. First, you must show that the defendant owed a duty of care. In the case of car accident claims, this is typically the easiest issue to prove because all drivers have a duty to drive in a lawful and safe manner. Secondly, you must prove that the driver breached or violated the duty of care. A driver may breach his or her duty by texting and driving, driving too fast for the conditions, or otherwise driving in a way that could endanger others. Thirdly, you will need to show that the driver’s negligence caused your injuries. Lastly, you must show that you sustained damages such as medical bills or lost income because of your injuries.

Reconstructing an Accident

Accident reconstruction is one tool that may be used to demonstrate how a driver’s negligent actions caused an accident. Accident reconstruction experts are usually highly-skilled in fields such as forensic engineering, physics, and mathematics. They may use evidence such as the location and severity of vehicle damage, skid marks, vehicle information from event data recorders, weather data, traffic patterns, and road conditions to determine what happened during an accident. This information may be used along with computer programs to “reconstruct” or reproduce the events that occurred during the accident in an easy-to-understand format. An accident reconstruction expert may offer assistance during the development of your claim or he or she may be called as an expert witness in court.

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IL injury lawyerBeing involved in a serious car accident can be a very traumatic experience to go through. Emotional and psychological injuries caused by a car accident can be just as severe as physical injuries. Car accident victims may suffer from flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, depression, and a number of other psychological problems. These problems can heavily interfere with a car accident victim’s ability to work and complete everyday responsibilities. If you were involved in a serious auto accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your psychological, emotional, or mental injuries.

Car Accident Trauma Symptoms

Studies show that nearly 40 percent of car accident victims develop post-traumatic stress disorder. Even if a person is not physically injured in an accident, they can be deeply affected by the experience. This is especially true if they witnessed another person be severely injured or killed in the accident or if they came close to death themselves. A car accident can lead to psychological problems such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Nightmares
  • Flashbacks
  • Mood swings
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Depressed mood
  • Compulsive or obsessive behaviors
  • Phobias
  • Hypervigilance
  • Loss of appetite
  • Insomnia or hypersomnia

These symptoms can have a profound impact on a person’s life.

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