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Waukegan personal injury attorneysIn Illinois, individuals who are hurt in auto accidents caused by recklessness or intentional wrongdoing may choose to bring a personal injury claim against the party responsible for the accident. Often, people assume that car accident injury claims are brought by an injured driver against another driver. However, the claimant in a personal injury case may be an injured driver, passenger, or a pedestrian. A passenger hurt in an accident may bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver even if the at-fault driver was operating the vehicle the passenger was riding in. If you or a loved one were hurt in an auto accident caused by negligence, read on to learn about your right to pursue compensation.

Who is Liable for an Injury-Causing Accident?

Traffic accidents are rarely black and white. There may be a number of factors that led to the accident. Driver inattention, speeding or violation of traffic laws, driving under the influence of alcohol, hazardous weather conditions, and many other elements could all contribute to a serious wreck. It is also possible that more than one person’s actions may have contributed to the accident. 

If you were hurt while riding in a vehicle and the driver of the vehicle you were in is considered to be the at-fault party, you may be hesitant to file a personal injury lawsuit. The at-fault driver may be a good friend, colleague, or even a family member. However, it is essential to understand that an injury claim is not a personal attack on the at-fault driver. In the majority of personal injury claims, the injured party is bringing the claim not against the actual person but against his or her insurance company.

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Lake County personal injury attorneysAs you enjoy your holiday parties this season, it is important to note how seriously Illinois law takes underage drinking. You probably already know that it is against the law for anyone under age 21 to consume alcohol, but you may not know about the laws regarding adults who supply alcohol or drugs to minors. In 2004, Illinois passed the Drug or Alcohol Impaired Minor Responsibility Act. The Act established a law that holds adults liable for injuries or deaths resulting from underage drinking when the underaged drinking was allowed or encouraged by the adults. It is important for all Illinois residents to be aware of the “social host liability law” and the consequences of allowing a minor to drink alcohol or use drugs.

Wakulich v. Mraz Provoked a Change in Illinois Law

The Illinois law regarding the duty of adults to prevent children from drinking alcoholic beverages was passed in response to a case involving the death of a 16-year-old girl. The young girl was at the home of two brothers, aged 18 and 21, and their father. At the home, the brothers offered the 16-year-old money if she could drink an entire bottle of Goldshlager without vomiting or losing consciousness. The girl consumed the bottle but quickly became unresponsive. Although the young girl was showing obvious signs of alcohol poisoning, the brothers did not seek medical help. The girl was eventually taken to the hospital but the damage to her body was too extensive, and she died due to the extreme binge drinking. 

The girl’s mother filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the family who allowed her daughter to drink so excessively, but the case was dismissed by the circuit court of Cook County. The dismissal was upheld both by an appellate court and the Illinois Supreme Court because the law in Illinois at the did not support a finding in the mother’s favor. In response to this case, the Illinois legislature created a cause of action that holds adults liable for supplying minors with alcohol or drugs if the minors are injured or killed as a result.

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Waukegan personal injury attorneysAt grocery stores, shopping centers, and business parks throughout the region, it is not uncommon to see drivers scrambling to find convenient parking spaces. In most parking lots, you can expect the constant movement of cars and pedestrians—the combination of which can easily lead to an injury-causing accident.

Accidents in a parking lot are often caused by drivers not paying attention for various reasons. For example, drivers may distracted by their phones or by small children in the car. Regardless of the cause of distraction or inattentiveness, the outcome is too often an accident involving another car or a pedestrian.

Determining Who Is at Fault for a Parking Lot Accident

The popular belief is that fault in a parking lot crash is equally shared by the drivers involved. However, this is not always the case. A parking lot accident is handled the same way as any other accident on the road would be. This is because parking lots have right-of-way rules that must also be followed and obeyed. A driver who did not yield to another driver or pedestrian with the right of way is likely to be found liable if an accident were to occur.

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Posted on in Brain Injuries

Chicago brain injury lawyerEvery day, as many as 153 Americans die due to injuries involving trauma to the brain. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), traumatic brain injuries make up approximately 30% of all fatal injuries nationwide. While the vast majority of traumatic brain injuries are not fatal, even the most minor cases of brain trauma can come with long-lasting symptoms and health issues later in life. If you or a member of your family suffer any type of head injury, it is important to receive medical treatment as quickly as possible. 

Common Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries 

Traumatic brain injuries can come in a number of forms, but some of the most common injuries come from falls and motor vehicle collisions. Studies conducted by the CDC found that throughout 2013, falls accounted for just under half of all traumatic brain injuries across the United States. Fall injuries can be especially severe for elderly Americans. Approximately 80% of all traumatic brain injuries resulting in hospitalization, long-term symptoms, or death among elderly Americans are caused by falling. 

Much like falling, motor vehicle collisions can cause problematic brain trauma. In 2013, automobile accidents were responsible for 14% of all documented traumatic brain injuries throughout the United States. Car crashes can lead to a number of head injuries, due to the high speeds at which the vehicles are traveling. Even the activation of safety systems such as airbags can cause brain injuries such as concussions. 

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whiplash injuries, minor car accidents, motor vehicle collision, Waukegan personal injury attorney, motor vehicle accidentsEvery year an average of 2.35 million Americans are injured in car accidents throughout the nation. Of those accidents, less than an average of 40,000 prove fatal. Every day minor accidents occur on American roadways. From minor rear-end collisions to non-severe side-swipe accidents, car accidents of limited impact are increasingly common in the United States. Still, some of these accidents perceived as minor, can have major implications on the impacted vehicle and its occupants.

Even in the most minor of vehicular collisions, receiving legal guidance can prove to be of the utmost importance. Minor collisions, can cause substantial damage to vehicles and occupants. For victims, even if injuries are not present at the scene, pain can be hidden by shock, and some of the most severe injuries, such as head trauma, can be hidden by delayed symptoms. If you or a member of your family is involved in a motor vehicle collision, contact our experienced team of Waukegan personal injury attorneys.

Minor Injuries with Major Problems

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