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Salvi & Maher, L.L.C.

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IL injury lawyerStudies show that most car accidents are caused by negligent driving such as intoxicated driving or distracted driving. However, sometimes, the at-fault party in a car accident case is not a person. Rather, it is a government entity such as a city or state. If you or a loved one were hurt in a car crash caused by a state government employee or negligence on the part of a government agency, it may be possible to sue the government for damages.

Personal Injury Claims Brought Against the State Government

Personal injury claims may be used to recover financial compensation for damages caused by a car accident. An injured person or a deceased person’s estate may be entitled to compensation for vehicle damage, medical expenses, lost income, and more. In Illinois, employers are usually liable for car accidents caused by on-the-clock employees. Similarly, when a government employee causes an accident in which someone is injured or killed, the government may be liable. Injured persons may wish to file a claim against the state of Illinois if they were hit by a state government employee or otherwise harmed by the negligent actions of a government agency.

Car Accident Cases Subject to the Illinois Court of Claims Act

Illinois law states that an injured person may be able to recover damages from the state of Illinois if the same claim would be possible if it were brought against an individual or company. However, personal injury claims brought against the government are subject to a special set of rules. The government is immune from legal claims in some situations. Furthermore, claims brought under the Court of Claims Act have tighter deadlines than claims against private individuals. If you wish to bring a claim against the state of Illinois, you will need to either file a notice of the claim or the actual lawsuit with the Court of Claims within one year of the injury-causing accident. You have two years to file the actual lawsuit regardless of when the notice is filed.

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IL injury lawyerSpeeding is estimated to be the cause of approximately a third of all traffic fatalities. Traveling at high speed increases the force on vehicle occupants in the event of a crash. This is why accidents caused by speeding often result in catastrophic injuries such as brain injuries and paralysis. If you or a loved one were injured in a collision caused by a speeding driver, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your damages.

Traffic Accidents Caused by Speeding

Most people admit that they speed from time to time. However, speed limits exist for a reason, and failing to comply with posted speed limits can lead to much more than a traffic ticket. Speeding makes it harder to control the vehicle or respond to hazards in the road. It increases the amount of time it takes to stop the vehicle. Lastly, if a collision does occur, the risk of injury or death is greater if one or both vehicles were speeding. In fact, every 10 mph increase in speed doubles the chances of dying in a collision. Drivers who cause accidents because they are speeding may be liable for the victims’ medical bills, vehicle damage, and other losses.

Holding a Negligent Driver Responsible

If you were hurt or you lost a loved one due to another driver’s choice to speed, you may be able to hold the driver accountable through a personal injury claim. Per Illinois law, the driver, or more likely, the driver’s insurer, must compensate you for damages. However, getting the compensation, you are entitled to can be tricky. Insurance companies often try to deny liability or claim that the injured driver is fully or partly responsible for the collision.

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IL injury lawyerThe idea of not realizing immediately that you have been injured may seem counterintuitive. Many people believe that car accident injuries are always immediately apparent, and in many cases they are. Injuries like lacerations or puncture wounds are generally obvious. Other types of injuries, like whiplash-induced spinal cord injuries, may take longer to present themselves.

If you were in a serious car accident, it is probably a good idea to get in contact with an attorney even if you do not think you are seriously injured. Reaching out to a lawyer promptly after a car crash is an important way to make sure evidence you may need later is preserved just in case you end up going to court.

How Could I Not Notice an Injury Right Away?

Motor vehicle accidents can be intensely frightening experiences. When you get into a major accident, you experience a serious adrenaline rush. Adrenaline can act as a natural pain reliever. Without pain to signal to you that something is wrong, an injury that does not prevent you from getting up and walking away may go unnoticed until the adrenaline rush has worn off, which could take hours. By then, you may have already gone home.

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IL accident lawyerSemi-trucks and other commercial trucks are massive vehicles capable of causing horrific destruction in an accident. In 2019, over 5,000 large commercial trucks were involved in fatal collisions. Sadly, many truck accidents are preventable. If your loved one was killed in a truck accident due to the negligent actions of the truck driver or another party, you may have the right to pursue legal action against the at-fault party. A wrongful death claim may enable you to seek justice for your loved one’s death and recover financial compensation for damages.

Liability for the Crash May Be Complicated

If your loved one passed away in a crash involving a large truck, you may understandably be looking for someone to blame. The at-fault party for a large truck crash is sometimes the driver. Intoxicated driving, distracted driving, speeding, and sleep deprivation are just some of the potential causes of the crash. However, the trucking company may ultimately be liable even if the driver’s actions caused the accident. If the crash was caused by faulty tires, brakes, or another defective truck part, the company that designed, sold, or manufactured the defective components may be to blame. Determining liability for a truck crash is often one of the most complicated aspects of a truck accident case.

You Will Need a Solid Case Backed by Strong Evidence

To bring a successful truck accident injury or death claim, you must have evidence to support the claim. Trucking companies and insurance companies often try to shift the blame for an accident onto the victim. To build your case, you will need evidence such as event data recorder (EDR) information, photos and videos, witness statements, police reports, medical records, and more. Your lawyer can help you obtain and preserve evidence.

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IL injury lawyerBy now, most people are tired of hearing about the dangers of distracted driving. However, for victims of distracted driving accidents, these warnings are more important than ever. Driving while using a cell phone is one of the most dangerous types of distracted driving. When a driver is texting and driving, using smartphone applications, sending emails, or otherwise using their cell phone, their hands, eyes, and attention is not on the road. It is hard to say for sure just how many car accidents are caused by distracted driving. However, many experts agree that the problem is getting worse.

Statistics About Cell Phone Use Behind the Wheel Are Grim

Everyone knows that they should pay attention to the road and avoid distracted driving. However, society has become so reliant on technology that many people struggle to put their phones down even when operating a vehicle. A recent study conducted by State Farm found that 36 percent of people admit to using the internet while driving. Over 40 percent admit to texting and driving. About a quarter of participants admitted to updating social media or taking pictures while driving. Just under 90 percent of drivers surveyed admitted to at least one activity involving cell phone use behind the wheel.

Legal Recourse After an Accident Caused by a Distracted Driver

Distracted driving puts others’ lives in danger. If you or a loved one were injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you may have legal recourse. You may be able to file a personal injury claim and collect financial compensation. You could be entitled to reimbursement for emergency room bills and other medical costs, lost wages from missed work, vehicle repair, pain and suffering, and more.

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