Personal Injury FAQ
In Illinois, personal injury and auto accident victims are entitled to recover damages by filing an injury claim or lawsuit. Every state has different laws, rules, and statutes established to address the procedure for filing insurance claims and options to seek financial compensation after an accident or personal injury. It can be a stressful process, which is why it is beneficial to speak with a personal injury attorney.
At Maritote Law, we're committed to offering compassionate representation and support to personal injury victims and their family members. Our dedicated attorney can review every last detail of your unique situation and answer some of your frequently asked questions about personal injury. Our team can help file your claims and pursue your rightful financial compensation. Our firm proudly serves clients across Hanover Park, Cook County, Rosedale, Bloomingdale, and Schaumburg, Illinois.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Illinois
Illinois is an at-fault state for personal injury and auto accidents. According to the state's at-fault laws, the party who caused the accident or injury (the at-fault party) will be held financially or civilly liable for medical expenses, property damages, and other accident-related losses suffered by the victims.
What Are the Options to Recover Damages?
To recover damages after an accident or injury in the state of Illinois, you can:
File a first-party claim with your own insurance provider.
File a third-party claim against the insurer of the at-fault party.
File a personal injury lawsuit in civil court against the at-fault party.
A seasoned attorney can examine your case details, walk you through the Illinois personal injury claim process, and help recover your deserved financial justice.
Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injuries
It’s common to have many questions surrounding a personal injury. When following an accident, you may be wondering about the following:
What should I do after an accident?
If you were involved in an accident, you should take the following steps, where possible:
Remain calm and do not panic. Exit your car carefully.
Call 911 to receive immediate medical treatment for your injuries.
Report the incident to the nearest sheriff's office or police department.
Document your injuries and gather accident scene photos, police reports, and witness statements.
Document your medical bills, medical treatments, health records, and doctor's visits.
Document your personal account of the accident and how it has affected your daily life and work.
Inform your insurer about the accident or injury.
Hire a skilled lawyer to help file your claims, negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance carrier, or file a lawsuit.
What if I was partially at fault?
Illinois follows the "modified comparative negligence" system, with a 51% bar. Under the rule, an injured person may pursue damages if the other party was mostly (51% or more) responsible for the injury or accident. However, your total compensation will be reduced by your degree of fault. According to Illinois's modified comparative fault rule, if you were mostly (51% or more) at fault for the incident, you will be barred completely from recovering damages.
I don't feel hurt. Should I still see a doctor?
Yes. Getting immediate medical attention is essential for both personal and legal reasons. Even if you don't feel hurt or only suffered minor injuries, you should still see a qualified physician:
For your health, safety, and general well-being.
To detect any injuries and symptoms that are hidden.
To ensure proper documentation of your injuries, treatments received, and medical records.
To comply with insurance requirements.
To avoid potential issues with the insurance provider when filing your injury claims.
Should I talk with the insurance adjuster?
No. Speaking with or giving a recorded statement to the claims adjuster without your attorney is never advisable because they can:
Take your statements out of context.
Interpret your words wrongly.
Ask contradictory questions to create inconsistencies in your responses.
Use your statements against you in court, during negotiations, or to undervalue or deny your claims.
Essentially, the insurance adjuster isn't on your side, and speaking with them might hurt your case inadvertently.
How long do I have to file a personal injury claim?
Also, the statute of limitation for personal injury claims in Illinois, including motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and falls, and wrongful death, is two (2) years from the date the accident or injury occurred. For this reason, the plaintiff must bring their civil action to recover damages within two years of the cause of action.
What if I'm injured, and the other party has no insurance?
Filing a personal injury claim against a liable party who is underinsured or has no insurance is never advisable. In most case, the uninsured party can't cover all the costs of your injuries and damages. Alternatively, you can file a claim with your own uninsured or underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage to recover damages for your injuries.
Do I need to hire a personal injury attorney?
Retaining an experienced personal injury attorney after an auto accident or personal injury is crucial for detailed guidance and to protect your rights. Your legal representative can advise you about your available legal options to pursue damages, help file your insurance claims, and seek to prove negligence.
Also, your lawyer will help negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance provider or take additional legal action where possible. With an attorney on your side, you can achieve the most favorable outcome in your personal injury claims.
Compassionate & Knowledgeable Legal Help
Filing a personal injury claim can be complicated and stressful. Contact Maritote Law today to schedule a simple case evaluation with a practiced personal injury lawyer. Our reliable attorney can represent you compassionately in your case and help you pursue fair financial compensation for your injuries, damages, and losses. We're proud to serve clients across Hanover Park, Cook County, Rosedale, Bloomingdale, and Schaumburg, Illinois.