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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CARPAL TUNNEL SETTLEMENTS IN ILLINOIS

It can start as a dull pain and morph into a medical condition that requires intensive medical intervention. On the other hand, carpal tunnel syndrome can come out of nowhere to cause excruciating pain that at times, can require immediate surgery.

What happens is the median nerve passing into the hand becomes painfully compressed. The median nerve generates the touch sensation for the thumb, long finger, index finger, and a section of the ring finger. Swelling that produces the compression of the median nerve of the hand can lead to several symptoms.

Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

One of the common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome is one or both of your hands “fall asleep.” Although the “fall asleep” condition is a temporary phase that typically affects the arms and legs, when it becomes one or both of your hands, then the numbness is probably the result of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Here are the other symptoms of the medical condition:

•    Tingling of the hand

•    Intense pain in the thumb and the largest three fingers

•    A burning sensation that moves up one or both arms

•    Nighttime wrist pain that disrupts sleep

•    Hand muscle weakness

How is Carpal Tunnel Treated?

You can treat mild carpal tunnel syndrome on your own by stopping the activity that causes the symptoms. A splint stabilizing the hand can reduce the nerve pressure causing the compression along the wrist. In many cases, your physician should examine the extent of the condition to determine the best course of medical action.

Doctors implement two strategies for treating mild to severe carpal tunnel syndrome. Medication is prescribed to mitigate the painful symptoms, such as swelling and inflammation. Your physician might recommend surgery that requires cutting the ligament touching the affected median nerve. However, surgery comes with risks, including scarring, infection, and/or nerve damage.

If you contracted carpal tunnel syndrome at work, you might be eligible to recover monetary damages to cover lost wages and medical bills.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Injuries Caused by Work

Carpal tunnel syndrome impacts one out of every 20 American workers. According to the United States Department of Labor, the medical condition is the number one reason why American employees miss work. Carpal tunnel is most often connected to repetitive on the job functions, such as typing, screwing nails, packaging materials, and lifting heavy objects into a truck.

Here are the industries with the highest incidence of carpal tunnel syndrome:

•    Administration

•    Apparel manufacturing

•    Food processing

•    Textile

•    Fabric finishing

•    Animal slaughtering

If you are employed in any of the listed industries, it is essential to take frequent breaks to avoid suffering from a repetitive motion injury. Otherwise, you might place enough pressure on the median nerve to set the pain train rolling. Consult with a doctor first, before seeking legal help from an Illinois licensed workers’ compensation attorney.

Compensation for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Although you cannot sue your employer for contracting carpal tunnel syndrome, you might have a valid claim for receiving compensation from the Illinois workers’ compensation program. The process for seeking financial relief from the Illinois workers’ compensation program differs significantly than the process for seeking monetary damages from a civil court.

Companies are responsible for funding workers’ compensation insurance. You do not have to prove your company acted negligently, just that your carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms are directly related to your job functions. It might seem like a straightforward legal process, but many companies like to derail claims by implementing different tactics.

Speak with an Illinois licensed personal injury lawyer to level the legal playing field between you and your employer when it comes to proving carpal tunnel symptoms on the job,

What Determines the Value of a Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Claim?

How much Illinois workers’compensation pays out for a claim depends on several cost factors.

•    Number of doctor visits

•    Prescriptions

•    Rehabilitation

•    Lost wages

•    Surgery

•    Supportive medical devices

Sometimes, carpel tunnel cases can be severe enough to warrant payment for a permanent disability claim. Such a claim also requires the legal counsel of an accomplished personal injury lawyer.

Two Illinois carpal tunnel syndrome lawsuits since 2010 have ended in settlements for the plaintiffs that exceeded $1 million. Both plaintiffs worked closely with highly rated personal injury attorneys to present their claims.

Take the same road taken by the winning plaintiffs by scheduling a free initial consultation today with our team of personal injury attorneys. You have nothing to lose; you’ll pay nothing out of pocket for our services. If we don’t get you compensation, we don’t get paid.

Frederick & Hagle serves people throughout Central Illinois, including Champaign-Urbana, Kankakee, Danville, Decatur, and Mattoon, Champaign County, Vermillion County, Macon County, Kankakee County, and Coles County.

How much is my case worth?

A common question we hear when talking to clients is, “how much is my case worth?”  But if you are hurt on the job in Illinois you are going to hear terms like PPD or “percentage loss of use,” and they can be confusing.  Hopefully, we can clear that up a bit.

Almost every Illinois work injury has some settlement value.  When you are done with your medical care is when it’s time to start thinking about a settlement which, if you aren’t permanently disabled or in a situation where you have a significant wage loss, is called PPD or permanent partial disability.

In plain English, PPD is compensation for how your injury is likely to affect you in the future.  You get compensated for the diminished nature of whatever body part was injured.  It’s a myth.  If you break your hand, usually it will grow back stronger so in theory there is no PPD.  In reality though if you hurt your hand at work you will be entitled to some settlement or if the insurance company won’t pay, an award from an Arbitrator after a short hearing.

So how do you figure out what your case is worth?

First, we need to know your average weekly wage. To determine your PPD rate for settlement, we take your average weekly salary (gross not net) and multiply it by 60%.  If you grossed $1,000 a week, your PPD rate would be $600.  There is a cap on this amount.  The highest PPD rate you could have if you were injured today is $790.64.  So for anyone making $68,522.13 a year or more, $790.64 would be your PPD rate.

The second thing we need to know is what body part is hurt.

The third thing to know is what percentage loss of use did you sustain to that body part.  This is determined mostly by looking at your medical records, the treatment you have had, any restrictions you might have, need for future treatment and what complaints you currently have.  As lawyers, we would compare what you are going through to other cases that have been decided at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.

We then take your PPD rate and multiply it by the number of weeks associated with your injured body part. The table below is the maximum value for any body part.

Part of Body And Maximum Number of Weeks Paid

Man as a whole (neck, back) 500

Hand 205

Thumb 76

Index finger 43

Middle finger 38

Ring finger 27

Pinky finger 22

Arm 253

Arm amputated above elbow 270

Arm amputated at shoulder joint 323

Foot 167

Big Toe 38

Any non-big toe 13

Leg 215

Leg amputated above knee 242

Leg amputated at hip joint 296

Loss of sight in one eye 162

Loss of one eye 173

Hearing loss in one ear due to occupational disease 100

Hearing loss in one ear due to accident or trauma 54

Loss of hearing in both ears 215

Kidney, spleen, or lung removal 10

Loss of one testicle 54

Loss of both testicles 162

If you tore your ACL and were determined to have a 40% loss of the leg.  40% of 215 (see the chart, a leg is worth up to 215 weeks) is 86.  So if you were making $1,000 a week, your PPD rate would be $600.  $600 x 86 means the case would be worth $51,600.00

If you lost 100% sight in one eye and you were making $1000/week before the injury, you would multiply $600 (60% of your average weekly income) times 162 which would net a permanent benefit of $162,000. This number, of course, would change if losing your vision made you permanently disabled or caused a significant wage loss.

If you were disfigured due to your on the job injury, like a scar on your face, the parties involved would need to agree on a number of weeks of compensation that injury is worth and then apply the same amount of weeks to 60% of your average income, with a maximum of 162 weeks.

Does this seem confusing?  It can be, but hopefully, this clears things up a bit.

Bonus tip.  Beware insurance companies who try to base what your injury is worth solely off an AMA rating.  It would significantly undervalue what your case is worth.

And of course, if you have any questions or concerns, you can call us any time at 217-367-6092 for a free consultation.

Truck Accident Statistics in Illinois

Over the past several years, The Weather Channel has expanded its programming options to present reality shows that demonstrate the awesome power of Mother Nature. One such show is called Highway Thru Hell, which chronicles how a commercial towing company handles the vehicle crashes caused by the slick road conditions present in Canadian mountain passes. What is interesting about the show is how seemingly countless 18-wheeler’s find their way into deep, snow covered ravines.

The more alarming fact about truck accidents is that many of the crashes result in severe injuries and unfortunately, an alarming number of fatalities. Millions of delivery trucks ranging from the trucks owned by UPS to the BP monsters hauling fuel cross the United States have to meet extremely tight delivery deadlines. The rush to get to a destination on time places both truck drivers and operators of other types of vehicles at a high risk of truck accidents.

In fact, the prevalence of truck accidents has prompted many trucking companies to assemble an in house team of attorneys to counteract the legal actions taken by personal injury lawyers.

Truck Accident Statistics in Illinois

With Chicago as one of the major commercial transportation hubs and destinations in the United States, it is not surprising to learn Illinois ranks high in the number of accidents involving commercial trucks. In 2014, which is the latest year for which statistics were released, the Illinois Department of Transportation made public a report that listed the following statistics.

Semi trailer trucks were responsible for more than 11,000 accidents, which accounted for more than 10% of all fatal vehicle crashes. Ninety-five people lost their lives because of truck accidents, leaving 1,902 motorists and pedestrians injured. The Illinois truck accident statistics released in 2014 confirmed a trend that should make the owners of other types of vehicles think twice about passing a big rig or even saddling up to the side of an 18-wheeler.

Primary Causes of Truck Accidents

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has reviewed more than 120,000 accidents involving at least one truck and the federal agency has come up with one compelling statistic.

Driver negligence causes about 87% of all truck accidents. What are some of the reasons causing truck driver negligence?

  • Distractions
  • Driver fatigue
  • Speeding
  • Making bad decisions
  • Drug and/or alcohol use
  • Jackknifing
  • Not familiar with area

The FMCSA discovered 10% of truck crashes involved some type of vehicle defect and the remaining three percent of truck accidents were directly related to poor road conditions.

Another reason plays a role in truck accidents that occur in greater Chicagoland. Six federally sanctioned interstates cross through the heart of The Windy City. Whether you commute every day on the Kennedy Expressway or leave for a weekend in the country by taking Interstate 55, chances are you will encounter numerous commercial trucks on the road.

Types of Truck Accidents

According to the FMCSA, four types of truck accidents encompass more than half of all crashes involving a semi and at least one other vehicle.

Rollovers

Several different scenarios can cause rollover accidents. Rollovers can happen because a truck driver tries to avoid contact with another vehicle or hit another vehicle and then the truck ends up on its side or worse, rolling over more than one time. Driving too fast for the conditions and not applying enough brake pressure on steep inclines cause the majority of truck rollover accidents.

Jackknifes

When truck’s axel brakes suddenly lock, the trailer can skid for dozens of yards, depending on the speed of the vehicle. The trailer can stop only if the driver angles the trailer to be 90 degrees with the cab. During the time a truck jackknifes, the driver loses complete control of the truck and typically a rollover unfolds.

Under Ride

As one of the most dangerous types of truck accidents, an under ride appears similar to a rear end collision. However, an under ride collision involves a smaller vehicle hitting the back of a truck at the point where the smaller vehicle makes impact at the top of the vehicle. The reason for the dangerous nature of an under ride is the possibility of the driver of the smaller vehicle receiving life threatening head injuries.

Rear End

Trucks carry considerable weight, which makes stopping the vehicle difficult to perform over short distances. The most common type of truck accidents can be either the fault of the truck driver or the driver of the other vehicle for not maintaining the proper distance for applying the brakes. Trucks weighing 8,000 pounds and moving at 60 miles per hour need 426 feet to stop.

Here are a few other types of truck crashes:

  • Road construction
  • Brake failure
  • Improper braking technique 
  • Blind spot
  • No zone accidents 
  • Turns taken too wide

Serious Injuries Caused by Truck Accidents

Weighing several tons and applying incredible force at high speeds, semi tractor trailers and even the smaller trucks driven by delivery companies can cause significant injuries. Many of the following injuries requires months, if not years of physical therapy to overcome.

  • Whiplash
  • Fractures
  • Brain swelling
  • Herniated discs
  • Internal organ damage
  • Joint contusions

If you suffer from one or more injuries caused by a truck accident, you should work with a highly rated team of personal injury lawyers to ensure you receive the monetary damages you deserve for long term physical and emotional harm. A majority of truck accidents in Illinois take place on the roads and highways covering the Chicago metro area. Each of the personal injury lawyers at our firm has amassed years of experience representing clients that have undergone the ordeal of a life changing truck crash.

Proving Negligence is the Key

As legal experts that often prosecute truck accidents causing personal injuries and fatalities, our team of attorneys understands how to get to the bottom of a personal injury case. We thoroughly investigate every truck crash incident to determine liability. Our strategy typically involves establishing whether a truck driver violated one or more state and federal regulations.

Here are some of the tools we use to ensure trucking companies have followed state and federal regulations:

  • Review time log books
  • Determine level of truck maintenance
  • Drug and alcohol tests
  • Confirm adequate insurance coverage
  • Examine truck safety markings
  • Weight restriction compliance
  • Adherence with loading procedures
  • Fulfilled safety inspection requirements

When our team of accomplished personal injury attorneys files a lawsuit against a trucking company, we have to present evidence that proves the truck driver in question caused an accident. Referred to as negligence, the key to helping you seek justice for the physical pain and emotional duress caused by a truck accident involves proving reckless conduct by the driver and/or trucking company.

Hire a Highly Rated Personal Injury Lawyer

Many of our clients feel acute anxiety after dealing with truck accidents. However, you cannot afford to wait for the stress to diminish. You should contact one of the accomplished personal injury lawyers at our law firm to seek swift justice for the negligence that caused the truck crash.

Call our office at 217-367-6092 or complete the convenient online form today to schedule a free initial consultation.

Who is responsible for paying medical bills after a traffic accident?

Have you been injured in a traffic accident in the state of Illinois? If so, you might find yourself wondering exactly who is responsible for the resulting medical bills. Let’s take a look at what to expect below, and don’t forget that you can reach out to the professionals at Frederick & Hagle for a free consult at 800.642.1227!
Common Misconceptions
First of all, it’s important to understand up front that the responsible party’s insurance company won’t pay for your medical expenses until after your case has been settled. We know that’s not what you want to hear right now, especially if you’re also dealing with lost wages on top of steep medical bills. You need to keep this information in mind, however, so that you understand that your medical expenses will likely be sent to collections if you tell the medical professional in question to “bill” the responsible party’s insurance. You’ll most likely have to pay up front and seek reimbursement after the fact.
With that said, keep in mind that this doesn’t mean insurance won’t cover your bills at all. It just means that you’ll have to pay them before your case is settled and take reimbursement out of the compensation secured on your behalf by an experienced attorney.
Check in with Your Health Insurance
When you go in for medical treatment, make sure to tell the provider that they should bill your health insurance agency. Many of the larger agencies will have special rates with certain facilities, so they’ll end up paying less than you might. Note that you might still be responsible for things like deductibles or the like require upfront payments. Additionally, your health insurance will likely expect their reimbursement to come from any compensation you receive from your injury case.
Medpay
Many car insurance policies contain a clause with medical payment coverage, also known as medpay. If it is present in your insurance policy, then you’ll likely have a set amount of money they will pay out of pocket. Once they meet that threshold, you’ll have to look elsewhere for expense coverage. This can be a great option to look into before worrying about other payment methods; however, you should keep in mind that this clause is optional. It might not be a solution for you, but it doesn’t hurt to check with your insurance company.
Liens
Another option to consider – or one that might be utilized whether you’re aware or not – is that of a “lien.” A lien is put in place to ensure that once you recover compensation, you pay off your medical bills. Some medical establishments will file for a lien on their own and others will enter into that agreement with you in exchange for providing treatment without billing you until your lawsuit has been settled.
For more information about your specific case, reach out to the skilled attorneys at Frederick & Hagle today!

How to Handle an FCE

Workers’ compensation claims are notoriously complex to settle fairly. It’s really no surprise, then, that almost anything related to them is seen in a rather negative light. Functional capacity evaluations (FCEs), for example, are often viewed with much mistrust on the part of patients completing them. And while that’s understandable, it’s important to note that there’s nothing inherently bad about the process. Infact, FCEs can work to prove your claim and help you receive the compensation and work restrictions necessary for your health.

What is an FCE?

An FCE is a type of test where patients demonstrate their capacity to do various tasks related to their daily lives and their work lives. It is designed to simulate activities that they might run into in their workplace or during the course of their work day in order to assess how well they can reasonably be expected to perform them. If the patient works as a construction worker, for example, but was injured while working and can no longer use their hands effectively for manual labor, an FCEto determine their exact capacity might be ordered.

These exams are generally overseen by a neutral physician or healthcare specialist who has specific activities they’ll ask patients to complete.

Why do I need an FCE?

If you’ve been injured at work and are in the midst of a workers’ compensation suit, you might wonder why you’re being asked to undergo an FCE in the first place. Keep in mind that,depending upon the injuries in question, the stakes for both you and the business in question could be pretty large. Even specialists might not be able to give a definitive answer about how your injuries would impact you at work, especially if they aren’t familiar with the industry. An FCE, then, is conducted to allow a professional to assess how the injuries you’ve received will impact your ability to do your job.

In addition to the above, keep in mind that an FCE is often highly valued in workers’ compensation cases because they are used by the people hearing or reviewing your claim to determine what accommodations or compensation you should be awarded.

How should I approach an FCE?

Your first instinct might be to try and appear as injured as possible during the examination, but this is not a good option for the long haul. If the exam administrator notices that you’re purposefully not giving your all, they will make note of that in the report and it could significantly negatively impact your case. At the same time, you shouldn’t strain yourself and overexert yourself during the exam. Just give your best effort without straining your ability – that’s all anyone expects.

If you’re facing a workers’compensation claim, it’s important to have experienced attorneys on your side.The professionals at Frederick & Hagle can help! Reach out to us today for a free consultation to see what we think about your case and how we can help.

Common Causes of Motor Vehicle Accidents

Car accidents are a major cause of injury in the United States. In fact, they are probably far more common than anyone would like to admit, with 324,473 crashes and 93,160 injuries being reported in Illinois in 2016 alone. That’s nearly 1,000 crashes (and 10 injuries an hour) per day according to the Illinois Department of Transportation’s Illinois Roadway Crash Data. It’s not surprising, then, that even the most cautious and safest of drivers can end up involved in a serious car accident. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of motor vehicle accidents in Illinois.

Car Accident Lawyers - Champaign, IL

Distracted Drivers

One of the main causes of accidents is distracted driving. This is any kind of driving where the driver is not fully engaged in driving. This includes a wide range of behaviors, including:

  • Checking Social Media
  • Interacting with Their Passengers
  • Texting
  • Reading a GPS App
  • Writing
  • Reading
  • Driving While Emotional/Upset
  • Driving While Fatigued

This kind of behavior is extremely risky and increases the changes of the driver causing (or being involved in) a motor vehicle accident.

Not Driving While Sober

Whether it’s under the influence of alcohol, prescription medication, or illegal drugs, driving while not sober is a big cause of motor vehicle accidents. There are many substances that can alter your judgment and perception and using them before driving is almost inviting a crash.

Driving Too Fast

Speeding is another big cause of car accidents. Frustration with posted speed limits is understandable in certain situations, however that doesn’t change the fact that adhering to them is safer than not. They were put in place for a reason. Failure to follow speeding restrictions can quickly end in a tragic situation.

Have you been the victim of a motor vehicle accident? The experts at Frederick & Hagle understand how difficult and overwhelming the situation can be. We’re ready to help fight for your rights and secure the compensation necessary to move on. Contact us today for more information!

Hurt in a Wreck? Seek the Compensation You Deserve with Our Auto Accident Lawyers

 

 

In 2016, the people of Illinois were involved in over 300,000 car accidents. About 20 percent, or 60,000, of these crashes resulted in a serious injury. And about 1 percent, or 1,000, of them ended in death. A mix of nasty winter weather and dense urban traffic make for a dangerous driving environment.

If you were involved in one of these accidents or any other accident, you need a car accident attorney in Illinois. Our car accident attorneys know the impact of even a small car accident and can help you get the relief you need.

Common causes of car accidents
Car accidents can happen for many reasons. Accidents can happen when two people are driving safely, but usually they occur because of one driver’s negligence. Here are some common reasons for accidents:
• Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
• Drowsy driving
• Distracted driving
• Disobeying traffic laws or signals
• Speeding
• Aggressive driving
• Bad weather

Also, here some common indicators of fault:
• Not stopping at a stop sign
• Backing out and hitting another car
• Driving without legally required glasses
• Driving without headlights on at night
• Driving distracted by texting, being on the phone, eating, etc.
• Driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

If the other driver was doing any of these, it’s likely the accident is their fault legally. Of course, there are more factors that are considered when determining fault, but this is a good start.

If you had a car accident that was not your fault
The first thing people do after they get into a car accident that wasn’t their fault is hire an attorney. They almost always hire a local attorney: so, if you live in Champaign, you need an attorney in the Champaign area.

An attorney will help the process go much smoother for you and help you get the compensation you deserve. Here’s what our attorneys will do:
• Understand the accident to find out its cause
• Make it clear that the person who caused the accident is responsible for the accident
• Find the best source of compensation from insurance
• Learn about all your medical needs and recommend a doctor
• Count all your financial and non-financial losses

Our attorney’s will get the compensation you need for all your losses.

This process can be confusing for most people; an attorney will take care of the whole process and make it easy for you, but an example will clear up how the process works.

(Truck accident? Read this.)
Example
Jim gets in a car accident with Sally when Sally makes a left turn into the front left side of Jim’s vehicle. Jim had a green light and Sally had a green light for yield. The accident is Sally’s fault. Jim gets all of Sally’s contact information and goes to the hospital for serious back injuries. At the hospital Jim racks up $25,000 in medical bills; he goes to an attorney as soon as he gets out of the hospital. The attorney listens to the case and then determines the best source of compensation. Sally works a minimum wage job. But she has an insurance policy worth over $100,000. This is an important note, whether the attorney sues Sally or the insurance company, generally, Sally herself won’t pay the money, her insurance company will.

Jim’s attorney files a claim against Sally’s insurance company. Instead of taking the matter to court, the insurance company agrees to settle the matter for $35,000. If Jim had filed a claim without an attorney, the insurance company may have only given him $25,000 maximum because they would not have taken him as seriously. Jim didn’t pay the attorney anything upfront and only now that Jim gets paid does the attorney get paid: the attorney gets paid a percentage of the settlement amount.

This is a routine process. An insurance company will give a self-represented person less every time. Hire an attorney and the process is easier and you will be compensated with what you deserve.

How much is a car accident claim worth?
Here are some real car accidents that happened in Illinois and the real amount the plaintiff (the person suing) received.
Dislocated collarbone from car accident
When: 1992
Where: St. Clair County, Illinois
Facts: The plaintiff was 14 years old and driving with his mom. His mom turned left in front of another car — both with green lights — they collided. The plaintiff’s collarbone was dislocated and cost $1,100 in medical bills. Ultimately, the jury sided with the defendant, because the plaintiff was making the left turn, and the plaintiff got nothing.
Neck injury
When: 1992
Where: Madison County, Illinois
Facts: The plaintiff was driving and was rear-ended while stopping to turn right onto a small access road. The defendant was speeding. The accident caused neck bone, tissue, and nerve damage and resulted in $3,000 in medical bills and $500 in lost wages. It went before a jury and the jury awarded $6,720 to the plaintiff.
Death by head injury
When: 1994
Where: Cook County, Illinois
Facts: 28-year-old Hurley was driving down the road when a tractor-trailer pulled out in front of him. Hurley’s car went right under the trailer, tearing the roof from the car. He didn’t survive. His wife brought the lawsuit against the tractor-trailer company. The company settled the matter for $1.4 million.

If you or a loved one has been in a car accident, our car accident attorneys can help you recover the compensation you deserve, so that you can focus on your recovery. Contact our Champaign office to schedule a free, no obligation consultation with one of our qualified attorneys, and let us discuss the legal options that are available for your specific incident.
If we decide to take on your case, there are no upfront fees.

Call 1-800-642-1227 or fill out a Free Case Evaluation form today.

Pickup Truck Accidents are on the Rise in Illinois

In 2016, pickup trucks were involved in the second highest number of accidents after passenger cars, in Illinois. Altogether, there were over 63,000 vehicles involving trucks of all kinds — just in one year. Accidents with trucks are more dangerous than those between cars.

If you were involved in an accident with a truck, you need a truck accident attorney in Illinois. Our truck accident attorneys know the gravity of a truck accident and can help you get the relief you need.

(Read the official car accident report here.)
What causes truck accidents?
Truck accidents happen for all the same reasons as car accidents. But one thing is for sure: the person not driving the truck is the person in the most danger. Only 21 percent of the people injured in truck accidents were the people in the truck, 77 percent were in the other vehicle, usually a car. Also, only 3% of all accidents in Illinois involve large trucks, but 10% of deadly accidents are with large trucks.

Here are some common causes for large truck accidents in Illinois:
• Speeding – Illinois has more than the normal amount of accidents from speeding: 39 percent of deadly accidents in Illinois were from speeding, whereas the national average is 28 percent.
• Drowsy driving – truckers have a legal limit on how many hours they can drive a day. Sometimes they exceed that limit.
• Distracted driving – eating while driving is common among truckers. This could also include driving while texting, drinking, or talking on a cell phone.
• Driving under the influence – this could include alcohol of course, but also prescription drugs.
• Not enough driver training – sometimes trucking companies undertrain their drivers.
• Unrealistic delivery schedules – sometimes drivers are under the pressure of intense delivery schedules. This can lead to poor decisions and accidents.

(For more on car accidents, go here.)
Whose fault is a truck accident?
A “truck accident” can include anything from pick-up trucks to three-trailer semis. Oftentimes people use it to refer to an accident with a commercial tractor-trailer or semi. These accidents are unique because it involves more parties, or groups, that can be responsible. Parties include:
• You
• The truck driver
• The employer of the truck driver
• The maker of the truck

(Want to know what to do after an accident? Read this.)
How much is a truck accident claim worth?
Here are some real truck accidents that happened in Illinois and the real amount the plaintiff (the person suing) received.
Pelvic fracture caused by a truck accident
When: 1994
Where: Cook County, Illinois
Facts: This was a case of suing the wrong person. 18-year-old Williams sued the City of Evanston, claiming its truck had hit him while he was walking across the street. He then held onto the truck until one of the passengers kicked him off. Pretty messed up. But Williams’ license plate number he provided did not match any of the city vehicles. He piled up $5,400 in medical bills and the jury gave him nothing.
Leg fracture caused by a truck accident
When: 1991
Where: Cook County, Illinois
Facts: Kruse was driving when her vehicle was hit by a commercial truck. The company admitted fault and settled for $1.5 million. Kruse had multiple leg and facial fractures and scarring and had tallied $200 thousand in medical bills.

(Want to see our case results? Go here.)

Should I hire an attorney for my car accident?

When it comes to unexpected situations that can change a life forever, traffic accidents are among some of the most devastating around. Because they involve heavy, large machinery moving at fast speeds, it perhaps makes sense that the injuries traffic accidents inflict upon their victims are often catastrophic in nature. If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident of some kind, it’s important to reach out to an experienced attorney who can help. With that said, you might be wondering exactly when you should hire an attorney. Let’s look at some of the considerations to undertake when making your decision.

Who is liable for the accident?

If the liability in your case is crystal clear, that can help the process move smoothly. In the event that the liability is shared or unclear, however, you might find yourself facing an uphill legal climb. This can be a serious issue, especially if you have medical bills or property damage to cover (not to mention lost wages if your injuries have left you unable to complete your normal shifts). Whether you are looking to secure your compensation or help ensure that the responsible person is held accountable, an attorney can help.

Insurance Has Offered (or Denied) a Claim

Insurance can be incredibly difficult to deal with. Keep in mind that their main interest is in ensuring that they keep as much money in their coffers as possible, not what is best for you. That means that they will do their best to pay out as little as they can if they offer a settlement. They will often deny a claim outright, leaving victims feeling as though there is no recourse. A lawyer can help you handle insurance claims and do their bests to secure the compensation you need to recover. If your claim has been denied – and even if you have been offered a settlement – you should hire an attorney.

You are Facing Extenuating Circumstances

Finally, if you are facing extenuating circumstances, you should reach out to an attorney for help. This means that if you are facing issues with lost wages or even problems with caring for loved ones after an injury from a car accident, a lawyer can help. Remember that insurance claims tend to calculate immediate losses, not complicated issues like lost work, caregiver fees, and extended projected medical fees. An expert can help make sure that you receive the compensation that you need to move on with your life.

Statute of Limitations

Something else to keep in mind when working through your traffic accident claim is the statute of limitations. You want to make sure that you understand how much time you must file a personal injury claim. In Illinois, this is generally within two years from the accident. Regardless, contacting an attorney can help you stay on top of any important due dates. It should be noted that a lawyer can also help protect you if you are concerned that someone might file a personal injury claim against you within the statute of limitations.

If you need help with your traffic accident personal injury case, the attorneys at Frederick & Hagle can help. We have the experience, knowledge, case history, support, and reputation needed to fight for your best interests. Contact us today for more information!

Auto Accidents and Private Property: Who is at Fault?

Automobile accidents are incredibly serious issues that can have catastrophic consequences. This is as true of accidents that occur on private property as it is of accidents that occur on a public thoroughfare. That is not to say that the two don’t have any differences at all, of course. Determining who is responsible for the accident can be more difficult with accidents that occur on private property. It is important that you understand your rights during this difficult time and are able to determine who is liable for the accident.

Who is at-fault?

When someone drives or otherwise behaves negligently and leads to the damage of person or property, they might be held liable for the victim’s losses. This does not change when the accident takes place on private property. Note that this can encompass situations where the accident was not caused by another individual physically striking your vehicle. If a privately-owned parking lot fails to mark blind spots or to ensure that the proper number of “no stop” or “yield” signs are in place, for example, then they very well might be found liable for accidents that occur in the lot.

Depending upon the property owner in question, you might find that gathering information about your accident, including camera footage, if available, that shows you were not at fault, to be quite difficult. A property owner who has an active stake in ensuring that you (and not they) are found to be liable for your own damages, for example, is less likely to willingly help you prove that the accident was not your fault. That is where an experienced attorney familiar with the laws governing auto accidents and private property comes in handy.

Auto accidents can happen to anyone. Even the most cautious of drivers can find themselves caught off-guard and put into a bad situation. If you have been the victim of an automobile accident on private property, the attorneys at Frederick and Hagle can help. Our experienced legal experts understand how to determine who is at fault for accidents as well as how best to ensure you receive proper compensation.

Reach out to us today at 217-367-6092 for more information!

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