For over 45 years, the lawyers at Goldberg & Schulkin Law Offices have been helping victims of car accidents, truck accidents, work accidents,, and other types of personal injuries get back on their feet. Our experience with personal injury claims, ability to uncover details that other lawyers in Chicago miss, and access to top experts in the United States have led us to recover hundreds of millions of dollars for injury victims and their families.
If someone else’s recklessness or negligence caused you to become injured, you don’t have to fight this battle alone. Call the accident lawyers in Chicago at Goldberg & Schulkin for a free, no-obligation consultation. 312-236-4146.
Personal injuries impact victims emotionally, physically, and financially and filing personal injury claims and lawsuits with top Chicago lawyers can help people recover compensation for their losses. When people refer to personal injury claims and personal injury lawsuits, the terms are often used interchangeably. There is an important difference between the two, however.
A personal injury claim is a claim filed against an insurance company to recover compensation for injuries caused by someone else. Common in cases involving car accidents and slips and falls, these types of claims are often filed against auto insurance policies, business or homeowner’s policies, or professional liability policies. Sometimes, injury claims may be filed against multiple entities for a single injury.
When the claim is filed, the insurance adjuster will investigate the accident, evaluating medical records, how the incident happened, who was at fault, the damages suffered, and the terms of the insurance policy. As a representative of the insurance company, the adjuster is not on your side. It is his or her job to try to reduce the amount paid on the claim. In many cases, the adjuster will make a quick, low-ball settlement offer or deny liability altogether. Your personal injury lawyers in Chicago will then attempt to negotiate with the company to settle your claim. If the insurance company denies the claim or an appropriate settlement offer cannot be reached, a personal injury lawsuit will often follow.
Personal injury lawsuits are often more complicated than personal injury claims because victims must prove to the judge or jury that the other party was negligent and that negligence caused the injuries. Personal injury lawsuits may last just a few months or several years.
Personal injury lawsuits consist of many stages, including:
Negligence generally forms the framework in personal injury claims and personal injury lawsuits. A personal injury law firm will use negligence to establish the defendant’s fault for the accident that caused the injuries. When proving negligence, the plaintiff will need to establish that the at-fault party owed the victim a legal duty of care, that the defendant breached that legal duty, that an injury occurred, and that the breach of legal duty caused the injuries.
For example, drivers have a legal duty to operate their motor vehicles with reasonable care to avoid harming other drivers and pedestrians. When drivers violate driving laws and cause car accidents or truck accidents that result in brain injuries or other severe conditions, they are said to have breached their duty of care to pedestrians or other motorists.
Accident lawyers in Chicago use a variety of factors to determine the value of a personal injury case. The circumstances of the accident, insurance coverage limits, and the severity of your injuries are key when estimating what a case may be worth. Other factors a Chicago personal injury attorney will consider include:
Economic damages are quantifiable financial losses and are generally fairly easy for a personal injury law firm to calculate. Examples include:
These general damages can be challenging for a Chicago personal injury attorney to quantify, as it is difficult to place a dollar amount on your pain or emotional trauma. Examples of non-economic damages include:
Unlike economic and non-economic damages which are designed to compensate victims of car accidents, slip & fall accidents, truck accidents, brain injuries, and the like for their injuries and losses, punitive damages aim towards punishing the at-fault party for his or her wrongdoing.
Most personal injury cases do not involve punitive damage awards, but in cases that do, the award amounts can be substantial. Cases involving the following may include a punitive damage award.
A Chicago personal injury attorney will investigate your accident, consider all parties who may be at fault, and evaluate the factors that may reduce the defendant’s liability or eliminate it entirely. Some of these factors include:
There are statutes of limitations that require filing these lawsuits within prescribed time limits. You should contact an experienced injury attorney at Goldberg & Schulkin Law Offices to determine the time period that applies to your case.
Serious car accidents often result in severe injuries that cause death. Similar to other types of injury cases in Illinois, compensation for the victim’s lost wages and medical expenses can be recovered with the help of a Chicago personal injury attorney.
However, surviving family members may also be able to recover compensation for funeral and burial expenses, loss of household income, loss of companionship, and grief and sorrow. While no amount of money can replace a loved one, compensation can provide financial stability for those who are left behind.