Hamilton & Antonsen
Joliet Car Accident Lawyer
Discuss legal options with a knowledgeable car accident attorney in Joliet, Illinois.
Car accidents are an unfortunately common occurrence in Illinois. According to the Chicago-Tribune, there were over 800 car accidents each day in the state in 2014, a rate that has only increased since that year. For drivers who are involved in these car accidents, there can be real damages, which may include property damage to their vehicle, medical bills, and lost wages from being unable to work. For more serious car accidents, there may be damages relating to loss of enjoyment of life or a permanent inability to rejoin the workforce because of injuries sustained.
For these individuals, the laws in Illinois may provide a recourse for their damages. If you have been in a car accident, contact a car accident lawyer in Joliet to learn more about any legal options that may be available to you.
Illinois Law on Car Accidents
Most commonly, a person injured in a car accident will seek to recover damages through a negligence lawsuit. In a negligence lawsuit, the injured driver or passenger will be required to prove to the court that the other party was not behaving in the way a “reasonably prudent person” would have in similar circumstances. A driver who causes a car accident because he or she is breaking the law – most commonly by ignoring a stop light, or speeding – is most likely behaving below this “reasonableness” standard. However, even drivers who may not be breaking the law could be behaving “unreasonably.” For example, a driver who causes a car accident when traveling at the speed limit – but in the middle of a blizzard – is unlikely to be behaving as a “reasonably prudent person” in similar circumstances because a reasonable person, unable to see in a blizzard, would be driving more slowly.
In some circumstances, a car accident may be caused by multiple negligent parties, or even by the victim. Under Illinois law, a victim that is partially at-fault for the car accident will still be able to recover for a portion of their damages from the other negligent parties.
In these circumstances, Illinois will follow a comparative fault approach to assigning liability and damages, per Section 2-1116 of the Illinois Code. Under a comparative fault or comparative negligence approach, a jury will determine which parties’ negligent behavior caused the car accident and assign a “percentage of fault” to each party. Then, the jury will decide the damages award. Each negligent party will then be liable for the damages proportionate to their own fault. If the jury finds that the injured victim is partially responsible for his or her own damages, then the injured driver’s award will be reduced by that percentage of fault.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Joliet Today
Under Section 5/13-202 of the Illinois Code, a person injured in a car accident will only have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against any responsible party or parties. Because this is a relatively short period of time, anyone injured in a car accident should not hesitate to discuss their legal options with a knowledgeable car accident attorney in Joliet, Illinois.
Request a free Consultation
Contact our Will County lawyers to set up a free consultation for aggressive litigation of your Personal Injury case. Our Joliet, Illinois office can be reached by calling 815.729.9220 or contact us for a free consultation. The attorneys at Hamilton & Antonsen, Ltd. look forward to meeting with you to discuss your personal injury case and concerns today.