Chicago Area Lawyers for Illinois Automobile Accidents
According to the latest statistics compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 30,000 people died in traffic accidents in 2012 – a five percent increase over 2011. In Illinois, nearly 1,000 people were killed in car crashes in 2011, and over 80,000 more were injured. Auto accidents can be attributed to a number of causes, including defects in automobile design and construction as well as defective highways and roadways, but the leading cause of automobile collisions is driver negligence. Distracted driving, texting while driving, drunk driving, fatigued driving and other types of careless, reckless, or negligent behavior can cause serious personal injury or wrongful death to innocent drivers and passengers. The attorneys at Johnson, Westra, Broecker, Whittaker & Newitt, P.C. represent people who have been injured in automobile accidents in Chicago and surrounding areas. Our lawyers understand the law and the practical aspects of making sure you get the compensation you need to care for yourself and your loved ones following a serious accident.
Liability insurance only goes so far
All drivers in Illinois are required to carry liability insurance in case they cause a wreck on the road. Unfortunately, the minimum amount required by law is only $20,000 to compensate a person for personal injuries suffered in the collision. While this amount may cover a minor injury and perhaps even a brief hospital stay, the statutory minimum is far too low to compensate someone who has been involved in a serious accident and has significant present and future medical expenses and likely also faces a loss of income for the present and into the future, not to mention pain and suffering and other legal damages.
Insurance companies do not typically offer to pay what your claim is really worth, so it is wise to discuss your case with an experienced auto accident attorney before accepting any money from the insurance company or making any written or recorded statements. It is often necessary to sue the negligent driver and prepare the case for trial in order to achieve an adequate settlement. Since a trial may also be necessary, be sure and hire a lawyer or law firm with litigation experience and a reputation for success in the courtroom.
Many drivers are uninsured
Despite the low mandatory minimums, many people choose to risk driving without insurance to avoid paying premiums. Nationally, uninsured drivers make up about 16% of the driving population and account for about 14% of traffic accidents. In other words, more than one out of every ten drivers on the road is uninsured.
If you are struck by an uninsured or underinsured motorist and you have uninsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage on your vehicle, you can appeal to your insurance company to cover your losses. Be prepared to deal with your insurance company like you would any other. Have an attorney to consult with or represent you to make sure you are being treated fairly and receiving adequate compensation for your injury.
Our Firm is Here to Help with Your Chicago Area Automobile Accident
If you or a loved one has been injured in an automobile collision in Chicago, Carol Stream, or any surrounding area, contact the experienced Illinois personal injury attorneys at Johnson, Westra, Broecker, Whittaker & Newitt, P.C. for assistance.