North Chicago Trucking Accident Lawyer
Trucks, ranging from small pickups to large commercial vehicles, travel the roadways and highways daily. The United States lists trucks in different classes based on their weight.
Classes 1,2,3 are light-duty trucks typically for consumer, non-commercial, and light commercial uses. Trucks in classes 4 through 6 include delivery trucks and school buses. The heavy-duty trucks are in classes 7 and 8, such as cement trucks, garbage trucks, and 18-wheelers.
Trucks are usually larger than other types of vehicles. An impact or collision with another automobile, cyclist or pedestrian can result in catastrophic injuries. The National Safety Council reports that in 2020 nearly 4,900 large trucks were in fatal crashes. The total includes commercial and non-commercial trucks.
In Illinois, thousands of trucks accident occur. In 2020, over 35,000 crashes happened in the state. The collision had more than 7,000 injuries and 180 fatalities. Of the deaths, 81 people were occupants in the pickup trucks.
North Chicago, Illinois, located on the shore of Lake Michigan, has more than 30,000 residents. Business, events, and daily living in North Chicago, residents and visitor travel through and around the city. As motorist drive on the city streets, trucking accidents may occur. The parties involved may suffer injuries and resulting damages and need compensation.
If you or a loved one was the victim of a trucking accident in North Chicago, contact an experienced and knowledgeable attorney at Briskman Briskman & Greenberg today. Call 1-877-595-4878 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.
What to do after a trucking accident
Illinois law requires that all drivers immediately stop in a motor vehicle accident resulting in vehicle damage, injury or death. They must give notice of the accident as soon as possible. If they do not stop immediately, they have 30 minutes after the accident to report the crash to the police station or sheriff’s office closest to the collision scene. The driver must give his name, address, vehicle registration number, and the name of the owner of the vehicle the driver operated in the collision. Any pedestrian or occupant of the hit vehicle can request the driver who hit them to show his driver’s license.
While at the accident scene, the drivers involved have a duty to give medical assistance to injured people. Such aid includes making arrangements for the hurt individual to get treatment at a doctor’s office or hospital.
A motorist unable to meet the time limit to report because of hospitalization or incapacitation must inform the appropriate law enforcement as soon as possible but at most a half-hour after his discharge from the hospital. The driver must provide the following information to the police department or sheriff’s office:
- The location of the accident;
- The date of the accident;
- The approximate time the accident occurred;
- The name and address of the driver;
- The registration number of the vehicle involved in the accident; and
- The names of all the vehicle’s occupants at the time of the collision
Mandatory Insurance Coverage in Illinois
People who own trucks or other automobiles and live in Illinois must register their vehicles in the state. The registered vehicles must have liability insurance coverage. State law has mandatory limits that the insurance policy must provide. For liability insurance, the coverage must have minimum amounts of:
- $25,000 for bodily injury or death to one person in an accident;
- $50,000 for bodily injury or death to two or more people in one accident; and
- $20,000 for damage to another person’s property
Liability automobile insurance is third-party coverage, which means it covers the damages of another person caused by the accident’s at-fault party. The insurance prevents the at-fault driver from paying out-of-pocket for the injured person’s medical costs or vehicle repair up to the policy’s limits.
Illinois residents must also have uninsured motorist (UM) bodily injury insurance on their registered vehicles for accidents resulting in bodily injury and death. The minimum amounts required for UM coverage are the same as automobile liability insurance. Although Illinois has mandatory insurance laws for vehicles registered in the states, an injured party may have an accident with an uninsured or unknown vehicle. In such cases, the injured person may receive compensation from his own UM insurance policy.
Underinsured motorist (UIM) insurance covers the individual who suffers bodily or death and has damages that are more than the at-fault driver’s liability insurance limits. UIM coverage is mandatory if the person’s uninsured motorist amounts are more than his liability quantities.
What is personal injury?
A personal injury is an injury to a person’s body, mind, emotions or reputation caused by another. As a result of the harm, the victim suffers damages that can be physical, emotional, financial and psychological. Examples of damages include medical bills, loss of enjoyment, humiliation and missed workdays.
The at-fault party may commit a personal injury negligently or intentionally. Negligence is the breach of duty by not behaving in the manner required for a particular circumstance. A person fails in their duty if they act inappropriately or do not act. An intentional personal injury happens when the purpose wrongdoer’s conduct is to cause a harmful or offensive result.
What is wrongful death?
Illinois law defines wrongful death as “death of a person…caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another. Like a personal injury, a wrongful death can occur by negligence or intentional conduct of the at-fault party. In some situations, the at-fault party can face criminal charges and penalties when they cause the wrongful death of another person.
A wrongful death legal action seeks to recover compensation for the benefit of the deceased victims’ surviving spouse and next of kin. The monetary award represents the financial injuries and other damages the survivors have because of their family member’s death. Under state law, the damages include grief, sorrow, and mental suffering.
Filing a car accident insurance claim in North Chicago
A driver, passenger or pedestrian hit in a trucking accident can file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier. During the bodily injury claim process, the insurance provider investigates the accident and reviews the injured party’s injuries and damages. If the vehicle has damage, the claimant can file a separate claim for property damage.
The insurance provider may resolve the property damage claim at a different time than the bodily injury claim. The bodily injury claim may take longer to resolve while the victim continues to receive treatment for her injuries. The provider may make a monetary offer to settle the claim. If the carrier denies the claims or the claimant disagrees with the offer, the injured may file a lawsuit against the at-fault party to seek compensation.
Filing truck accident lawsuit in North Chicago
A truck accident lawsuit begins when the plaintiff files a complaint with a court in the appropriate county in North Chicago. The complaint must include the name of all the parties in the case, a clear statement of the facts, and the remedy the plaintiff wants. A summons notifies the defendant of a lawsuit filed against him. and that they must appear in court. The plaintiff sends the summons and complaint together to the opposing department by a method required by Illinois law. Once the defendant receives notice of the lawsuit, he has 30 days to respond to the complaint.
Under Illinois law, a plaintiff must file a lawsuit before the deadline, known as the statute of limitations, ends. A plaintiff must file a bodily injury suit within two years after the accident date. If the injured person is a minor when the crash occurs, the parent or guardian may file the case on behalf of the child. However, state law allows minors to wait until they reach 18 years old so they can file the lawsuit themselves. Then, they have until two years from the date they turn 18 to file their case.
Wrongful death lawsuit in North Chicago
In a wrongful death lawsuit, the death must arise from the reason the plaintiff files the case. If the individual injured in a trucking accident has a cause of death unrelated to the collision, the at-fault driver is not liable for wrongful death.
The personal representative of the deceased victim’s estate files legal action to seek compensation for the death due to the motor vehicle crash. Under Illinois law, the statute of limitation to file a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from the date of death. State law extends the time limit if the death result from an intentional violent act or the at-fault driver receives a conviction for specific criminal charges.
The amount recovered by a settlement or court judgment are for the benefit of the deceased victim’s surviving spouse and next of kin. The court distributes the monies based on its determination of each person’s dependency on the deceased person.
Hire an Attorney
Trucking accident claims and lawsuits are complex and time-consuming. They require obtaining and analyzing documents. Sometimes deadlines have short time frames and arise with very little notice.
It is best to have an attorney handle the case and protect your rights under the law. Contact a knowledgeable and experienced North Chicago trucking accident attorney at Briskman Briskman & Greenberg. Call 1-877-595-4878 today for a free consultation of your case.