CHICAGO PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
Illinois Pedestrian Safety StatisticsWe know it might be hard to imagine that pedestrian accidents are a big problem in Chicago. After all, how often do they actually make the news? Unfortunately, they are much more common than you might think. In fact, they’re actually a large problem in the busy Windy City. According to data from the Illinois Department of Transportation, we see that dangers to pedestrians are very real. In 2018, of 5,006 Chicago motor vehicle accidents that involved pedestrians, 4,711 involved injuries. That’s an incredible 94% rate of injury. Furthermore, we see that 1,045 of those injuries are “Type A”, or the most serious type. These cases see major trauma to pedestrians which result in extensive medical treatment and changes to their daily life. In Chicago alone, 2,963 pedestrians suffered injuries, and 64 lost their lives.
Illinois Laws Protecting PedestriansAs a pedestrian who has been hurt in a car collision, there are a number of laws in place to protect you. Understanding these can assist you in preparing for your case and provide you with peace of mind that your Chicago pedestrian accident claim is supported. There are a number of rules in place to safeguard persons crossing roadways and those who are in close proximity to moving vehicles. The major regulations from these statutes from the Illinois Motor Vehicle Code to avoid traffic accidents involving pedestrians are summarized below.
Safeguards for Pedestrians in Illinois
- Drivers must come to a complete stop in crosswalks and while entering or exiting a school zone on school days. Drivers must also come to a complete stop if it is necessary to avoid further injuries or an accident.
- They must also yield under the following circumstances.
- Turning at an intersection or red light
- When people are present on their side of the road
- While foot traffic has the right of way
- People are in the crosswalk as the light turns green
- Someone is leaving an alley, driveway, building, or private road
- When yielding would likely prevent injuries or accidents
- Drivers must exercise extreme caution to prevent pedestrian collisions with pedestrians and other cars on the road. It is their responsibility to drive their automobiles or use their horns to avoid a collision.
- Illinois law also forbids drivers from texting and talking on mobile phones while driving.
- It is the responsibility of drivers to prevent collisions, especially pedestrian collisions. When an accident occurs, it is assumed that the driver is to blame. Individuals are protected by these rules, while irresponsible drivers are punished.
- When driving across a designated crosswalk, cars must yield to pedestrians. This implies they must slow down, come to a complete stop, or do whatever else is necessary to allow the individual to cross the street.
What Causes Pedestrian Accidents in Chicago?Pedestrian-driver accidents are common in Chicago and other cities around Illinois due to distracted driving. Too many drivers are too preoccupied with texting or talking on their phones to see what is going on around them. As a result, they frequently miss individuals crossing the street or strolling along the curb. Many of these mishaps are caused by a condition known as inattentional blindness. To put it another way, a motorist may be able to see a pedestrian plainly. Despite this, the motorist fails to respond by slowing down, swerving, or coming to a complete stop due to inattention. When drivers disobey the laws of the road and fail to stop, or when they drive dangerously near to pedestrians, accidents occur. If a driver’s refusal to yield resulted in harm to you or a loved one, you should act quickly to preserve your legal rights and get whatever compensation you are entitled to. Contact a Chicago pedestrian accident attorney as soon as possible.
What to Do if You Were Hit by a Car in Chicago?The most essential thing you can do is seek legal assistance from a skilled Chicago pedestrian accident attorney. At Curcio Law Offices, we offer free and confidential consultations. We also recommend taking the following steps.
- Seek medical attention. As quickly as possible, your doctor should examine you for injuries and begin your care plan. The longer you wait to see a physician, the longer your healing time will be. Some injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, are also difficult to identify. A doctor will be able to evaluate you and perform the necessary tests.
- Obtain a copy of the accident report. You can get a copy of the report from the law enforcement agency that created it, such as the Chicago Police Department. You can also obtain one from the Illinois State Police.
- Gather information. Keep photographs of the accident scene, witness information, insurance company correspondence, and receipts for any accident-related costs, including hospital bills.
- Take notes. Keep note of how your injuries influence your capacity to work and engage in other activities by writing a summary of what you remember about the accident.
- Refer the driver’s insurance company to your attorney. Your lawyer at Curcio Law Offices can deal with the driver’s insurance while you focus on your healing time. Before you provide any statement to the insurance or accept any settlement offer, you should consult with an attorney.
How Long Do I Have to File a Chicago Pedestrian Accident Lawsuit?After a pedestrian accident in Illinois, you only have a certain period of time to make a claim. The statute of limitations is the legal term for this. In general, you have two years after an incident to make a claim, or two years after the loss of a loved one to file a lawsuit. If you wait too long and fail to meet the deadlines, you will likely lose your right to compensation. Therefore, we highly recommend contacting a pedestrian accident attorney the second you feel ready to file a claim. Curcio Law Offices stands ready to fight for your right to compensation.
Can I File a Claim on Behalf of My Child if They Were Hit by a Car?Yes. Parents can claim on behalf of their children for injuries sustained as a result of being hit by a car. You must prove that the motorist acted irrationally and caused your child’s injuries in order to claim negligence. You may lose if that individual proves that your son or daughter was the cause of the crash. Children under the age of five, on the other hand, are typically not held responsible under Illinois law. You will be able to retrieve all of your child’s economic and non-economic losses if you can effectively show these elements.
Can I File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit if a Family Member Was Killed in a Chicago Pedestrian Accident?Yes. Following a pedestrian accident, Illinois law permits the decedent’s family to file a wrongful death claim for damages such as medical and funeral costs, lost financial support, and loss of companionship. Close family members, such as spouses, parents, or children, are usually covered by the legislation.
What Compensation Can I Recover from a Chicago Pedestrian Accident?An injured pedestrian in Illinois is entitled to compensation for both economic and non-economic losses resulting from their injury. Recovery for medical bills, future medical care and costs, lost income, and loss of future earning potential is referred to as economic damages. Scarring, anguish and suffering, and mental distress are examples of non-economic damages. If the defendant’s behavior was intentional, careless, dishonest, or showed a reckless disregard for your safety, you may be able to recover punitive damages. In situations of drunk driving and hit-and-run incidents, punitive damages are more often sought.
What Do I Do if the Driver Who Hit Me Does Not Have Insurance?You may file an uninsured motorist claim under your own car insurance policy if you are hurt or injured by a driver who does not have auto insurance. When you pursue an uninsured motorist claim, the law often allows you to recover the same damages as you would in a case against the at-fault driver. However, keep in mind that certain procedural specificities exist for uninsured motorist claims involving pedestrian injuries. For this reason, we recommend speaking with a pedestrian accident attorney and reviewing your own insurance policy. This will help to determine the best course of action for your case.
Can I Still Secure a Recovery if I Was Partly to Blame?Even if your activities contributed to the pedestrian accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. However, your recovery will be minimized. In all personal injury and other tort lawsuits in Illinois, the theory of comparative fault is used. An individual’s economic recovery is lowered by the extent to which they contributed to their own losses, which is known as comparative blame. Furthermore, in order to get any compensation, the wounded pedestrian must be 50% or less to blame for the collision. They are banned from receiving any compensation if they are found to be more than 50% liable for the accident.
Is It Worth Hiring a Chicago Pedestrian Accident Attorney for Your Case?Absolutely. At Curcio Law Offices, we aim to secure as much compensation for you as possible. While many people simply see dollar signs, we see a means for injured folks to move on with their lives after an accident. As attorneys, we always start by conducting a deep investigation of your situation. During that investigation, we engage in many of the following techniques.
- Reading through the accident report from the police
- Gathering and studying photos from the accident scene
- Inspecting the scene of the accident, as well as the vehicle of the driver
- Speaking with witnesses
- Watching any available video footage
- Gathering or subpoenaing cell phone records of the driver
- Examining any breath, blood, or urine test results
- Examining your medical records from the accident