Personal injury victims can sustain various injuries, ranging from minor scrapes to severe physical trauma that affects every aspect of their lives. Those suffering from catastrophic injuries often have an uphill battle recovering the full extent of their losses, including the cost of future healthcare needs.
Hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer is your best option to ensure you receive the compensation you need after sustaining a catastrophic injury in Chicago, IL.
The legal team at Attorneys of Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers will stand up for you and protect your right to a fair financial recovery. We have over 30 years of combined experience protecting injured people throughout Illinois. Since opening our law office in 2011, our attorneys have secured tens of millions of dollars in awards and settlements.
Contact our Chicago catastrophic injury lawyers for a free, no-obligation consultation by calling (312) 929-2884. We’ll discuss your life-changing injury, how it has impacted your life, and your legal options for pursuing compensation from the at-fault party.
How Can Attorneys of Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers Help You With a Catastrophic Injury Claim in Chicago, IL?
Catastrophic injury cases often involve substantial amounts of money. You may require ongoing medical treatment and rehabilitative care. At the same time, you may be unable to earn a living or care for yourself without assistance.
When the stakes are high, insurance companies and other opponents will do everything possible to limit their financial responsibility. Experienced legal representation could mean the difference between a lowball settlement and an outcome that fully compensates you for all damages.
If you hire Attorneys of Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers, you can expect our Chicago personal injury lawyers to:
- Listen to what happened from your point of view and learn how your injury has affected your daily life
- Thoroughly investigate the incident that caused your catastrophic injury
- Collect evidence – including medical records, photos, videos, and expert witness opinions – proving liability and the full extent of your present and future damages
- Ensure that you receive the medical care and attention you need
- Communicate with opposing parties and negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf
- File a personal injury lawsuit and represent you in Cook County court if necessary
You don’t have to deal with the aftermath of a catastrophic injury alone. Contact our law firm for a free initial consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Chicago, Illinois.
What Is a Catastrophic Injury?
Illinois law doesn’t explicitly define what constitutes a catastrophic injury. However, it typically refers to an injury that is severe and life-altering. A catastrophic injury may impair your cognitive functions or impact your physical abilities temporarily or permanently. They often reduce a victim’s quality of life, preventing them from engaging in work and activities they once enjoyed.
Common types of catastrophic injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Paralysis, including quadriplegia, paraplegia, and other spinal cord damage
- Severe burns
- Amputations and loss of limbs
- Multiple broken bones
- Any other injuries that cause permanent impairment or disability
These severe injuries often require extensive medical treatment and ongoing care, costing victims tens of thousands of dollars. People may heal after rehabilitative services, or they may never completely recover from catastrophic injuries.
What Causes Catastrophic Injuries?
Any kind of incident can potentially lead to catastrophic injuries, depending on the severity of the accident and the victim. Examples include:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Other motor vehicle accidents
- Dog bites and attacks
- Slip and fall accidents and other premises liability matters
- Construction accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Train accidents
- Bus accidents
- Assaults and other violent acts
- Medical malpractice
- Dangerous or defective products (product liability)
Many of these accidents are fairly common in Chicago – but suffering a catastrophic injury isn’t usually the outcome. Our Chicago personal injury attorneys can help regardless of how you were catastrophically injured.
How Much Is My Chicago Catastrophic Injury Case Worth?
Catastrophic injury claims tend to be worth more than other personal injury cases in Chicago. The more severe and life-altering your injury, the higher your medical costs and level of suffering.
For example, a severe spinal cord injury causing tetraplegia can result in lifetime costs exceeding $5.1 million, depending on your age. Traumatic brain injury survivors may incur over $1,875,000 over their lifetime.
So, when calculating the value of your personal injury claim in Illinois, our Chicago catastrophic injury attorneys will evaluate the following factors:
- The type of injury you sustained
- Whether it causes permanent impairment, disability, or disfigurement
- The medical costs and out-of-pocket expenses you’ve incurred
- The impact of the injury on your overall quality of life
- Your age when you were injured and life expectancy
- Whether you’re able to continue earning a living and your lost income
- The pain, physical discomfort, and mental trauma you’ve experienced
- Whether you contributed to the cause of your catastrophic injury
- Whether you support a family, and your ability to continue providing financial support
Our legal team will evaluate the circumstances of your situation to assess your case value. We’ll ensure that you receive compensation for the full extent of your losses, including future healthcare expenses.
What Compensation Can I Seek for a Catastrophic Injury in Chicago, Illinois?
Catastrophic injury victims in Chicago can pursue a monetary award for all of their losses. That includes financial (economic) and personal, more challenging-to-value (non-economic) damages.
For example, you may seek the following economic damages after a catastrophic accident in Illinois:
- Medical bills for your ambulance transport, ER visit, surgery, treatment, etc.
- Future medical expenses for your physical therapy, rehabilitation, ongoing care, etc.
- Lost wages and job benefits
- Reduced earning capacity
- Out-of-pocket expenses for child care, household services, modifications to your home, nursing care, etc.
Examples of non-economic damages suffered due to a catastrophic injury include:
- Permanent disability or impairment
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Pain and suffering
- Chronic pain
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress and psychological trauma
In some catastrophic injury cases, an Illinois court may award punitive damages. These awards are granted to punish defendants who acted with outrageous and reckless indifference to the safety of others.
What If I’m Partially At Fault for Causing My Catastrophic Injury in Chicago?
Catastrophic injury victims in Illinois who contributed to the cause of their injuries can still recover compensation, but only if they are 50% or less responsible. Once your share of fault exceeds 50%, you’re prohibited from a financial recovery under Illinois law. This is known as a modified comparative negligence standard with a 51% bar to recovery.
For example, assume you’re assigned 40% of the blame for causing a truck accident because you were speeding. You’d only be entitled to recover 60% of your awarded compensation. If you were allocated 51% fault, you’d be entitled to nothing.
Don’t admit fault, even if you think you’re partially responsible for the Chicago accident. You can’t be sure of anything until your attorney fully investigates and identifies every potentially liable party. Contact a catastrophic injury lawyer in Chicago to help fight allegations of shared fault and seek compensation.
How Do I Prove My Chicago Catastrophic Injury Case?
Most Chicago catastrophic injuries are caused by another party’s negligence, meaning they could be avoided by using reasonable care and attention.
The plaintiff (injured person) has the burden of proving the following elements of negligence in a catastrophic injury case:
- The defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff
- The defendant breached their duty by acting unreasonably or carelessly in the specific situation
- The breach of duty directly led to and caused the plaintiff’s injuries
- The plaintiff sustained damages due to the defendant’s negligent actions
The following types of evidence may be useful in proving your catastrophic injury claim:
- Medical records
- Statements from your doctor regarding your prognosis and required treatment
- Photos, videos, and surveillance of the accident
- Eyewitness statements
- Opinions and statements from expert witnesses
- Pain and suffering journal entries
- Employment records and pay stubs
Our catastrophic injury attorneys in Chicago will communicate with your physicians and healthcare providers to gather the evidence needed to prove your injuries. We’ll also consult leading experts, such as medical specialists and economists, to put a dollar value on your damages.
How Long Do I Have To File a Catastrophic Injury Lawsuit in Illinois?
Illinois law implements a statute of limitations that restricts your time to file a civil lawsuit. Most catastrophic injury victims have two years from the accident date to take legal action against the at-fault party. If your loved one ultimately died after suffering a catastrophic injury, you have two years from their date of death to pursue a wrongful death claim.
If you’ve sustained a catastrophic injury due to someone else’s actions, it’s vital to seek legal advice as soon as possible. It takes time to build a case and calculate damages – especially if you’re undergoing ongoing rehabilitation and medical treatment.
Contact a personal injury lawyer in Chicago to ensure you meet the applicable statutory deadline.
Contact Our Chicago Catastrophic Injury Lawyers for a Free Case Evaluation
If you sustained a catastrophic injury in Chicago, IL, you’re likely struggling with expensive medical bills while missing time from work. An experienced personal injury lawyer from Attorneys of Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers can help you pursue the best possible financial recovery.
Contact our catastrophic injury lawyers in Chicago for a free consultation to discuss your legal options and the benefits of creating an attorney-client relationship.
Our personal injury law firm in Chicago, IL, also provides:
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- Assault Injury Lawyer in Chicago, IL
- Aviation/Airplane Attorney in Chicago, IL
- Bad Faith Insurance Attorneys in Chicago, IL
- Bicycle Accident Lawyers in Chicago, IL
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- Brain Injury Attorneys in Chicago, IL
- Burn injury Lawyer in Chicago, IL
- Bus Accident Lawyers in Chicago, IL
- Car Accident Attorney in Chicago, IL
- Child Injury Lawyer in Chicago, IL
- Construction Lawyers in Chicago, IL
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- Nursing Home Lawyers in Chicago, IL
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- Premises Liability Attorneys in Chicago, IL
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- Sexual Assault Lawyers in Chicago, IL
- Slip and Fall Accident Attorney in Chicago, IL
- Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer in Chicago, IL
- Taxi Accident Lawyers in Chicago, IL
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- Truck Accident Attorneys in Chicago, IL
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- Wrongful Death Attorneys in Chicago, IL