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NEW LAW CLARIFIES "RIGHT OF WAY" PROTECTIONS AFFORDED TO BICYCLISTS

The longstanding question as to whether bicyclists are entitled to the same "right of way" protections as motor vehicles on public roadways in Illinois has finally been answered. On January 1, 2017, a new law went into effect that clarifies that bicyclists are entitled to all of the same rights in "right-of-way" traffic situations as the drivers of motor vehicles.

The new law, Dennis's Law, states that "traffic laws apply to persons riding bicycles" and confirms that " every person riding a bicycle upon a highway shall be granted all of the rights, including, but not limited to, rights under Article IX (Right of Way)." 625 ILCS 5/11-502.

Dennis's Law is named in honor of Dennis Jurs, a Hampshire resident, who first started cycling in order to recover from a land mine injury he suffered in the Vietnam War. On May 18, 2015, Mr. Jurs was killed in a car crash after the driver of a motor vehicle ran a stop sign and collided with him. The driver was issued a ticket for failing to yield the right-of-way to an oncoming bicyclist. However, a Kane County judge ruled that a bicycle was not a "vehicle" under the Illinois Vehicle Code and dismissed the traffic ticket in October of 2015.

In response, Mr. Jurs' family pushed for the passage of House Bill 5912 (Dennis's Law) that clarified that bicyclists have the same rights as the drivers of motor vehicles. The bill was signed into law by Governor Bruce Rauner on August 12, 2015 with overwhelming support in both the Illinois House of Representatives and the Illinois State Senate. Now, bicyclists can travel the roads of Illinois with the knowledge that they will receive the same protections that are afforded to the drivers of motor vehicles.

Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid continues to protect our injured bicyclist clients against negligent drivers of motor vehicles. We recently obtained a maximum settlement in a DuPage County lawsuit involving traumatic injuries our bicyclist client sustained when he was struck by a work van that disobeyed a red light at 75th Street and Modaff Road, the Southern DuPage Regional Bike Trail in Naperville.

  1. "Committed To My Cause"

    I was struck by a car while cycling and severely, almost fatally injured. A team of excellent medical professionals performed complicated and extensive surgical and medical procedures as part of a successful effort to restore my health....
    -Jeff D.

  2. "Could not have made a better choice"

    We found Mark [Mathys] through the web after an auto accident in October 2011. While selecting someone you don't know to represent you can be a gamble, we could not have made a better choice....
    - Dave

  3. "Very satisfied"

    Mark [Mathys] is very professional. He responds almost immediately, via email, to any question, comment or concern I have and if he is not able to respond right away, he will let me know. I have been very satisfied with Mark so far and I am happy to be his client.
    -Jennifer

  4. "Easy to talk to"

    Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid were very professional and easy to talk to. Prior to working with them, my wife and I had no real experience with the legal system beyond a house closing, yet Mr. Mathys and Mr. Schneid explained the whole process to us very well. I knew that whenever I had a concern about our case or the legal system in general I could call their office or send an email and receive answers the same day... -Larry

  5. "Provided very wise advice"

    I've dealt with attorneys on a variety of issues, almost all of them since leaving college and entering the workplace. Mr. Mathys was the first attorney I had any real experience with, and I was impressed then and remain so. He provided very wise advice and always kept me informed. In the end, he delivered a favorable result. I recommend him highly.
    - Tyler D.

  6. "In-depth knowledge of the law"

    Mark [Schneid] is an excellent and skilled attorney and demonstrated in-depth knowledge of the law when he helped settle my dog bite lawsuit resulting from a traumatic incident. He explained what was needed of me and how I should handle the situation in a professional manner.
    - Karen K.

  7. "They went to bat for me"

    Not long ago I was involved in a car accident where I was hit by a gravel truck at an intersection. After I called Mathys & Schneid, even though I didn't have a very large case, they made me feel like I was one of their most important cases. They went to bat for me with the trucking company's insurance and got me a settlement. I would definitely recommend them to my family and friends. -Dan H.

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