Frequently Asked Questions About Motor Vehicle Accidents
When you’re injured in a car crash, truck collision or another motor vehicle accident, you will understandably have many questions about your rights and the legal process. The Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid has a long history of fighting for those seriously injured in vehicle accidents and can provide the answers you need at every stage of your case.
Below are answers to some of our most frequently asked vehicle accident questions. For answers to more specific questions about your case, call to schedule a free consultation at one of our offices.
How long do I have to file a car accident lawsuit?
In Illinois, you typically only have two years from the date of the accident to file a claim. This is referred to as the statute of limitations, and if you miss this deadline then you will not be able to recover any compensation for your injuries. In rare instances where the accident only resulted in property damage and no personal injury, you may have up to five years to file your claim. The sooner you get started, however, the stronger your case will be.
Who is at fault in a truck accident, the truck driver or the trucking company?
Truck accidents are significantly more complex than normal car accidents. Depending on the situation, the truck driver and/or the trucking company may be responsible for the wreck.
Trucking companies are usually held liable for the actions of their employees, but many Illinois truck drivers are independent contractors. Even so, strict deadlines and lack of training or oversight may lead to reckless driving, which could put the trucking company at fault. You may also have a claim on the owner of the truck or the manufacturer of any defective parts. With so many parties involved, it’s crucial to consult a highly skilled truck accident attorney in the days following your accident to determine the best path forward.
How do I pay for medical bills after a car wreck?
When you’re seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident, you should first rely on your own health insurance to cover any medical bills. If you do not have health insurance, then your own auto insurance will be able to cover a limited amount of your medical expenses. We have also helped our clients in the past by asking their health care providers to send us a “lien” on their medical bills, which would then be paid off when the case resolves.
Should I accept the settlement offer from the other driver’s insurance company?
Insurance companies operate for their own profit, and their goal is to minimize their payout to you. The best way to ensure you receive maximum compensation is by consulting with a trusted lawyer before talking to the other driver’s insurance company. Without an attorney representing you, you may be tricked into underestimating your expenses or even admitting fault for the accident.
How long does a vehicle accident case take?
The answer to this question can vary widely depending on the specifics of your case. Some cases are settled within the weeks or months following your accident, but other more complex claims can take years to resolve.
The best way to expedite your case is to consult with an attorney as soon as possible. Be sure to seek immediate medical care and follow through on all treatment following your accident. Keeping thorough records of your expenses over the course of your case can help you receive full and fair compensation when your case resolves.
Can I still recover compensation if I was partially at fault for the accident?
Illinois uses a modified system of comparative fault to determine how compensation is awarded after an accident.
In order to receive any compensation at all, you must prove that you are less than 50% at fault for the accident. Additionally, any compensation you are eligible to receive will decrease depending on how at fault you were. For example, if the accident is 25% your fault, your compensation would decrease by 25% as well.
When representing you, our goal is to both maximize your potential compensation and minimize any fault placed on you. This strategy is designed to help you recover as much as possible for your injuries.
Have More Questions? We Are Here To Help.
For answers to more questions about serious accidents, visit our other FAQ pages below:
If you have been in a serious vehicle accident, do not hesitate to reach out to our attorneys. It’s understandable to have many questions about the legal process, and we offer free initial consultations to discuss your options and help you get started. Call 630-848-9294 to make an appointment.