Were you or a loved one involved in a motor vehicle accident involving a large commercial truck, resulting in traumatic injuries? You may consider contacting a Chicago truck accident lawyer.
If You’ve Been Injured, Don’t Wait To Contact A Chicago Truck Accident Lawyer
Have you sustained an injury and are seeking help with your truck accident lawsuit in Illinois, aiming to get the maximum financial compensation allowed under Illinois law for your truck accident injuries?
The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC are committed to helping you recover the maximum compensation available for your injuries under Illinois law.
We can also assist you in pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit if you have lost a loved one in a semi-truck collision. Let us help you with your recovery.
Contact an experienced truck accident lawyer in Chicago, Illinois at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation. Discuss your legal rights and options directly with an experienced lawyer.
Hire an Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer
You are understandably overwhelmed with the complexities of your vehicle accident claim and need help with your case from experienced personal injury lawyers.
Compared to other collisions, such as car crashes, truck accidents are more complicated due to the commercial context of logistics and the insurance companies who defend them.
There are usually multiple parties at fault when truck crashes involve passenger cars and SUVs.
Most of these entities are well-experienced corporations defending claims and truck/car accident lawsuits brought against them for an injury or wrongful death.
When Large Trucks are Considered “Unsafe”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), federal hours of service regulations apply to any trucking company where truck drivers work up to 11 hours per day at the steering wheel based on a strict schedule of operations.
These trucking laws mandate that truck drivers cannot be on duty for more than 11 hours after ten consecutive off-duty hours. The punishments for violating these rules include fines, license suspension or revocation, and even jail time.
Truck drivers are also required to take certain breaks during their working day, which prohibits them from driving if they have been on duty for a certain number of consecutive hours.
Every trucking company must also comply with a state’s laws and highway safety regulations, which cover its truck drivers’ qualifications, vehicle maintenance, and insurance company requirements.
Contacting a semi-truck accident lawyer with experience handling commercial vehicle accident claims against various carriers is essential.
What to Do If You Hit a Semi-Truck on the Highway or Interstate
While many states have separate laws for automobile collisions and semi-truck accidents, Illinois is one of five “home rule” states. This means local communities can pass their own traffic rules if they do not directly conflict with state laws.
All interstate trucking companies in Chicago must register with the Illinois Commerce Commission  and have a valid safety permit to operate on interstate highways.
If you are in an accident with a large truck, you must follow these steps:
- Call the police immediately and report the truck crash
- Call your insurance for help investigating the personal injury claim
- Get information from all parties involved if multiple vehicles were in truck/car accidents
- Do not admit fault for the truck accident or apologize to the truck driver
- Make sure that the trucking company contacts your insurance carrier once they are notified of an accident
- Seek medical treatment even if you do not suspect your accident injuries are serious
Our Truck Accident Lawyers Can Handle Your Case While You Focus on Your Recovery
When you work with one of our lawyers, you can rest assured that you are working with a professional familiar with your personal injury case, understands the law, and has your best interests in mind.
Our law offices are well-versed in the Federal Safety Regulations  for a large trucking company. Our truck accident lawyers have achieved successful settlements for truck accident cases like yours by demonstrating that violating these regulations contributed to the crash.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC has successfully prosecuted cases involving semi-tractor-trailers across Illinois and the Midwest, recovering millions of dollars in settlements in commercial vehicle collisions for our clients.
Your truck accident attorney from our law office will help you navigate your case’s ins and outs so that you can focus on recovering from the physical and emotional trauma incurred by your trucking accident.
Our Lawyers Know What to Do to Help Injured Victims
With our law offices headquartered in downtown Chicago, Illinois, our lawyers know the area well and have experience working on large vehicle accident cases involving integral Illinois highways, such as:
- Kingery Expressway (I-80, I-94)
- Bishop Ford Freeway (I-94)
- Dan Ryan Expressway (I-90, I-94)
- Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88)
- Eden’s Expressway (I-94)
While these are common locations for catastrophic crashes, our lawyers know what to look for regardless of the location of your accident.
Our team has seen it all regarding the causes of trucking accidents.
How Most Victims Are Hurt in these Accidents
While most truck accident cases stem from driver error and driver fatigue similar to car accidents, our legal firm consistently sees people seriously hurt in accidents involving semi-trucks via:
- Rear-end accidents
- Intersection impacts
- Left-hand-turn accidents
- Head-on impacts
- Rollover accidents
- Driving too fast for road conditions (speeding)
- Poor road maintenance
- Vehicles making an illegal turn into your path
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Commercial trucks running red lights or stop signs
Our current and former clients have been involved in commercial vehicle accidents involving severe injuries, such as:
- Back and neck injuries, including herniated discs
- Brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal damage to organs
- Joint damage to areas such as the knee, hip, and shoulder
- Fatal truck accidents
- Other traumatic injuries
Frequent Causes of Truck Accidents in the Chicago, Illinois Area
Just as with car accidents colliding with other vehicles, accidents involving semi-trucks can involve almost infinite causes.
Many victims are harmed by poor road conditions, improper truck maintenance, truck driver fatigue, driver error, and poor training.
Some significant semi-truck accidents involving trucker negligence result in rollovers , rear-end collisions, jackknives, and undercarriage accidents
Things to Know About Commercial Vehicle Accident Cases
Our legal team is familiar with the intricacies of cases involving a trucking company, as they remain a core part of our law practice. Contact our firm for a free initial consultation if you need more information about tractor-trailer accident cases.
- You carry the burden of proof: After establishing the liability of the trucking company, you (the person bringing the lawsuit) have the burden of proving liability and damages. You must demonstrate that the truck driver’s negligence caused the crash and your injuries.
In truck crash cases involving substantial damages, expert testimony from treating physicians and expert witnesses may be needed to establish the causal relationship between the collision and your truck/car accident injuries.
- You are up against commercial entities: If your case involves an incident with a commercial vehicle operated by a corporation, recognize that these companies and their insurers are skilled at investigating and fighting claims like yours and know how to do so quickly and cheaply. Consult an experienced truck accident attorney before talking to the insurance agency.
- Worker’s comp could cover your truck claim: Depending on the trucker’s employment status, they might have legal rights to file a worker’s comp case or a claim against the party who caused or contributed to the collision or unsafe condition.
A truck accident attorney can determine if a lawsuit may be necessary if the trucking company fails to settle a compensation claim.
Since the burden of proof is on the victim, it is important to prove that the driver of the truck or the trucking entity was responsible for the collision. A few data points that may aid your case include:
- Level of truck maintenance
- Drug/alcohol testing
- Review of insurance coverage
- Review of truck safety markings
- Weight restrictions
- Inspection requirements
- Accident reconstruction
Permanent Disabilities from A Catastrophic Accident
In some cases, injured victims suffer catastrophic traumatic brain injuries , spinal cord damage, broken bones, or other debilitating permanent condition.
As part of the negotiation process, the semi-truck accident lawyer working for the injured client may seek lifelong compensation to deal with the compromised condition caused by a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord damage, or another severe injury.
Contributing factors used to determine the lawsuit’s value involving a permanent disability in trucking accidents include:
- Home renovations to accommodate a new disability
- A transportation van
- The need for full-time around-the-clock caregivers
- Lost past and future earnings
- Lifetime medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
The Impact That a Semi-Truck Accident Has on the Injured Victim’s Life
A semi-truck accident can profoundly impact the injured victim’s life. In some cases, the injuries are so severe that the victim cannot return to work or support their family.
The immediate changes can be devastating events for the victim and their family. If you have been injured in a semi-truck accident, you must speak with a reputable semi-truck accident lawyer who can help you get the compensation you deserve.
What to Do if You Have Been Involved in a Commercial Vehicle Accident
If you have been involved in an incident with a semi, you must begin the claims process as soon as possible.
- Report the crash to the police: First, you should report the incident from the accident scene and obtain a police report. Remember to relay the facts as you remember them that will be included in the police report and avoid embellishing the occurrence with your own opinions.
- Document the crash scene: To the extent you can, ensure you document the scene. It means that you take pictures of the scene and get contact information of those who may be possible witnesses to the collision.
- Report the incident to your insurer: It is essential to report the crash to your insurance carrier. It will begin the process of starting your serious injury claim. It will ensure that your insurance company is informed of what happened and won’t learn about it first from the truck driver’s insurer.
- Hire truck accident attorneys: You should seek legal representation because actions you take in the immediate aftermath of a collision may determine whether you can receive a settlement.
Statistics on Illinois and Semi-Truck Accidents in Chicago
You are not alone in your position, as many are hurt due to a truck crash in Chicago, IL.
- According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), 14% of people involved in Illinois trucking crashes are injured.
- The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) concluded that approximately 87% of truck crashes are due to truck driver negligence and violating state and federal regulations.
Dealing with Truck Insurance Problems
Giving a Statement
Almost immediately, an insurance adjuster working on the defendant’s behalf will want to take a statement from all parties involved in the collision.
Nearly all injured victims want to tell somebody what happened. However, it is crucial to protect your legal rights.
We recommend that all accident victims not agree to sign any document or give a verbal statement about what occurred without first speaking with a competent Chicago, IL, truck accident attorney.
Considering the First Insurance Settlement Offer
Within days, long before you are genuinely aware of the actual value of your case, the trucking company and its insurance carrier will provide an initial settlement offer, usually based on the lowest reasonable financial amount.
Unfortunately, the amount they offer is typically significantly lower than what will be required for all the lifelong expenses, medical costs, and bills generated by your injuries.
Instead, our semi-truck accident attorneys recommend allowing us to secure maximum compensation to ensure that all your economic (medical bills, lost wages, etc.) and non-economic damages (pain, suffering, grief, loss of consortium, loss of companionship, etc.) are covered.
Experiencing an accident usually involves multiple vehicles, including additional large trucks, semi-tractor trailers, passenger cars, SUVs, motorcycles, bicycles, pickup trucks, or other vehicles.
In these cases, multiple defendants are likely involved with multiple claims (lawsuits) for additional compensation.
An experienced Chicago truck accident lawyer working on your behalf will include all potential defendants in a complex lawsuit to ensure each is liable.
Resolving the Case
Most truck crash cases are complex and take significant time to resolve. Sometimes the defendants will offer a settlement, but this offer is often far less than the injured victim case’s value.
A qualified tractor-trailer accident lawyer can help you negotiate a fair settlement or take the case to trial if necessary.
The accident case will usually be resolved in stages where one defendant offers an acceptable financial amount before the other parties at fault are ready to settle.
Commercial Vehicle Accident FAQs
Our personal injury law firm understands many families have unanswered questions about dealing directly with insurance companies to resolve a compensation claim.
Below are some questions raised by semi-truck accident victims related to their personal injury cases.
Of course, should you have further questions about vehicles involved in collisions, contact an experienced semi-truck accident attorney from our law office at (888) 424-5757 for a free evaluation or immediate legal advice.
What is the Statute of Limitations for this Kind of Lawsuit?
Personal injury victims have up to two years after an incident to file a claim. With a truck accident, compiling evidence quickly is crucial for your success, so get in touch with a trusted attorney as soon as possible to have the best chance of winning fair compensation.
Should I Hire a Lawyer for My Case?
Yes. Because semi-truck crashes differ from passenger car accidents, hiring an experienced truck accident attorney to protect your legal rights is a good idea.
More legal considerations arise from an accident involving trucks because a trucking company is involved with substantial assets and the manpower to defend accident injury cases.
The heavily regulated trucking industry has many intricacies. The nature of semi-truck crashes also means there is likely to be much more damage than in a standard auto accident.
You should hire a severe personal injury lawyer who understands the complexities of semi-truck crashes.
Additionally, your personal injury lawyer will understand how truck companies commonly defend their interests and will be prepared to fight against the typical tactics and strategies used to defend these claims, such as:
- Claiming you (the plaintiff) were at fault
- Blaming another third party/unidentified driver
- Claiming your care, rehab, or treatment, medical costs are exaggerated
- Claiming no one is at fault
How Long Will It Take to Settle a Truck Accident Case?
Most accidents involve large trucks where victims are severely injured with head trauma, broken bones, or spinal cord injuries that could take significantly longer to resolve.
Typically, the trucking company involved in the crash will be added as a defendant in the lawsuit to ensure all injured parties are fully compensated for all damages, including any future medical bills from further rehabilitation, therapy, and surgeries.
How Much Is My Accident Case Worth?
For several reasons, semi-truck accident claims average much more than other automobile or pedestrian crashes.
- First, semi-tractor trailers are much larger than delivery trucks, commercial vehicles, box trucks, common carrier buses, cement trucks, etc. They can do more damage and cause serious injuries.
- Second, trucking is a business, and this commercial aspect allows for significant recovery.
- Finally, injured victims in semi-truck accidents generally face catastrophic injuries and lifelong consequences.
An injured person in a truck accident can obtain economic damages, including medical costs, lost wages, property damage, non-economic damages like pain and suffering, and punitive damages in extreme recklessness.
It is best to work with a competent truck accident attorney who can accurately determine the value of your commercial truck crash case and identify all potential defendants who might be entirely or partially responsible for your damages.
What Are My Legal Rights If I Am a Truck Driver Hurt in a Crash or On the Job?
If you are a trucker employed by a commercial trucking venture and get hurt while on the job, you can file a workers’ compensation claim.
The claim applies regardless of the fault you or your employer carries as long as your employer is part of a state’s workers’ compensation program.
A competent semi-truck accident lawyer specializing in semi-truck cases can ensure you receive all the benefits you deserve.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Truck Crashes?
Any large vehicle accident can cause catastrophic injuries and fatalities. While many factors can contribute to these accidents, knowing the most common causes can help you be more aware and avoid them. Here are some of the most common causes of Chicago semi-truck accidents:
- Driver error or negligence
- Poor driving skills
- Poor vehicle maintenance
- Weather conditions
- Drunk driving
- Unsafe loads
- Road hazards
- Driver fatigue
- Aggressive driving
- Distracted driving
- Reckless driving when sharing roads with passenger vehicles and other large trucks
- Defective equipment/parts
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports around 4,000 fatalities yearly due to truck crashes.
Many of these crashes result from a trucking company pushing its drivers to meet tight delivery deadlines.
Begin the Legal Process Today. Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer in Chicago, Illinois
Contact our firm for a free evaluation with an experienced Chicago truck accident lawyer. Our personal injury lawyers are available to discuss the prospects of your semi-truck accident case and can guide you on the way forward.
At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, all of our law practice areas involving these accidents and personal injury lawsuits involving large commercial vehicles are handled on a contingency fee basis.
This guarantee ensures that your lawyers only receive a fee from a client when we successfully obtain a settlement or verdict on their behalf.
Contact our personal injury attorneys at (888) 424-5757 or use the contact form for a no-obligation, free evaluation in the Chicago area.