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Chicago Truck Accident Lawyer

Have You Been Injured in a Trucking Accident?

Considering that you are on this page, chances are you or a loved one has been involved in a motor vehicle accident involving a large commercial truck, resulting in serious injuries.

You have sustained an injury and are seeking help with your Chicago truck accident lawsuit in the State of Illinois, aiming to get the maximum financial compensation allowed under Illinois law for your trucking accident injuries.

The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC are committed to helping you recover the maximum compensation available for your personal injuries under Illinois law.

We can also assist you in pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit if you lost a loved one in a semi-truck crash. Let our team help you with your recovery.

Our Chicago truck accident lawyers invite you to contact our legal firm today for a free consultation to discuss your legal rights and options directly with an experienced truck accident lawyer.

Hire the Right Truck Accident Lawyers

You are understandably overwhelmed with the complexities of your commercial vehicle accident claim and need help with your personal injury case from experienced truck accident attorneys.

Compared to other types of collisions such as car accidents, 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 corporations that are well-experienced in defending claims and truck accident lawsuits brought against them for an injury or wrongful death.

many people have died in Illinois truck crashes

When Semi-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 drivers cannot be on duty for more than 11 hours after 10 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 requirements.

It is important to contact a Chicago truck accident lawyer who has experience handling commercial vehicle accident claims against various carriers.

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 which means that local communities can pass their own traffic rules as long as they do not directly conflict with state laws.

In Chicago, all interstate trucking companies must register with the Illinois Commerce Commission and have a valid safety permit in order to operate on interstate highways.

If you are in an accident with a commercial truck, it is important that you follow these steps:

  • Call the police immediately and report the truck accident
  • Call your insurance for help investigating the personal injury claim
  • If possible, get the truck driver’s license number, name, phone number, and insurance information
  • Get information from all parties involved if multiple vehicles were in the truck/car accident
  • Do not admit fault for the truck accident or apologize to the truck driver even if they hit you
  • 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 truck accident injuries are serious

We Handle Your Tractor-Trailer Truck Accident Case While You Focus on Your Recovery

When you work with one of our Chicago, Illinois truck accident lawyers, you can rest assured that you are working with a professional who is 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 that apply to large trucking companies and have achieved successful settlements for cases just like yours by demonstrating that the violation of 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 semi-truck accident lawyer from our law office will be on hand to help you navigate the ins and out's of your case so that you can focus on recovering from the physical and emotional trauma incurred by your trucking accident.

Illinois truck accidents cause serious injuries

We Know What to Do to Help Truck Accident Victims

With our law offices headquartered in downtown Chicago, Illinois, our truck accident attorneys 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), and Eden's Expressway (I-94).

While these are common locations for semi-truck accidents, we know what to look for regardless of the location of your accident.

Our personal accident lawyers have seen it all in terms of the causes of trucking accidents.

While most truck cases stem from truck driver error and driver fatigue similar to car accidents, our legal firm consistently sees people seriously hurt in trucking accidents involving:

Our current and former clients have been involved in commercial vehicle accidents involving severe injuries such as:

Frequent Causes of Truck Accidents in the Chicago, Illinois Area

Just as with car accidents involving passenger vehicles, truck accidents can involve almost an infinite number of causes.

Our Chicago truck accident lawyers regularly represent people injured in truck accident cases due to common causes such as poor road conditions, improper truck maintenance, truck driver fatigue, driver error, and poor training.

Some of the large semi-truck accidents involving truck driver's negligence are seen in truck rollovers, rear-end collisions, jackknives, and undercarriage accidents.

truck accident causes

Examples of Truck Accident Settlements

Our Chicago truck accident lawyers have worked on a variety of complex commercial semi-truck matters– and won.

Below are some examples of settlements and truck accident claims we have won for our clients, lightening their load and their medical expenses while they focus on recovering.

If you have questions about a trucking accident, contact our office for a consultation with one of our experienced truck accident attorneys.

  • $1,400,000: Rear-end truck crash resulting in plaintiff needing back surgery. The lawsuit was filed in Cook County, IL.
  • $1,250,000: A commercial driver was rear-ended by a large truck. Plaintiff had herniated discs in his back and underwent two surgeries. Both truck drivers and their trucking company agreed to a negotiated settlement resolved in DuPage County.
  • $1,100,000: A couple was injured while riding in the passenger seat of their friend's car when it was struck by a large truck. Both clients had spinal injuries and needed surgery. A lawsuit was filed in Cook County and included other vehicles involved.
  • $1,025,000: A young woman was injured when she made a left turn in front of an 18-wheeler on Cicero Avenue between Fullerton and Damen Avenues. The trucking accident victim filed suit against the truck driver and his trucking company. The case has not yet been resolved.
  • $750,000: Loading dock accident involving a trucker crushed by a forklift. The lawsuit was filed in Kane County.
  • $616,772: Settlement for four friends injured by a large truck going through a red light at an intersection in Aurora, IL, at high speed.
  • $500,000: A garbage truck accident settlement for clients injured by the garbage truck following an Illinois State Trooper crash on I-55 in Rock Island County resulted in a negotiated settlement. This crash was one of two truck accidents happening on the freeway within one mile of each other.

Things to Know About Commercial Vehicle Accident Cases

Our legal team is familiar with the intricacies of cases involving truck companies, as they remain a core part of our law practice. We have some helpful information to improve your understanding of the legal context of your claim.

If you need more information about trucking accident cases, contact our firm for a free initial consultation.

  • 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 need to demonstrate that the truck driver's negligence caused the crash and your injuries. In truck crash cases involving substantial damages, expert testimony may be needed from treating physicians and expert witnesses 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 with our experienced Chicago truck accident lawyers before talking to the insurance agency.
  • Your truck claim could be covered by worker's comp: Depending on the employment status of the truck driver, they might have legal rights for filing a worker's comp case or a claim against the party who caused or contributed to the collision or unsafe condition. Rosenfeld Law represents injured truck drivers to secure the best outcome for your case from all responsible parties.

Permanent Disabilities from a Catastrophic Truck Accident

In some cases, injured victims suffer catastrophic traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, or other debilitating permanent condition.

As a part of the negotiation process, the truck accident attorney working on behalf of the injured client may seek lifelong compensation to deal with the compromise condition caused by a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord damage.

Contributing factors used to determine the lawsuit's value involving a permanent disability 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 a Truck Accident Has on the Injured Victim's Life

A truck accident can have a profound impact on the injured victim's life. In some cases, the injuries suffered are so severe that the victim is unable to return to work or support their family.

The immediate changes can be a devastating turn of events for the victim and their family. If you have been injured in a truck accident, it is important to 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 Truck Accident

If you have been involved in an incident with a semi, you need to begin the claims process as soon as possible. It may be difficult if you are badly injured, so you may need help from a friend or family member.

  • Report the crash to the police: The first thing you should do is report the incident from the accident scene and obtain a police report. Remember to relay the facts as you remember them and avoid embellishing the occurrence with your own opinions.
  • Document the crash scene: To the extent that you are able, make sure that you document the scene of the crash. 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 very important to report the crash to your insurance company. It will begin the process of starting your personal 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 insurance company.
  • Hire a Chicago truck accident lawyer: You should look at obtaining legal representation because actions that you take in the immediate aftermath of a collision may determine whether you are able to receive a settlement.

Truck Accident Cases Statistics

You are not alone in your position as the party hurt as a result of a truck crash in Chicago, IL.

  • According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), 14% of people involved in Illinois trucking accidents are injured.
  • The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) concluded that approximately 87% of truck crashes are due to truck driver negligence violating state and federal regulations.
  • Defective equipment on semi-trucks accounts for about 10% of large tractor-trailer accidents.

Our Chicago personal injury attorneys proudly represent injured commercial truck drivers across the Midwest.

Semi truck accident data-include center

Dealing with Truck Crash Insurance Problems

Giving a Statement

Nearly immediately, an insurance adjuster working on that the defendant's behalf will want to 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.

Most insurance adjusters are trained on how to show their concern for the victim's well-being. However, they work for the insurance carrier, who has a vested interest and generating profits, typically at the victim's expense. Insurers and adjusters have the ultimate goal to protect the company's interests and not yours.

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 truck accident lawyer.

Considering the First Insurance Settlement Offer

Within days, long before you are truly aware of the actual value of your case, the trucking company and its insurance carrier will provide an initial settlement offer that is 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 legal team recommends allowing us to secure maximum compensation on your behalf to ensure that all your economic (medical bills, lost wages, etc.) and all your non-economic damages (pain, suffering, grief, loss of consortium, loss of companionship, etc.) are obtained.

Multiple Defendants

Experiencing a truck accident usually involves multiple vehicles that could include additional semi-trucks, passenger cars, SUVs, motorcycles, bicycles, or pickup trucks.

In these cases, there are likely multiple defendants involved, and multiple claims (lawsuits) for additional compensation. An experienced truck accident attorney working on your behalf will include all potential defendants in a complex lawsuit to ensure that each is held liable for their part in causing the crash.

Resolving the Case

Most truck accident cases are complex, taking significant time to resolve. Sometimes the defendants will offer a settlement, but this is often far less than the injured victim case's value.

A qualified truck accident lawyer can help you negotiate a fair settlement or take the case to trial if necessary. Most times, the case will be resolved in stages where one defendant offers an acceptable financial amount before the other parties at fault are ready to settle.

Our Chicago truck accident attorneys have years of negotiating experience and are here to ensure you get all the compensation you are entitled to receive.

Commercial Vehicle Accident FAQs

Our personal injury law firm understands many families have unanswered questions about dealing directly with the insurance companies to resolve a truck accident 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 Chicago truck accidents, we welcome you to contact an experienced accident lawyer from our law office at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation or immediate legal advice.

Should I Hire a Truck Accident Attorney for My Case?

Yes. Because semi-truck crashes differ from passenger car accidents, it's a good idea to hire an experienced truck accident attorney to protect your legal rights. There are more legal considerations arising from a tractor-trailer accident because there is a trucking company involved with substantial assets and the manpower to defend trucking accident injury cases.

Trucking is also a heavily regulated industry with many intricacies. The nature of large truck accidents also means there is likely to be much more damage than in a standard car accident. You should hire a serious personal injury lawyer who understands the complexities of an accident involving tractor-trailers.

Additionally, your truck accident lawyer will understand how trucking companies commonly defend their interests and will be prepared to fight against the common 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 expenses are exaggerated
  • Claiming no one is at fault
  • Arguing that driving conditions were unfavorable

From the time our law office is retained after a tractor-trailer crash involving a serious injury (or fatal truck accident), we begin the process of collecting evidence to help determine liability and damages in your case.

How Long Do I Have to File a Truck Accident Lawsuit?

Plaintiffs have two years to file a lawsuit after an accident in Illinois. It applies to suing for negligence as well as making a product liability claim following a trucking crash (where the claimant must show that a defective product such as a tire led to a crash).

In the case of a fatal semi-truck accident, the family of the deceased also has two years to file a claim for their loss.

How Long Will It Take to Settle a Truck Accident Case?

It will likely take a few months to even a couple of years to settle a semi-truck accident claim filed in Cook County, IL Circuit Court, depending on the claim and whether it goes to trial.

Much of the time frame for settlement will be dependent upon the liability aspects and severity of your medical condition.

How Much is My Truck Accident Case Worth?

Trucking accident claims average much more than other automobile or pedestrian crashes for several reasons.

  • First, commercial trucks are much larger than delivery trucks and other vehicles and can do more damage.
  • Second, trucking is a business, and this commercial aspect allows for greater recovery.
  • Third, tractor-trailer accident victims generally face more severe injuries and lifelong consequences.

However, the value of your claim depends on your individual damages and what you are trying to recover.

An injured person has the right to obtain economic damages, including medical bills, lost wages, and property damage, along with non-economic damages like pain and suffering, and punitive damages in the situation of extreme recklessness.

If the crash resulted in a fatality, the family of the deceased could recover compensation for the loss of financial support (lost wages) as well as the intangible loss they will experience due to the death.

Our tractor-trailer accident attorneys can assist with pursuing a fatality claim against the negligent parties under the Illinois Wrongful Death Act.

What Are My Legal Rights if I am a Truck Driver Hurt in a Crash or on the Job?

If you are a truck driver employed by a commercial trucking venture and you get hurt while on the job, you have the right to file a workers' compensation claim.

It applies regardless of the level of fault you or your employer carries, as long as your employer is part of a state's workers' compensation program.

If you are a truck driver classified as an independent contractor, you may still be eligible.

As an injured commercial driver, you also have the right to file an accident injury claim against a responsible third party, such as other motorists or entities who are not your direct employer.

What are the Most Common Causes of Truck Crashes?

Any truck accident can cause severe injuries and fatalities. While there are many factors that 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 truck accidents:

  • Driver error or negligence
  • Poor driving skills
  • Poor vehicle maintenance
  • Weather conditions
  • Drunk driving
  • Unsafe loads
  • Fatigue among truck drivers
  • Road hazards
  • Driver fatigue
  • Aggressive driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Defective equipment/parts

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there are around 4,000 fatalities each year as a result of truck accidents. Many of these crashes result from a trucking company pushing its drivers to meet tight delivery deadlines.

VIEW MORE TRUCK CRASH FAQS

Begin the Legal Process Today. Hire Our Chicago Personal Injury Lawyers

We invite you to connect with our law firm today for a free consultation with an experienced Chicago truck accident lawyer.

Our personal injury lawyers are available to discuss the prospects of your case and can guide you on the way forward.

All our law practice areas involving tractor-trailer accidents and personal injury lawsuits involving large commercial vehicles are handled on a contingency fee basis. This guarantee ensures that we only receive a fee for our work from a client when we are successful in obtaining a settlement or verdict on their behalf.

Contact our law firm for a no-obligation, free consultation in the Chicago area.

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Personal Injury News & Developments - Truck Accidents
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