Car accidents are a common cause of personal injury lawsuits. Hundreds of people are injured each year in car accidents in Illinois, and the injuries they suffer can be severe or even fatal.
When one driver is injured because of another driver’s negligence, they may be entitled to compensation. However, the process for recovering damages can be complicated. Car accident lawsuits in Naperville often involve gathering copious amounts of evidence and negotiating with insurance companies. Insurance companies may use the vast resources at their disposal to decrease the value of a plaintiff’s claim in a car accident lawsuit. You should always have a lawyer on your side to fight this pressure and work to get you the compensation you need.
If you have been injured in a car accident, get help by from our Naperville, IL car accident lawyers by calling the Rhatigan Law Offices at (312) 578-8502 for a free case review.
Naperville, IL Car Accident Lawsuit Process
The process of seeking compensation for your car accident injuries can be long and tiresome. Understanding what to expect from a car accident lawsuit can help you navigate your road to recovery. Our Naperville car accident lawyers can offer guidance throughout the process and help you understand the following steps in a car accident lawsuit:
Dealing with the Aftermath
There are steps you can take immediately after an accident to protect your chances of winning a car accident lawsuit. The first step is to call 911 and get all injuries treated. If anyone requires immediate medical attention, the dispatcher can send an ambulance. Additionally, a police officer will need to visit the scene and make a report. The police report may be extremely helpful in building your car accident lawsuit.
The next step a driver should take after an accident is to exchange information with all other parties to the crash. Contact information and other details should be recorded for other drivers and witnesses, including the following:
- Phone numbers
- Email addresses should be collected.
- Insurance information for all drivers
- License plate numbers of all vehicles involved
- Make, model, and color of all vehicles involved
Pictures and videos of the scene can also be valuable when establishing circumstances surrounding the crash, such as weather and road conditions. Furthermore, pictures may be used to prove property damage. Lastly, it can be valuable for car accident victims to write down or record their personal recollections of the accident while their memory is fresh.
Victims should also be careful with what they say immediately after an accident. It may be natural for individuals to apologize after a car crash, even if it was not their fault. However, a simple apology can be interpreted as an admission of guilt. Our Naperville car accident lawyers can offer more in-depth advice regarding what to do after a car accident in your specific case.
A crucial stage in any car accident lawsuit is the gathering of evidence. During this stage, a plaintiff will be tasked with accumulating evidence to prove their claim. Examples of relevant evidence in car accident cases include witness statements, police reports, medical records, and expert opinions. This evidence will be used to establish who was at fault for an accident and the extent of damages it caused.
The insurance company will also gather evidence of their own. They will often hire their own lawyers, doctors, and private investigators to disprove your claims or minimize the supposed impact of the accident. Our Naperville car accident lawyers can help you gather evidence to build a strong case.
The next step in the car accident lawsuit process involves negotiating with insurance companies. Insurance companies may make early, low-dollar settlement offers in the days following a car accident. It is important for car accident victims to take time to assess the full extent of their damages suffered before agreeing to any settlements.
Defense lawyers working for the insurance companies will use various tactics to get car accidents plaintiffs to accept these low-dollar settlement offers. Our Naperville car accident lawyers can lean on years of experience dealing with defense lawyers to help us negotiate a fair settlement in your case.
If a fair settlement offer cannot be reached, the parties to a car accident lawsuit will go to trial. Going to trial can result in greater compensation for the plaintiff, or it may have the opposite effect. Plaintiffs in car accident cases should consult with a Naperville car accident lawyer to weigh the potential risks and rewards of taking their case to trial.
Damages Available in a Naperville, IL Car Accident Lawsuit
There are multiple types of damages available to Naperville plaintiffs in car accident cases. Some damages may be easier than others to prove. Furthermore, the process for recovering each category of damages can differ. In a free case review, our Naperville car accident lawyers can help you determine what damages may be available to you in your car accident case.
These damages are usually divided into two categories:
Economic damages are often more easily accounted for. Economic damages are based on expenses and financial consequences you face because of the accident and can include the cost of lost wages, medical bills, property damage, lost future earning capacity, and other losses. These damages can be established with evidence like medical bills and pay stubs.
Noneconomic damages are losses that may be more difficult to explain or quantify because they do not have bills or financial statements attached to them. Non-economic damages include compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life, among others. Despite being harder to calculate, non-economic damages can be just as severe or even worse than economic damages.
Statute of Limitations in Naperville Car Accident Lawsuits
The statute of limitations is governed by state law and states how long plaintiffs have to file a claim. In Illinois, the statute of limitations is two years. Accordingly, car accident victims in Naperville have two years from the date of their crash to file a car accident lawsuit. However, over time people may forget what happened or evidence can be lost. Our Naperville car accident lawyers can help you gather and preserve evidence and file your claim quickly to avoid running afoul of time limits.
If You Have Been Injured Because of a Car Accident in Naperville, IL, Our Lawyers Can Help
If you suffered an injury because of a car accident, seek guidance from experienced Naperville car accident lawyers by calling the Rhatigan Law Offices at (312) 578-8502 for a free case review.