Motorcyclists in Illinois have the same rights, yet less protection, as other drivers. A traumatic accident can leave motorcyclists with severe injuries or result in death. The outcome of a preventable motorcycle crash changes lives forever.
As you deal with massive medical bills, painful injuries, or lost a loved one, contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers.
We are a national law firm with multiple offices around the country. We also work with affiliate law firms in most states that share our focus and dedication to excellence. No matter where you are located, we may be able to help you, so call or contact us now. We are open, for free, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at 800-898-4877, or you may contact us now by clicking here to submit your case for review.
Motorcycle Accidents and Liability
There is no way to predict the behavior of other drivers. An Illinois motorcycle ride can turn tragic in seconds due to someone else’s reckless actions. The driver who lost control of their vehicle may face liability for your damages.
Liability in a motorcycle accident results from driver negligence. A driver who fails to obey traffic rules and laws can forever and unfairly change a motorcyclist’s quality of life.
A driver is generally responsible when they cause a motorcycle accident by:
- Distracted driving: The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) lists three main forms of distraction: visual, manual, and cognitive. Any actions that take a driver’s eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, or mind off driving places motorcyclists at risk for an accident.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol: The dangers of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol are well-known, yet many drivers engage in the behavior anyway. This behavior is irresponsible and demands accountability for the damage that resulted.
- Aggressive driving: Speeding and purposely tailgating can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles. Road rage against motorcyclists can cause a motorcycle to spin out of control.
- Drowsy driving: A drowsy driver deals with similar types of impairment as drunk drivers: reduced reaction time and impaired judgment.
Some drivers violate traffic rules by failing to yield the right of way at intersections. For example, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that nearly 42 percent of fatal motorcycle accidents occur at intersections.
Failing to simply watch for motorcycles is another common cause of accidents. Many drivers cite not seeing the motorcycle following a crash. While the motorcycle’s narrow profile can make them harder to see, motorists must take precautions.
Adjusting car mirrors for blind spots and watching for motorcycles are proactive steps for preventing a crash. If you suffered severe injuries from a dangerous driver, a lawyer can help you fight for compensation.
After an Illinois Motorcycle Accident
No one goes for a motorcycle ride expecting to wake up in a hospital. A motorcycle accident occurs in seconds, yet the impact on your life can last forever.
The aftermath of an Illinois motorcycle accident can include the following for victims:
- Painful and sometimes permanent injuries: From broken bones to severe brain injury, the medical bills seem to never stop
- Significant time missed from work and/or job loss: Some injuries require a lengthy recovery or make it impossible to return to work
- The devastating impact on a victim’s quality of life: Pain, suffering, and psychological harm may affect relationships and their ability to ride a motorcycle again
Most motorcyclists understand the risk of riding along Illinois highways and city streets. Unfortunately, despite safety gear and precautions, far too many motorcyclists experience harm due to inattentive and reckless drivers
No matter how serious your injuries, life is never the same following your motorcycle accident. Pursuing compensation in the form of a civil claim and lawsuit against the responsible driver is your right. You do not have to manage your case alone.
At Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, we fight for compensation for Illinois motorcycle accident victims. We believe accident victims deserve the best possible outcome in their civil cases.
Hiring a member of our team can protect your best interests moving forward. However, the aftermath of your accident may leave you feeling confused about your next step. Learn more about your options by reaching out to us today for a free case evaluation.
The Financial Impact of Motorcycle Accident Injuries
The pursuit of possible compensation is a challenging process. As personal injury lawyers, we understand how to proceed with a civil claim and lawsuit. However, fighting for a fair settlement is crucial as you face medical bills and lost wages all due to another driver’s negligence.
A motorcycle lacks the protection of a car or truck; that much is obvious. However, the freedom of the open road compels many Illinois residents to own and operate a motorcycle.
The lack of protection exposes riders to severe injuries in an accident. In addition, the financial impact of such injuries can cause accident victims much anxiety.
These severe and catastrophic injuries typically require long-term and continuous care:
- Brain injury: A brain injury disrupts normal brain function. Some patients must relearn basic skills. In addition, your loved one may exhibit changes in behavior and emotions. Compensation for this type of injury and the cost of care is why a civil case is necessary.
- Spinal cord damage: Movement and sensation are primarily part of what the spinal cord manages for the body. When communication with the brain becomes disrupted, patients experience paralysis. This type of injury is catastrophic and requires a variety of costly needs, such as home modifications for a mobility chair.
- Broken bones: Motorcyclists face the chance of broken arms, legs, and other bones in their bodies. Broken bones can require multiple surgeries, rehabilitation, and physical therapy.
- Road rash: A painful skin abrasion, road rash results from skin contact with a rough service. Motorcyclists are generally thrown from the bike, causing them to strike and sometimes slide across the pavement. Road rash can become infected and, in severe cases, affect tendons and nerves.
Medical care is expensive and severe injuries can result in enormous costs. Unfortunately, these costs can far exceed your savings. Therefore, when a motorcycle accident results from a careless driver, they and not you should pay these and other damages.
Motorcycle accident victims have enough worry on their minds. How to pay their medical bills when they cannot work should not be one of their main concerns. If you face mounting medical expenses due to an out-of-control driver, contact us today for help with your civil case.
Fatal Motorcycle Accidents
A fatal motorcycle accident can devastate a family. Losing a loved one due to what was most likely a preventable tragedy is maddening. If your loved one died doing what they loved riding their motorcycle Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers can help you pursue legal action.
Filing a wrongful death claim and lawsuit is a somewhat complex process. For one, your relationship with the accident victim is crucial in whether you qualify for compensation. Most close family members who can pursue civil action are surviving spouses, parents, and grown children.
Funerals cost thousands and are an unexpected expense. Other expenses include burial and any final medical expenses for your loved one. Grief can overpower you as you encounter sudden bills and additional stress relating to your loss.
A wrongful death attorney from our office can fight for the following types of compensation on your behalf:
- The final medical expenses if your loved one did not die immediately from their injuries
- Funeral, burial, cremation, or memorial costs
- Lost income and future earnings if your loved one contributed financially to the household
- Companionship: The loss of companionship your loved one provided
Wrongful death cases typically involve economic and non-economic damage. Some damages are easier to assign value to than others. Medical bills are an example of economic damage, while the loss of companionship is an example of non-economic damage.
Conveying the true impact of your loved one’s death is where an attorney can help you. It is understandably a highly emotional time for you and your family. Your time is better spent with loved ones and not dealing with the details of your case.
Time Matters With Your Motorcycle Accident Case
Personal injury and wrongful death victims can quickly lose track of time following a motorcycle accident. While pursuing compensation is generally possible, time is not on your side.
The statute of limitations exists so that civil claims do not linger forever. Evidence can become lost, witnesses can forget, and laws can change. Filing your civil lawsuit within the statute of limitations is mandatory. Failing to file before the time expires can leave you with no further options.
In Illinois, the statute of limitations is two years for personal injury and wrongful death. Twenty-four months can seem like a long time. However, following a dramatic event, it can pass very quickly.
Hiring a lawyer familiar with Illinois civil law can significantly benefit you during this stressful time. In addition, your lawyer can ensure that your lawsuit reaches court on time.
While many personal injury cases settle without ever seeing the inside of a courtroom, protecting your right for a trial is crucial. Contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers without delay to protect your best interests.
Contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers Today
A tragic motorcycle accident caused by a negligent driver can cause your life to change forever. A fun ride can turn tragic in seconds when another driver fails to share the road responsibly.
There is a chance that the driver responsible for your accident will face criminal charges. If so, their criminal case has no bearing on your civil case. You may still pursue compensation for your damages, regardless of the outcome of their criminal case.
Negotiation with an insurance company for fair compensation requires skill. Presenting your case before a judge and jury also requires skills and experience. Pursuing possible compensation is not easy and not something accident victims should manage alone.
At Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, we put our knowledge of civil law to work for you. Our team is proud of the testimonials by clients that detail their experiences with us.
While the testimonials provide a glimpse of our success, they do not represent nor predict the exact outcome of your case. Compensation is never guaranteed, yet it is worth pursuing. Settling for less than you deserve is not an option when you suffer physical, psychological, and financial damages due to driver negligence.
Your Illinois Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
We work on a contingency-fee-basis, meaning you do not pay us unless we secure compensation for you. There is no retainer required to hire us for your case. We collect our legal fees if and when we secure compensation for you.
The statute of limitations clock begins to tick when you suffer injuries or your loved one dies. Make hiring a member of the Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers your top priority. Once the case is in our hands, we can manage the details and keep you informed. This affords you more time to focus on rest and recovery or mourn your loved one.
How you proceed following an Illinois motorcycle accident can significantly impact your future. If your injuries or loss are due to another driver’s reckless actions, we stand ready to help you. If an insurance adjuster offers you a settlement before contacting us, do not accept it. Reach for the phone or get online and contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers instead.
You deserve justice for the careless actions of the responsible driver. Hold them accountable with our help. With a free case evaluation and a contingency basis of payment, you have nothing to lose by contacting us today.
Illinois motorcycle accident victims can contact us online or call us at 800-898-4877 as soon as possible. The sooner we review your case, the faster we can get to work protecting your best interests.
Your Illinois Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Answers Your Frequently Asked Questions
An Illinois motorcycle accident caused by a negligent driver changes your life. Dangerous drivers surround motorcyclists, their potential for causing harm not visible until it is too late to avoid an accident.
Read on for answers to the most common questions we receive from our clients.
What Causes Motorcycle Accidents?
Some many actions and behaviors can result in motorcycle accidents. Both motorcyclists and drivers have a responsibility to share the road. While a motorcycle is smaller in size and profile than a passenger vehicle, the operator has the same rights and road privileges.
The following list contains a few reasons why motorcycle accidents occur on Illinois streets and highways:
- Turning left in front of motorcycles in intersections: A motorist who fails to yield the right of way can leave a motorcyclist no time to stop. Nearly half of all fatal motorcycle accidents occur in this manner.
- Blind spots: Approximately half of the area surrounding a car contains blind spots. This makes it very difficult to see motorcycles. Proper mirror adjustment can make a big difference and possibly save lives.
- Failing to judge a motorcycle’s distance and speed: Pulling out too soon in front of a bike can result in a traumatic crash.
- Not understanding how a motorcyclist brakes: A motorcyclist will down throttle instead of braking to slow down. The lack of brake lights can confuse an inattentive driver, resulting in an accident.
Drivers also engage in risky behavior behind the wheel that can affect all road users, such as:
- Distracted driving: Smartphone use, programming navigational devices, and eating are just a few examples of distracted driving.
- Drunk driving: Far too many drivers believe a drunk driving accident will not happen to them, and they can make it home safely.
- Road rage: Some drivers may not want to share the road with a motorcyclist. Throwing objects at the bike or purposely forcing it off the road are signs of road rage.
- Drowsy driving: A driver can fall asleep behind the wheel, drifting into you and your motorcycle.
An Illinois driver’s license is a privilege and not a right. Those who abuse it by violating traffic laws and causing harm to others must face accountability. The changes to your life were unwanted and not fair. Pursuing compensation for your damages is your right and best done with an experienced attorney by your side.
An accident is possible no matter how much motorcycle safety gear you wear or how much training you receive. If another driver is responsible for your harm, reach out to the Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers team for help with your civil claim and lawsuit.
What Types of Motorcycle Accident Injuries Are Most Common?
The lack of protection a motorcycle provides for operators can place them at risk for:
- Internal injuries: Internal bleeding can harm organs and result in death if left untreated
- Traumatic brain injuries: Bump, blow, or striking of the head against the pavement disrupts normal brain function
- Bone fractures: multiple breaks of one bone or crushed bone can impact recovery time
- Lower extremity injuries: damage to the legs can require a lengthy recovery and possible amputation
- Road rash: painful skin abrasions that can develop an infection
- Spinal cord injury: results in paralysis and an extensive list of expensive medical needs
These injuries can result in permanent harm that makes returning to life as before the accident impossible. A traumatic brain injury is incredibly costly when the injury is severe. Patients with such an injury may require ongoing medical and personal care.
There is typically no quick recovery from a motorcycle accident. If you face a long road to recovery, with no end in sight for your medical costs, contact us. A member of our team will get to work fighting for compensation for your medical expenses and other relatable damages.
What are Common Damages in a Motorcycle Accident Case?
The damage to your motorcycle is just one type of damage in your claim and lawsuit. Other common types of damages include:
- Medical costs, current and for ongoing care: rehabilitation, prescription medications, and therapy
- Your inability to work, now and in the future: lost wages and potential future earnings
- Pain and suffering associated with your accident: mental anguish and overall impact of the accident on your life
Upon carefully reviewing your damages, your lawyer can build a strong compensation case. Each motorcycle accident is different, and so are the civil cases that follow.
If you suffered severe injuries from a negligent driver, fight for justice with a personal injury lawyer’s help. A free case evaluation can help you start your journey toward possible compensation and accountability.
Do I Need a Lawyer if the Insurance Company Offers Me a Settlement?
Yes. This is too hard to do on your own.
While you can accept a settlement offer without a lawyer, you must understand the impact of such a decision. Accepting a settlement offer prohibits you from pursuing additional compensation later, should your condition worsen. In other words, the amount you receive is final.
An insurance company wants you to accept an initial settlement offer. The amount offered may seem like a lot of money to you when it is, in fact, the least amount they want to provide. The ultimate goal of the insurance company is to protect company profits. Some insurance companies may fight your claim and blame you for the accident.
A lawyer from the Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers team can protect your best interests. Insurance companies have years of experience working with accident victims, making them highly skilled at confusing you.
Your accident, injuries, medication, and stress can cause you to make the wrong decision. Your lawyer will counter insurance company tactics and fight for a fair settlement. Removing this burden from your shoulders not only protects you but allows you much-needed rest.
Accepting an insurance settlement offer before contacting an attorney is never a good idea. While there is never a guarantee of compensation in a civil claim and lawsuit, it is worth pursuing the right amount for your current and future needs.
How Can I Help My Lawyer?
You can help your lawyer by providing as much information regarding your accident as possible.
This evidence can save your lawyer time as they build your case for compensation:
- Police report about the accident
- Accident scene photographs and video
- Contact information for witnesses
- Copies of your medical reports and expenses
- Proof of lost wages
These are a few examples of the types of information that help your lawyer prove negligence. If your Illinois motorcycle accident received local news coverage, that information is potentially helpful.
Serious injuries may prevent you from gathering or remembering important information. You can help your lawyer in other ways by protecting what you share about the accident with others. For example, it is sometimes best to refrain from posting accident details on social media.
Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms are quick and easy ways to update friends and family. Unfortunately, the information you share may land in the wrong hands or imply you are responsible for the accident.
Protect your best interests by limiting discussion about your accident. Focus on your rest and recovery instead and leave the details of your case to your motorcycle accident lawyer.
If I Miss the Statute of Limitations, Can I Still File a Lawsuit?
Probably not. The Illinois Statute of Limitations allows two years for filing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. This may sound like a long time; however, it can pass in the blink of an eye after a traumatic motorcycle accident. If you miss this deadline, there is no opportunity to file your case.
To pursue compensation, your lawyer must prove the other driver was negligent. Gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and other vital steps take time. Therefore, if you seek compensation for your injuries or loss, you must act quickly.
Do not let your opportunity for justice slip through your fingers due to an expired deadline. Hiring a lawyer can ensure that this critical deadline is not missed and that your case stays on track for meeting all legal requirements.
My Spouse Died in a Fatal Motorcycle Accident. Can I Sue?
A surviving spouse can generally pursue a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible party. Wrongful death attorneys acknowledge that the loss of a close loved one is a highly emotional time. Therefore, your attorney will treat you with care and compassion while aggressively fighting for justice.
Your time of grief can leave you prone to making hasty and wrong decisions, like that of accepting a low sum settlement. Planning a funeral, informing family and friends, and other tasks can leave you exhausted. It is not the time to deal with pushy insurance adjusters who want to settle and move on from your claim.
If you lost a close loved one who was not your spouse, you may still qualify for a wrongful death claim and lawsuit. Contact Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers for a free case evaluation today to learn more about your options.
Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers: Helping Illinois Motorcycle Accident Victims
An Illinois motorcycle accident caused by a reckless driver turns your world upside down. The significant life changes you face are unfair. A lawyer can help you fight for compensation to help cover your damages.
Compensation is never guaranteed; however, fighting for the best outcome possible is best. Accepting less than you deserve from an insurance company can cause heartache and headaches later if your medical condition worsens. In addition, no one should pay out of pocket for damages that result from another driver’s negligence.
Our lawyers work on a contingency-fee-basis, meaning you only pay our legal fees if we win compensation for you. As attorneys, we understand the financial hardship a motorcycle accident can cause. Therefore, we do not require our clients to place a deposit or retainer to secure our services.
If we do not win your case, you do not pay. Rest assured that once you become our client, we will work hard to fight for a fair settlement. Most civil cases settle without ever going to court. However, if we feel going before a judge and jury is the best option for you, we will do it.
Courtroom experience is just a part of what we bring to the table. Learn more about us by viewing our client testimonials. The testimonials do not indicate a similar outcome for your case but show our commitment to quality customer service.
Start Your Fight for Compensation Today
Contacting an attorney soon after your accident can help you start your journey toward possible justice. While possible compensation can never replace your loved one, it can help ease your financial stress.
An inability to work or the need to give up a career you loved can cause you to feel depressed. Anxiety and other emotions can abound as you deal with your injuries and mounting medical costs. Dealing with the details of your case and aggressive insurance adjusters can only add to your frustration.
At Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, we are here to manage your case for you. Knowing that someone is at work for you can ease your mind as you navigate medical appointments and procedures. In addition, we are happy to answer any questions you have regarding your case throughout the process.
Unfortunately, time is not on your side. However, you can contact us today to get the help you need from a member of our team without delay.
The legal team of Stewart J. Guss, Injury Accident Lawyers, is nationally recognized for protecting the rights of injured victims for more than 20 years. If an Illinois motorcycle accident injured you, call our office right now for a free consultation! Because we take all of our motorcycle accident cases on a contingency fee basis, you will not owe us a dime unless we win your case. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so call us today at 800-898-4877 or contact us now by clicking here.
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Since starting his firm in 1999, Stewart J. Guss has had the honor of representing clients from all over the world, helping them recover from even the most catastrophic injuries.
Today, thanks to a strong belief in those values of compassion, respect, and approachability, the firm has grown to employ over 120 legal professionals in numerous offices across 4 states, with nationwide reach.