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Springfield Illinois Personal Injury Law Blog

Truck safety rules are only good when they're followed

President Trump recently signed an executive order declaring that for every new regulation an agency wants in place, at least two existing rules must be pegged for repeal. The White House memo on the order affirms that the intent is to manage spending of taxpayer dollars properly.

No one would argue that managing budgeted funds isn't within the scope of the president's job and that agency rules have costs. However, many experts across a range of fields indicate that the broad scope of the order and lack of specifics leave a lot of questions unanswered.

Legislation shows Illinois workers' comp is subject to change

A sense of déjà vu still lingers over the capitol in Springfield. More than a year ago, we posted here about how government leaders were having a hard time resolving issues on a budget. At the time, one of the big struggles was finding some middle ground on the question of workers' compensation reform. Politicians were split with Democrats saying more time is needed to see if reforms made in 2011 might be working. The governor reportedly wanted changes now and was refusing to negotiate on money matters unless he saw action on his proposals. Meanwhile, the task of protecting injured workers carries on.

Indications from Capitol Hill are that a possible compromise plan could come up for votes in the Senate this week. How the series of scheduled votes will go is uncertain.

No system defects doesn't mean car autopilot is foolproof

Those who grew up in the 60s or 70s probably remember the amazing ads in the back of comic books. One of particular note was for gyrocopters. Readers across central Illinois will remember that the suggestion was these were the vehicles of the future. Gyrocopters haven't quite taken off, but what is real are self-driving vehicles. We highlighted some of the challenges this technology presents in a post back in July.

That blog entry raised the question as to whether a car manufacturer could be held liable for the death of a man who died when his car collided with a semitrailer truck. The high-tech vehicle was in self-driving mode at the time and it was unclear if suspected product defect caused the crash. The answer seems to be in, but questions remain.

Can bedsores be deadly? Lawsuit says yes

Sleeping in or resting all weekend in a recliner is something most people across Illinois would likely relish. But, as the wisdom of the ages taught us long ago, too much of a good thing can be bad for us. Indeed, in some instances, it can be downright deadly.

In the nursing home setting, experts know that one of the things caregivers must always be watching to avoid is the development of decubitus ulcers in their patients. Commonly known as bedsores, these ulcers are easier to prevent than to cure. If caregiver neglect allows ulcers to develop and go untreated, it can mean the loss of a loved one's life.

What driving behavior causes most fatal crashes?

This is a common question and the thing that makes it interesting is that the answer can change. As we note elsewhere on our site, the act of driving a motor vehicle is risky business. In 2014 alone, Illinois officials recorded nearly 300,000 crashes. More than 61,000 people were injured in those vehicle accidents. Of those victims, 845 died.

The factors that contribute to a crash can vary widely. No two cases are ever alike. But one thing remains consistent, regardless of the factors involved, identifying options for victim compensation and holding responsible parties accountable often depends on working with a skilled attorney.

What exactly is 'pain and suffering'?

Any time someone is involved in a car accident, there is the potential for damages to be suffered. When people think about these damages, they often jump right to physical injuries and property damage, which are typically the easiest damages to see.

However, victims also commonly suffer less visible damages. Among these are pain and suffering. If you have recently been in an accident, it can be helpful to know more about pain and suffering damages, as they can have a dramatic impact on the compensation available. 

If I suspect I've been exposed to asbestos what can I do?

The hazards of asbestos have been known for years. There is no shortage of medical research showing that asbestos, as good as it is at retarding fire, is something that can cause serious and deadly diseases in those exposed to the material.

Contact can be brief. And these days, exposure on the job is possible because asbestos can be found in many places throughout Central Illinois. This can happen without the worker even knowing it. Unfortunately, symptoms of any resulting illness might not develop for decades. Regardless, workers' compensation rules are in place to provide health care and wage benefits to those who qualify. In some cases, it may be possible to seek broader compensation based on a negligence claim.

Trucking regs are for everyone – including crash victims

Long-haul truckers enjoy nearly mythological status across central Illinois and the rest of the country. Some call them the last American cowboys. They are riders of the open road, free and independent spirits. The reality is that those who are in the trucking trade are subject to a great many rules and regulations.

Most who climb into the cab understand there's good reason why those rules are in place. They might not always like them, but they follow them. Some drivers and trucking companies, however, fail to live up to standards set by state and federal authorities. Accidents result and very often serious or even fatal injuries occur.

Farm hazards remain in depths of Illinois winter

People who live in the city have little clue about the hazards that farm workers in Illinois face on a day-to-day basis. Knowledge about such things comes from experience and urban dwellers often never get any closer to the farm than passing by them on the way to grandmother's house, which might be in some other city.

Indeed, we would not be surprised to find that most people think that farm folk only work during the growing season from spring to fall. Not so. Farm work is a year round business. Hazards may be of greater variety during the warmer months, but attorneys experienced in dealing with farm accidents know there can be serious workplace threats in winter.

How do I report suspected abuse at a care facility?

The Illinois Department on Aging is the agency that bears responsibility for helping citizens find proper care facilities for their loved ones. To that end, it has various web-based resources. Included on the list of possible pages are some that guide consumers on what to do when they suspect their loved one is suffering neglect, abuse or exploitation.

We have found that sometimes these tools don't always work the way they should. But that does not mean that anyone who has a complaint should be swayed from following through. The protection of our most vulnerable citizens is too important to allow technological hurdles to frustrate the efforts. And if full accountability requires taking legal action, consult a skilled attorney to understand your rights and options.

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