Decatur Personal Injury Attorney
Accidents and injuries happen every day. When they are caused by the negligence of another, you have recourse to recover compensation under civil law. Our Decatur, Illinois personal injury lawyers at Kanoski Bresney have been successfully representing injured people for decades. Call us today if you have suffered an injury through someone else’s negligence.
Decatur, Illinois Personal Injury Resources:
- Why choose Kanoski Bresney?
- What is a personal injury claim?
- How long will my personal injury case take to settle?
- What is the average settlement in a Decatur injury claim?
- What type of compensation is recoverable?
- How much will my injury attorney charge?
Why Choose Our Decatur Injury Lawyers?
Handling your own personal injury claim may be similar to treating your own medical condition instead of going to a doctor. If you have suffered serious injuries, your best course of action is to consult with an experienced Decatur personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Our trial lawyers can investigate your accident to determine and prove liability, negotiate with insurance companies, and fight for full and fair compensation in court, if necessary
- We are the largest personal injury law firm in Central Illinois, with 10 attorneys and more than three dozen staff to handle your injury claim.
- Our trial lawyers are not intimidated by large corporations or courtrooms. We will not hesitate to take your case to trial to recover the compensation you deserve.
- We have successfully recovered more than $400 million for our clients.
What Is a Personal Injury Claim?
A personal injury claim is a civil legal action based on the fundamental concept that another party has caused you harm for which you are entitled to compensation. To prevail in a personal injury claim, you must show that:
- The other party owed you a duty (for example, the duty to exercise reasonable care while operating a motor vehicle).
- The other party breached that duty.
- The other party’s breach of duty caused the injuries you suffered.
- You suffered measurable damages as a result.
How Long Do Personal Injury Cases Take to Settle?
Most personal injury cases end with settlement negotiations. It is usually not in either party’s best interests to allow a case to drag on for long; the longer a case takes to resolve, the higher both parties’ legal fees become. During settlement negotiations, a defendant may be willing to pay more than expected just to have the case out of the way while a plaintiff may be willing to settle for less in exchange for a speedy resolution while facing mounting economic issues from his or her injury.
Some personal injury cases are inherently more complex and will therefore take much longer to resolve. For example, cases involving multiple defendants, comparative negligence, or unclear liability may take months or even years to resolve. Starting the legal process as soon as possible after a personal injury is crucial to obtaining a satisfactory recovery in a reasonable time.
Average Settlement Values for Decatur, Illinois Personal Injury Cases
Judges in the Illinois civil court system use various metrics to determine appropriate case values. Economic damages like hospital bills and lost income are typically easy to prove; the plaintiff must simply provide proof of those losses and proof the defendant’s actions caused those losses.
When it comes to noneconomic damages like pain and suffering, judges often refer to past verdicts in similar cases to determine appropriate amounts. Some courts may award per diem pain and suffering compensation, awarding a set amount for each day the plaintiff spends in recovery. Others simply multiply the plaintiff’s medical expenses by a set amount and award a lump sum.
Illinois also follows a comparative negligence statute that may influence a plaintiff’s recovery. Under Illinois’ comparative negligence law, a plaintiff may still recover compensation if he or she partially caused his or her claimed damages. The plaintiff loses a portion of the case award equal to his or her fault percentage, but only if the plaintiff’s fault is less than the defendant’s. For example, a plaintiff found 25% at fault for a $100,000 claim would lose 25% of the case award. If the plaintiff’s fault is 50% or more, the plaintiff may not recover any damages.
What Type of Compensation Is Recoverable?
The aim of a personal injury lawsuit is to make a plaintiff “whole” again; this means the plaintiff can recover any and all damages resulting from a defendant’s negligence. Damages in personal injury cases typically fall into two categories: economic and noneconomic. Economic damages include verifiable expenses or losses resulting from a personal injury, whereas noneconomic damages pertain to a plaintiff’s pain and suffering and other intangible losses. Other types of damages may come into play as well.
- Immediate and future medical bills, surgery fees, ambulance fees, and necessary long-term treatment costs
- Lost income or lost future earnings
- Repair and replacement costs of personal property
- Pain and suffering damages
- Punitive damages if the defendant was egregiously negligent, engaged in a criminal act that harmed the plaintiff, or committed an intentional tort against the plaintiff.
The amount won in punitive damages typically hinges on the personal wealth of the defendant; a wealthier defendant should expect to pay much more in punitive damages than a defendant with very limited personal assets. A plaintiff may have the chance to collect much more compensation than he or she originally anticipated. An experienced Decatur personal injury attorney can help a client explore every available avenue of compensation in a personal injury claim.
How Much Will My Decatur Injury Attorney Charge?
Attorney fees are often high and can deter many people from hiring a lawyer to assist in their claim. This is, however, not the case with most personal injury lawyers. Injury lawyers understand the high costs of their services and typically offer payment on a contingency basis for legal counsel.
A contingency fee agreement means the client pays no up-front fees or expenses and only pays the attorneys if they win the case. Most attorneys will set a percentage of the final settlement to take as legal fees. For example, an attorney may charge a 30% contingency fee, which means they will take 30% of the clients case award as payment for their services.
Types of Personal Injury Cases We Handle
Our Decatur injury attorneys have more than 40 years of experience representing people wrongfully injured through negligence. We have successfully handled a wide range of personal injury matters, including:
- Motor vehicle accidents: We have extensive experience handling traffic crash cases involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians, commercial vehicles, and school buses.
- Workers’ compensation: We serve as dedicated legal advocates for injured workers seeking the workers’ comp benefits they are entitled to receive.
- Medical malpractice: Medical error is a leading cause of injury and death in the U.S. We are tough advocates for injured victims and their families.
- Dangerous drugs and medical devices: We believe that manufacturers of dangerous drugs and medical devices should be held accountable for the harm their products cause.
- Defective products: Manufacturers and sellers have a responsibility to ensure their products are safe for use by consumers.
- Dog bites: Dog owners can be held strictly liable for dog bite injuries in Illinois.
- Nursing home abuse and neglect: We help family members of abused nursing home residents seek justice and compensation for their elderly loved ones.
- Construction accidents: Depending on the circumstances, workers injured in construction accidents may have legal options in addition to workers’ compensation.
- Farm vehicle accidents: We help injured farm workers pursue the compensation they deserve.
- Slip, trip, and fall accidents: Property owners have a duty to maintain their property in a reasonably safe condition. When they fail to do so, they may be held liable for resulting injuries.
Contact Our Decatur Office Today
At Kanoski Bresney in Decatur, Illinois, we have dedicated our practice exclusively to representing injured people. Contact our office right away to schedule a free consultation if you believe you may have a personal injury claim for compensation.