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Peoria Livestock Accident Attorney

Schuyler County farm animal car accident lawyer

Lawyers for Car Crashes Caused by Free-Roaming Livestock in Peoria County, Macon County, and McLean County

Throughout much of its history, central Illinois has mostly been made up of farmland, but in recent years, many cities, towns, and suburbs have grown larger, leading to more traffic on the roads and highways in the area. This has created some unique safety issues, especially when drivers have had to share the road with farm equipment or animals. In some cases, livestock has gotten loose or been allowed to roam free, and animals in the road can lead to dangerous car accidents. Victims of these types of accidents are often left unsure about who was responsible for their injuries and how they can be repaid for their damages.

Kanoski Bresney is a hometown central Illinois law firm, and our attorneys have been representing clients in the area for over 40 years. We understand the unique legal issues involved in accidents related to farms and livestock, and we are dedicated to helping personal injury victims receive financial compensation that fully addresses the damages they have suffered. With more than $400 million recovered for victims through both jury verdicts and out-of-court settlements, we can ensure that you receive payments that will address your financial needs.

Accidents Caused by Animals in Central Illinois

Drivers may not be prepared for livestock to wander across the road, especially when they are driving on rural roads or other dangerous highways where tall crops can limit their visibility. Multiple different types of crashes can occur in these cases, including:

  • Collisions with animals - Drivers and passengers can suffer serious injuries if their vehicles strike livestock in the road. Cows, horses, pigs, or sheep can be very large and heavy, and people in a car or truck may suffer traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, or whiplash when colliding with these animals.
  • Spin-outs - Drivers may swerve to avoid livestock, or they may hit large animals from an angle, causing their vehicles to go into a skid or run off the road. This can lead to rollover accidents, which may result in serious bodily harm, burn injuries, or wrongful death.
  • Collisions with obstacles - Swerving to avoid animals in the road may cause drivers to collide with fixed objects such as trees, telephone poles, fence posts, or signs. When vehicles are traveling at high speeds, a sudden stop can cause serious injuries, including brain trauma or spine injuries.
  • Collisions with other vehicles - Multiple vehicles may be involved in an accident caused by livestock, including situations where drivers hit another car or truck after swerving to avoid animals or when a driver is unable to slow down or stop in time to avoid striking a vehicle that has collided with livestock. In these cases, head-on collisions, rear-end collisions, and other types of accidents between vehicles can cause severe injuries and extensive property damage.

Liability for Accidents Involving Free-Roaming Livestock

The Illinois Domestic Animals Running at Large Act (510 ILCS 55) states that owners of livestock cannot allow their animals to run at large. Livestock includes cattle, horses, sheep, swine, bison, donkeys, goats, and geese. Farm owners and employees are required to provide fences, restraints, or other methods to prevent free-roaming livestock, and if they fail to take reasonable care to do so, they may be held responsible for the injuries and damages suffered by victims of car accidents involving their animals.

Even though crashes involving livestock may involve a variety of unique factors, they are treated the same as most other car accident cases under Illinois law. Each party's percentage of fault for the accident will be determined, and if the owner of free-roaming livestock is fully or partially at fault, they may be responsible for repaying a driver for their injuries and damages. Even if a driver was partially responsible for a crash, they can recover compensation if they were less than 50% at fault, although the damages they receive will be reduced by their own percentage of fault.

Recovering Compensation for a Car Accident Involving Livestock

Drivers who are involved in a livestock-related accident can typically make an insurance claim, and they may be covered by their own automotive insurance policy, as well as the insurance policy of the animal's owner. Insurance adjustors will be assigned to investigate the case, and a driver may receive coverage for their immediate and ongoing medical expenses, as well as property damage such as the costs of repairs to their vehicle.

A victim may also pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the owner of the livestock. While these lawsuits may sometimes go to trial, they are often settled through negotiation of a settlement, or the parties may use mediation to reach an agreement on the amount that should be paid to the victim. The damages that can be recovered through a personal injury claim are often more extensive than those that can be addressed through an insurance claim. Compensation may include:

  • Immediate and ongoing medical expenses
  • Lost wages while a victim is recovering from their injuries
  • Diminished ability to earn an income due to a disability resulting from the accident
  • Pain and suffering
  • Physical, psychological, or occupational therapy
  • Emotional trauma and distress

How Can a Bloomington Personal Injury Lawyer Help With My Case?

Whether you will be pursuing an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit, the attorneys of Kanoski Bresney can provide invaluable legal help throughout your case. We can assist with:

  • Gathering evidence - Insurance claims will typically involve an investigation performed by insurance company adjusters. To ensure that all applicable factors are addressed, our lawyers can perform our own investigation and gather the evidence necessary to show that a livestock owner was responsible for your injuries. With our understanding of what to look for and how to organize evidence to demonstrate that your injuries were the direct result of the negligence of an animal's owner, we can help you achieve success in your case.
  • Calculating damages - As you pursue compensation for your accident, we can help you make sure the amount you receive will accurately reflect the actual damages you have suffered. We will help you gain a full understanding of all the ways you have been affected, including the expenses related to your medical care and vehicle repairs, the future financial impact of your injuries, and the physical pain and emotional trauma caused to you and your family.
  • Negotiating a settlement - While most accident cases are settled out of court, the initial settlement offer made by an insurance company or the defendant in a personal injury lawsuit will often be much lower than the actual amount of a victim's damages. Our attorneys have the negotiation skills you need to make sure you are properly compensated, and we will fight for a settlement that will not only address your immediate needs, but also the ways your injuries will affect you and your family in the future. If an acceptable settlement cannot be reached, we are not afraid to take your case to trial to make sure you are fully repaid for your damages.

If you have been injured in a car accident that was caused by free-roaming livestock, you will want to work with a law firm that understands the legal issues involved in these types of cases. At Kanoski Bresney, we have experience representing clients injured in farm accidents, car crashes on rural roads, and a wide variety of other types of cases. We will provide you with respect, response, and results as we work to make sure you are fully compensated for your injuries. Contact us today by calling 888-U-COUNT-2 or 888-826-8682 to arrange a free consultation. We represent injury victims in the state of Illinois, including Peoria County, Springfield, McDonough County, McLean County, Schuyler County, Peoria, Tazewell County, Champaign County, Sangamon County, Decatur, Quincy, Macomb, Adams County, Pekin, Champaign, Rushville, Macon County, and Bloomington.

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