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Illinois and Missouri Motor Vehicle Accidents Law Blog

Workers' compensation payouts less than they used to be

Every year, too many Illinois residents suffer injuries while on the job. Every year, too many of these individuals end up getting very little in compensation. The simple truth is that the amount being paid in workers' compensation benefits, in general, is less than it used to be.

According to a recently published article, more people are entitled to workers' compensation benefits now than ever before, but the amount being paid out yearly has declined. In 2017, roughly $62 billion in benefits were paid to injured workers or their family members. This is a lot, but looking at the bigger picture, it is not as much as it should have been. In 1997, worker's wages were covered at a rate of $1.17 per $100, whereas two decades later, their benefit decreased to 80 cents per $100 in covered wages. That is a significant change.

Compensation may be available after a dooring accident

Many people in Illinois depend on bicycles as their primary form of transportation, while others just enjoy the sport. Come rain or shine, it is common to see cyclists out and about daily. Unfortunately, motorists often fail to be on the lookout for them, causing numerous individuals to suffer injury or worse in auto versus bicycle accidents. Victims or -- in the event of fatality -- their surviving family members may be entitled to seek compensation for any resulting losses.

Dooring is just one type of bicycle accident that is seen far too often in Illinois and elsewhere. This is where a motorist in a parked car opens his or her door just before a cyclist is passing. The cyclist has no time to react, hits the door at full speed and, typically, suffers significant injury. Some dooring accidents have resulted in death.

Sharing the road with a heavy loaded 18-wheeler

Semis, tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers - whatever you want to call them, the drivers and their loads travel the highways 24/7. When sharing the road with one of these big rigs, accidents inevitably happen - ones you may not be able to avoid.

However, you can control your awareness of your surroundings. The lanes of the highway where semis tend to gravitate might be the areas you want to avoid. Another detail to pay close attention to is the loads these big trucks carry. What if you see a truck start to lose its load? Is there anything you can do to keep from involving yourself in a crash?

Can I seek relief after a hit-and-run car accident?

When involved in a motor vehicle accident, whether as a driver or a pedestrian, one would expect the responsible party to step up and accept liability. Unfortunately, that does not always happen. There are those who flee in an effort to escape any consequences. Most times hit-and-run drivers are caught, though sometimes they are not. If one is the victim of a hit-and-run car accident in the state of Illinois, even if the responsible party is not found, it may be possible to seek relief for one's losses through legal means.

Following a typical car crash, a victim has the opportunity to file a claim with the other driver's insurance provider. Following a hit-and-run collision, the victim, in order to seek relief, will need to file a claim with his or her own insurance provider. One would think that doing so would mean all damages experienced would be covered, but that is usually far from the case.

Experiencing PTSD after a car accident?

Auto accidents happen every day in Illinois but, thankfully, most are minor in nature. There are some, though, that have severe -- if not fatal -- outcomes. After a serious car accident, a survivor may experience a number of physical injuries, which is expected. What he or she may not expect are the psychological injuries that often present following this type of traumatic event. Post-traumatic stress disorder, for example, is experienced by nearly 40% of all car accident victims.

PTSD presents itself in several ways. Those that have it may not realize that they do right away. Common signs of PTSD include:

  • Nightmares
  • Social avoidance
  • Negative mood and thoughts
  • Intrusive memories

Injured by a drunk driver?

You hear about drunk driving-related collisions happening all the time. You never expected to be in one yourself, though, but here you are. You were injured by a drunk driver, and now you are wondering if you can seek compensation for your losses. The good news is, in Illinois, as in other states, you may file legal claims against the responsible party in an effort to seek monetary relief.

It does not matter where or when your accident occurred. It does not matter if the driver who hit you was only slightly buzzed or full-on impaired. Drunk drivers are negligent drivers, and according to state laws, they may be held criminally and civilly responsible for the damage and losses that they cause.

Was your workers' compensation claim denied? Appeal

If injured on the job, Illinois residents expect to be taken care of. Most employers are required to offer workers' compensation coverage, which is a good thing. The bad thing is many people struggle to gain access to this benefit, and those who do often find the coverage granted them is insufficient for their needs. When workers' comp coverage is denied or fails to cover one's losses, it may be possible to appeal.

Workers' compensation is supposed to be there to protect employees. It can save them from financial ruin and offer them support during an already challenging time. Unfortunately, many people have lost faith in the system and believe that this benefit is not much of a benefit at all.

Inadequate driver training can lead to truck accidents

Experience and proper training are essential when driving any motor vehicle. It is particularly important, though, for individuals who wish to operate commercial trucks. These vehicles are difficult to maneuver and do not manage the same as typical passenger cars. As such, inadequate driver training can lead to truck accidents. Those in Illinois who have suffered losses in such events may seek relief through legal means.

How is commercial driver training different than regular driver training? The truth is, they are a lot the same. Both require drivers attend classes for the type of license they are seeking and pass written exams. Both also require that driver applicants pass hands-on training. The only real difference is that commercial drivers have to make sure they are in good standing with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, which means they have to ensure they have met all FMCSA standards in order to obtain and keep their commercial driver's licenses.

Reducing car accidents involving teen drivers

Teen drivers are often more prone to dangerous behaviors behind the wheel, and one of the specific things younger drivers may do is engage in distracted driving. When Illinois drivers are distracted while operating a motor vehicle, it significantly increases the chance of car accidents.

There are a few things parents can teach their teen drivers that will keep them safe and decrease the chance of a collision. One of the simplest tips is to set up automatic replies when he or she receives a text message while driving. Parents can also install an app on their child’s phone that allows them to track things like speed, acceleration, sudden braking and other things. It allows a parent to see how his or her kid is driving when the parent is not around.

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