Some Accidents Could Have Been Prevented, You Shouldn’t Have to Suffer
If you or a loved one has been injured in a Machesney Park, Illinois car crash. Let the trusted Personal Injury Lawyers at Marriett & Murati help. We’re available 24/7/365 and we’re from the area with our office located just south of Machesney Park. Machesney Park is one of the most rapidly growing communities within Winnebago County with a developing 173 corridor and a number of major employers in the region calling Machesney Park home.
Often one of the first things we hear after someone contacts us about a Machesney Park car crash is usually that they’re asking what they can do to help us, help them. First, it’s important to know that what we look for first after we take on a case is to review the crash report prepared by law enforcement. Machesney Park is a unique village in that they utilize the services of the Winnebago County Sheriff exclusively, so if anyone is ever hurt or injured in a Machesney Park car crash, it’s generally always going to be the Sheriff’s office that responds.
The department can be contacted for a copy of your crash report directly at 650 W. State St. Rockford, IL 61102, at 815-319-6000, or on the web at http://www.winnebagosheriff.com
Once you have contacted them for a copy of your crash report, if you provide this information to us we can begin your case by opening up a claim with the other insurance company, and/or your own insurance company to notify them that an injury has occurred, and to initiate a property damage claim for your vehicle. From there we can assist you and your family in the following ways:
Common injuries we handle in personal injury cases are broken bones, fractures, ligament strains, and concussions. If you have any injuries stemming from an auto accident the most important thing you can do is to seek treatment for all injuries.
While we can never tell a client when they come in how much a case is worth, one way that we’re able to appraise the value of a case is how much medical treatment someone had to endure, and then discuss with the client how the injury impacted their day-to-day life. Were they able to play with their children, attend work, take a shower, pick up items to perform household chores, drive to medical appointments, etc. Once we discuss with you what a reasonable number might be, we submit that demand to the responsible insurance company that was covering the Defendant/Tortfeasor (person who caused your injury).
If they agree to pay the specified amount this is called a “Settlement”. If they refuse to pay what’s fair, or offer an amount lower than you wish to take this is when we would prepare a lawsuit, file it with our county circuit clerk’s office, have the defendant/tortfeasor served, and set the case ultimately for a trial so that a Winnebago County jury can determine what a fair recovery is for your personal injury case. There are key areas after a lawsuit is filed that may allow a settlement to occur even after a lawsuit is filed but the biggest threat an injured person has, is that their lawyer will drag the insurance company through the mud in front of a jury. Also, there are no hard and fast rules on what a fair amount might be for any case generally. Fair is ultimately what the client thinks is fair, and then adjusted to what previous cases may have been assigned at trial in their respective area. You may have heard that the value of a case is 3 times the total of medical bills. While that sometimes can be a standard metric on some cases, often times it falls critically short. For example if the injured party had a large income that was curtailed or reduced based on the permanence of the injury sustained, or if it’s a lifetime debilitating injury, a simple calculation of medical bills being multiplied doesn’t compare to the amount of financial loss a victim would suffer if that was the bench mark that was applied to appraising their claim.
As an example if your case involved a fractured sternum with a typical recovery, and a normal amount of medical appointments, we can typically find a similar case within the surrounding area and see how much a jury awarded in that real case. We can then provide that case information to the insurance company and say this is what we’re likely to get at trial, and we’re going to ask for even more because our case is distinguishable in these other ways, etc. Simply being prepared, and being willing to take cases to trial is one sure fire way to get a better recovery for all clients than what will happen if someone brings on a lawyer that does not file lawsuits or tries to handle their case on their own.
One of the common situations we run into when handling personal injury cases arising out of Machesney Park is that with the proximity to Wisconsin along the 251 and I-90 corridors, car crashes often will involve visitors from out of State. In years past some jurisdictions did not require their motorists to carry ANY auto insurance on their vehicles, which would cause major disasters for anyone here in Illinois that were to be injured by someone driving without an insurance policy in effect. While that has since changed, we still routinely handle claims for insurance companies operating out of Wisconsin and other states.
When this happens our client often asks, “do I have to travel out of Illinois for court if someone hits me from a different State”. The answer generally is no. In some unique situations that would be heavily case specific that answer may change but for the most part the Illinois Rules of Civil Procedure state that a lawsuit may be filed in the venue where the injury occurred, OR where the Defendant (the person being sued) resides. So if someone travels out of their home state, and injures someone in a different state they have “availed” themselves to the jurisdiction of Illinois if the injury occurs here, so if someone is injured in Machesney Park, Illinois, they’ll be able to have their lawsuit filed and attend court here in Winnebago County. Perhaps in a unique situation if we had multiple Defendants’ and it was an interstate pile-up causing numerous injuries or something else with a large number of involved wrongdoers we may seek to file a lawsuit in federal court if a large number of Defendant’s lived outside of Illinois. While we can always file in the federal courthouse closer to most potential clients in the region, the chance that the case is removed to a different jurisdiction is possible depending on a variety of factors. The long and short of the situation though is that 99.9% of the time, someone that’s injured will not have to travel very far to obtain justice if your case involves filing a lawsuit in court.
Now, the opposite of the situation described above would be if someone comes to Machesney Park from out of State, and they are injured in a crash caused by someone from Illinois. In that case, just as above, the person who caused the injury is considered a “defendant”. The venue of any lawsuit in court must either be where the injury occurred, or where the Defendant resides. So in this situation our client would have to travel back to the Winnebago County Courthouse in order to have their case heard. The client would of course not be forced to attend every court date since we would handle that on their behalf. Additionally now with the advent of remote services like Zoom/Google Hangouts we can likely conduct depositions, and other matters such as discovery review completely remotely with the client at home wherever they may live. Ultimately though if there was a trial in the case the client would have to arrive back to the Machesney Park/Winnebago County area for a trial.
Illinois sets a time limit of two years to file a personal injury lawsuit in the state’s civil court system. In most cases, this two-year time limit, known as a “statute of limitations,” begins to run on the date of the accident. Sometimes, however, a statute of limitations might run from the date that you discovered you were injured, rather than the date of the event that injured you. This later date is known as a “discovery date.”
For injury claims against a city or county, you have one year to file a lawsuit. The time limit to sue the state is generally two years, but you must file a formal claim within one year in order to sue.
The qualified personal injury law firm of Marriett and Murati can help guide you through this difficult time and alleviate some of the stress.
For an honest, free, and compassionate consultation about your Machesney Park, Illinois personal injury case, feel free to call or text message us confidentially at 815-315-4967 or contact us here. Remember our service is absolutely no cost to you unless we earn a recovery on your behalf. Let the trusted pro’s at The Personal Injury Lawyers: Marriett & Murati help you or your loved one navigate the legal side of your case and fight for your financial recovery, while you focus on your physical recovery.