Rockford Farm Accident Lawyers
Rockford Farm Accident Lawyers
If you, or someone you love, has been hurt in a farming accident we can help. Reach out to our Farm and Agricultural Lawyers for a FREE consultation. No fees unless we win.
Your health and livelihood depend on your ability to get back to work.
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Rockford Personal Injury Lawyers work with farm and agricultural related lawsuits on a regular basis. Each case is different and should be thoroughly investigated. We have professionals we contact on a regular basis who are familiar with lawsuits involving farming and the equipment. We are a strong asset for any farm accident case. More about our Farm Injury Lawyers.
If you’ve just been injured in a farming accident please follow 4 Steps You Should Take After a Farming Accident to Protect Yourself
Farming is a Tough Job and Risky Job
Farming is a tough job, and it comes with its fair share of risks. Every year farmers are getting hurt in farm related accidents. They have to work fast during planting and harvesting with big equipment and heavy machinery.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a total of 416 farmers and farm employees sustained fatal work-related injuries in 2017, which equates to a fatality rate of 20.4 deaths per 100,000 workers. The CDC also reports that approximately 100 agricultural workers sustain injuries every day. Some of these accidents and injuries are preventable. When such injuries result from negligence, a violation of state or federal regulations, or product liability, those who suffer injuries may be entitled to compensation.
Farm Injury Compensation and Different Types of Legal Claims in Illinois
Agricultural accidents can happen for several reasons. Your options for seeking compensation comes down to the cause of the accident – who or what. Farm accidents can be caused by negligence by your employer, co-worker, or someone associated with the job. But also by faulty equipment.
Employers have a certain “duty of care” to employees. If an employer fails to maintain equipment or violates state and federal regulations, that employer may be held liable. You could have a strong case if we can prove that the accident could have been avoided. In the case that an employee gets hurt on the job a Workers’ Compensation Claim can be filed. Worker’s compensation laws differ from state to state, but are similar to personal injury claims, but come with its own guidelines. Read more about Workers’ Compensation.
Independent Contractor, Self- Employed, and Other Workers
If you’re not a direct employee of the employer then you’re likely a contract worker. In most cases independent contractors are not allowed to collect workers’ comp benefits from the people they work with. However, if the accident happened due to neglect the person who is injured can still pursue compensation. It would be similar to if you were an employee, but instead of a workers’ comp claim we would look at alternative claims, like a Personal Injury Claim.
Accidents Caused by a Co-Worker
If you suffered an accident that was caused by the neglect of a co-worker or another party you can still see compensation for your injuries. We know it might be difficult to file a claim against a co-worker. You might have a good working relationship, or might even be friends. But if negligence caused your injury, and you’re unable to work and provide for yourself or your family – you have a right to seek compensation.
If farm and agricultural equipment injuries are the result of defectively designed and/or defectively manufactured equipment, an injured person may pursue a product liability lawsuit. This would be a lawsuit against the company that designed and manufactured the equipment. In some cases, more than one company may be legally responsible for the injuries. One company may design the equipment while another company may manufacture the equipment.
Seeking compensation for injuries sustained in an accident that could have been avoided can be complicated. We commonly see low-ball workers’ compensation, and insurance offers that make recovering from your accident difficult. Talking with a lawyer with experience in farm accidents and agricultural accidents, and what steps to take next should be your first step. Contact our Farm Injury Lawyers 24/7 – (815) 964-8303.
Wrongful Death Claim in a Farming Accident
Under Illinois Law – When a person sustains fatal injuries associated with farm and agricultural equipment, a legal representative of the deceased victim may bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Additionally, Illinois workers’ compensation laws allow for surviving family members to receive death benefits. However, because such benefits are often inadequate, many legal representatives of fatally injured loved ones seek the advice and guidance of an Illinois Farm Accident Lawyer.
If you’ve experienced the death of a loved one due to a farming accident call our office so we can help. We can obtain compensation for damages due to pain and suffering, lost wages, lost future income, medical expenses, and in some cases punitive damages.
For more information on how we can help if you’ve experienced the loss of a loved one read more about our Wrongful Death Lawyers and how we can help.
Is There a Time Limit on Filing Claims Relating to Farm and Agricultural Equipment Injuries?
Time limits on filing legal claims are known as “statutes of limitations,”. Illinois state laws dictate how much time a person has to file a lawsuit seeking compensation for injuries.
Depending on the type of legal claim, the statute of limitations may differ, as identified below:
- Personal Injury Action (735 ILCS 5/13-202): If a farm and agricultural equipment injury lawsuit involves allegations of negligence under Illinois law, the person seeking compensation has two years from the date the cause of action accrues to file a lawsuit, which is typically the date of injury.
- Products Liability Action (735 ILCS 5/13-213): Product liability is commonly for defective or poorly manufactured equipment. If a farm and agricultural equipment injury lawsuit involves product liability the person seeking compensation has two years from the date the person knew or reasonably should have known that the injuries at issue were caused by the defective nature of a product. The date a person knows defective equipment was the cause of the injuries is the day the injuries are sustained for purposes of calculating the statute of limitations.
- Wrongful Death (740 ILCS 180/1): In the event a person’s farm and agricultural equipment injuries are fatal, a legal representative (typically a surviving spouse or adult child) can file a wrongful death lawsuit but must do so no later than two years after the date of the victim’s death.
- Workers’ Compensation (820 ILCS 305/1): Under Illinois workers’ compensation laws, a qualifying injured worker has three years from the date of injury to file a claim seeking benefits.
Like many other states, Illinois has laws that provide exceptions to the statutes of limitations in certain situations, but such exceptions should never be relied upon. Rather, all individuals who sustain injuries and loved ones of fatally injured victims should assume that the general rule applies to their situation. It’s best to talk with an Illinois Farm Accident Lawyer who is experienced and can help determine if you have sufficient time to see legal actions.
Common Farm Injuries Case Types We’ve Worked On
Farming and agriculture encompass a wide variety of job duties, some of which involve the use of large and heavy equipment. In Illinois, injuries involving the use of such equipment can range from minor to severe or even fatal. Examples of these injuries include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Tractor rollovers;
- Falling off or becoming entangled with a tractor or other mobile machinery;
- Being crushed by equipment;
- Accidents resulting from defectively designed and/or defectively manufactured equipment;
- Accidents resulting from inadequately maintained equipment;
- Grain bin fatalities;
- Being struck by falling objects; and
- Exposure to toxic chemicals or substances.
While the use of farm and agricultural equipment involves some level of risk, many accidents are preventable. Many of these cases we’ve worked on are often linked to negligence, product liability, or a failure to follow state or federal regulations.
We’ve Represented Clients With Various Types of Injuries Resulting From a Farm Accidents
Not surprisingly, farm and agricultural equipment injuries have the potential to be severe, debilitating, permanent, and fatal. Most individuals who suffer injuries require extensive medical treatment that keeps them out of work for many weeks, months, years, or in some cases, permanently. Examples of these severe injuries include, among others, the following:
- Broken, fractured, and/or shattered bones;
- Soft tissue injuries that require surgical intervention (such as gashes or open wounds);
- Internal organ injuries;
- Head injuries, such as skull fractures, concussions, and more severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs);
- Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries, which may lead to partial or complete paralysis;
- Severe infections;
- Injuries associated with the ingestion or inhalation of toxic chemicals or substances emitted from equipment or machinery; and
Without question, suffering a fatal farm and agricultural equipment injury in Illinois is the worst possible outcome. For those who feel lucky to be alive, suffering permanent injuries are stressful and disruptive to daily life. This is why many injured individuals have the option of seeking compensation. Let us help you recover.
Frequently Asked Questions About Illinois Farm and Agricultural Injury Claims
Although many farm and agricultural equipment injuries share common causes, all cases are unique, and the outcome from case to case will also be unique. However, the general process of pursuing legal action – in any form – will be similar as all cases are governed by the same Illinois state laws. The following questions often arise when an injured person or loved one of a deceased victim explores legal options for seeking compensation concerning farm and agricultural injuries.
HOW LONG IS THE ENTIRE PROCESS FROM FILING A LAWSUIT TO OBTAINING COMPENSATION FOR INJURIES?
A lawsuit can progress very quickly or very slowly. The pace of any lawsuit is dependent on numerous variables, which include, among others, where the injury happens, when a trial date is available (which is often well over one year following the date a lawsuit is filed), and how many parties are involved in the lawsuit. If a lawsuit involves multiple defendants, the entire process of either pursuing a case to trial or seeking to settle a claim out of court can take much longer. Furthermore, there is never a guarantee that a person will be successful in obtaining compensation, but the chances are certainly greater with the assistance of legal counsel.
CAN AN INJURED PERSON FILE A LAWSUIT WITHOUT THE HELP OF A LAWYER?
Yes, a person can technically file a lawsuit “pro se,” which is when a person represents him or herself in court without the help of a lawyer. However, in doing so, an injured person may be limiting the chances to recover substantial compensation. Lawsuits can be expensive, especially when experts must be hired to support an injured party’s case. Therefore, anyone wishing to pursue legal action in Illinois for farm and agricultural equipment injuries must be aware of what steps are necessary to successfully obtain compensation through legal action.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MORE THAN ONE PARTY IS TO BLAME FOR CAUSING INJURIES?
Some injuries may be linked to the conduct of two or more parties, such as both an employer and co-worker, or multiple companies allegedly at fault in a product liability lawsuit involving farm and agricultural equipment. In such cases, blame may be shared by all defendants, and it is the job of the jury to determine (1) who is at fault and (2) to what extent each party is at fault. For example, parties may be assessed fault equally, or one party may be considered more at fault than another. Regardless of the number of parties at issue in a lawsuit, the injured victim needs strong legal representation from the start.
CAN AN INJURED PERSON SEEK WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS AND COMPENSATION BY FILING A LAWSUIT?
Typically, if an injured worker obtains workers’ compensation benefits, this person is not able to also seek compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the employer for the same injuries. However, simply obtaining workers’ compensation benefits in Illinois for workplace injuries does not prohibit the person from also filing a lawsuit concerning the same injuries against third parties. For example, if defective farm and agricultural equipment caused or contributed to one’s injuries, the injured worker may seek workers’ compensation benefits from their employer in addition to filing a product liability lawsuit against the designer and/or manufacturer of the defective equipment. Because legal options will be unique to each person’s case, anyone considering legal action should first consult with an Illinois Farm and Agricultural Equipment Injury Lawyer as soon as possible after sustaining injuries.
Illinois Farm Accident Lawyers Who Can Help
If you’ve been injured in a farming accident you should have the ability to explore ALL legal options. The amount of compensation you’ll receive depends on winning the best case. To determine your best course of action your best first step is to talk to one of our Farm Accident Lawyers. We have experience working with farming injuries, personal injury, wrongful death, workers’ compensation – and what works best for your specific situation.
Let us help you navigate the road ahead. If you or a loved one has suffered a farm or agricultural based injury call, text, or email our Farm Accident Lawyers at (815) 964-8303 for a FREE, confidential, and honest consultation about how we may be able to help in your case.