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Rolling Meadows car accident lawyersApril is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. The Illinois State Police Department and the Illinois Department of Transportation have partnered with local law enforcement agencies across the state in an effort to curb cell phone use behind the wheel. While most people are aware that texting and driving is illegal, few realize just how severe an issue distracted driving has become. According to a recent study, distracted driving is a factor in over a million auto collisions each year. Using a cell phone while driving increases the chances of a crash by an astounding 400 percent.

Cell Phone Use While Driving is Dangerous and Unlawful

Although many drivers think nothing of reading or sending a message while driving, this practice leads to thousands of injury-causing and deadly car accidents every year. Some drivers justify cell phone use behind the wheel because they are only looking down at their cell phone for a few seconds at a time. However, a driver traveling at 55 mph who looks down for as few as five seconds travels over 400 feet without looking at the road. If a vehicle, pedestrian, or cyclist appears in the driver’s path, he or she may not have enough time to avoid a collision.

Illinois has outlawed the use of hand-held phones and other portable electronic devices while driving. This includes texting and driving as well as video chatting, reading messages, using online maps, checking social media, or watching videos while driving. Hands-free cell phone use is permitted for drivers over the age of 18, however, drivers are encouraged to pull over if they need to make a call. A violation of Illinois’s texting and driving law that results in a serious injury is a Class A misdemeanor offense. Cell phone use while driving that causes another person’s death is a Class 4 felony.

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Schaumburg medical malpractice lawyersCancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. Almost everyone has a story of how cancer has touched their lives. Fortunately, medical advances have significantly decreased the rate at which people die of cancer. Cancer can now be detected at an earlier stage and more and more people can get the treatment they need before the disease takes their lives. However, to get the life-saving cancer treatment a patient needs, he or she must first be diagnosed with the disease by a physician. Failing to promptly diagnose cancer can constitute a form of medical malpractice.

Delayed Diagnosis or Misdiagnosis of Cancer

Receiving a diagnosis is the first step to stopping the spread of cancer. When a doctor or specialist fails to see the warning signs of cancer and order the appropriate cancer screening tests, a patient may suffer irreparable harm. Sadly, some patients die because a medical professional fails to diagnose cancer.

There are many different ways in which medical negligence can lead to a delayed, misdiagnosis, or missed diagnosis of cancer, including:

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Palatine workplace injury attorneysA work accident such as a fall, caught-between accident, or equipment-related injury can cause profound suffering and financial distress. Workers’ compensation benefits are intended to reimburse an injured worker for work injuries that occur on the job. Although workers’ compensation insurance is mandatory for all Illinois employers, getting the compensation you need and deserve after a work accident can be problematic—especially when the accident has worsened a pre-existing injury.

Work Injuries Can Make an Existing Medical Condition Worse

Most adults struggle with at least one health concern. They may have a bad knee from an old sports injury, degenerative disc disease, an inherited disorder, or countless other medical conditions. When a work accident worsens an employee’s medical condition, this is also covered by workers’ compensation insurance. However, workers’ compensation claims involving aggravation of preexisting conditions are often more complex than claims involving a brand-new injury or medical condition. Workers’ compensation insurance companies or employers may argue that the condition is unrelated to the accident or that the accident did not actually worsen the condition. The insurance company may deny your claim or offer you less than you deserve.

Fighting for Compensation for an Aggravated Health Concern

Aggravation of an existing medical issue can lead to painful, debilitating symptoms. The worker may need significant medical intervention including ongoing care like physical therapy. The worker may also be unable to work for months or years because of the accident. Some workers may be permanently disabled when a work accident exacerbates an existing injury. Workers’ compensation insurance should cover these losses.

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Arlington Heights personal injury attorneysBrain injuries can vary considerably in severity. Some brain injury sufferers only experience short-term, mild symptoms. Other brain injury victims suffer from debilitating symptoms that prevent them from working or even enjoying life as they once did. If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury in a car accident in Illinois, you may be entitled to compensation. However, getting the compensation you deserve may be a very challenging task.

Reimbursement for Medical Expenses Caused by a Brain Injury

Brain injuries are typically diagnosed through imaging tests including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computerized tomography (CT) scans. Brain injuries are often difficult to diagnose because the symptoms may not appear for a few hours or days after the accident. Severe brain injuries may be immediately apparent and require emergency medical intervention. Sometimes, surgery is needed to stop bleeding in the brain or relieve the pressure inside of the skull. Some brain injury sufferers must be placed in a temporary coma so that the brain has time to heal. Many severe brain injury sufferers require rehabilitative care and ongoing medical treatment for months or years.

The costs associated with these medical treatments can be exorbitant. Unfortunately, many car insurance companies try to get brain injury sufferers to settle for less than they need to cover their medical bills and other damages. In cases like these, it may be possible to bring a personal injury claim against the party that caused the accident. A personal injury claim may allow the victim to recover compensation for medical bills as well as other damages like lost income from missed work and reduced earning potential.

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Palatine sex crime injury attorneysThe Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) reports that one individual is sexually assaulted every 73 seconds in the United States. The effect that sexual violence has on the victim cannot be overstated. Sexual abuse victims often bear physical and psychological scars for the rest of their lives. If you or a loved one were the victim of sexual abuse, you should know that you may be able to hold the perpetrator accountable and recover damages through a personal injury lawsuit.

How a Personal Injury Case Differs From a Criminal Case

Sadly, many sexual abuse victims are abused by someone that they trusted. The perpetrator may be a family member, teacher, religious authority, community member, or another respected figure. This can often make it even harder for the victim to report the abuse. Some sexual abuse survivors can hold their abuser accountable through criminal proceedings. However, there is sometimes not enough evidence for the prosecution to secure a conviction against the perpetrator. Even if the criminal case is successful, a criminal conviction against an abuser does not offer the victim restitution.

A personal injury lawsuit is a civil case that may be brought in the absence of a conviction or in addition to a criminal case. The perpetrator does not need to be convicted of sexual abuse or another sex crime for the victim to bring a civil claim against him or her. In fact, it is possible to bring a successful civil case against the perpetrator even if the perpetrator was acquitted of criminal charges. This is because the standard of proof in a personal injury case is lower than that of a criminal case. Prosecutors must prove guilt “beyond a reasonable doubt” to get a criminal conviction. To hold a perpetrator civilly liable for the abuse, his or her actions must be proven "by a preponderance of the evidence,”—which means that the judge or jury must be convinced that the perpetrator was more likely than not to have caused the injuries alleged in the lawsuit. 

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