Although Auto-Owners is not the largest auto insurance company out there, it still insures millions of drivers. You may think of them as your ally, and it certainly is nice to have someone guaranteeing your liability in case of an accident. You shouldn’t hesitate to file a claim if you are involved in an accident that is covered by one of their policies. Once you file a claim against Auto-Owners, however, whether as a direct claimant against your own auto insurance policy or as a third-party claimant against the at-fault driver’s policy, your “ally” immediately becomes your adversary.
This is not the insurance company’s fault. It’s just how the insurance industry works – an insurance company makes money by accepting premiums and loses money by paying claims. You’re just going to need effective legal representation, that’s all. Here at Malman Law, personal injury law is what we do for a living, and it is all we do. Retaining us to represent you is no shot in the dark – we win 95 percent of our cases, year in and year out. Of course, we understand that you need money today, not tomorrow, and we will do our best to settle your case quickly – but not at the expense of maximum compensation for you. Although we settle the vast majority of our clients’ cases, we are ready and willing to battle it out in court should that become necessary. Insurance companies know about our lawsuit track record and, quite frankly, they usually do not want to mess with us in court. The reality of the Illinois legal system is that, in most cases, it takes more than just a good case to win maximum compensation – you need experienced legal representation on your side. We are so confident of our track record that we will not charge you a penny in legal fees unless we obtain a recovery for you. Furthermore, whatever you do end up paying will be proportionate to the amount of your recovery. “Two years ago I was involved in a trucking accident involving a 14-wheeler truck that nearly disabled me for life. Steve fought to make sure that I received the most possible compensation for my injuries. I was about to take the insurance company’s lowball offer, but decided to call Steve first – it was the best decision I’ve made yet.” – Malman Law client
Unless the other driver caused the accident intentionally (a “road rage” incident, for example), you will have to prove negligence or recklessness on the part of the other driver. There are two ways to do this. A violation of a traffic law will usually suffice as long as it caused the accident. Otherwise, careless behavior might be negligent under the circumstances, even if it wasn’t illegal. Some examples are:
There are several steps you need to take:
Your own insurance company might pay these bills, even if they are not ultimately liable for the claim. If they do, they will have a lien on any verdict or settlement that you receive. It is also possible to make a deal with your healthcare provider to delay bill collection action until you receive compensation.
Yes, and you can win the lawsuit if you can prove that the airbag was defective and unreasonably dangerous as defined by Illinois product liability law. You will only be able to recover for damages that you suffered because the airbag failed to deploy, not for the accident itself (look to the driver who caused the accident for further compensation).
No, a child can’t – the court will have to appoint a guardian to sue on the child’s behalf if under 18. The court usually appoints a close relative. Any amount he or she receives is likely to be put into a bank account that resembles a trust fund in certain ways.
“Pain and suffering” is a form of non-economic damages under Illinois law. As long as you were physically injured, you should be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering. In some cases, pain and suffering damages can amount to well over 50 percent of your total compensation.
2 years ago I was involved in a trucking accident involving a 14-wheeler truck that nearly disabled me for life. Steve fought to make sure that I received the most possible compensation for my injuries. I was about to take the insurance company’s lowball offer, but decided to call Steve first – it was the best decision I’ve made yet
NOAH TAFFELPersonal Injury Victim