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Please fill out the form below and a representative at Malman Law will contact you within 24 hours to discuss the specifics of your personal injury case.
Wednesday, March 28, 2018
You were involved in a severe motorcycle accident. You have injuries, but you will recover. However, the time off work and the extensive medical costs are starting to drain you financially, which makes you turn to the idea of filing a personal injury lawsuit.
While you did not cause the accident, you feel that you might have contributed to the injuries in that accident. For example, you chose not to wear a helmet. Therefore, you suffered serious injuries, including a traumatic brain injury. Since you did not wear a helmet, are you partially at-fault here?
If so, how does that impact your compensation value, or will you receive compensation at all?
These types of cases are quite common, especially motorcycle and vehicle accident cases. One party might have contributed slightly to the accident or injury but did not cause the incident itself. While you could try to battle the insurance company and prove that you are not to blame, it is best that you consult with an injury attorney any time you are dealing with an injury case – especially one that involves you being partially at-fault.
When you might be partially to blame for your injuries, the insurance company uses it to their advantage. They will try to push the blame as much on you as possible to reduce their losses or get the case thrown out. Therefore, any time you question your role in the accident, you should speak with an attorney. An attorney can protect you from this common strategy used by insurance companies and defense attorneys.
Currently, the state of Illinois has no helmet requirements for motorcycle riders. While there have been attempts, once you are over 18 years old, you are not required to wear a motorcycle helmet. While you might not receive a citation for not wearing your helmet, your failure to wear a helmet could be used against you in a civil case.
The motorist might have caused the accident, but if most of your injuries and damages came from a traumatic brain injury (TBI), the insurance company could argue that your choice to not wear a helmet is your contribution and that their client is not responsible 100 percent for the damages associated with that injury.
Before we can discuss how your negligence might affect your case, we must first talk about how the negligence system works in the state of Illinois. Illinois uses the comparative method for negligence.
Negligence is what determines liability in an accident. In a motorcycle accident in Illinois, you must show which party was the most negligent to decide on how compensation is apportioned. There are two principal types of negligence used: comparative and contributory. Sometimes these terms are used synonymously, but they should not be. These are two very different types of negligence determinations.
Some states use contributory, while others use comparative or a modified version of comparative. Most states today use comparative, but there are still a few states relying on the older contributory rules.
Contributory negligence laws do not allow a victim to recover compensation if they are even partially at-fault. Therefore, if the courts find that you are even five percent at-fault, you are barred from seeking compensation entirely. As you can see, many victims would be unable to collect compensation, because all it takes is a good enough defense attorney to argue that the victim was even a portion at-fault.
That is why most states use comparative or modified comparative negligence laws instead. Comparative laws are used in Illinois, and they allow the injured party to collect compensation still even if they are partially at-fault for the accident. However, their damages are reduced with respect to the amount of fault.
There are three types of comparative negligence being used in various states:
In pure comparative negligence, the judge assigns each party a degree of fault in the accident. Then, depending on the amount of responsibility assigned to you, your compensation will be reduced. For example, if your case settles at $100,000, but you were found 30 percent at-fault, your reward is reduced by $30,000 – which means you get $70,000.
In a modified comparative negligence system, which is what is used in Illinois, the judge looks at the percentage of fault by each party. Unlike pure comparative negligence, if your fault percentage goes over a threshold, then you will be barred from seeking compensation.
Some states use the 50 percent bar, while others use the 51 percent. In Illinois, the law applies the 51 percent bar. Therefore, if the judge decides that you are 51 percent or more at-fault, then you cannot collect compensation for your injuries. You can, however, still obtain compensation if you are 50 percent or less at-fault.
Unfortunately, because the state allows you to collect compensation up to 50 percent or less fault, many insurance companies will try to prove you are 51 percent or more at-fault. The evidence is your best defense against this common tactic. The more evidence you have proving fault, the easier it will be to thwart these attempts.
Some evidence your attorney will use to protect you include:
Even if you are at-fault for the accident (partially), you can collect compensation for your injuries and damages. Some compensation you might be entitled to include:
Anytime you suffer from an accident, it is in your best interest to speak with an attorney. An attorney has experience handling accident claims, including ones where you might be at-fault even partially. Your attorney can handle the investigation, evidence collection, negotiations, and the tedious tasks so that you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
After your motorcycle accident, seek medical attention right away. Then, contact the advocates at Malman Law. Our attorneys are here to help you receive maximum compensation. Do not assume that you cannot win a case just because you were partially at-fault. Our team has helped countless victims just like you receive compensation for their injuries.
Speak with an attorney today by calling 1-312-629-0999 or request more information online.
They area very helpful and when it come to getting things done with your case I had the pleasureof working with Jason Kellerman he was awesome I highly recommend them.
- Britany Weaver
I’m very pleased to recommend Malman Law to my friends and relatives! I have to mention how efficient and professional in dealing with my case has been with everyone that I’ve been in contact with at Malman Law. Mrs. Sabo is outstanding as well as her secretary and assistant in responding quickly to any of my questions or concerns. This firm has gone above and beyond to keep me updated and get answers to my questions at any time, weekends included! Malman Law rules in my opinion!
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I’ve been knowing about this Law firm for many years through friends, referrals & advertisements , never I thought I would need their services , because I believed things & situations don’t happen to me like this , long story short I was in situation that I needed help & advice!!! The right direction , I connected with the Firm & a very patient , understanding professional woman by the name of Margie assisted me in what I needed 🙂 Thank you I will refer as I was as referred as well This firm really does care !
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I was rear-ended by a semi-truck on my way to work. I was transported to the hospital and my car was totaled. In the aftermath, Dan Petrich and Anna Schmidt from Malman Law helped me get set up with physical therapy and negotiated with the insurance companies to make sure the resulting settlement would cover my medical bills and a rental car until I could get a new car. I would highly recommend their services.
would do everything they could for me.
- Tony S.
I contacted Malman Law go my work injury. So professional from my first phone call. Mr. Malman’s investigator, Dan, came right out to our home. Everything was explained in detail so I know what to expect during this process. I certainly recommend anyone ever in need of a personal injury lawyer to call Malman Law. Truly the best!! Thanks everyone!
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Attorney Greg Lamorena was my lawyer when I slipped and fell. He kept me updated throughout the case and was always available to talk when I had questions. He is a great lawyer and could not be happier about my settlement!
- Annie Ong
Alexis was the attorney on my case! She kept me in the loop about everything with my case. If I had any concerns I was able to contact her and she’ll answer my questions right away. If your interested in working with Malman Law I would highly recommend Alexis she was GREAT. I would highly recommend Malman Law if you’re ever in need!
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I have had an amazing experiences with Malman law so far. From the start Dan was super easy to work with, got me the medical attention I needed and fast. Couldn’t ask for better communication. Neil Kilcoyne has been nothing but the best I could not recommend a better attorney. Malman Law is a 10 out of 10 law firm.
- Trevor Harris
Hi I just want to acknowledge Jay McCarron, Kelly & the Firm at Malman Law for representing me as they continue to work on my case. Thanks for keeping me updated & responding quickly to any of my questions or concerns. I would Highly recommend you and your firm to friends & family. E. P.
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I had the best experience with Jason and Jay attorneys from Malman Law they really went all the way to settle my case I’m telling you there just the best!! Recommend 100%!
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Adam Meadow acted as the attorney for a family member who was in a car accident. He was highly personable and actively listened to our issues throughout the litigation process. He was able to get us a settlement for the repairations of the accident. We would recommend their services!
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Excellent customer service and great experience. Malman law handled the whole process and it was very smooth. The settlement was a great success. I would choose malman law again in the future.
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Helped me out of a big jam when my auto was hit twice when and the other drivers had no insurance. Adam Meadow is the only Lawyer I will call for helping me an my daughter.
- Devri Lott
I cannot give enough praise to the team at Malman Law, for helping with my case . My children were involved in a auto collision and the attorney Adam along with his paralegal Michelle worked diligently until the matter was resolved and my entire family was happy. I would definitely recommend Malman Law for anybody going through legal troubles.
- Adrian Lopez
A close friend recommended me to Malman Law. I currently have a case with them due to a car accident I had and ever since the accident they have been taking care of everything for me without me having to worry about anything. They took care of the medical bills & helped me get ph