A lot of folks are unsure of what happens after a car accident and a lawyer’s role in the process. Brassfield, Krueger, & Ramlow help our clients maximize their settlement award when they file a claim against their own or another party’s insurance. This is especially important when you are suffering from extensive injuries. You will likely be out of work and require extensive rehabilitation and rest. You want to ensure that the money you receive from your injury settlement covers not only your medical expenses but ensures that you can live comfortably while you are out of work.
The catch, of course, is that the insurance company is not really interested in helping you do that, which is why you need a Morris car accident attorney to help litigate your claim.
The claims process will be slightly different depending on who is responsible for the accident. Below, we will take a look at the most common scenarios.
Illinois operates on a modified comparative negligence rule. Under a pure comparative negligence rule, the driver is responsible for whatever this or her percentage of fault is. If the driver is 20% responsible for the accident, then the other driver may sue them for 20% of their damages. In Illinois, a driver who initiates a lawsuit against another driver must 49% at fault or less. Those who are 50% or greater may not initiate a lawsuit against the other driver.
If the other driver is 51% or more responsible for the accident, then you may initiate a lawsuit against that driver and recover 51% (or more) of your damages. This requires that you file a claim against the other party’s insurance company.
What most folks do not understand is that the other driver’s insurance company has a fiduciary responsibility to ensure the best possible outcome for their policyholder. It also helps their own bottom line to reduce their client’s liability. So the insurance company will force you to prove your case against their policyholder. This is where an experienced Morris car accident attorney can help.
If you are at fault for the car accident and you carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage, you can make a claim against that policy. This policy will pay out in the event that you are injured and it will not matter who is to blame for the accident. This is the way that “no-fault” states work by default. Sometimes, however, the insurance company will not want to cover certain medical expenses or will outright deny your claim. The Morris car accident attorneys at Brassfield, Krueger, & Ramlow can help.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist policies (UM/UIM) cover you in the event that the accident was caused by a driver who did not have insurance at the time of the accident or fled the scene. In addition, it covers you when your total expenses are greater than the other driver’s policy limit. In this case, you would file a claim with your own insurance policy. If the settlement offer covers all of your damages, then that is great. Most times it will not. The insurance company will only offer you a fraction of what you are owed. In this case, you should hire a Morris car accident attorney.
Our attorneys litigate car accident claims when insurance companies do not want to pay up. In addition, we can sue drivers directly when it is appropriate. Give us a call or contact us online today.
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