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Frequently Asked Questions2022-05-30T15:00:16-06:00
Why shouldn’t I cooperate with the insurance company?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

You should never give a recorded statement to the claims adjuster for the insurance company without consulting an attorney first. The claims adjuster works for the insurance company. Their job is to help the person or business who caused your injury. It is not to help you. They may try to get you to agree to misleading statements of how an accident occurred which will be used against you if the case goes to trial.

Never sign any papers sent by the insurance company without first talking to an attorney. A release called a general release will prevent you from suing other people liable for your injuries, even though the insurance company will not pay you for those additional claims.

Why do I need to talk to an attorney right away?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

You need to talk to an attorney as soon as possible so that all your rights are protected. It is imperative that a proper investigation be performed and potential evidence be gathered and preserved. An attorney at Collison Law Offices can find out how much insurance is available to compensate you. There can be complicated insurance questions including whether uninsured motorist coverage is available, whether multiple insurance policies can be stacked to provide additional coverage, whether underinsured motorist coverage is available, and whether the defendant has excess insurance coverage or an umbrella policy.

There also may be other people who are legally responsible for your injuries who you are not even aware of. One of our personal injury attorneys can explore all avenues of potential recovery. To contact an attorney at Collison Law Offices call (312) 906-7644 or click here for a free case evaluation.

What types of financial compensation can I get in a personal injury law suit?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

The “value” of your case depends on many factors, such as the extent of your injury, the amount of your medical bills, and your condition after you have finished treating with your doctors.  The calculation also involves the ability of the other party to pay a judgment, and whether you played any role in causing the accident.

There are many types of damages that may be awarded, including:

  • Medical Bills (including necessary future medical expenses)
  • Lost Wages, including Overtime
  • lost earning capacity (i.e. an inability to work in the future due to injuries)
  • Pain & Suffering
  • Physical Disability
  • Disfigurement
  • Permanent Scars
  • Emotional Trauma
  • Mental Anguish
  • Loss of Enjoyment
  • Loss of Love & Affection
  • Embarrassment
  • Mental Disability
  • Property Damage
  • All out of pocket expenses (transportation charges, house and yard work, and others)

All damages may include present and future expected losses. You may also be eligible to recover punitive damages if you can prove the defendant’s conduct was intentional or malicious.  Those with severe, incurable injuries that prevent them from working and were caused by intentional acts will likely recover higher compensation amounts.

We will not take your case unless we think it has a good chance of success.  Even so, there are no guarantees.  All we can do is give you a fair assessment of the outcome of your case based on our experience, the injury itself, and what jury verdicts have been achieved in cases similar to yours.

What should I do if I want to file a personal injury lawsuit?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury due to the negligence or wrongdoing of another party, it is important to seek the help of an experienced personal injury attorney who will protect your legal rights and maximize your interests. Please contact us today at 312-906-7644 to speak to a qualified personal injury lawyer free of charge, or click here for a free case evaluation.

What should I do if I am in an automobile accident?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00
  1. STOP- no matter what kind of accident you are involved in, even if you are not at fault, you must stop.  If you leave the scene of an accident without stopping, you could be charged with a crime.
  2. Call for help- Call 911 and explain the situation and make sure to give your exact location.
  3. Tell the police the truth.  Make sure to tell the police what happened; however do not admit to fault.  You may think you are in the wrong, only to find out later that someone else is legally responsible.  Ask for a copy of the police report.
  4. Document what happened.  While the details are still fresh in your memory, write everything you can remember down on paper.  Include details about the accident, date, time, road and traffic conditions, the weather, speed of the cars involved and any details regarding any conversations you had or overheard.  Draw a diagram of what happened.  Get information on any witnesses.
  5. Take Photographs.  Keep a disposable camera in your car glove box or use the camera on your cell phone.  Take multiple photographs of all vehicles involves in the collision.  Include photos of the inside and outside of the cars, anything that appears broken or dented, license plates, street signs and skid marks.  Take photographs of all the people who where involved, including passengers.  Have someone watch for traffic while you take the photos.
  6. Exchange information.  Exchange names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance company name, policy number, license plate number, driver’s license number and the vehicle owners name.  If the vehicle is owned by someone other than the driver, get as much information on the owner as possible.
  7. Get witness information.  Try to get witnesses names, addresses, telephone numbers and license plates.  Ask all witnesses to stay to talk with the police.
  8. Seek medical attention.  It is not unusual to feel uninjured immediately after an accident.  If you believe that there is any possibility that you could be injured, seek medical attention immediately.  Tell the doctors of any complaints of pain/discomfort, any injuries and past medical history.
  9. Report to your insurance company.  Call your insurance company or broker and provide them with all the information about what happened, if anyone was injured and the names of any witnesses.
  10. Call Collison Law Offices if you suffered personal injury or property damage.  You can call us at 312-906-7644 or click here for a free case evaluation.
What is the statute of limitations for my case?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

The statute of limitations is the time in which you have to file a lawsuit. When the statute of limitations expires on your case, you simply don’t have a case anymore. Statutes of limitation differ not only from state to state, but also in regard to the kinds of lawsuits involved.

In Illinois, the statutes of limitations for certain lawsuits, including suits against governmental agencies, are shorter than that for other types of personal injury cases. In general, however, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Illinois is two years, and the time begins from the date of the accident.  Of course, there are exceptions, and one of our experienced lawyers at Collison Law Offices can help you determine the time you have to bring your case.

What is a personal injury lawsuit?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

If another person’s (or corporation’s) negligence or recklessness caused you harm, you may be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit to seek compensation for the damages you have suffered.

What if I am unsatisfied with my current attorney?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

A good personal injury lawyer will always be available to you for any reason throughout your case, and they will be prompt in getting back to you. They will be on time and be honest with you about the possible options and outcomes of your personal injury suit. They will consistently move your case forward as quickly as possible.

If you are unhappy with your current attorney for any reason and want to change lawyers, it is very easy to do so.  Switching law firms should happen if you are unhappy with your current lawyer. Remember, your attorneys are working for you and you should be satisfied with the work that they are doing.

In Illinois, you have an absolute right to choose the lawyer you want to work on your case – even if you have signed an agreement with another lawyer.  If you are unhappy with your present lawyer, please call Collison Law Offices at 312-906-7644 to discuss the possibility of allowing us to work for you or click here for a free case evaluation.

What about my lost wages?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

You are entitled to full compensation for time off work due to your injuries. Keep your own log of your time off work, and request a note from your doctor.

My insurance agent says I can handle the case myself without a lawyer. Is this a good idea?2022-05-30T14:56:42-06:00

Having worked as lawyers for years, we know that no matter how nice insurance adjusters sound on the phone, they have one goal in mind above all others–to pay you as little as possible.

Insurance companies do not work for you.  They rarely help you figure out your legal rights, and may not fully understand them.  Most importantly, they rarely give you a fair assessment of the value of your case.

One of the nation’s largest insurance companies actually stated that personal injury cases are a “Zero Sum Economic Game” and that in order for the insurance company to “win” that YOU must lose. 

It has recently been proven (based on internal insurance company documents) what we have known for years, that insurance companies will push you to accept quick settlements without the help of lawyers. If you try to fight for more money without the help of a lawyer, you will face insurance company attorneys who to refuse to negotiate with you and will drag the case out for years in the hope of forcing you to settle for a small fraction of your cases worth.  That same national insurance company acknowledged that when injured people hire lawyers, the insurance company an average pays 50% more to injured parties.   

There are several reasons why one of Collison Law Offices’ lawyers can help you.  The insurance companies know that they can’t push us around and that we will fight for your rights.  We will seek every category of damages that applies to your case, and find ways to support those damages with evidence that will be admissible in court to ensure that you receive a just and fair recovery.

If you take my case, what will I have to do?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

If you hire us to be your lawyers, you will be a significant part of your case team.  We will ask you to help us gather the information that we will use to support your case.

Just as we will keep you informed about your case, you will need to keep us informed about your medical treatment and your physical limitations.  After we file the lawsuit, you will have to answer written questions called interrogatories and sit for a question-and-answer period with the opposing lawyer called a “deposition.”  (Of course, we’ll prepare you first, find a time that is convenient for you, and sit next to you during the deposition).  You may have to be evaluated by other doctors.  If your case does not settle, you will have to be present for the trial.

How long will it take?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

Even though many cases settle before trial, this does not usually happen until both sides have prepared the case.  Generally, lawsuits take about two years from filing to trial.  This can vary significantly in either direction based on the complexity of your case, the congestion of court dockets, and other factors.

Our advice to our clients?  Be patient.  We are always willing to tell you exactly what is happening with your case.  In the meantime, you have to trust that we are working hard for you.

Can I talk to you about my case for free?2022-05-30T14:56:41-06:00

Yes.  If you want to talk to one of our lawyers about a case, just call on the phone and ask or click here for a free case evaluation.  After you have answered a few basic questions, we will be happy to discuss your case for free on the telephone or in our office.  Generally, it will take only ten to thirty minutes for us to decide whether or not we can help you.

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