Car Accidents While on Vacation
Vehicle Collision Lawyers Serving Wheaton and Schaumburg Residents
Everyone needs a vacation once in a while. Whether you take your car or rent one, it is vital to know what to do if you find yourself in a car wreck while on vacation. While this is the last thing anyone wants to deal with on vacation, the truth is that an accident can happen to anyone at any time, so it is important to be cautious. If you were injured in a collision while out of town, our Wheaton and Schaumburg car accident attorneys are here to help. We understand how to navigate these complex cases and assist you in seeking the money damages you may be owed.
Unique Concerns Pertaining to Car Accidents While on Vacation
Dealing with a car accident while on vacation can be stressful for reasons beyond the accident itself. You may be far away from home, you may not know where to turn to for help, and/or you may be dealing with serious injuries that prevent you from returning home. In addition, you may have been driving a rental car at the time of the wreck, which can further complicate insurance issues. Since each state sets their own insurance laws, you might encounter laws in the state where your accident took place that are entirely different than what you expected.
Filing a Claim After a Car Accident on Vacation
Generally, car accident claims are filed in the state where the accident took place. Put simply, the location of the crash determines which state laws are applicable to the case. This is important because state laws differ when it comes to victims’ rights and insurance coverage levels, which can directly impact the amount of compensation a plaintiff is able to recover. For instance, if the accident occurred in Michigan, the case would likely be filed in Michigan where its state laws would be applied. However, you should be aware that the vast majority of cases settle prior to going to trial, which is much more time consuming and expensive than settling.
Negligence is often the legal claim asserted against a driver after an accident. If negligence can be established, the car accident victim can recover damages. Negligence in this context is the failure to take proper care behind the wheel, causing an accident and injuries. To prove negligence, the plaintiff bears the burden of establishing the following elements: the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care; the defendant violated the duty of care owed to the plaintiff; and the defendant’s violation was a direct cause of the accident and resulting injury.
For accidents that take place within Illinois, it is important to note that the victim can still recover compensation even if he or she was partially at fault for the accident. Illinois follows the modified comparative negligence doctrine, in which fault is relatively apportioned to each party involved in the wreck. This means that any damages awarded to the plaintiff will simply be reduced by his or her percentage of fault. However, a plaintiff who is 50 percent or more at fault will be barred from recovering compensation altogether. A knowledgeable injury lawyer can assess whether this may be an issue in your case.
Damages in Car Accident Claims
After establishing fault, victims may be entitled to recover compensation for items such as hospital bills, lost wages from work, property damage, pain and suffering, rehabilitation costs, and more. Since the defendant’s insurance company will typically try to minimize the amount of money they have to pay in relation to the accident, it is critical to document all of the costs associated with the accident.
Wheaton and Schaumburg Attorneys for Car Accident Victims
If you have been injured in a car accident while on vacation, our seasoned Wheaton and Schaumburg lawyers may be able to help. At Therman Law Offices, we know that dealing with a car accident claim is never something someone wants to do while on vacation, but it is important to handle it in the correct way so you can move forward as quickly as possible. We proudly serve clients from communities including Westmont, Oakbrook Terrace, Clarendon Hills, Downers Grove, Lisle, Darien, and Bolingbrook. For a free consultation about your case, please call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online.