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Understanding Fault and Liability Laws in Illinois Auto Accident Cases

 Posted on August 18, 2023 in Personal Injury

Joliet Car Accident LawyersIllinois follows traditional tort liability laws and the fault-based model when assessing negligence and responsibility in multi-vehicle car, truck, motorcycle, and other motor vehicle accidents. Determining liability is complex but critical for injury claims. This blog post will go over what you should know about how Illinois handles fault and liability.

Illinois Uses a "Fault" Liability System

Illinois operates under a "fault"-based auto liability legal system when appraising responsibility for damages and injuries stemming from traffic collisions. This means the driver who was at fault and caused the accident, either fully or partially, can be held liable for monetary damages to injured parties through an auto insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. This differs from "no-fault" auto insurance states where drivers seek damages from their own insurer.

Negligence Is Determined By Assessing Actions

Courts must determine the percentage of fault and negligent actions of each party involved in the motor vehicle crash based on details like speeding, distraction, disregard of traffic signals, intoxication, reckless maneuvering, and other behaviors leading to the incident. Illinois follows modified comparative negligence laws.

Multi-Vehicle Crashes Add Complexity

In accidents involving more than two vehicles, the court undertakes an extensive process to evaluate each driver's respective actions and level of responsibility. While one party may bear the majority of liability, other drivers could share smaller percentages of fault as well.

Damages Are Sought From Liable Parties

The liable at-fault driver who is deemed fully or partially negligent in causing the auto accident is then required to financially compensate the not-at-fault injured party for damages, pain and suffering in proportion to the percentage of fault allocated to them. An experienced personal injury attorney can help maximize recovery.

Illinois Statute of Limitations

Injury claims resulting from an auto accident must be filed through a lawsuit or settlement within Illinois' two-year statute of limitations. Failure to do so may cause the injured party to forfeit their rights to seek financial damages. Therefore, it is crucial to take prompt and strategic legal action to ensure the protection of one's rights and maximize the chances of obtaining the compensation deserved.

Contact a Will County Car Accident Attorney

If you have been injured because of another motorist’s negligence, an experienced Illinois personal injury lawyer can help protect your rights. Call McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC at 815-727-0100 for a free consultation. We can help you make sure you are taking the right next steps for your case.





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