No matter where you live, you’ve probably seen many local commercials for personal injury lawyers, and Chicago is no different. However, many people may not know that the term “personal injury” covers a wide variety of incidents that inflicts a physical injury onto a person’s body. In fact, some personal injury law firms only specialize in one or two areas. Here are five reasons you would need to contact a personal injury lawyer in Chicago.
1: Compensation for a Work Injury
Unfortunately, work injuries aren’t uncommon in Chicago— in fact, Illinois saw more than 100,000 non-fatal work injuries in 2021. Some of the most common workplace injuries include falls (whether from a height or as a result of slipping or tripping), repetitive motions, fires, or biological/chemical/electrical hazards. Falls, fires, and repetitive motions are more common in the majority of workplaces, whereas biological/chemical/electrical hazards are usually more common in specific types of work.
It’s important to note that injured employees can only file a workers’ compensation claim if their injuries resulted from no fault of their own. Still, many employees refuse to give their employees fair compensation, so in this case, you’d need to contact a personal injury lawyer.
2: Medical Errors
Also known as medical malpractice, medical errors typically occur in hospitals, but they can also occur in doctor’s offices and other medical settings. Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional makes a mistake that results in injury or death, whether due to negligence or intentional. Examples of medical malpractice include:
- Surgical errors
- Pharmacy errors
- Nursing home neglect
- Improper diagnostics/misdiagnosis
- Birth injuries
- Anesthesia errors
Those who have experienced a medical error due to the negligence of their doctor(s) should contact a personal injury lawyer to seek compensation.
3: Motor Vehicle Accident
The majority of people know that a personal injury lawyer is who you’d contact if you were involved in a motor vehicle accident. These types of accidents can involve cars, big trucks, motorcycles, and even bicyclists and pedestrians. Motor vehicle accidents of all types usually result in one or more drivers not obeying traffic rules, due to:
- Distracted driving (e.g., texting)
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
Inclement weather can also result in motor vehicle accidents, so it’s important for drivers to exercise extreme caution during certain weather conditions. However, not all drivers will do this, or maybe they’re just speeding in general or not completely obeying traffic laws. In this case, an accident is more likely to occur and the victims can call a personal injury lawyer.
4: Injured on a Premise
Also known as premise liability, individuals can become injured on a premise and will be entitled to compensation if the injury could have been prevented by the property owner. Examples of situations that constitutes a premise liability case include:
- Asbestos exposure
- Dog and other animal bites
- Inadequate security
- Poor lighting that causes falls
- Slippery floors that cause falls
It’s understandable that a property may be under maintenance or something may be broken or not functioning properly. However, it’s the property owner’s responsibility to have these things fixed and to mark the potential hazards on their premises so that visitors can take extra precautions. If property owners fail to do so, they can be held liable.
5: Recalled Drugs and Products
Drug and product recalls are actually pretty common, but when manufacturers are aware of the dangers their products pose to consumers and don’t alert the public, they can be held liable for any harm that comes to those consumers. This can be filed as either a class action lawsuit (injury victims are grouped as one plaintiff) or a mass tort (multiple lawsuits against one defendant).
A personal injury lawyer in Chicago can help you if you believe that a now-recalled product had caused an injury, illness, or disease that you previously did not suffer from.
Any of these incidents can also result in an accidental (or intentional) death, and a personal injury lawyer can also help you in this situation, as wrongful death falls under personal injury. However, you must make sure that the personal injury lawyer in Chicago that you contact practices in your area of concern. Again, some personal injury lawyers only specialize in workers’ compensation, motor vehicle accidents, or premises liability. On the other hand, some may specialize in all or more of these areas, so make sure to do your research.