Accidents can range from the minor to the severe and even the fatal in the worst case scenarios. Along with the nature of the accident, the nature of the injuries that result can vary as well.
In the best case scenario, no injuries will result from an accident and those involved will be able to move forward with their lives. But too often, it is innocent victims of an incident that are forced to bear the burden of injuries and the expenses that go with them.
Every year, thousands of residents and visitors in Chicago are victimized and injured in accidents, whether they are car accidents, bus accidents, slip and falls, medical malpractice, bicycle accident, or other type of incident. Though nothing can reverse these accidents once they have occurred, relief can be sought and obtained so that victims can receive the medical help they need and deserve.
Common Types of Personal Injuries
Personal injury is a very broad field of law that includes all different kinds of injuries. However, there are a few types of injuries that are particularly common. Here are four examples of common injuries that lead to personal injury claims.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries, or TBI, occur when the head is struck or penetrated by a great force. TBI cases that are eligible for personal injury claims are usually caused by motor vehicle accidents, slips and falls, and workplace injuries. TBIs are often classified as mild, moderate, or severe. But regardless of how a brain injury is classified, it can seriously affect a person’s life. Brain injuries can also be extremely costly to treat and recover from, which is why it is often necessary to pursue a compensation claim. Initial treatment, hospital stays, surgery, rehabilitation, and missed time from work can all add up to a significant financial burden. If a person suffers a TBI due to negligence, they should speak to an attorney to explore their options for financial recovery.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries refer to damage to any part of the spinal cord, ligaments, muscles, or nerves that are located in and around the spinal cord. Spinal cord injuries are technically their own category of injury. However, they are very similar to neck and back injuries. These types of injuries can occur because of a sudden blow to the spine, which can twist, rip, or damage the nerves or ligaments in the spine or break one of the vertebrae, which can cause serious pain and sensory or mobility problems. A spinal cord injury often causes permanent loss of strength, sensation, and mobility in different parts of the body. This loss of function requires rehabilitation, surgery, assistive devices, and medications to aid in recovery. All of these treatments and medical interventions create significant financial stress and pain and suffering for victims of injury accidents. The types of accidents that commonly cause spinal injuries include motor vehicle accidents, slips, trips, and falls, and workplace accidents.
Broken Bones and Fractures
Simple broken bones and fractures, like those that occur to the arm or foot, are usually easily treated and heal quickly with the help of a cast. However, if the bone is damaged enough, or multiple bones are broken at the same time, things can get much more complicated and much more painful. Multiple broken bones or crushed bones may require a long rehabilitation process and multiple surgeries and can lead to a significant amount of time away from work and daily activities.
Internal injuries can be scary since you cannot see them and most people know very little about them. The most common types of internal injuries are internal bleeding and damage to the organs. If you are hurt in a significant traumatic event, like a serious car accident, it is vitally important to see a doctor right away so that you can be examined for internal injuries. It's common for adrenaline and shock to mask internal injuries so a medical evaluation is a good idea. Internal injuries can require anything from bedrest to emergency surgery to treat. As such, the financial impact of internal injuries varies tremendously from case to case.
Common Types of Accidents that Cause Injuries in Chicago
One of the most common reasons that injuries occur in Chicago is the prevalence of car accidents across the city. In 2012 alone, 274,111 motor vehicle collisions took place in Illinois with 131,402 occurring in Cook County. As the most densely populated county in the state, Cook County tops the number of collisions every year with its citizens suffering the consequences.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Motor vehicle accidents (MVAs) include collisions involving cars, trucks, bicycles, pedestrians, and recreational vehicles, like boats and ATVs. Motor vehicle accidents most often occur because of a driver’s negligence. In a car accident, some of the most common actions that lead to injuries are texting while driving, driving too fast, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Because of the broad definition of a motor vehicle accident, the types of injuries that are caused by MVAs vary dramatically. The types of injuries that may occur on a boat or ATV are often dramatically different from the types of injuries that occur to a pedestrian struck by a car.
In truck accidents, injuries are often much more severe than they are in accidents involving only passenger vehicles. Because of the larger mass of trucks compared with cars, the types of injuries that usually result from semi-truck accidents often create much larger medical bills, longer periods of missed wages, and a tremendous amount of pain and suffering.
Injuries from pedestrian, motorcycle, and bicycle accidents are often severe since walkers and riders don’t have as much protection as people in large vehicles. Accidents involving pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists often result in devastating injuries with serious repercussions like amputation, paralysis, coma, and even death.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Another common cause of numerous injuries in Chicago are slip and fall accidents. Slip and falls occur when a victim stumbles, trips, slips, or otherwise loses balance due to a hazard caused by negligence. Whether it is pooling liquid or a broken stair, slip and fall accidents commonly cause back and neck injuries, shoulder damage including rotator cuff tears, injuries to the wrists and hands, and dislocations in the extremities.
Slip and fall accidents can occur anywhere: in grocery stores, corporate chain businesses, small locally owned businesses, your apartment complex, or even a friend’s house. If you fall because of someone else’s negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit to recover compensation for your or a loved one's injuries. Since the types of injuries that are caused by slip and fall accidents vary so much, the amount of compensation that is available in a slip-and-fall case also varies just as much.
Medical malpractice doesn’t often cause injuries. However, it can make existing injuries much worse. Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor or nurse is negligent. This can include giving the wrong dosage or wrong prescription to a patient, discharging a patient too early, incorrectly diagnosing a patient, and even surgical errors. Medical malpractice can create a wide variety of injuries and illnesses like infections, worsening of diseases, and internal injuries from equipment left behind during surgery.
Medical malpractice cases are generally trickier than other personal injury cases because you have to battle against the strong protections that are afforded them because of the nature of their work. Hiring an attorney who has experience with medical malpractice cases is the only way to go in this situation.
Nursing Home and Daycare Abuse
Nursing home and daycare abuse are very similar as they both involve people who may not have the ability to protect themselves on their own. Seniors and children rely on other people to take care of them and are considered vulnerable populations. So, when the people that are supposed to care for them instead neglect them, it can be very difficult for the victim and their families. Abuse in these cases falls into a few different categories: sexual, physical, mental, and financial (especially in the case of seniors).
Injuries caused in nursing homes vary based on whether or not the resident was abused physically or sexually. With physical abuse, nursing home residents may suffer broken bones, brain injuries, back injuries, or lacerations and bruising.
If the nursing home abuse was sexual in nature, the types of injuries that a resident may suffer could include vaginal or anal tearing, cuts or lacerations, fractured bones, and many other types of physical injuries (not to mention the mental and emotional trauma that come along with physical markings).
In situations of daycare abuse, the injuries that a child may suffer look very similar to the injuries described above in the examples of nursing home abuse. The only difference that may be notable between daycare abuse and nursing home abuse is that children often lack the ability to let somebody know what is happening to them. Although this is possible with elderly residents or adults with diminished capacity as well, it is much more common in situations where young children are being abused.
Wrongful Death Injuries
Any type of incident that causes a personal injury can also result in the death of the victim. In these instances, the right to seek a recovery may pass to a victim’s surviving family members, including a surviving spouse or children. Compensation for wrongful death claims include medical bills prior to death, funeral costs, loss of primary provider income, and pain and suffering. Though no amount of compensation can ever make up for the loss of a loved one, it can help ease the financial burden imposed by their death.
Legal Relief for Injury Victims in Chicago
If you have been hurt in an accident in Chicago, the legal team at Abels & Annes, P.C. want to help you understand your legal options, including whether you have a valid claim for relief. We make ourselves available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to take your call and provide you with answers whenever you need them.
We offer a free case consultation to all injury victims who contact us toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO (529-2442) or locally at (312) 924-7575. If you prefer to meet with us in person but you are too injured to travel to our offices, we also offer free in-home and in-hospital consultations. If you have been victimized due to the actions of another, call us now and let us help you seek a recovery you deserve.
If you are an injury victim and you were hurt in Chicago, call us toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO or Contact Us online for a free consultation.