Illinios accident lawyer,  Illnois personal injury attorney,In our firm’s 30 years of representing clients, one misconception that comes up regularly is that if you fall on someone else’s property, you have a viable lawsuit against them. This is not the law in Illinois, and slip and fall accidents can be much more difficult to prove.

The Deciding Factor on If You Can Recover Damages

Often the fact that determines if you have a case is if you can prove if the condition that caused your fall was known or should have been known to the property owner/occupier. In some cases, you can prove that the property owner knew about the dangerous condition and did not fix it. For example, you may be able to get video surveillance footage of a store employee mopping and not putting out warning signs.

More common, however, is that you can prove that a reasonable property owner should have been aware of the dangerous condition. For example, you may be able to secure the testimony of another customer who can testify to the fact that the dangerous condition had been present for weeks before your fall.

Liability Could Be Split Between Property Owner and Fall Victim

Sometimes a judge or jury may determine that the property owner and the person who fell are both at fault. For example, if it was shown that the staircase railing had been in disrepair for weeks and that you were looking at your cell phone while walking, it is possible both of you could be at fault.

In such a case, the judge or jury will assign each party a percentage of fault. If your percentage of fault is less than the property owner’s, you will receive compensation reduced by your fault percentage.

For example, if you are found to be 20 percent at fault and the property owner is found to be 80 percent of fault, and you proved $100,000 in damages, you would receive $80,000.

Call an Orland Park, IL Slip and Fall Lawyer

While it is true that slip and fall cases can be difficult to pursue, if you are injured through no fault of your own, you should contact a qualified Illinois slip and fall attorney to evaluate your case. These types of cases are fact-based, and the lawyers at James A. Payonk Jr., Attorney at Law have the experience required to determine if your case has merit.

Our firm typically takes on slip and fall cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning that we do not get paid unless you recover damages. With slip and fall cases, it is important that you act fast. In Illinois, you must bring slip and fall cases within two years of the accident. Perhaps more importantly, video footage, which is very helpful in these cases, must be retrieved as quickly as possible because it is frequently erased if it is not requested.

Call our firm today at (708) 633-6005.



Posted in Slip and Fall Accidents | Tagged , , , ,

Illinios accident lawyer,  Illnois personal injury attorney,Illinois recently passed a law mandating that child passengers under two years old must ride in car seats that face the back of the vehicle. The bill was signed into law on August 3, 2018.

The law states that children under two years old may sit facing forward in car seats if they are at least 40 pounds or 40 inches tall. A first offense is punishable by a $75 fine, and a second offense is punishable by $200.

This requirement had long been the recommendation made by experts, however, the law previously only required rear-facing car seats up to a year old. Prior to 2011, the Academy of Pediatrics recommended rear-facing car seats until the child was a year old or 20 pounds.

The new recommendation and subsequent law came about after studies showed that death rates were 75 percent lower when car seats were positioned rear-facing until two years of age.

Common Vehicle Collision Injuries in Children

Car seats can only provide so much protection. Children still get injured even when riding in accordance with best safety practices.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the most common injuries to children in auto accidents include:

  • Head injuries, including concussions;
  • Internal organ injuries;
  • Chest injuries; and
  • Back injuries.

Head injuries can be very harmful to infants and young people. Head injuries can lead to reading disabilities, memory loss, and headaches.

Injuries sustained so early in life to any part of the body can lead to improper bone growth or permanent disability.

Contact an Orland Park, IL Car Accident Attorney

Even with advances in car seat technology and safety recommendations, children still get seriously injured in car accidents. If your child has been injured in a collision, you have a lot to think about and to plan. Injuries sustained at a young age can, unfortunately, mean a lifetime of medical treatment. Your family should not shoulder this burden if you were not at fault — or not fully at fault — in the car accident.

Our firm understands that your health and your children’s health is a top priority. We strive to get our clients all the medical help they need now and will need in the future. This is often accomplished by seeking out expert medical opinions.

Call our efficient Cook County auto crash lawyer today at 708-633-6005. We offer free consultations.



Posted in Car Accidents, Child Safety | Tagged , , , , , ,

Illinios accident lawyer,  Illnois personal injury attorney,While most people think of a dog bite as the resulting injury of such an attack, there are other injuries that may be sustained during the dog attack. These injuries can be more threatening than a flesh wound and should not be overlooked by a victim, medical provider, or attorney.

Disease from Dog Bites

A dog’s mouth can have many types of bacteria in it. There are over 60 types that have been found. It is no wonder that 18 percent of dog bites become infected.

Dog bite victims can contract these diseases:

  • Rabies. If you do not know the shot record of the dog that attacked you, rabies is one of your top concerns. Rabies affects the brain and is almost always fatal once symptoms appear.
  • Capnocytophaga. This type of bacteria does not make dogs or cats sick. Many people will also not become sick from this bacteria. However, the bacteria are dangerous to those with weakened immune systems.
  • Pasteurella. This bacteria is seen in over half of infected dog bites. Symptoms include a painful, red infection at the site of the bite, swollen glands, swelling in the joints, and difficulty moving.
  • MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). This is a type of staph infection that is resistant to some antibiotics. The bacteria can cause skin, lung, and urinary tract infections in people. When MRSA gets into the bloodstream or lungs, it can cause life-threatening infections.
  • Tetanus. This toxin leads to rigid paralysis.

Emotional Disturbances from Dog Bites

There are also a host of emotional injuries that dog attack victims may experience. Some people become depressed due to the severity of their injuries or the new limitations placed on their life. Other people suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety disorders and may find it impossible to be around dogs or to be in certain situations.

Also, one’s injuries may lead to a loss of enjoyment of life. If a dog bite means that the victim can no longer enjoy activities, the law may provide for some compensation.

Future Medical and Lost Wages

A victim’s future medical needs should always be provided by the at-fault party. This may mean that a doctor will have to give an expert opinion about what care will be needed. Also, past and future lost wages should be added to a victim’s compensation package.

Contact an Orland Park, IL Dog Bite Attorney

James A. Payonk Jr., Attorney at Law represents dog bite victims seeking to be made whole again. Our firm is experienced with negotiating with insurance companies and is not afraid to go to trial if our clients do not get a reasonable and satisfactory settlement offer.

Dog attacks can leave the victim with a host of injuries, both seen and unseen, and the at-fault party should be made to compensate anyone injured. Contact our resourceful Cook County dog bite lawyer today at 708-633-6005 to learn more about what type of case you or a loved one may have.



Posted in Dog Bites | Tagged , , , , ,