Rear-end collisions are quite common on Illinois roads. In fact, according to the Illinois Dept. of Transportation, rear-end accidents are the most common type of collision in the state (more than 92,000 rear-end accidents in 2017 alone).
Being hit from the rear also causes more injuries than other types of collisions—and in many cases, those injuries are severe because the people in the front car have no ability to brace for impact. Since the driver behind is typically the one at fault in a rear-end accident, obtaining a personal injury claim may seem fairly cut-and-dried–but you’d be surprised at how often these cases can become convoluted. You need a skilled Illinois personal injury attorney in your corner to make sure you receive the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation with a rear-end accident attorney in Chicago or Aurora, contact Cullotta Bravo Law today at 630-898-7800.
Common Causes of Rear-End Accidents
Rear-end collisions can happen for any number of reasons. Among the most common causes are:
- Speeding. The driver behind is going too fast and can’t stop in time.
- Tailgating. The driver behind is following too closely and doesn’t have time to hit the brakes when you slow down unexpectedly.
- Distracted driving. The driver behind is using a mobile device or is otherwise not paying attention.
- DUI. The driver behind was drinking or is under the influence of drugs which affect their cognitive and reasoning skills.
- Inclement weather. Wet or icy roads require longer stopping times, and it’s easier to lose control of a vehicle.
Proving Liability in a Rear-End Accident
The driver behind in a rear-end accident is almost always the party at fault. In fact, if your vehicle is hit from behind by another driver, that driver is presumed to be at fault under Illinois law. But that doesn’t mean their liability is a foregone conclusion. The case may be more complicated than it appears, and defendant attorneys and insurance companies are quite good at shifting blame. Some examples of arguments the defense may present:
- You stopped quickly without just cause. (For example, if you brake while someone is tailgating to “send them a message.”)
- Multiple cars were involved. (E.g., the driver who hit you might have been struck by another car and forced their vehicle into yours.)
- You turned into traffic unexpectedly, not giving the driver time to stop.
Getting Help from a Rear-End Accident Attorney
If your rear-end collision seems clearly to be the other driver’s fault, you might be tempted to file a personal injury claim on your own–or the driver’s insurance may call you to try and settle quickly, and you may decide to take their first offer. Doing either of these things is likely to cause you to come away with less than what you actually need in order to become whole. An experienced attorney can make sure you receive the full amount of compensation to cover your injuries and recovery. Call the Cullotta Bravo Law Firm at 630-898-7800 to schedule a free consultation.
Common Injuries in Rear-End Accidents
Since the vehicle in front often doesn’t have any warning before it’s hit, injuries in a rear-end accident are quite common and may be significant even in slow-speed collisions. Whiplash (the sudden jerking of the neck) is the most common type of injury in rear-end accidents, and while you may have no symptoms at the moment, they can develop hours or days after the impact, causing fatigue, dizziness, numbness, and in severe cases, even blurred vision or memory loss. Other common rear-end injuries may include:
- Spinal injuries (due the spine/vertebrae being thrown out of alignment due to impact)
- Concussion (the shaking of the brain inside the skull)
- Other traumatic brain injuries (e.g., hitting your head on the dashboard after recoiling)
- Soft tissue injuries and broken bones (e.g., sprains, strains, or fractures from limbs flailing due to impact).
Getting Compensation for a Rear-End Accident in Aurora, Illinois
If you’re hit from behind in a vehicle collision and injured as a result, you may be eligible to recover damages for medical expenses/treatment costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other compensation. The attorneys at Cullotta Bravo Law Firm have plenty of experience with rear-end accident cases, and we know how to deal with the unexpected complications that can arise while ensuring the insurance company doesn’t underpay for your injuries. Call us today at 630-225-8341 or contact us online.