How a Helmet Can Save Your Life in a Bicycle Accident

bicycle helmetWhether you ride a bicycle for leisure or sport, a helmet is an essential piece of safety gear you cannot ignore. Besides preventing traumatic brain injuries, wearing one will also make you more visible on the road so you can avoid a bicycle accident.

How Bicycle Helmets Work

A bike helmet has a hard outer shell and a soft lining inside. The former protects the head if you fall by spreading the impact area and thus, prevents head injuries. The smooth outer shell allows the head to slide across the impact surface without making the neck jerk. The soft lining limits the impact by absorbing the force of the accident. Both work together to reduce the impact on your head, which may otherwise lead to a fractured skull, brain bleed, or worse.

How to Choose A Bicycle Helmet

Experienced Antioch bicycle accident lawyers will tell you that your helmet choice should depend on its specific use. For instance, a BMX cyclist will have a sturdier helmet than one who rides their bicycle for leisure on the road. Whether you are the former or the latter, follow these general tips as outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to choose a suitable helmet:

  • Make sure the helmet fits snugly over your head. There should not be any spaces between the foam and your head inside. Get a looser one if the helmet squeezes your head like a vice. A tight fit will cause headaches, increasing your chances of getting into an accident.
  • The helmet size can differ between manufacturers. So whether you know your size or not, always try one on before buying it.
  • Check the recall date on each helmet beforehand. If it has the US Product Safety Commission (CPSC) label, that means it passed federal safety standards and crash tests successfully.

When Should You Replace a Bike Helmet

If you are involved in a bike crash, get a new helmet afterward, even if your existing one looks undamaged. Hidden damage such as compressed foam or cracks can compromise its structural integrity to the point that it won’t be able to protect your head later. For the same reason, never buy a second-hand helmet from friends, online, or any place for that matter. You don’t know what it has been through and the damages it may have sustained under someone else’s ownership.

Contact Robert Edens for a Consultation Regarding a Bicycle Accident

If you or someone you know has been injured in a bike accident, you need Antioch bicycle accident lawyers to get the compensation you deserve. At the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, we understand how insurance companies work and the aggressive tactics they can use to reduce your claim. We are not afraid to get equally aggressive if you are not compensated for damages and medical bills. Our lawyers have more than 20 years of experience representing victims such as you and have a successful track record to show for it. Get in touch with us for a consultation today.

Accidents That May Require a Personal Injury Attorney in Waukegan

It happens to the best of us. If you have suffered severe injuries because of an accident that could have been avoided, the negligent party should compensate you. If they or their insurance company deny your claim, do not hesitate to hire a personal injury attorney in Waukegan to claim damages.

Unsure whether your accident merits a claim? Here are some of the types of accidents that may require a personal injury attorney in Illinois:

Car Accidents

As one of Illinois’ most common types of accidents, car crashes are often caused by drunk, sleepy, speeding, or unruly drivers. If you sustain a car accident injury, you can file a personal injury claim to get financial compensation for your losses. This includes serious medical bills, lost wages, and even physical and emotional distress.

Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycles can go from 0 to 100 mph in the blink of an eye. Plus, most motorists fail to see motorcyclists before it is too late due to their compact size. A motorcycle accident usually results in debilitating injuries that can prevent victims from living a normal life. Anything from road rash to broken bones to paralysis can reduce their quality of life.

Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice can take on several devastating forms. It can include birth injuries caused by an inexperienced doctor, surgical injuries caused by a slip of a surgeon’s hand, and even a fatal disease missed during diagnosis. When a doctor or a medical professional fails in their duties and, as a result, hurts their patients, he/she can be held liable via a personal injury lawsuit.

Slip and Fall Accidents

Don’t underestimate slip and fall accidents. These are some of the most common types of personal injury claims made in Illinois. Here is how the law works: if you slip, fall, and injure yourself on another individual’s property, the latter can be held liable for damages you sustain.

As per Illinois Premise Liability Act, property owners owe a duty of care for guests and even people passing through their property. They have to place warning signs on hazardous areas and/or fix them before they cause an accident.

Statute of Limitations on Personal Injury Cases

Whether you are injured in a slip and fall accident, because of medical malpractice, in a car/motorcycle accident, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against the negligent party. If you miss this deadline, you may have to forfeit your claim and thus, give up the compensation you deserve.

However, if you wish to file a personal injury claim against a government entity, you only have one year to file your claim. Time is of the essence. Get in touch with an experienced and skilled personal injury attorney in Waukegan, such as Robert Edens, at the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens for a consultation today.

Personal Injury Attorney

With over two decades of experience protecting the rights of personal injury victims in Illinois, Robert can ensure you get the maximum compensation you deserve. Claims adjusters are NOT your friends. Before they swoop in and try to make you say or do things that can limit the settlement you may receive, contact his office in Waukegan.

Ways to Prepare Children for a Road Trip That Can Prevent Accidents

Personal Injury AttorneyA road trip can be relaxing, but when you have excitable kids onboard, you can get into an accident. The good news is you can prevent it, make the most of the trip and ensuring it does not become a nightmare by following these tips.

Prepare Your Car Beforehand

You will be spending hours behind the wheel, so making sure it is good driving condition just makes sense. A lot can happen on the road that can cause an accident. For example – do not wait for it to rain before finding out your wipers do not work. Plus, an overheated engine can strand you for hours and your kids can suffer in the heat as they wait for you to fix the car. Worse, what if your car veers off the road because of a broken axle?

If you think your vehicle cannot perform for hours on the road, consider getting a rental instead. It will be a safer option for you and your family since these are usually in proper working order. Make sure they have safety belts as well. According to Illinois law, there should be two sets of these.

Distract the Kids with Meals and Snacks

Finger food and snacks are often enough to calm down toddlers and older children. If you have a baby on board, pull to the side of the road or in a safe area and then get in the back seat to feed him/her pureed baby food or cereal.

If your baby is still nursing, pull to the side of the road to feed him/her on a strict schedule. Plus, either have food in the car or stop at a restaurant at mealtime. Children usually act out when they are hungry. By maintaining a meal schedule during the road trip, you can do your best to ensure they remain calm.

Drive at Night

If your children are quite young, consider driving at night. This is going to be quite helpful if you have 2-year old’s or younger children. Keeping them calm and occupied for hours at a time can be a challenge as it is.

By driving at night when they are tired from a day full of play and sleepy, you will be able to drive without distractions. However – make sure you are not too tired to remain behind the wheel.

Personal Injury Attorney

If despite taking all of these precautions, you get into a car accident with a negligent driver who refuses to pay for damages, get an expert attorney on your side. Get in touch with us at the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens for a consultation as soon as possible. We offer our services in Chicago, Waukegan, Woodstock, Libertyville and Antioch, IL.

What You Need to Know About Filing a Traffic Crash Report in Illinois

Personal Injury AttorneyWhether you are involved in a light or heavy traffic accident, you must file a crash report with the Illinois Department of Transportation (DOT) within 10 days. As a rule, you don’t have to file a report if the accident caused $1,500 worth of damages, but the rules can change if you were partially responsible for the incident. If you fail to file a report before the deadline, you may have to pay a hefty fine and lose your driver’s license.

Why You Should File a Traffic Report ASAP

The accident report can be filed by either the driver, the police officers who arrive at the scene or passengers. You should file a report as soon as possible so you can use it as proof for a personal injury case, which will allow you to get compensated for your medical bills and wages you lost during your recovery. You can also receive compensation for emotional trauma you suffered. Here are a few reasons why this is important:

  • You can correct discrepancies in the crash report before the insurance companies receive
  • Your insurance company can use it to prove your claims
  • Your attorney will be able to move your case forward much sooner if they have the report

How to File a Crash Report

To file the report, you need to complete the Motorist Crash Report and give it to IDOT. Here is some information that should be included:

  • The location and time of the crash
  • The name, date of birth and address of everyone involved in the accident. This includes individuals who are insured
  • The license plate number of the vehicles involved, and the state of the people involved
  • The names and addresses of registered motorists who were involved in the accident
  • Details about the crash

Personal Injury Attorney

If you or someone you know has been involved in a car crash, get in touch with the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens for a free consultation. We represent traffic victims in Chicago, Libertyville, Woodstock, Waukegan and Antioch. With more than two decades of experience in auto accident claims, our team of professionals will leave no stone unturned to ensure you receive justice. This includes aggressive representation against the at-fault driver’s insurance company who will try and deny or reduce your claim. Just look at our case files available on our website and see our success rate for yourself.

2 Critical Steps You Should Take After You Have Been in an Auto Accident

Auto Accident AttorneyA car accident can leave victims feeling disoriented and if it is serious enough, in excruciating pain. While the experience can be traumatic, the worst thing you can do is delay charges. Don’t delay and take these critical steps as soon as possible after an accident:

1. Collect Evidence

The first thing you need to understand is the strength of your case is determined by the proof you can provide, i.e. the facts that surround it. This will ensure you receive the justice and monetary compensation you deserve. Here are some facts and documents you should collect:

  • Information about the weather conditions before, during and after the accident.
  • The complete police report.
  • Witness statements.
  • A list of injuries you sustained.
  • A list of damages your vehicle sustained.
  • Details about the condition of the road and on which the accident occurred.
  • Traffic conditions at the time of the incident.
  • Medical reports, bills, medication receipts and other information pertaining to the accident.

2. Check the Statute of Limitations

In Illinois, time is of the essence when it comes to filing cases against negligent drivers who may or may not be insured. Victims only have a couple of years to file their case before it is deemed invalid. There are basically two limits you should look up. If you are injured because of the accident, you have two (2) years to file a lawsuit and five (5) years if you want to file one for property damage.

The insurance company of the negligent party will try to take advantage of this by delaying the insurance claim for as long as they legally can. In other words, you may not have time to file a lawsuit if they can get away with it. At this point, you should get in touch with a law office that has experience overcoming such obstacles and ensuring their clients get the compensation they deserve.

Get the Money You Deserve with Help from Robert T. Edens

Personal Injury Attorney

From the time of your auto accident, the law office of Robert T. Edens will have a team of dedicated professionals working on your case. Whether you want to deny or reduce the claim, no stone will be left unturned during the proceedings whether the accident occurred in Chicago, Waukegan, Libertyville, Woodstock or Antioch. Call us today and get the money you deserve.

Auto Accidents Due to Driving Under Influence

Personal Injury AttorneyDriving under influence is one of the single biggest contributors to auto accidents and subsequent personal injuries, which may also lead to death. In various reports, the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) has highlighted one death every 48 minutes – or 28 percent of all traffic deaths, were due to driving under influence, with total crashes costing the U.S. economy more than $44 billion in 2016. Also is 2016, a million drivers were arrested and fined for driving under inference of alcohol and various other drugs. Apart from alcohol and drugs, the use of marijuana while driving continues to rise, leading to a 25 percent higher risk of road accidents.

Considering the fact crashes happen often and because there are strict laws – which may result in a jail sentence, suspension of license or fines – consult a competent personal injury attorney to help your case. Likewise, if you’ve been injured in an auto crash due to driving under the influence and need to recover medical costs, or need legal advice for a potential lawsuit, call a personal injury attorney.

Effects of Alcohol on Driving

Consuming alcohol reduces muscle coordination, leads to impaired thinking and has negative effects on the nervous system. It also reduces the ability to focus on a task, making it a risk to roadside safety. Although some use of alcohol may be permitted, it is strictly advised not to drink before a long journey, or under distressed weather. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 can increase the risk of a crash and subsequent auto accidents. It is illegal in all states, including Illinois, leading to heavy fines of up to $25,000, three (3) to seven (7) years of jail term, suspension of license for 10 years and considered a felony if found guilty on multiple occasions.

Ways to Prevent Driving Under Influence

Following proactive steps can reduce the risk of crashes and subsequent legal action when driving under influence, such as:

  • Arrange a taxi, carpool, or a different mode of transportation after drinking at an event or gathering,
  • Choose a sober driver beforehand to transport drunk individuals to their residence,
  • Always wear seatbelts when driving,
  • Never drive immediately for long distances after an episode of drinking,
  • Drink responsibly and refrain from using excess drugs before driving,
  • Engage in alternative beverages that are non-alcoholic such as soda, coffee and water,
  • Seek rehabilitation to stop future episodes of drinking.

Personal Injury Attorney

If you wish to find out more driving under influence, auto accidents, and unusual injuries in Illinois schedule a free consultation contact the offices of Robert Edens at (847) 395-2200 to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer.

How to Avoid Parking Lot Auto Accidents

Personal Injury AttorneyMany people think auto accidents occur on congested roads and busy highways. You will be surprised to know several auto accidents occur in parking lots. One of the main reasons for parking lot accidents is distraction. Fellow passengers’ behavior, cell phone use and any other electronic device usage are generally the leading causes behind distracted driving. Here are some tips to help you stay alert and avoid a parking lot accident.

Determine the Right of Way

The most effective method of avoiding a parking lot accident is to comprehend who has the right-of-way when driving in a parking lot. Most parking lots – especially indoors lots, have confined spaces, which allows minimal movement. With limited space to work with, it’s natural for a parking lot to get congested. To determine the right-of-way, consider the cars already moving through the thoroughfare as having the way of right, over the cars in the feeder lane. However, exiting the main thoroughfare automatically allocates the right-of-way to the vehicle coming across the feeder lane.

Be Watchful of Dimly Lit Parking Lots

Some indoors and outdoors parking lots have spots that are not well lit. If the driver is not careful, these dimly lit areas within a parking lot can result in accidents. While parking or backing up, be watchful of people, pets and other vehicles. Staying alert and looking around before backing up is key to ensure you and others around you are safe. Children are particularly susceptible to backover auto accidents in parking lots. Drivers have to be cautious by looking out for young children around their vehicle before backing away.

How to Make a Claim in a Parking Lot Auto Accident?

If you are a victim of a parking lot accident, you will need a practiced auto accident attorney to make a claim for compensation for your injuries. In Illinois, the person who violates the right-of-way in a parking lot accident is held liable for the crash. However, if the plaintiff is held partially responsible, under comparative negligence, which resulted in the auto accident, the plaintiff will be required to compensate the defendant.

Keeping the aforementioned tips in mind will help keep parking lots safe and help reduce the number of auto accidents caused by unnecessary distractions.

Personal Injury Attorney

If you wish to find out more about auto accidents and personal injuries, schedule a free consultation, contact the offices of Robert Edens at (847) 395-2200 to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer.

How to Spot a Drunk Driver, and What to Do When you Spot One

You know better than to drink and drive. In Illinois and throughout the country, the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit for an individual to drive a car or other vehicle is 0.08 percent. Beyond this point, the individual can face a charge for driving under the influence (DUI). Alcohol inhibits an individual’s ability to accurately perceive his or her surroundings and make judgments about the safe operation of a vehicle.

But even if you never drive drunk, you can be involved in a collision with a drunk driver. Driving drunk is one of the most dangerous actions a driver can commit, along with using a cell phone while driving and driving when he or she has not had an adequate amount of sleep. If you are injured in an accident caused by a drunk driver, you can seek monetary compensation for your damages through a personal injury claim. Although a personal injury settlement can be a great thing if you need it, it is even better to avoid an accident and needing such a settlement.

Signs of a Drunk Driver

There are a few tell-tale signs of a drunk driver to be aware of. These include:

  • Swerving in and out of lanes;
  • Driving through stop signs and traffic lights;
  • Failing to maintain a consistent speed; and
  • Signaling that is inconsistent with his or her actions.

These can also be signs of a distracted driver, a tired driver, or a driver who is under the influence of another type of drug, such as a sleep aid. Regardless of why the driver is showing these signs, he or she is a hazard to him- or herself and others on the road.

If you Spot a Drunk Driver

If you see a car that you suspect is being driven by a drunk driver, report that vehicle to the local authorities. Doing so can potentially prevent a tragic accident.

It is important that you stay as far away from the car as possible. Do not try to pass the car and if you can, get over a lane or two from it. Note the vehicle’s make, model, color, and if possible, its license plate number. Then when it is safe to do so, pull over and call 911 to report the vehicle. If you can, tell the officer the direction the car was traveling, the time you saw it, and your current location so the authorities can better locate the vehicle.

The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, P.C.

Work with an Experienced Antioch Car Accident Attorney

Drunk drivers put themselves and all others on the road in danger of injury, property damage, and death. If you are injured in an accident with a drunk driver, you could be entitled to receive monetary compensation for your damages through a personal injury claim. To learn more about this process and your rights as a claimant, contact The Law Offices of Robert T. Edens, P.C. today to set up your initial legal consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.