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Q & A


Q. How Long Does It Take to Receive Settlement Proceeds From an Insurance Company After the Entry of a Judgment or Settlement?

A. Settlement proceeds from an insurance company must come to the plaintiff within 30 days after the release is tendered. This is recent Illinois law. Under the Illinois statute, 735 ILCS 5/2-2301, a release must be tendered to the plaintiff by the settling defendant within 14 days of written confirmation of the settlement. The statute also requires the settling defendant to pay all sums due to the plaintiff within 30 days of the tender by the plaintiff of the executed release and all applicable documents in compliance with this section.

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Q. How Much Time Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Illinois?

A. The timing to file a personal injury lawsuit in Illinois is based on the statute of limitations. This is the time limit for filing a lawsuit for negligence that caused personal injuries is two years from the date of alleged harm. The exception to this statute may arise when the at-fault party being sued is a governmental, municipal or similar agency. Many times the statute of limitations is shortened to one year when a governmental agency is a party defendant. However, under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), a preliminary written demand must be made first when the defendant is the United States. This is before the lawsuit can be filed. In fact under the FTCA, the attorney general’s office’s writing denying the claim must come before the lawsuit can be filed. If the statute of limitations is missed, the lawsuit’s later filing will be barred and the case dismissed.

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Q. In Illinois are Motorcycle Riders Required to Wear Helmets?

A. Motorcyle riders and passengers are not required to wear helmets in Illinois. Local ordinances cannot legislate that motorcyclists require them in Illinois. Other neighboring states to Illinois, including Missouri, do require helmets for all riders. In Indiana, helmets are required for those riding their motorcycle under the age of 18.

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Q. What are the Elements Needed for Filing a Nursing Home Lawsuit in Illinois?

A. The elements needed under the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, 210 ILCS 45/1, et seq. for nursing homes, intermediate care facilities as well as long term care facilities are set forth in that statute. The intent of the Act is to protect the rights of nursing home residents who may be vulnerable to negligence or abuse. As in any negligence case, the four elements of negligence must be met which includes injury or damages to the resident. The elements of negligence are duty, breach of that duty, causation and damages. The statute of limitations for a negligence case in Illinois is two years from the date of the alleged occurrence that caused the nursing home injury or death. In some cases, the statute of limitations may be tolled because the person harmed because of negligence is under a legal disability such as being adjudicated a disabled person or being a minor at the time of the incident. The Nursing Home Care Act is an important law, protecting the welfare of nursing residents.

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Q. What is the Illinois Medical Malpractice Statute of Repose?

A. The Illinois medical malpractice statute of repose is found under the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure, 735 ILCS 5/13-212 which sets forth the two-year statute of limitations for bringing a lawsuit for medical negligence. This section of the law also includes a four-year “statute of repose” which means that no medical malpractice case can be filed in the State of Illinois if more than four years have passed since the occurrence of the claimed medical error was discovered. The statute of repose is designed to protect the rights of an injured or harmed patient who because of the facts would not have been able to know of the cause of the negligence. For example, the surgery that occurred three years ago was done with surgical tools, one of which was forgotten and left in the cavity of the body of the patient. The patient could not have known of that error but for symptoms that revealed themselves more than two years later. The four year statute of repose would protect the filing of the lawsuit more than two years after the surgery, but less than four years from that date.

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Q. What are the Prerequisites to Filing a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit in Illinois?

A. The prerequisites for filing a medical malpractice case in Illinois law require an “affidavit of merit” to be attached to the complaint. 735 ILCS 5/2-622. In addition to filing a negligence lawsuit for medical negligence within the two-year statute of limitations or the four-year statute of repose, a potential case must also include with the complaint a consulting medical professional’s affidavit that sets forth the health professional’s statement of being knowledgeable in the relevant issues involved in the particular action, that the person practices medicine or has practiced within the last six years or teaches over the last six years in the same area of healthcare or medicine at issue, is qualified by experience or demonstrated competence subject to the case and that having reviewed the medical records and other relevant materials involved in the particular action, there is a reasonable and meritorious cause for filing the lawsuit. The law allows for an extension of time to attach that affidavit of merit, particularly in cases where the statute of limitations is about to run out and the affidavit has not yet been obtained.

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Q. Are There Special Illinois Laws Protecting Bicyclists?

A. The Illinois law that protects bicyclists went into effect January 2, 2018 advances the rights of Illinois bicyclists that advocates for safe bicycling in Illinois. The new law amends Section 11-703 of the Illinois Vehicle Code in this way: “Overtaking a vehicle on the left,” to allow for a motor vehicle to pass a bicycle in a “no passing” zone as long as three conditions are met. One, the bicyclist going less than half of the posted speed limit; two, the motor vehicle does not have sufficient speed in order to pass the bicycle; three that the motor vehicle adheres to Illinois’; “3-Foot rule” and gives the bicyclist at least three feet when passing. There are other provisions in the new law that protects bicyclists in Illinois from harm by other vehicles.

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Q. Can I sue My Employer for an Injury on the Job?

A. Under Illinois law, an injured employee may not sue his/her employer directly in most cases. That is because if injury that occurred in the course and scope of employment, the injured employee has an exclusive remedy under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act only. However, if the cause of the injury was a third-party, there is no such restriction and thus the worker can sue the third-party within the requisite statute of limitations. At the same time, the worker can make a claim in the Industrial Commission of Illinois under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act which will not interfere with the third-party lawsuit brought in a circuit court. There will, however be a statutory lien on the third-party lawsuit should there be an award or any payments under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act claim.

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Q. Do Motorcycle Riders Require a Special License in Illinois?

A. Motorcycle riders in Illinois must apply for a special license. All licenses in Illinois are handled by the Illinois Secretary of State. In order to legally ride a motorcycle, the individual must have a valid Illinois Class M license or permit. Class M stands for motorcycle over 150 cc. A Class L denotes a motor-driver cycle with less than 150 cc displacement. This law covers motorcycles, scooters and mopeds.

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Q. How Long Do You Have to Make a Claim for Personal Injury in Illinois?

A. The timing for filing a claim for personal injury in Illinois is set forth by statute. In Illinois, a lawsuit for personal injury compensation following an incident must be made within two years of the date of the occurrence. There are exceptions to this rule, but under Illinois law, negligent lawsuits must be filed within two years of the date of the claimed harm.

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Client Reviews
★★★★★
“We were devastated when our 31 year-old son was killed by a negligent driver. Kreisman Law Offices did everything to help us through this very difficult time, including coming out to the house several times which was a comfort. My wife and I were extremely pleased with Mr. Kreisman’s compassion and care for this very tragic and troubling time.” C.B.
★★★★★
“Bob Kreisman did everything possible in handling the trial of this case. It was devastating that I traumatically lost my leg above the knee in this truck accident. However, it was not an easy case to win. His staff was so prepared for the trial that it was not surprising that the settlement offers continued to rise until we finally accepted the multi-million settlement while the jury was still deciding the case. My wife and I were delighted that we could secure our future with this settlement. We thank Mr. Kreisman and his incredible staff for working so hard for our benefit.” T.P.
★★★★★
“My mother died because doctors dropped the ball. I called Robert Kreisman and he immediately set up an appointment for my entire family. We met at his offices and I was very comfortable that he would do the best for my dad and my brothers. He spent hours with all of us in preparing for depositions and he hired top notch experts, all of which contributed to an incredible settlement before trial. I know that he is dedicated to his cases and particularly to the people he works for and the people who work with him. He continues to be generous in contributing annually to my mother’s memory and to make known to the public the signs and symptoms of brain tumors.” V.S.
★★★★★
“My dad was ignored and mistreated at the nursing home that we placed him in. It didn’t take long for us to realize that we made a big mistake, particularly after my dad developed these terrible bedsores. We transferred him as we were contacting Mr. Kreisman. He was referred to us by a lawyer we have known for a long time and respect his opinion. Mr. Kreisman and his staff worked tirelessly to resolve this case. We were fortunate to have his services and will recommend him to anyone.” T.J.