Burn Injury Lawyer in Chicago

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Burn Injury Lawyer In Chicago

Burn injuries can cause serious harm. According to the World Health Organization, over 400,000 burn injuries occurred in the U.S. in one year, and over 40,000 of those required hospitalization.

Even if you survive your burn injuries, they can cause a range of long-term difficulties. For example, your injuries may require costly medical treatment you’re not prepared to pay for. They could also permanently impact your quality of life if they result in long-term pain or disability.

You may be eligible for compensation if you’ve sustained burn injuries in Illinois in an accident that was someone else’s fault. At Wallace Miller, our Chicago burn injury lawyers understand that the future looks very uncertain right now. We can help you move forward from this experience by pursuing the compensation you need. Contact us today at (312) 261-6193 to learn more.

Table Of Contents

    Types of Burn Injuries

    Burn injuries fall into different categories depending on their severity. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, the degrees of burn injuries are:

    • First-degree burns – Burns that only affect the skin’s outer layer are first-degree burns. Someone with a sunburn may technically have a first-degree burn.
    • Second-degree burns – Second-degree burns affect the middle layer of the skin. A second-degree burn may cause pain and swelling and will blister.
    • Third-degree burns – A third-degree burn destroys both the outer and middle layers of skin. Such burns can cause a lack of feeling due to the destruction of the nerve endings. The skin could appear white or charred.

    Third-degree burns may even affect tissues such as bones and muscles. Under some classification systems, burns affecting these tissues qualify as fourth-degree burns.

    Burn injuries may also fall under different headings based on their cause. Cause-related burn injury classifications are:

    • Thermal burns – Burns resulting from contact with hot surfaces or objects
    • Radiation burns – Burns resulting from exposure to UV rays
    • Chemical burns – Burns resulting from exposure to harmful chemicals, like acids
    • Electrical burns – Burns resulting from contact with electrical current

    Doctors and other medical professionals will likely document the severity of your burns when treating you. Request copies of your medical records, test results, and other such documentation. Saving documentation of your injuries’ severity may help you pursue compensation.

    Common Causes of Burn Injuries

    Burn injuries have many potential causes. Examples include:

    Some burn injuries may be the result of negligence. The following are a few scenarios in which a negligent party may cause someone to sustain burn injuries:

    • A careless driver causes a motor vehicle wreck because they were speeding. Injured parties may sustain burns if the collision causes a fire or explosion.
    • A cooking appliance was defectively manufactured and malfunctions with appropriate use. A consumer sustains injuries when using the product.
    • A property owner knows their electrical wiring isn’t up to code. Regardless, they don’t make the necessary upgrades. Someone working on or near their wiring may sustain electrocution-related burn injuries. Poor wiring could increase the chances of a fire occurring in which someone could be harmed.

    Depending on the circumstances, you may need to prove that someone was negligent to obtain compensation for your burn injuries. A burn injury lawyer can gather the evidence you need to prove your claim.

    Burn Injury Risk Factors

    Various factors may contribute to a person’s chances of sustaining burn injuries. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), examples of such factors include:

    • Age – Data indicate children are at a high risk of sustaining burn injuries.
    • Gender – Adult women sustain burn injuries at higher rates than adult men. This may be due to notions regarding gender roles. Women may be more likely than men to cook for their families, increasing their odds of sustaining burns.
    • Occupation – Certain jobs inherently involve a risk of burn injuries. For example, someone who works around dangerous chemicals is naturally at a higher-than-average risk of sustaining chemical burns.
    • Lifestyle factors – Habits like smoking can increase one’s chances of sustaining burn injuries.

    Any person of any age can sustain burns. This is particularly true when burn injuries result from the negligent actions of another.

    Seeking Compensation for Burn Injuries in Chicago

    You may experience various struggles and losses after sustaining burn injuries. Some losses are economic. Examples of economic losses resulting from burn injuries include:

    • The cost of medical treatment
    • Lost wages or lost earning capacity if you can’t return to work after sustaining burn injuries
    • The cost of other relevant care, treatment, and rehabilitation services

    You can seek compensation for such losses by filing a claim with the insurance company of the party who caused your injuries. The compensation you’re entitled to might include compensation for future losses, such as the cost of long-term care. Your lawyer can help you assess and include the cost of ongoing treatment when negotiating for a fair settlement.

    In some instances, you may also seek compensation for non-economic losses. These are losses that don’t have absolute monetary values. Examples of non-economic losses are:

    • Pain and suffering
    • Loss of enjoyment of life
    • Loss of consortium
    • Mental anguish

    An insurance adjuster’s initial settlement offer might not compensate you for all your losses. You don’t have to accept their first offer if you can show you’re entitled to a larger payout.

    Important Information About Work-Related Burn Injuries in Chicago

    According to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, the law requires most employers in Illinois to purchase workers’ compensation insurance. Filing a workers’ compensation claim is likely an option if you’ve sustained burn injuries while performing your duties as an employee.

    Proving negligence isn’t necessary when filing a workers’ comp claim. If your injuries are work-related, you’re entitled to benefits. However, workers’ compensation benefits don’t cover non-economic losses. Workers’ comp covers economic losses like medical bills and some lost wages.

    That doesn’t mean you cannot seek compensation for these losses if your injuries are work-related. You could file a third-party claim or lawsuit if your injuries resulted from another party’s negligence or wrongdoing.

    Perhaps you sustained burn injuries in a motor vehicle wreck someone else caused. Your primary means of seeking compensation may be to file a workers’ comp claim if you were driving for work at the time. You could also take legal action against the negligent driver who caused your accident.

    Determining whether you have grounds to file a third-party claim or lawsuit may require investigating the circumstances of your accident. Discuss your case with a burn injury lawyer in Chicago for more information.

    How a Chicago Burn Injuries Lawyer Can Help You

    Close up of lawyer meeting with clientNavigating your legal options after sustaining burn injuries can prove confusing if you’re unfamiliar with the applicable laws. Even if you know how to pursue compensation, doing so may involve such tasks as:

    • Gathering evidence and documentation
    • Coordinating with doctors, insurance adjusters, and other such parties
    • Estimating how much compensation you may be eligible for
    • Completing and submitting paperwork by strict deadlines
    • Pushing back against low offers from the insurance company

    You don’t have to handle these tasks on your own. Enlist the help of a burn injury lawyer in Chicago instead. An attorney can help you by:

    • Reviewing your case and determining whether you’re eligible for compensation
    • Determining the appropriate means of seeking compensation
    • Handling correspondence with physicians, insurance adjusters, and other parties
    • Investigating your accident to determine who is liable
    • Gathering evidence proving negligence
    • Gathering documentation of your losses
    • Submitting your claim paperwork
    • If necessary, estimating the potential value of future losses and non-economic losses
    • Negotiating with insurance adjusters

    A burn injury lawyer can also help you determine whether filing a lawsuit to seek compensation in a trial is necessary. Doing so may be the right course of action if an insurer refuses to offer a fair settlement.

    How Long Do I Have to Sue for Burn Injuries in Illinois?

    Taking legal action fast is critical if you think you’re eligible for compensation after sustaining burn injuries. The statute of limitations establishes deadlines for submitting claims and lawsuits. You’ll no longer be eligible for compensation if you miss the deadline.

    Statute of limitations deadlines for burn injuries in Illinois can vary depending on the cause of such injuries. Under Illinois law, you have two years from the date you sustained injuries to file a personal injury claim.

    You have three years from the date you were injured on the job to file a workers’ compensation claim. The two-year personal injury deadline applies if you also plan to take action against a negligent third party.

    Contact a Chicago Burn Injury Lawyer

    Sustaining burn injuries as a result of someone else’s negligence or a workplace accident can impact your life in both the short term and the long term. Securing the compensation you need can ease some of your burdens during a challenging time.

    Pursuing what you deserve is easier with representation from a qualified Chicago burn injury lawyer. That’s exactly the type of legal assistance we offer at Wallace Miller. Find out more about what we can do for you by contacting us online or calling us at (312) 261-6193 today for a free case review.

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