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Aurora workers compensation benefit lawyersGetting injured at work can be a scary experience. Not only are you suffering a physical injury, but you are also probably worried about how you will pay your bills if you cannot work. Thankfully, all employers are required to have what is called workers’ compensation insurance, which is insurance designed to help workers who are injured on the job. In Illinois, workers’ compensation is required to provide three types of benefits to injured workers: medical benefits, disability benefits, and death benefits. These different types of benefits can greatly help employees and their families if an accident does happen. 

Medical Benefits

The first and most basic benefit that is provided by workers’ compensation is medical benefits. If you are injured while you are at work, your employer is required to pay for all of the medical expenses relating to your injury. Expenses that are covered can include:

  • First aid;
  • Emergency care, such as ER costs and ambulance rides;
  • Doctor visits;
  • Hospital care;
  • Surgery;
  • Physical therapy;
  • Chiropractic treatment;
  • Prosthetics;
  • Prescription medications; and
  • Medical appliances.

If your injury results in a permanent disability, the cost of devices, such as a wheelchair or wheelchair ramp, may be covered as well.

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4 Ways to Document Damage From a Car Accident

Aurora, IL auto accident lawyerUnfortunately for drivers in the United States, injuries from car accidents are not uncommon. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly three million people were injured and over 40,000 people were killed due to motor vehicle accidents in 2016. Injuries from car accidents can range from mild to severe and can greatly impact your life. One of the most important things you can do to make sure you are in the best position to receive a favorable settlement is preserving and recording damages and evidence resulting from the car accident. Here are four ways to document the damage:

1. Take Your Own Notes of the Accident

By taking notes immediately after the accident while you are still at the scene, you are minimizing the possibility of memory loss. Chances are, your case will not be settled for months after the accident occurred, which is why it is important to document what occurred while your memory is still fresh. You should note:

  • Where and when the accident occurred.
  • What happened during the accident.
  • The road and weather conditions at the time.
  • The names, contact information, and insurance information of others involved in the crash.
  • The names and contact information of any witnesses to the crash.
  • Witnesses’ accounts of what they saw.

2. Take Photos

Taking photos of damages to your car and injuries that you or a passenger sustained will be key in proving your case. Before anything is moved or any injuries are treated, try to take as many photos as possible from as many different angles as you can. Take pictures of exterior and interior damage for all vehicles involved, their license plates, the area surrounding the accident, and injuries of any parties involved.

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Understanding the Risks of Pedestrian Accidents in Illinois

Aurora pedestrian accident lawyerNearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2016. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)  has reported that pedestrians are one of the only groups that have experienced an increase in fatalities in recent years; in fact, pedestrian deaths have been increasing since 2009. Pedestrian safety is a widespread issue, since at some point every day, everyone is a pedestrian. Pedestrian accidents can result in serious injuries and, in some cases, death, which is why it is important to understand the causes of these accidents and what you can do to decrease your chances of being seriously injured in a collision with a vehicle.

What Increases the Risk of Pedestrian Accidents?

The NHTSA has done extensive research on pedestrian accidents in an effort to grasp why they happen so frequently and what can be done to decrease their prevalence. Studies have discovered that certain risk factors play a part in whether or not a person is likely to be involved in a pedestrian accident:

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5 Tips to Keep Your Children Safe Around Water

Aurora premises accident lawyer swimming injury drowningAugust is the peak of the summer temperatures, which means that more and more people are heading to pools, lakes, rivers, and beaches to cool off. Though swimming is a fun and refreshing activity during these sultry months, it can also be a dangerous one. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drowning is the leading cause of death for children ages one to four and the second leading cause of death for children ages five through 14. Drownings are tragic accidents, but they are avoidable with proper precautions and safety measures. Here are tips to keep your children safe around water this summer:

1. Make Learning a Priority

One of the best ways to combat drowning is by teaching your kids to know what to do when they are in water. Babies can be taught to float on their backs if they fall into the water, and children can be taught how to swim. Most of the time, you can find swimming classes at your local recreation center or school. As a parent, you should also know how to perform CPR if it becomes necessary. These classes are often given at local Red Cross organizations, hospitals, or schools.

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6 Steps to Take if You Have Been Injured at Work in Illinois

Kane County work injury attorneyYou go to work every day having some degree of expectation for what your day will be like. But nobody knows when an accident will happen--that is why they are called accidents. Thankfully, the United States has a system in place to help those who have been injured on the job. The workers' compensation program allows injured workers to receive compensation for lost wages, have their medical bills relating to the accident paid, and receive disability pay if the accident results in temporary or permanent loss of earning capacity. In order to receive these benefits, you must follow guidelines to have your case submitted and approved. Knowing what steps to take after a workplace accident is crucial to getting benefits that are owed to you.

1. Get Medical Attention

This may seem obvious, but the way you go about getting treated for your workplace injuries can impact how your case is handled. Often, employers will have what is called a Preferred Provider Program (PPP) in which there is a network of approved medical providers that you can see. Within your employer’s PPP, you have the choice of two physicians. If your employer does not have a PPP, you have the choice of any two providers. If you decline to use providers in the employer’s PPP, you use one of your choices, and you can choose to go to any doctor or hospital, but any further change of providers must be approved by your employer.

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Multiple Foods Recalled for Possible Salmonella Contamination

Kane County food poisoning injury attorneyA public health alert has been issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) for products containing whey powder that might be contaminated with salmonella. The whey powder, which is a FDA-regulated product, has been recalled by the manufacturer, Associated Milk Producers, Inc. So far, four different food products have been recalled due to the salmonella concerns, and illnesses caused by these contaminated foods could bring about product liability lawsuits.

Whey Powder Usage

It is not uncommon for foods to contain whey powder. Whey is a milk by-product that is often used in powder form for its convenience. Whey powder is typically used to modify texture, thicken foods, and enhance the solubility and transportability of foods. Often, it is used in foods that have relatively long shelf lives, though that is one of the reasons the salmonella contamination is occurring in dry foods--salmonella has the ability to survive in dry environments. 

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Distracted Driving Causes Deadly Car Accidents

Naperville distracted driving car accident lawyerWe are a society of multitasking--rarely do we ever focus on one thing at a time. Studies have shown that the human brain cannot actually multitask efficiently, meaning that even if you think you are paying attention to more than one thing at a time, you are not. This is why is it so dangerous for drivers to pay attention to anything other than the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving leads to more than 420,000 injuries and 3,100 deaths each year across the United States. It is important to realize that distracted driving causes car accidents and is something that can be easily prevented.

External and Internal Distractions

Distractions can be classified into many different categories, and one of them is based on whether or not the distraction is inside or outside the vehicle. Many people think that distractions only take place inside a vehicle, but many things outside a vehicle can also divert your attention. External distractions can include:

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4 Recent Changes to Safety Standards for Infant Products

Kane County product liability lawyerIt seems as if every day we are hearing about another product that has been recalled due to the safety of the product and the person using it. When it comes to products manufactured for children, safety regulations are a bit more extensive, because babies and children cannot decide for themselves what products they use. According to Kids in Danger, a children’s safety organization, there were 93 children’s product recalls in 2017, a 22 percent increase from 2016. Though parents want the best and safest products for their children, they are often unaware of the dangers certain defective products can pose.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is the governing body that oversees product safety and recalls. Safety standards are measures created and put in place to ensure that products are safe and pose no hazards to consumers when used properly. Recently, new changes to safety standards were approved for four types of infant products:

1. Infant Sling Carriers

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The Four Types of Permanent Partial Disability Benefits in Illinois

Aurora workers' compensation benefits attorneyThe United States has taken actions toward making workplaces as safe as possible for employees, but there are unavoidable accidents that still occur. Sometimes, accidents result in serious injuries that affect a person’s ability to work or to continue doing the job they were doing prior to the injury. In these cases, the employee is usually eligible for some sort of workers’ compensation benefit which can help supplement the loss of wages that they might experience. If a person loses a part of their body or loses the function of that part of the body, they usually qualify for permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits.

Commission on Workers’ Compensation

The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is the state agency that all workers’ compensation claims go through. The Commission helps employees and employers settle cases that involve a workplace injury or illness by acting as an impartial administrative court system. The Commission awards four types of PPD benefits:

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Common Causes of Truck Accidents in the United States

Kane County truck accident attorneyCar accidents can come in many different shapes and forms, ranging from mild to serious in severity. When you are involved in a truck accident, it is often a critical situation, because trucks are so much bigger than the average car. Collisions involving tractor-trailer trucks can result in serious injuries to both the driver of the truck and to the drivers and passengers of other vehicles. Several departments and administrations monitor truck accidents and try to decrease the number of accidents that occur each year. The causes of these accidents are recorded and are used as tools to reduce the number of accidents.

Causes of Truck Accidents

Truck accidents are caused by many of the same things normal vehicle accidents are caused by--driver impairment, carelessness, and speeding. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) assigns codes to truck accident causes using three variables:

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Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

Aurora nursing home neglect lawyerWhen an elderly family member requires around-the-clock care, families may opt to put their loved ones in nursing homes so they can get the help that they need or might not get while living at home. Sadly, it has been estimated that anywhere from one to two million Americans over the age of 65 have been abused or mistreated by their caregivers. Elders are among the people who are least likely to report abuse, due to physical or mental limitations or fear of retaliation from their caregivers. Noticing signs of elder abuse or neglect can help save the life of your loved one.

Types of Nursing Home Abuse

There is more than one way an elderly person can be abused in a nursing home. People may think that physical abuse is the only form, but the elderly can and do suffer emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation.

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Four Most Common Causes of Construction Worker Fatalities

Aurora construction accident injury lawyerWhen you think of dangerous workplaces, a construction site is probably one of the first things that comes to mind. By nature, construction is a hazardous profession. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reported that in 2016, one in five worker deaths were in the construction industry. 

Construction’s “Fatal Four”

OSHA has defined four of the leading causes of worker deaths in the construction industry as the “fatal four.” These causes are:

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Determining Negligence in Car Accident Personal Injury Claims

Aurora car accident injury attorneyWhen you get into a car accident, figuring out what to do next can be confusing. If you have been injured in a collision, you can file a personal injury claim to recover expenses related to medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. In order to file a claim, you must prove negligence, which consists of four elements: duty of care, breach of duty of care, causation, and damages.

1. Duty of Care

The first element you must prove in a car accident personal injury claim is the duty of care that the other driver had on the road. The duty of care is the agreement that every driver makes to operate their vehicle in a safe manner by obeying all traffic laws and other precautions used to protect drivers. Examples of duty of care include:

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FDA Warns Public of Dangers of Over-the-Counter Benzocaine Products

Aurora product liability lawyer injury to childrenThe Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a warning on May 23 that over-the-counter teething products containing benzocaine can cause harmful and potentially deadly side effects when used on children, especially those under two years of age. Benzocaine can be found in products such as Baby Orajel, which is commonly used on infants to soothe the pain of teething. If your child has been injured after using one of these types of products, it is important to understand your options for pursuing compensation through a product liability lawsuit.

Benzocaine Can Be Deadly to Children

The statement that the FDA published said that the use of benzocaine in products used on infants poses a serious risk to their health. Benzocaine can cause methemoglobinemia, a condition that causes dangerously low oxygen levels in the bloodstream. Symptoms of methemoglobinemia usually appear anywhere between 20 and 60 minutes after being given benzocaine and can include:

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Common Causes of Medical Malpractice

Kane County medical malpractice injury attorneyOne of the most important people in this world that you should be able to trust is your doctor--they often hold your life and well-being in their hands. Though doctors are held to a high standard, they are people too, and they can make mistakes, but they must be held accountable for any malpractice they commit.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor, hospital, or healthcare provider causes injury to a patient through negligence or breaching the “standard of care.” To legally be considered medical malpractice, a case must consist of three elements:

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5 Industries With the Most Workplace Injuries in Illinois

Aurora, IL work injury lawyer hazardous industriesWork-related injuries can be preventable with proper precautions and safety measures, but unfortunately, they are not uncommon--accidents do happen. In the state of Illinois, an estimated 137,500 non-fatal workplace injuries were recorded in 2016 for all industries. Certain industries tend to be more dangerous than others, but understanding which industries carry the most dangers can help you take precautions.

1. Educational and Health Services

Though it may surprise some people, the educational and health services industry has the largest number of workplace injuries in Illinois. An estimated 24,300 injuries were reported in the industry in 2016. This industry includes educational institutions like schools, universities, educational support services, hospitals, and nursing facilities. Most of the injuries reported in this industry were falls, trips, and overexertion.

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Brachial Plexus Birth Injury May Lead To Lifelong Symptoms

Aurora medical malpractice lawyer birth injuriesHaving a child is one of the most rewarding moments in the lives of many men and women. Bringing a baby into this world is supposed to be a joyous and happy time, yet out of every 1,000 infants born in the United States, six to eight of them are born with a birth injury. In our ever-innovating society, we have the tools and resources to deliver babies safely and successfully. However, due to reasons such as negligence, time restraints, or lack of communication, preventable birth injuries still occur in the United States.

Birth injuries can manifest themselves with a variety of symptoms, ranging from mild to severe, with many of them leaving lasting effects on your infant’s health. According to a new study, brachial plexus birth injury may affect your child’s mental health later in life.

What Is a Brachial Plexus Birth Injury?

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Avoiding Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents

Kane County motorcycle accident lawyerSpring and summer bring long-awaited warmer temperatures in Illinois, and many motorcyclists will be taking advantage of the pleasant weather and spending more time on the road. While motorcycles provide a great sense of freedom, cyclists should be aware of the dangers that come with sharing the road with larger vehicles.

Without the safety features provided to the drivers and passengers of cars and trucks, motorcyclists are much more likely to be injured in auto accidents. In fact, even though only three percent of registered vehicles in the United States are motorcycles, motorcyclists account for 14% of all car accident fatalities, and motorcyclist fatalities occur 27 times more frequently than fatalities of drivers or passengers in other vehicles. In order to avoid being seriously injured or killed in a motorcycle accident, cyclists should be sure to take the proper safety precautions.

Safety Tips for Motorcyclists

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6 Steps You Should Take After a Car Accident

Kane County auto accident lawyerWhether it is a minor bump or a major fender bender, a motor vehicle accident can be a traumatic experience. In the immediate aftermath of an automobile collision, it is understandable to feel shaken up and unsure of how to proceed. However, it is important to take steps to not only treat injuries and resolve details related to law enforcement, but also to protect your ability to seek compensation for injuries caused by someone’s negligence. After an accident, be sure to take the following steps:

  1. Seek medical attention - Check for injuries to drivers, passengers, and anyone else involved in the accident. Be sure to offer aid to anyone who needs it, and if necessary, call 911 for immediate medical assistance.
  2. Contact the police - While it may seem like a good idea to avoid involving law enforcement, it is best to have an officer come to the scene of the collision to make an accident report.
  3. Exchange information - Be sure to get the name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, license plate number, insurance company, and insurance policy number from other drivers or anyone else involved. However, do not discuss the cause of the accident or admit fault. 
  4. Gather evidence - Get as much information as you can at the scene of the accident. Take pictures of the vehicles, the damage which occurred, and people’s injuries, as well as any other relevant information, such as street signs, road conditions, or skid marks. Get the names and contact information of any witnesses and check nearby businesses to see if they have security camera footage of the accident. Be sure to write down any other observations, such as the time of day, the weather, and any other factors which may have been involved in the accident.
  5. Obtain a police report - Contact the police department to obtain a copy of the report filed by the officer who came to the scene of the accident. This record can be used to demonstrate how the collisions occurred and the circumstances which led to the accident.
  6. Contact an attorney - A skilled attorney can review the details of the accident, determine the liability of negligent parties, and help you understand whether you are likely to be successful if you pursue compensation for your damages through a personal injury lawsuit. 

Contact a Kane County Car Accident Lawyer

If you have been injured in a car accident, you may be able to seek financial compensation that will help you pay for the costs of medical care and rehabilitation, recover lost income, and address your pain and suffering. The experienced Aurora personal injury attorneys at Kinnally Flaherty Krentz Loran Hodge & Masur P.C. can help you determine your best options for obtaining the compensation you deserve. Call our office at 630-907-0909 to schedule a free consultation.

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Pursuing a Personal Injury Claim for Food Poisoning

Aurora personal injury lawyer food poisoningWhen you purchase food from a grocery store or order a meal at a restaurant, you expect the food to be safe for you to eat. However, there are many cases in which contaminated food is sold or served to consumers, and food poisoning can result in a wide variety of harmful conditions. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has estimated that 48 million people become ill from foodborne diseases every year in the United States, and these illnesses result in 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. If you have been injured because of food poisoning, you may be able to seek compensation for your damages through a personal injury or product liability lawsuit.

Types of Food Poisoning

There are a wide variety of illnesses that can result from food poisoning, and some of the most common include:

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