Damages for Exacerbating a Pre-existing Injury or Medical Condition in Illinois

Damages for Exacerbating a Pre-existing Injury or Medical Condition in Illinois

An accident victim is entitled to compensation for damages for aggravation to a pre-existing injury in Illinois. However, proving damages for aggravations can be difficult. Insurance companies know how to diminish your pain and suffering so they can save money and protect their bottom line. You need savvy, experienced, and successful personal lawyers who have the knowledge and skill to prove that you deserve compensation for aggravation to your pre-existing injury. The auto accident attorneys of Stein & Shulman, LLC, have the experience and proven track record of success you can rely on to win compensation if you suffered an aggravation of a pre-existing injury in an accident.

A car crash victim can receive compensation for aggravation or worsening of a pre-existing injury.  That is the law in Illinois. The law in Illinois also states that a person is responsible for compensating an injured person only for the injuries he or she caused. The difference between the two principles of Illinois law seems to walk a fine line. On the one hand, a defendant, or person who caused the injury, should not be allowed to get away with causing pain to someone while acting negligently, even if the injured person had an injury before the accident. On the other hand, the defendant should not be liable for injuries that he did not cause. In Illinois courts, the jury has an obligation to sort out the difference.

For the jury to find in your favor, they need to be convinced that you are suffering from an exacerbation to your pre-existing condition caused by a car accident. It is critically important to show the jury that you are worse off now after the accident then you were before the accident. Expert witnesses can help with this proof. An expert witness is someone who, through their training and experience, has greater knowledge about a particular subject than the average person. Experts are important components in our cases:

  • We use experts such as doctors, accident reconstructions, and biomechanics to show the jury how the crash happened, how the body moves in a crash and the nature and permanency of your injuries.
  • As an example, a doctor can testify as an expert to prove to the jury that your condition from which we were suffering before the accident is now worse. Perhaps the injury you had before is now chronic or permanent.
  • Your doctor can give the jury their opinion that your injury is now permanent. Your doctor can explain to the jury how much pain you could suffer and the treatments you will need to take all because the accident made your condition worse. For instance, you might need surgery to repair the damage because of the accident instead of managing your condition through less invasive means.

Perhaps one of the most common examples of a pre-existing injury is a herniated disc. Many times, herniated discs are present without pain or discomfort. After a jar or shock to your spine, a herniated disc can become painful and symptomatic. The symptoms can range from shooting pain to the extremities to numbness and weakness.  The resulting symptoms may prevent you from working or enjoying other parts of your life such as playing with your children. Sometimes, nerve damage from herniated discs can be so bad that sitting for lengthy periods can be painful. Standing can be problematic too.

Pre-Existing Injuries Are No Defense in Illinois

Insurance company lawyers will use every trick in the book to show that your injuries were not caused by your car crash. Their job is to save the insurance companies money. Our passion is to win compensation for our clients who suffered injuries through no fault of their own, including aggravation of pre-existing injuries. The Chicago pre-existing injury law firm of Stein & Shulman, LLC is a group of dedicated, successful, and committed attorneys who devote their practice to winning compensation for their clients who suffered injuries in car accidents. Learn how you can protect your rights by making an appointment today by calling 312.422.0500 or complete our on-line contact form to schedule a free consultation. There is no fee unless they are successful on your behalf.

Stein & Shulman, LLC
134 N LaSalle St, #820
Chicago, IL 60602
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Hess v. Espy, 813 NE 2d 270 – Ill: Appellate Court, 2nd Dist. 2004