Monday, April 18, 2016

"You make house calls?" Why It Is Important That Your Attorney Treats You As More Than Another Client

Illinois Bicycle Law Attorney Mike Keating
A Chicago bicyclist called me last week after he was injured in a crash. He was badly injured and had just gotten home from the hospital. I told him that it was no problem for me to come meet with him in person. His response was, "You make house calls?"

I never thought of it in those exact terms before but, yes, we do make house calls. To me (not just as a lawyer but as a bicyclist) I know how it feels in the days after a bike crash. You are shaken up, in pain, and worried about the days in front of you. The last thing you need is to have to travel down to a law firm. That is why we have always "made house calls" and met with our clients at their home, at work, or wherever is convenient for them. We are also always available to meet in the evening or on weekends if necessary. We are here for you.

In an age where personal injury attorneys advertise on TV and on highway billboards, it is easy for someone to fear that they would be "just a number" or "just another client." Our commitment to the Illinois bicycle community is that we are ready to assist any bicyclist injured anywhere in Illinois at anytime. This can mean anything from offering some helpful advice to complex litigation. But we will do whatever is best for each client. And that always includes "making house calls" when necessary.

Initial consultations are 100% free and with zero obligation. In fact, there are zero attorney's fees unless we make a recovery for you in your case. If you have been injured in a bicycle crash in Illinois, please call Keating Law Offices at anytime. We have online chat operators who are literally available 24/7/365. You can reach us on the phone at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Hit-and-Run Driver of Semi-Truck Involved in Fatal Illinois Bike Crash Located

Illinois Trial Attorneys at Keating Law Offices
According to news reports, the Illinois State Police have located the driver of a semi-truck that was involved in a fatal crash near St. Elmo, Illinois on Monday morning. 30-year old Jason Hearty of Altamont, Illinois was killed in the crash. It was reported that Mr. Hearty regularly used this route to ride his bike to work. 
Additional Charges May Be Filed In Fatal Hit-and-Run
The driver was located around noon Monday morning after the crash. He was identified as 31-year old Kevin A. Bagwill of Godfrey, Illinois. Police also identified the semi-truck itself as the one involved in the crash. Bagwill was issued traffic citatinos for leaving the scene of a fatal crash and for failure to report the crash to police. Further charges may be forthcoming after a review by the Fayette County State's Attorney's Office. 
Illinois Law Requires Drivers Involved In Bike Crashes to Stay at Scene
Hearty was was riding his bicycle westbound on Route 40 near St. Elmo, Illinois when the fatal crash took place. There are no reports as to the direction of travel of the semi-truck at the time of the crash. However, witnesses reported the driver of the semi-truck fleeing the scene. Driver in Illinois who are involved in a crash are legally required to:
1) Stay at the scene of the crash long enough to provide the injured party with their information; and

2) If necessary or if requested to arrange for medical care for the injured bicyclist. 


Section 11-401(a) of the Illinois Vehicle Code provides the groundwork for the motorist: 
"The driver of any vehicle involved in a motor vehicle accident resulting in personal injury to or death of any person shall immediately stop such vehicle at the scene of such accident, or as close thereto as possible and shall then forthwith return to, and in every event shall remain at the scene of the accident until the requirements of Section 11-403 have been fulfilled."
Section 11-403 of the Illinois Motor Vehicle Code more specifically lays out the requirements any such motorist must fulfill before leaving the scene of a collision that leads to personal injuries: 
"The driver of any vehicle involved in a motor vehicle accident resulting in injury to or death of any person or damage to any vehicle which is driven or attended by any person shall give the driver’s name, address, registration number and owner of the vehicle the driver is operating and shall upon request and if available exhibit such driver’s license to the person struck or the driver or occupant of or person attending any vehicle collided with an shall render to any person injured in such accident reasonable assistance, including the carrying or the making of arrangements for the carrying of such person to the physician, surgeon or hospital for medical or surgical treatment, if it is apparent that such treatment is necessary or if such carrying is requested by the injured person."
Rather interestingly, in 2011 the law regarding hit-and-runs in Illinois was amended to allow the motorist to avoid prosecution for the hit-and-run by notifying the authorities within a half hour of the accident or within a half hour of being discharged from the hospital for an injury or incapacitation suffered in the accident. Section 11-401(b) provides as follows: 
"Any person who has failed to stop or to comply with the requirements of paragraph (a) shall, as soon as possible but in no case later than one-half hour after such motor vehicle accident, or, if hospitalized and incapacitated from reporting at any time during such period, as soon as possible but in no case later than one-half hour after being discharged from the hospital, report the place of the accident, the date, the approximate time, the driver's name and address, the registration number of the vehicle driven, and the names of all other occupants of such vehicle, at a police station or sheriff's office near the place where such accident occurred. No report made as required under this paragraph shall be used, directly or indirectly, as a basis for the prosecution of any violation of (staying at scene requirements)."
There is no reasonable excuse for a hit-and-run. Illinois law provides reasonable requirements for drivers who have been involved in a crash to stay involved. Even in instances where the driver is injured, there is still a window of time to legally report the crash. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Illinois Bicyclist Killed In Crash - Police Search for Semi-Truck

Another Illinois bicyclist has passed away as a result of a collision with a motor vehicle. In this most recent case, the bicyclist was struck by a semi-truck in the early morning of March 28, 2016. Illinois State Police say their preliminary investigation reveals Jason Hearty, a 30 year old Altamont resident, was riding his bicycle westbound on Route 40 traveling to his workplace in St. Elmo, when his bicycle was struck by an unknown semi-truck that left the scene. 

State Police say the crash occurred at 6:20 a.m. Fayette County Coroner pronounced Mr. Hearty dead at the scene at 7:00 a.m. According to news reports, Fayette County authorities say a semi-truck, matching a witness’s description of the semi-truck involved, was spotted near Highland earlier Monday morning.

No further details have been released in the media. Illinois State Police Crash Reconstruction Officers and Illinois State Police Crime Scene Investigators are continuing to investigate the fatal crash, along with the Fayette County Coroner’s Office.

Unfortunately, Mr. Hearty is the latest victim in a number of fatal bicycle crashes that have occurred in recent months in Illinois. With bicycling season in full swing, the Illinois Bicycle Attorneys of Keating Law Offices plead with motorists to share the road and drive with a heightened sense of awareness for bicyclists. Too many lives have been tragically lost in preventable collisions such as this.

We extend our deepest sympathies to Mr. Hearty’s family and friends.

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Keating Law Offices Wins Victory Over CTA In Bike Crash Case


A Cook County Jury has found in favor of a Chicago bicyclist for injuries he sustained as a result of a CTA bus pulling in front of him while he was riding down the Damen Avenue bicycle lane. Attorney Michael S. Keating secured the verdict in the highly contested case after several days of trial in the Law Division in the Circuit Court of Cook County. The case stemmed from an occurrence between the bicyclist and a Chicago Transit Authority bus in November of 2010 near the intersection of Damen Avenue and Division Street.

For over five years the Chicago Transit Authority and its legal department refused to make any offers to settle the case. At one point, the CTA filed a motion asking the judge to throw out the case and claimed that the allegations by the injured bicyclist were "pure fantasy." At another point a Chicago Transit Authority attorney claimed that the case was entirely baseless and said that is was a "Zero Offer" case meaning they would never offer to settle the case. However, the jury found otherwise and held the Chicago Transit Authority and its bus operator to be primarily responsible for the crash.

The bike crash at issue occurred on the morning of November 5, 2010 when the bicyclist was riding in the bike lane down Damen headed towards Chicago's medical district. As the bicyclist passed Division Street there was a CTA bus stopped at a bus stop. As the bicyclist approached the bus, the bus pulled out from the stop. The CTA's own Standard Operating Procedures requires a bus operator to check their mirrors to make sure it is clear to pull out and to only pull out when it is safe to do so.

The CTA, however, was able to locate a witness who claimed that the bicyclist ran the red light on Division Street and was riding too fast just prior to the crash. The CTA further claimed that the crash occurred when the bicyclist attempted to pass the CTA bus on the right and crashed into a construction barrier. The CTA also attempted to claim that because there was no contact between the bus and the bicyclist that they were not to blame. In short, the CTA claimed the bicyclist was 100% to blame.

Surveillance video from the bus showed the bicyclist crashing into the construction barrier and did not show any contact on the passenger side of the bus. However, the bus did not have surveillance video on the driver side where the bicyclist was cut off by the bus. Most significantly, the responding paramedic to the scene and the CTA's own supervisor made reports right after the crash that reflected that there was contact between the bus and the bicyclist. The CTA's original reports contained a statement from the CTA's own witness that there was contact between the CTA bus and the bicyclist prior to the bicyclist losing control and crashing.

The CTA made every effort to prevent the injured bicyclist from obtaining compensation for his injuries. However, the Cook County jury was able to view all of the evidence and attempted to make a fair award for the bicyclist. According to one of the jurors, the jury used the arguments made by Attorney Keating in his closing argument as the basis to render a verdict in favor of the injured bicyclist.

Attorney Keating said the following regarding this verdict:
"One of my favorite expressions is "talk is cheap and actions speak louder than words." I always say that I will always fight for my clients to the very end. In this case the CTA took a hard line approach and forced me to try the case. We tried the case and won. I am very pleased to have obtained a verdict for my client after all these years of litigation."
Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Attorney Mike Keating Presides Over National Bicycle Lawyer Meeting


Keating Law Offices attorney Mike Keating recently presided over the bi-annual meeting of the Bicycle Litigation Committee for the American Association for Justice (AAJ) in Boca Raton, Florida. AAJ is formerly known as the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and is the nation's largest and most influential group of trial lawyers. The mission of AAJ is to protect the right of all Americans to pursue justice when they or a loved one has been injured. 

The Bicycle Litigation Group is made up of some of the most prominent bicycle lawyers from throughout the United States. The group works together to advocate for bicyclists and ensure that they are legally protected. A primary focus of the Bicycle Litigation Group is to share insights and analysis on efforts by insurance companies and anti-bicycling interests to compromise the rights of bicyclists when they are injured and to share the road. Many of the attorneys in the group are prominent bicycling advocates in their communities and have fought for safe streets for bicyclists not just in the courtroom but in city halls and state capitals throughout the country. 

Mike Keating has acted as the Chair of the AAJ Bicycle Litigation Committee since 2013. Mike is considered one of the nation's leading bicycle law attorneys and bicycle advocates. The firm has successfully represented hundreds of Illinois bicyclists in a wide variety of cases where the bicyclist was injured in a bike crash or bike accident. The firm is committed to assisting any bicyclist anywhere in Illinois at any time. 

For more information about Keating Law Offices, please visit the firm's website at KeatingLegal.com

Monday, February 22, 2016

National Bicycle Law Attorneys Who Serve Bicyclists In All 50 States

Keating Law Offices is an Illinois-based law firm that is dedicated to representing bicyclists and their families when they or a loved one have been injured in a bicycle crash. In most instances, bicycle crashes are preventable and could have been avoided. The result of bicycle crashes are that injuries and, tragically, even deaths are common results.

At Keating Law Offices we believe that the motorists and the insurance companies who should be responsible for protecting the injured bicyclists must be held accountable. Too often the bicyclist is blamed for a bicycle accident and the insurance companies try to take advantage of this unfair bias against bicyclists. That is why we are committed to representing bicyclists who have suffered injuries in a crash. Far too often, without skilled legal representation the bicyclist is at a massive disadvantage when pitted against a giant insurance company.

One of the nation's leading bicycle litigation firms, the attorneys at Keating Law Offices have spent years fighting on behalf of bicyclists' rights. Attorney Michael S. Keating is the Chair of national trial lawyer association's Bicycle Litigation Committee. 
We work with other firms throughout the country as co-counsel on bicycle crash cases. 

As bicyclists ourselves, we work to counsel our clients and that starts with an ability to listen and be receptive to our clients' needs and desires. One of the keys to the firm's success is our sincere commitment to our clients and our desire to obtain for them the best outcome possible. Part of that unmatched commitment is our desire to communicate clearly and consistently what is happening in your case and to answer all of our client's questions.

Many times after a bicycle accident the bicyclist is left to feel not just physical harm, but emotional harm from a motorist who was not careful, or a police officer who was not unbiased, or an insurance company that put their profits ahead of the experience of an injured person. These wrongs must be made right. Call us at any time, day or night, weekdays or weekends, to begin the path towards justice.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Chicago Bicyclist Received Insurance Settlement After SUV Driver Swerves Into Him

The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices have settled a substantial personal injury claim of $50,000.00 on behalf of a bicyclist injured in the Gold Coast this summer. The crash occurred when the bicyclist was riding his bicycle eastbound on West Oak Street and approaching its intersection with North LaSalle Street. At the same time the driver of a luxury SUV erratically attempted to go around the car in front him and swerved directly into the bicyclist’s path. The motorist illegally struck the bicycle by sideswiping him. The force of this collision forced the bicyclists off his bike and as result he suffered a dislocated left shoulder.

The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices Serve Cyclists Throughout Chicago and the State of Illinois

This bicyclist’s injuries were so severe that he was immediately transported via ambulance by Chicago Fire Department paramedics to Northwestern Memorial Hospital emergency room. The ambulance report showed that the bicyclist had a deformity to his left shoulder. An x-ray confirmed dislocation of the bicyclist’s left shoulder and he had to have his shoulder reset. Upon leaving Northwestern this bicyclist knew he needed help. He reached out to the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices were able to recover a settlement of $50,000.00 for this injured Chicago bicyclist. This is a substantial settlement for an injury that fortunately did not require surgery and the bicyclist's recovery was without any complications. The settlement was also reached without having to resort to filing a lawsuit and will fully compensate the bicyclist for his medical bills, time off from work, and his pain and suffering.

City of Chicago Laws Provide Protection to Bicyclists

In this case, the motorist violated a Chicago Municipal Code statute that protect bicyclists throughout the city. Section 9-40-160 of the Chicago Municipal Code states that “every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with …any person operating a bicycle…upon any roadway, and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary.” (See Section 9-40-160 of the Chicago Municipal Code.)

Without any warning or signal the motorist and his luxury SUV attempted to swerve around a vehicle directly in front of him to continue eastbound on West Oak Street. With no time for the bicyclist to react, he was violently struck from the side and injured. As a result of the crash, the bicyclist was thrown off his bicycle, injuring his left shoulder. It was very important for the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices to recover as much money as possible from the motorist’s insurance company based on the injuries to this rider’s left shoulder and we are proud to have done so.

Contact Keating Law Offices At Any Time

If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

The Leading Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Illinois

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. Keating Law Offices has successfully obtained compensation for hundreds of bicycle injury victims across Illinois.  The firm's bicycle accident attorneys are always available to review your case with absolutely no risk or obligation to you. The firm's mission is to do everything possible to obtain you the maximum amount for the injuries you sustained. In the event that no recovery can be made for you, our legal services are absolutely free. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Bike Attorney Mike Keating's Article, "Bicycling In An Automobile's World," Published In Trial Magazine

Illinois Bicycle Law Shield
More Americans use bicycles than ever before, but decaying infrastructure, automobile-focused transportation policies, and a lack of federal funding put bicyclists at serious risk of harm. These are the issues investigated in a recent journal article authored by Keating Law Offices attorney Michael S. Keating. The article, entitled "Bicycling In An Automobile's World," was recently published in Trial Magazine. Trial Magazine is an award-winning publication produced by the American Association for Justice, the national trial lawyer organization that works to promote a fair and effective justice system for injured Americans and their families. 

America's Decaying Infrastructure May Directly Lead To Bicycle Accidents

For decades, the United States has failed to adequately incorporate bicycles into its overall transportation plan, instead focusing almost entirely on motor vehicle traffic. This longstanding transportation policy has resulted in roadways, bridges, and other elements of transportation infrastructure that are not “bike friendly.” Bicyclists are vulnerable roadway users and current transportation policies unfairly place them in harm’s way, leading to crashes that could have been avoided by adding bicycle-friendly features into the transportation infrastructure. A bike-friendly transportation project incorporates features such as bicycle lanes and paths, and it creates safer streets so that its overall design helps bicyclists stay safe.

Illinois Bicycle Attorney Michael S. Keating

Attorney Michael S. Keating is a national leader in the field of bicycle litigation.  Keating Law Offices has successfully represented hundreds of injured bicyclists and their families and in the process recovered millions of dollars in settlements and awards. Mr. Keating has served for years as the Chair of the American Association for Justice's Bicycle Litigation Committee and is an active member of the Active Transportation Alliance and Ride Illinois, formerly the League of Illinois Bicyclists. 

Keating Law Offices Is Always Available For A Free Consultation

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Illinois Bicycle Attorneys at Keating Law Offices Attend Chicago Winter Bike Swap

 Keating Law Offices' Booth at Bike Swap
Attorneys from Keating Law Offices attended the Chicago Winter Bike Swap this past weekend. The firm has been a part of the Chicago Winter Bike Swap for several years going back to when the event was held at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Attorney Michael Keating, founder of Keating Law Offices, said:
"We love coming to the Chicago Winter Bike Swap and meeting with other bicyclists who are passionate about bicycling and answering questions about bicycle law. My commitment to bicyclists stems first from my personal love of bicycling and bikes. My experience as a trial attorney obviously came later. When the firm goes to events like this it is a great opportunity to combine these two passions. At the end of the day, being a part of the bicycle community in Illinois is at the very heart of what we do and who we are." 
Keating Law Offices is dedicated to representing bicyclists and their families throughout Illinois in cases related to bicycle accidents. The firm prides itself on the fact that its attorneys are involved in all aspect of bicycling and bicycle advocacy. The firm is known for providing personal and direct legal counsel and advice to bicyclists throughout Illinois. The goal of the firm is simple: "To provide legal counsel and advice at any time to bicyclists who are injured anywhere in Illinois." The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices are always available to meet clients at their convenience.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Scofflaw Driver Claims "Ghost Car" Causes Crash That Severely InjuresTwo Bicyclists

Driving record of offending motorist who claimed a "ghost car" caused Illinois bike crash. 
A driver with a long and troubled history of traffic violations tried to claim that it was a "ghost car" that caused a bicycle crash in August of 2015 that seriously injured two bicyclists. "Ghost cars" or "phantom vehicles" are terms that lawyers and police officers use to describe mythical cars that only drivers who are suspects in crashes conveniently see before a collision. "Ghost cars," like a mythical figure, only appear momentarily before disappearing forever. "Ghost cars" also drive erratically and force other drivers to swerve out of their way but unfortunately into something or someone else. 

The Legend of the "Ghost Car" in Vehicle Accident Cases

The motorist who struck two Chicago-area competitive cyclists in late summer of claimed that the crash was caused by a "ghost car." The driver and the cyclist were traveling in the same direction on a major road in the far northern suburbs when the driver swerved over the fog line and onto the shoulder of the road where the two bicyclists were riding. The driver struck both bicyclists and caused serious injuries. 

Fortunately for the cyclists, there were two other witnesses to the crash and a responding police officer who wrote in his report that he did not find "credible evidence" of the ghost car. The problem with stories like this is that the insurance companies will often latch onto stories like this and use it as an excuse to delay a claim or deny it entirely while they "complete their investigation." In all cases an insurance company does have a duty and responsibility to investigate all claims. It's part of their job. But when the facts of the case are so overwhelmingly in favor of the injured person, the claim of an "investigation" becomes nothing more than an excuse to use the Three Ds Of Insurance Defense: Deny, Delay & Don't Pay. 

Our law firm was in contact with the responding police officer and the local county prosecutors' office right away. In the course of our investigation it was learned that the driver had received SIX separate traffic citations within five years. The driver was originally charged with a simple traffic violation, but Lake County prosecutors were encouraged by our firm and the responding police officer to pursue more serious charges given the extreme misconduct of the driver and the fact that serious injuries were sustained. The prosecutors made the decision to drop the misdemeanor traffic ticket and are preparing to file felony traffic charges against the motorist for the crash itself and his claims at the scene about the "ghost car." 

Illinois Laws Provide Bicyclists Protection on all Illinois Roadways


The improper lane change by this motorist on a state roadway violated Section 11-709 of the Illinois Vehicle Code. It is important to note that cyclists have the same rights on all state roads as motorists.

Section 11-709 of the Illinois Vehicle Code states that “a vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practicable entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from such lane until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety. (625 ILCS 5/11-709).
As evidenced by this collision in August of 2015, there was no dispute that it was unsafe for this motorist to move his vehicle from the left lane of Illinois Route 120 to the right lane and directly into the path of the cyclist himself and his bicycle, striking him and causing serious personal injuries.

Keating Law Offices Works To Protect Cyclists Throughout The State of Illinois

The injured bicyclist in this case was represented by attorneys Michael Keating of Keating Law Offices. The cyclist is a member of a local road bike racing team focused on road cycling and triathlon competitions. Given the extremely competitive nature of road bicycle racing, this cyclist will have residual negative effects of a decline in his training level that will permeate into the 2016 season. It was very important for the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices to recover the maximum amount of money available from State Farm on behalf of this injured competitive cyclist and we are proud to have done so.

Bicycle Crash Lawyers

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, it is important that your get as much information as possible right away regarding your legal options. Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. 


If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Lawsuit On Behalf of Injured Chicago Bicycle Messenger Settled for $100,000.00

The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices have settled a personal injury lawsuit filed on behalf of a Chicago bicyclist for $100,000.00. This amount represents the full amount of the State Farm Insurance policy for the motorist who struck the bicyclist and caused her injuries in November of 2014. State Farm had originally denied any responsibility in this case and the bicyclist was forced to file a lawsuit against the driver in the Circuit Court of Cook County. After only six months of litigation the attorney for the driver agreed to have State Farm Insurance settle the case for every penny available from the insurance company.

The motorist caused the collision when she attempted to accelerate past the bike messenger as both traveled southbound on Lakewood Avenue in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood. The record in the case indicated that the motorist struck the bicyclist’s rear tire at approximately 25 to 30 miles per hour and ejected her forward. The bike messenger was violently thrown off her bicycle and onto the pavement of Lakewood Avenue due to the force of the impact. Due to the severity and speed of the crash, the bike messenger suffered fractures of her radius and ulna bones in her right arm at the wrist, as well as shredded her tendons. She also smacked her forehead on the pavement as she crash-landed.

The Chicago Police Department ticketed the motorist for her failure to exercise due care because she collided with the bicyclist in the roadway. It was a clear violation of Section 9-40-160 of the Chicago Municipal Code, which affords bicyclists the same rights as motorists on the road.

Chicago Bicycle Laws Provide Bicyclists Protection On City Streets

Motorists must be aware of bicyclists on the road at all times and a failure to “not see the bicyclist” until it is too late is no excuse. Section 9-40-160 of the Chicago Municipal Code provides the following protection to bicyclists on the roadway:

"Every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian, or any person operating a bicycle or other device propelled by human or animal power, upon any roadway, and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary…"
Chicago Bicycle Lawyers Successfully Resolve Case After Filing Lawsuit

Despite the Chicago Police Department finding the motorist at-fault and the ruling of a Cook County Traffic Court judge determining the motorist was guilty for a failure to exercise due care in this collision, the insurance company for the motorist refused to offer any money in settlement when negotiations first began. The claim by the motorist was that the bicyclist pulled in front of the motorist and the crash was not only unavoidable, but actually the bicyclist's fault. The insurance company for the motorist believed the bicyclist was at-fault because they claimed that and offered nothing prior to the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices filing a lawsuit against the motorist in the Circuit Court of Cook County.

After filing suit on behalf of this injured bike messenger and six months of contested litigation, the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices were successful in obtaining the insurance policy limits for the injured bike messenger – $100,000.00 – in settlement.

Bicycle Crash Lawyers

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, it is important that your get as much information as possible right away regarding your legal options. Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois.


If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Monday, January 4, 2016

What NOT To Do If You've Been A Victim Of A Bicycle Crash

The Chicago Bike Flag - Keating Law Offices, P.C.
The calendar pages have turned to 2016 and everyone is making New Year's resolutions. The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices have previously discussed at length what TO DO if you have been in a bicycle accident. But in keeping with the theme of New Year's resolutions, here are some actions to definitely skip if the unfortunate strikes and you are injured in a bicycle accident.  A resolution should be one that improves your life in some measurable way, so keep these steps in mind, as they can make a big difference:

Refusing Medical Care Even Though You Are Injured: You're scared. You're injured. The adrenaline is pumping and everything is a blur. People are all around you telling you what to do. You're also in pain. But you are worried about the cost of an ambulance or an E.R visit. You just really want to get home and figure you will be OK soon enough so you skip getting medical attention. The ramifications from this decision range from medical to legal. By not getting medical attention you are risking making a medical situation that was treatable much, much worse by waiting. You also miss the opportunity for your injuries to be documented near the time the injury occurred. This is very important to medical professionals who may provide treatment in the future. From a legal standpoint electing not to take an ambulance or get immediate medical attention causes insurance adjusters and insurance defense attorneys to question the seriousness of the injury. Even though the decision to not seek medical attention had nothing to do with the need for it, the absence of documented injuries at or near the time of the injury will forever cause a "question" in the minds of those that are paid to keep you from getting the compensation you deserve. If there is insurance coverage for the bike accident, the medical bills will most likely be covered that way. And in cases where there isn't insurance and you are unable to pay, most hospitals will consider a waiver of charges through a charitable application.

Hitting Social Media With Details Of Your Crash: Being in a bike accident is a big deal, and like a lot of major events in your life you want to tell your friends about it on social media. Don't. Those same insurance adjusters and insurance defense attorneys will use any small detail that they can find and try to use it against you. We've even heard the argument, "How could they be so hurt if they were still on social media?" This makes no sense because you only need a working thumb and you can post, but that's besides the point. Don't give anyone fuel to try and deny you the opportunity to compensate you for what you've been through. If you want to communicate with your friends and family about how you're doing, do so privately and not in a public forum.

Trying To Handle The Insurance Claim On Your Own: That lady from the insurance company who called you seemed really nice and genuinely concerned for your well being. She said that the insurance company would pay your part of the medical bills and you had nothing to worry about. She just needs to take your statement over the phone oh, and you don't mind if she records it, do you? Well, you have a lot to worry about as this is the oldest insurance company scam in the book. The insurance adjuster doesn't tell you that they will use the recorded statement against you if it is convenient. What that adjuster also fails to mention is that a personal injury claim is made up of more than just your medical bills. You are entitled to be compensated for time lost from work, pain and suffering, loss of a normal life, and other compensable damages under Illinois personal injury law. In addition, if your bike was damaged you can also get compensation for the property damage. Insurance companies spend literally billions of dollars every year fighting claims, you should have someone fighting on your behalf. Our involvement in hundreds of cases has made a large difference in the outcome of the case by getting maximum compensation for ALL the parts of your personal injury case. Insurance companies - fairly or not - treat attorneys differently than they do the injured person. The attorneys at Keating Law Offices work 100% on a contingency fee basis meaning you pay absolutely nothing - zero - unless we successfully resolve your case. We do not accept a single penny from you directly and only get paid directly from the insurance company proceeds when your case is resolved. President Abraham Lincoln may have said it best when he said, "He who represents himself has a fool for a client." You have nothing to lose by contacting the Illinois bike attorneys at Keating Law Offices. All initial consultations are absolutely free and with no obligation. Call or email anytime. We are here to help.

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The law firm, which only handles personal injury and wrongful death cases, is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients in every county in Illinois. If you have any questions rplease contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are 100% confidential and absolutely free and without any obligation.

Chicago, IL Bike Accident Attorneys

Monday, December 21, 2015

Focus Bicycles Recalls Bikes Due To Issues With Headset

Focus Bicycles recently announced a recall of its 2014-2015 Izalco Max bicycle models equipped with Acros-brand upper headsets. The recall was issued when Focus discovered that the headset could cause the carbon-fiber fork steer tube to crack, posing a fall hazard to the rider. The recall includes approximately 470 (an additional 31 sold in Canada) Izalco Max bicycles with Acros-brand upper headsets with model years from 2014 through 2015. The headsets are black with the word “Acros” printed in white on the upper headset.

Recalled Bicycles Sold Nationwide

The recalled Focus Izalco Max bicycles were sold at independent bicycle retailers nationwide and online at www.bikebling.com and www.carbonconnection.com from January 2014 to August 2015 for between $1,800 and $9,500. To date, there have been 11 reported incidents associated with the recalled Izalco Max bicycle outside of the United States. The CPSC recommends that riders who have a Izalco Max bicycle that is affected by this recall immediately stop using the bicycle and contact Focus Bicycles to schedule a free repair.

Illinois Bicycle Recall Law Attorneys

Keating Law Offices has significant experience and success with product liability cases and injuries resulting from bike usage. In Illinois the manufacturer of a product can be held liable when their product fails and the person was using the product in a reasonably foreseeable manner. This means that if a bicycle crash occurs because a part of the bike broke or failed during normal use, the manufacturer of that product would be responsible for any injuries or other damages suffered by the rider. Relevant to the recalled Focus bicycles, it would be reasonably foreseeable for a rider to expect the carbon-fiber fork steer tube not to crack, making any resulting injury the potential basis for a claim against the manufacturer.

The Illinois Bicycle Attorneys at Keating Law Offices strongly encourage Illinois bicyclists to stay informed regarding recalls that may affect their bicycles or equipment. While manufacturers rarely intend to sell defective products, recalls are a reminder that product defects posing serious risks to cyclists can be discovered once a product is already on the market. It is important to monitor the safety of your bicycle and cycling equipment both before and after a purchase.

Contact Illinois Bike Attorneys at Keating Law Offices 

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787. Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Need A FREE Stocking Stuffer For The Bicyclist In Your Life?

Chicago Bike Flag stickers and patches and the popular "Share The Road Bumper Stickers" from the Illinois Bicycle Law Attorneys at Keating Law Offices make great stocking stuffers for the bicyclist in your life. And best of all they are FREE to Illinois bicyclists!

How To Get The Chicago Bike Flag Or A Bumper Sticker

All you need to do to get a Chicago Bike Flag sticker or patch or the Share the Road bumper stickers is to email your mailing address to ChicagoBikeFlag@KeatingLegal.com. In the email simply let us know what items you would like and we will mail them out absolutely free of charge. We will do our best to get them out in time for Christmas.

Illinois Bicycle Lawyers At Keating Law Offices 

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm works as attorneys and advocates who have been injured in a bicycle accident or crash. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois.

If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Victim of Dooring on Milwaukee Avenue Receives $60,000.00 Settlement

A Chicago bicyclist who was doored on North Milwaukee Avenue in April of 2015 has received a $60,000.00 settlement from the insurance company for the driver that caused her injuries. The dooring occurred as the bicyclist was riding north on North Milwaukee Avenue towards its intersection with West Haddon Avenue in West Town. At the same time the driver had just parked her vehicle on Milwaukee Avenue. Without looking, the motorist unfortunately made the regrettable decision to swing her driver’s door open into the designated bike lane on Milwaukee Avenue where the bicyclist was unable to avoid the collision. 

Chicago Bicycle Laws Outlaw Doorings

It is troubling that bicycle accidents from doorings still occur in areas like West Town where there are designated bike lanes and consistent bicycle traffic. The law in Illinois generally and Chicago specifically make the act of dooring illegal. Section 11-1407 of the Illinois Vehicle Code and Section 9-80-035 of Municipal Code of Chicago address this issue with the same statutory language:
"No person shall open the door of a vehicle on the side available to moving traffic unless and until it is reasonably safe to do so, and can be done without interfering with the movement of other traffic, nor shall any person leave a door open on the side of a vehicle available to moving traffic for a period of time longer than necessary to load or unload passengers."
Common Injuries In Bicycle Crashes

As with almost all doorings, this one could have been avoided had the driver simply checked over her shoulder and her mirror and looked for bicycles that could be expected down the dedicated bike lane. This seemingly simple failure resulted in a serious injury to a young professional who ended up with a broken collarbone, a pile of medical bills and missed time from work. This insurance settlement for the bicycle accident will fairly compensates the bicyclist for her medical bills and missed time from work and also compensates her for the pain and suffering she went through while recovering from her injuries. Fortunately the bicyclist did not have to undergo surgery for her fractured collarbone and healed with rest and some physical therapy. Due to this she will be able to use most of her settlement towards getting back to her life and putting this event behind her. 

Bicycle Accident Lawyers

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, it is important that your get as much information as possible right away regarding your legal options. Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois.  If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Chicago Bicyclist Killed And Pedestrian Injured In Crash With Motor Vehicle in Lawndale

Fatal car crash
Photo by Alexandra Chachkevitch of the Chicago Tribune)
A Chicago bicyclist was killed and a pedestrian seriously injured after they were the victims of an accident caused by the operator of a motor vehicle. The collision happened late last night near 14th Street and Kostner Avenue in the Lawndale neighborhood on Chicago's West Side. According to reports, the bicyclist was a 55-year old man and the pedestrian was a 45-year old man who were struck by the vehicle. The bicyclist was pronounced dead at Mt. Sinai Hospital and the pedestrian was taken there for treatment as well. 

No other details are available, other than the fact that charges were pending against the driver. Given the this motor vehicle crash involved a fatality to the bicyclist and serious injuries to the pedestrian, the Chicago Police Department's Major Accidents Investigation Unit will investigate this incident. A photograph taken by Alexandra Chachkevitch of the Chicago Tribune shows severe damage to the entire front end of the vehicle and significant damage to the windshield. Windshield damage of this nature typically occurs when a person is struck, thrown onto the hood, and then their body damages the window. 

Our thoughts and prayers are with all of those affected by this tragedy. 

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Support Your Local Bike Shop on Black Friday

While throngs of shoppers head out on "Black Friday" to chase deals, instead consider visiting your LBS (Local Bike Shop) for your winter riding needs and gift ideas for the cyclists in your life. When you support your LBS, you are directly impacting your local economy and helping contribute to a stable "bicycle economy" made up of store owners, store clerks, mechanics and other jobs. This, in turn, helps continue to foster a community that values bicycling. So simply by "shopping local" you are helping bicycling overall.

Here is a list of Local Bike Shops from the Chicago Bike Shop Database. Feel free to add any shops to the comments below.

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Kona Announced A Recall of Kona Wo Mountain Bikes

The United States Consumer Products Safety Commission has announced a recall of Kona Wo bicycles due to the risk of a bicyclist being injured in a fall due to issues with the fork on the Kona Wo. The concern is that the bicycle fork on the Kona Wo bicycles can crack or break at the junction of the crown. A failure of the fork obviously poses a substantial fall hazard which could lead a bicyclist to sustain serious injuries. The recall includes approximately 530 2014 Kona Wo bicycles with a charcoal black frame and silver decals. The word “Wo” is on the top tube of the frame and the word “Kona” is on the down tube of the frame on the side of the seat.

Kona Bicycles Sold Throughout United States

The recalled 2014 Kona Wo bicycles were sold at authorized Kona dealers nationwide from September 2013 through July 2014 for approximately $1,700. The CPSC recommends that riders who have a Kona Wo bicycle that is affected by this recall immediately stop using the bicycle and to contact Kona or an authorized Kona dealer for a free replacement and installation of the bicycle fork.

Recalls occur in an effort to proactively prevent bicycle accidents from a potentially defective product before that accident takes place. In this case, Kona issued the recall even though there were no injuries reported from the issue with the bicycle fork. When a manufacturer discovers a potential product defect, it is required to recall the defective product immediately. 


Illinois Law Protects Bicyclists From Defective Products

Manufacturers of defective products are liable for all foreseeable injuries that occur as a result from use of the defective product. This is known as "strict liability" under Illinois law. The law in Illinois is very clear when it comes to product defects: if a bicyclist is using a bicycle and its components in a normal manner, and the bicycle product fails to work and a bicycle accident occurs, the manufacturer is liable. Under Illinois law, a liable manufacturer would have to compensate the injured bicyclist for their "damages" which would include their personal injuries such as medical expenses, pain and suffering, disfigurement and lost wages.

Illinois Bike Attorneys At Keating Law Offices

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois, including bicyclists injured as a result of a defective bicycle or bicycle component. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Bicyclist Killed In Crash With Semi-Truck Near North Shore Channel Trail

Eastbound Howard St. at McCormick Blvd. Near North Shore Trail
An Evanston bicyclist was killed near the North Shore Channel Trail in Skokie during rush hour on Friday evening. According to news reports, James C. Hinton of Evanston was riding his bicycle around 5:00 p.m. Hinton was riding eastbound on Howard Street at its intersection with McCormick Boulevard when he was struck by a semi-truck. McCormick Boulevard runs immediately adjacent and parallel to the North Shore Channel Trail at this location. The trail is to the immediate east of McCormick Boulevard.

No further details have been released in the media. The Chicago Tribune quoted a Skokie police officer as saying that both the bicycle and the semi-truck were traveling eastbound at the time of the crash. As of yet, no citations have been issued to any person involved in the crash. Skokie police continue to investigate the crash with the assistance of the North Regional Task Force Major Crash Assistance Team. Major Crash investigation units routinely investigate fatal crashes such as this where there are major injuries or death as the result of a crash. 


Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of James C. Hinton and all those affected by this crash.


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Crash That Killed Joliet Bicyclist Remains Under Investigation

Attorneys Representing Illinois Bicyclists
Joliet police are awaiting the toxicology results and conducting a further investigation into a bicycle crash that left a Joliet bicyclist dead. The fatal crash took place at around 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 11th. The collision between the motor vehicle and the bicyclist took place when the driver of a Chevrolet Avalanche turned from northbound Boulder onto Westbound Washington in Joliet. According to reports, the motorist only became aware of the collision when he heard a noise. The motorist reported that he never saw the bicyclist. 

The driver found the fatally injured bicyclist underneath the Avalanche truck and called 911. Joliet fire department personnel that responded to the scene had to use a jack to lift the Avalanche in order to extract the bicyclist from underneath the truck. The bicyclist was taken to Silver Cross Hospital where he was pronounced dead a short time later.  The bicyclist was identified as 57-year old Joliet resident Raul Weeks. Our thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Weeks's family and friends and all those affected by this tragic event. 

The Joliet Police Department has yet to issue any citations as they await the results of toxicology results and conduct a further investigation into the crash. Because the motorist claims that he did not see the bicyclist prior to the crash it is currently unknown as to what direction the bicyclist was traveling and his location on the roadway prior to the crash. Police departments typically conduct major accident investigations when a crash involves a fatal injury or death. The police department will then issue a final Illinois Traffic Crash Report that summarizes their investigation and will state whether any traffic citations were issued.

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Denied Claim for Rockford Bicyclist Ultimately Results in $100,000.00 Settlement

Illinois Bicycle Law
In 2011 a Rockford bicyclist was out on a ride for exercise. A diagnosed diabetic, the bicyclist had used bicycling as a way to stay in shape and maintain his weight. Through proper diet and regular exercise from bicycling, the bicyclist's doctor said that his diabetes was "under control" and the bicyclist was a "model patient." However, his life took a drastic turn when he was struck by a car and suffered a nerve injury to his face. 

Failure to Stop At Stop Sign Leads to Collision

The crash occurred when the bicyclist approached the roadway from a bike path. There was a stop sign for bicycle traffic on the path and the bicyclist came to a complete stop. He rode into the intersection to continue onto the bike path and was struck by a car that made a quick lane change from across another lane in a last-second attempt to turn. The motorist later admitted he was late in realizing he wanted to make a turn and crashed into the bicyclist. 

Serious Injuries from Bicycle Crashes

The impact from the crash threw the bicyclist from his bike and he landed face first. The impact was so substantial that the bike helmet was completely destroyed. The impact of the helmet pushed into the bicyclist's upper face and caused a nerve injury to what is known as the trigeminal nerve. This nerve helps control function in the bottom, middle, and top of a person's face. It is a slow-healing injury that has an unknown recovery. 

The offending motorist, although accountable for his actions, was nonetheless responsible for violating numerous Rules of the Road. The responding police office cited the motorist for failing to yield the right-of-way to the bicyclist in the intersection. In addition, the motorist
violated Section 11-1003.1 of the Illinois Vehicle Code in causing the collision. Section 1003.1 requires that drivers of vehicles exercise due care to avoid colliding with any person operating a bicycle. (625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1).


Bicycle Accident Case

What seems like a "clear cut" case became complicated when the insurance adjuster handling the claim for the motorist's insurance company denied the claim. Her reason for denying the claim? She thought it was not possible that a bike helmet forced into a person's face could cause nerve damage. Her personal opinion (keep in mind the claims adjuster is not a doctor) was that the diabetes most likely caused the nerve injury even though there was nothing in the medical records to substantiate this "diagnosis." 

The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers at Keating Law Offices were forced to file a lawsuit in Winnebago County to protect the interests of the bicyclist. After two years of litigation the case finally settled after the bicyclist's doctor and the expert neurologist hired by our firm testified that the nerve injury was from the bike crash. The expert neurologist was even able to demonstrate how the point of injury was exactly aligned with where the helmet impacted the bicyclist's face in the crash. 

The case ultimately settled for $100,000.00 which represents the full amount of the motorist's insurance policy. This was also the very same amount that the injured bicyclist agreed to accept - before the insurance company forced him to file a lawsuit against their own insured. 

The case is another example of how when a crash happens and you are injured, even if it is not your fault, that does not mean the insurance company will look out for your best interest. The people handling your claim are claims adjusters, not claims payers. Their job is to do what they can to try and convince you to take less than you are owed. The insurance company will always do what it can to protect its own interest. But Keating Law Offices will always do what we can to make sure that every opportunity is given to injured bicyclists. We will do what we can to assist any bicyclist injured anywhere in Illinois at any time.

Illinois Bicycle Attorneys at Keating Law Offices

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Illinois Law Requires A Bike Light - Daylight Savings Time Is A Reminder To Get One If You Don't Have One

Daylight Savings time is in effect again and until the Winter Solstice on December 22nd the days will get continually shorter. Even after the solstice it is many weeks before we get out of long nights and commutes home will again be in daylight. 

Lights Are Important

There is no way around the fact that Illinois bicyclists who commute to work via their bikes will be riding home in the dark. Because of this bike lights are critically important for all bicyclists. A headlight in particular provides the rider greater visibility and makes you more visible to motorists. A simple set of bike lights can categorically affect the risk of getting injured in a bicycle accident. Thinking "well, there's streetlights, I'll be ok" is an unreasonable and unnecessary risk. It is also illegal. 

Illinois Law Requires Lights And Reflectors

Lights for bicyclists riding at nighttime are required by Illinois law. According Section 11-1507 of the Illinois Rules of the Road, bicyclists must have the following on their bikes:
  1. A lamp on the front that emits a white light that can be seen for 500 feet; and
  2. A red reflector visible from 100 to 600 feet by a car with its headlights on. A rear red light may also be used.
The fact that the law says that a bicyclist may use a rear red light in addition to a rear reflector is probably just due to some less than precise legal drafting. The bottom line is a red reflector AND a rear red light are better than a reflector alone. This is why the Illinois Bicycle Lawyers strongly recommend that all bicyclists use a rear red light in addition to a red reflector and a bright light in the front. 

Jason Jenkins of the Active Transportation Alliance has put together a very helpful and informative short video on bike lights and what a difference they can make. Jason's advice regarding buying the most durable and bright light you can afford is solid advice. No one wants unnecessary expenses, but bike lights can make the difference between getting in a bike crash and getting home safely. 

Illinois Bike Law Attorneys

Keating Law Offices is the premiere personal injury law firm representing victims of bicycle accidents in Illinois. The firm is based in Chicago, Illinois and represents clients throughout Illinois. If you have any questions regarding this post or have a question regarding personal injury law, please contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-239-6787 (Office) or 312-208-7702 (Nights/Weekends). Our staff and operators are available around the clock. You can also email Mike@KeatingLegal.com 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.