Burns are among the most severe, painful, and catastrophic injuries someone can sustain. The treatment necessary to help burn victims recover can be harrowing, with infection and disfigurement posing a major threat to their health.
When people are severely burned as a result of another individual’s carelessness or malice, they may be entitled to fair compensation. If you suffered a burn injury as a result of an accident, a skilled Oak Lawn burn injury lawyer could help you navigate the complexities of negligence law and determine what kinds of compensation you may be entitled to pursue.
Important Elements of a Burn Injury Lawsuit
In many burn injury cases, the plaintiff may hold the burden of proof. This means the plaintiff is tasked with proving with a preponderance of evidence that the defendant was responsible for their injuries. Moreover, the plaintiff may be required to establish the following elements of negligence
- The defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff
- The duty was breached
- The defendant’s breach of duty was the direct cause of the plaintiff’s injury
- The plaintiff suffered a physical injury and associated losses
A burn injury lawsuit may not succeed if the injury was caused by an unrelated source, such as the plaintiff being burned by spilling hot liquid on themselves.
Recoverable Damages in Oak Lawn Burn Suits
Determining compensation for a burn injury may depend on a number of factors. Each victim’s case can vary according to their circumstances, which subsequently may affect the amount of compensation awarded.
Some significant factors that may impact available compensation include:
- Severity of the burn
- Amount of medical care necessary to treat the burn
- Source of the burn
- Location of the burn
- Percentage of skin damaged from the burn
- Emotional injuries
Illinois uses the modified comparative fault standard, which holds responsible those who cause an accident as well as any other parties who share the blame. Damages awarded to a plaintiff may be reduced by the percentage of fault that plaintiff personally bears for their own injuries. If the injured party was not at fault, full damages may be claimed. For more information, get in touch with an Oak Lawn burn injury lawyer.
What is the Deadline for Filing a Burn Injury Lawsuit?
Illinois gives victims of personal injuries two years to file a lawsuit in civil court, according to 735 ILCS 5/13-202. In other words, the plaintiff has two years from the date of the underlying accident that caused their injuries to file the initial documentation for an ensuing lawsuit in court.
If more than two years have passed since the accident, the defendant can file a motion to dismiss the lawsuit based on this fact. Unless a rare exception entitles the plaintiff to extra time, the court may summarily dismiss the case, and the victim may lose their right to recover damages for injuries sustained, no matter how significant their injuries might be.
There are a variety of scenarios that might serve to delay the two-year deadline. Some circumstances that can pause the proverbial clock include:
- If the injured person becomes legally disabled after the accident but before a burn injury lawsuit can be filed
- If the injured person was under the age of 18 at the time of the accident, the statute of limitations clock will not run until the victim turns 18
- If the injured person was subject to a non-permanent mental illness at the time of an accident, they would have two years to file the lawsuit once this disability is removed
Let an Oak Lawn Burn Injury Attorney Help
Burn injuries can cause tremendous pain and suffering for both burn victims and their families. An accomplished Oak Lawn burn injury lawyer could fight for your rights and help guide your claim through the legal process. To learn more, call today to schedule a consultation.