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The catastrophic injury attorneys at Meyers & Flowers have the resources, drive, and expertise to build the strongest cases that seek the maximum in damages for your losses. Wrongfully injured clients choose Meyers & Flowers for their commitment to justice and willingness to leave no stone unturned when it comes to safeguarding clients’ rights. Get started with your private Chicago consultation today.

What is a catastrophic injury?

While there is no legal definition of a catastrophic injury in the state of Illinois, such an injury is understood to be severe, debilitating, and life-altering, affecting an individual’s ability to move around, care for themselves, earn a living, and otherwise enjoy a normal life. Survivors of catastrophic injuries often require extensive medical intervention, rehabilitation services, full-time care, and a change in accommodations. 

When someone else is to blame for a person’s injuries, Illinois law allows victims to sue, extracting compensation for their losses. An experienced catastrophic injury lawyer in Chicago can delve into your case, match your claim with an appropriate dollar value, and go to bat for you so you receive the full compensation you are owed.

Common types of catastrophic injury

Catastrophic injuries can occur almost anywhere and can be categorized as follows:

Spinal cord injuries

These are injuries that may sever the spinal cord, leading to paraplegia or tetraplegia. 

Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)

These injuries may interfere with cognition, motor function, speech, and sensory input.


Limb loss can significantly lower the victim’s quality of life and may require prosthetics. 

Catastrophic burns

Severe burns may need extensive surgery with skin grafting, causing profound scarring to the individual.

Crush injuries

Incidents where the victim was crushed in some way can cause bones to break, damage to internal organs, blood loss, and immobility. 

Our Chicago catastrophic injury lawyers have decades of combined expertise when it comes to handling these types of cases. Our single-minded attorneys will work aggressively to help victims to claim compensation for past, present, and future losses. 

Causes of catastrophic injury

There are many different causes of catastrophic injuries. Some are related to accidents while others are related to negligence. Categories include:

  • Car crashes – High-speed accidents, head-on collisions, or pileups can result in life-threatening injuries such as amputations, brain damage, spinal cord severing, and other forms of significant trauma.
  • Truck crashes – Trucks are massive in terms of size and weight, and they often carry heavy loads, making them a hazard to other drivers. 
  • Motorcycle crashes – Motorcyclists are at special risk of catastrophic injuries on the road, as they do not have the same protection found in a car or truck. 
  • Pedestrian accidents – If a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle, it can result in severe, complex damage to the head, spine, limbs, or vital organs.
  • Defective products – Defective products or medical devices may cause burns, crushing, amputation, organ damage, or other severe trauma.
  • Construction injuries – Accidents due to negligence that happen on the job, such as falls, electric shocks, or crushing, can cause critical, life-altering injuries.
  • Premises liability – Injuries related to property flaws, such as broken stairs, dim lighting, uneven surfaces, and inappropriate security, may lead to falls, assaults, or accidents that negatively impact the victim’s life.
  • Medical malpractice – Patients may be negatively impacted by surgical errors, medication mistakes, wrong diagnoses, and neglect, resulting in damage or one or more parts of the body.

What to do after being hurt

After being injured, it is essential to take the appropriate steps in order to safeguard your future. Don’t delay in hiring a catastrophic injury attorney in Chicago, as crucial evidence needs to be gathered immediately. If you wait too long before involving a qualified attorney, you may lessen your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve. The following steps are critical:

  1. Go to the hospital – After an accident, you should seek out medical care immediately, calling an ambulance if necessary. Untreated injuries may lead to life-threatening complications.
  2. Get a diagnosis – Your physician may perform a series of tests to determine the scope of your injuries. They may suggest surgery, medications, rehab, or a longer hospitalization. 
  3. Keep up with your medical appointments – Staying current with all your medical appointments establishes evidence that your injuries are valid.
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What not to do

There are some common pitfalls to be aware of after being in an accident. These include the following: 

  • Don’t talk to the insurance company – If you are contacted by the insurance company of the at-fault party, tell them that you have hired a catastrophic injury lawyer. Don’t discuss any details of your case. Leave that to the professionals.
  • Don’t use social media – Be cautious about your social media presence. The defense lawyers could use the frequency of your posting or your posts themselves against you. They may try to claim your injuries aren’t that serious if you’re taking selfies.
  • Don’t sign any documents – The insurance company of the at-fault party may pressure you to sign forms you don’t fully understand. You could unintentionally negate your chances of receiving the compensation you deserve. 
  • Don’t settle too early – It’s dangerous to settle before you know the full extent of the treatment plan for your injuries and how much your future care will cost. Our team can help ensure you receive compensation for past, present, and future expenses. 

Determining who is liable 

Determining liability is a challenging aspect of building a strong case against the at-fault parties. There may be one sole person to blame, or there may be multiple individuals who contributed to your catastrophic injuries. Our highly trained, experienced lawyers can help gather evidence that reveals:

  • Who is responsible for your injuries
  • How their negligence may have contributed to your pain and suffering
  • How your injuries have lowered your quality of life

We will go above and beyond to ensure justice for you and your loved ones by partnering with top-tier experts such as private investigators and accident reconstruction professionals to compile convincing evidence for your case.

What damages can you recover?

Illinois can award general damages, economic damages, or even punitive damages. 

  • General damages – General damages take into account the emotional and social aspects of the victim’s losses. They may include pain and suffering, diminished quality of relationships, distress and suffering, changes in lifestyle, loss of bodily function, and scarring.
  • Economic damages – These include costs incurred for diagnosis, treatment, recuperation, and rehabilitation. Our attorneys can recover economic damages related to lost income, medical fees, surgical fees, pharmaceutical fees, mobility equipment, physical therapy costs, medical transport fees, funeral expenses, and more.
  • Punitive damages – Punitive damages may be awarded by the court to punish a wrong-doer for outrageous behavior. Illinois courts may choose to award these damages when the at-fault party has willfully or wantonly caused the victim’s catastrophic injuries. 
man in rehab with a female in white lab coat

Time limit to file a lawsuit

In the state of Illinois, the statute of limitations – the time limit for filing claims after a catastrophic injury – is two years from the date of the injury. If a victim does not file a claim against the at-fault party within this time frame, they are not likely to receive compensation for their losses. Exceptions to this rule include cases involving minors and claims made against governmental bodies in the state of Illinois. Let a Meyers & Flowers catastrophic injury lawyer in Chicago help you claim the appropriate compensation before time runs out.

Why choose Meyers & Flowers?

Meyers & Flowers is a Chicago law firm with the critical expertise, skill, and drive to tackle the most difficult of cases and obtain just compensation for clients who have suffered a catastrophic injury. Our resourceful and dedicated lawyers have taken on high-profile national cases involving victims of defective medical products and won. Working with a large network of fact-finding experts, we will leave no stone unturned when it comes to proving your case. If you or a loved one has been the victim of wrongdoing that resulted in catastrophic injuries, contact Meyers & Flowers today. Let us do all the work while you focus exclusively on healing. Call today to get started.


How much is my case worth?

It’s difficult to put a numeric value on a claim because many factors come into play. Most importantly, there must be clear liability in the case. This will allow for the highest dollar amount to be recouped. When the victim shares some of the responsibility for the injury, then the claim amount is likely lower. If the at-fault party acted willfully, the court could award punitive damages, which would likely make the compensation higher. Insurance policy limits can also affect the amount of compensation that is possible.

Affordability of a catastrophic injury lawyer

The truth is that you cannot afford to NOT hire an attorney after your accident, as earning after a catastrophic injury is typically no longer possible. A good lawyer can think through the situation critically and assess your past, present, and future losses in a way that may be difficult for someone who has just been in an accident. Our lawyers at Meyers & Flowers have the energy and passion to pursue the maximum damages and will fight for you tooth and nail even when you are indisposed due to your injuries. Take advantage of our free case evaluation tool today to get started.

Why do I need a catastrophic injury attorney?

Catastrophic injuries can devastate victims financially and emotionally. Recovering the appropriate damages can mean the difference between having all anticipated future expenses covered and going into an uncertain future not knowing if there will be enough money to pay for vital medical services, rehabilitation, and housing. A good attorney has the foresight to calculate all your losses, even those that might not be obvious to you. Making matters worse, many insurance companies make it near impossible to honor a claim by using a variety of intricate strategies to protect themselves from high-value payouts. An experienced team of catastrophic injury lawyers knows how to navigate these curve balls and win. Catastrophic injury lawyers will:

  • Launch a detailed investigation to root out the key facts in the case
  • Build a strong, well-rounded argument to support your claim
  • Capture critical witness testimony to support your argument
  • Utilize a team of experts to increase the value of your case
  • Play hardball with greedy insurance companies
  • Take your case to trial if the proper settlement cannot be reached
  • Negotiate to reduce your medical bills after a settlement is achieved

How long will it take to receive compensation?

Because it takes time to properly evaluate the impact that the catastrophic injury will have on the victim – not just right now but indefinitely – it sometimes takes longer to obtain compensation. If the insurance policy is significant – a million or more – cases can take years to resolve. With a smaller insurance policy, the case may settle more rapidly.

How much time do I have to file a claim?

The statute of limitations in Illinois is two years from the date of the injury. It is essential that you make your case within this time frame in order to avoid missing a vital opportunity. Our team of trained, experienced, and dedicated attorneys can help ensure you don’t miss the window to receive the compensation you need to put your life back together.

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