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Tens of millions of people visit Chicago each year to see the Windy City, visit world-renowned museums, and eat some of our famous cuisines. Unfortunately, your exciting vacation may have turned sour if you were hurt in an accident. Whether you slipped and fell at a museum, were involved in a vehicle collision with a cab, or were part of an accident on the “L,” you now face a messy situation. After you receive your initial medical treatment, your vacation is over and you need to head home. But, once you are home, your accident claim and all the evidence is still back in Illinois. How do you handle a personal injury insurance claim or lawsuit from multiple states away? The best way to deal with an out-of-state claim is to work with an experienced attorney where your accident took place.
At Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C., our Chicago personal injury lawyers are ready to represent you in Illinois while you move forward with your life back home. Call us today at (312) 236-2900 to learn more during our free consultation.
Jurisdiction means that courts only have the power to make decisions regarding citizens or matters that take place within their defined region. There are two types of jurisdiction: personal and subject matter. Personal jurisdiction means a court has the right to make a decision regarding the defendant while subject matter jurisdiction means the court has the right to make a decision regarding a specific type of claim. Both types of jurisdiction must be satisfied before a case can move forward.
Because of personal and subject matter jurisdiction, you cannot bring a legal claim anywhere you want. If you need to file a lawsuit based on an injury, you must do so in a place connected to the accident and the party you believe is responsible. If your injury occurred while you visited Chicago and involved another Chicago business or resident, then you should file a legal claim in Illinois. If you tried to file a lawsuit in your home state and make the Illinois-based defendant come to you, it is likely your case would be dismissed based on improper jurisdiction.
Jurisdiction can be complicated. If you were hurt in Illinois and wonder whether you must file a claim here, speak with a Chicago personal injury attorney. An experienced lawyer can evaluate your circumstances and the responsible party to determine where it would be proper to file a claim.
You may wonder why you need an Illinois attorney rather than hiring a lawyer back home to handle your accident claim. Firstly, since your accident took place in Chicago, Illinois law will likely govern your rights and the outcome. Thus, an Illinois attorney will know Illinois law and have more experience with the local court system. Secondly, if you need to move forward with a lawsuit, you must have a legal representative licensed to practice within this jurisdiction. An attorney from another state may not have the right to represent you in court here.
Many personal injury issues begin as an insurance claim. During the claims process, you may not need to return to Chicago as long as you have representation here. By having a legal representative in Chicago, you have someone close to the evidence and responsible party in case there are in-person meetings. However, with insurance claims, most matters can be taken care of over the phone and through email.
If your personal injury claim moves forward into a lawsuit, it is more likely that you will need to come back for one or more court dates. With a local attorney representing you, you may avoid returning until trial.
If you were injured while visiting Chicago, your best chance to recover the maximum compensation possible for your situation is to work with a Chicago personal injury attorney from Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. We have years of experience representing out-of-state individuals in local matters. Call us for help at (312) 236-2900 for more information.