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IL injury lawyerAs a parent, you may already be nervous about putting your child in daycare. Many new parents find the first time they drop their children off nerve-wracking even if they have thoroughly researched the facility. Most of the time, daycare centers are perfectly safe places for children. The vast majority of daycare centers are very careful about the safety of the children in their care. Unfortunately, not all of them are as cautious as they should be, which can lead to children suffering injuries. It is important for you as a parent to familiarize yourself with the safety protocols a child care facility should be using. If you suspect that there is something not right about the daycare your child attends, it is important that you take prompt action to protect your child. If your child has already been harmed due to a lack of safety protocols in a daycare, an attorney may be able to help you recover damages on their behalf.

Steps a Day Care Center Should be Taking to Keep Children Safe

There are certain measures every daycare must take in order to protect the children in their care. These steps include:

  • Background checks - Every employee or volunteer in a daycare center should have submitted to a complete background check that includes their criminal history. Bad actors who would prey on children may attempt to find employment that gives them access to their desired victims. A solid background check should weed out the vast majority of those with bad intentions.
  • Proper ratios - The Department of Children and Family Services determines what ratio of caregivers to children of varying ages is safe and appropriate. If a daycare center fails to adequately staff its facility, there may not be enough adults around to keep your children safely supervised.
  • Security cameras - Cameras in the care areas are an absolute must. If a child is injured, these cameras will show everyone exactly what happened. Daycare centers that have nothing to hide and are not interested in covering anything up will have no problem with cameras, as they can equally protect the daycare center.
  • Cleaning protocol - While in some cases, infections like pink eye or strep throat will spread among young children no matter what, proper cleaning protocols can minimize or limit the spread. Staff should refuse to allow sick children to be dropped off.

Parental instincts are one of your best tools when it comes to keeping your children safe. If something does not seem right or safe, it probably is not.

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IL injury lawyerWhether you are the type of person who loves shopping or the type who gets in and out of stores as quickly as possible, you at least do not expect a simple trip to the store to injure you. You should generally expect retail stores open to the public to be safe. When there is a danger to shoppers, it quite frequently has to do with a hazard that causes people to slip, trip, or fall. Even in young healthy people, a simple fall can be surprisingly injurious. Injuries as simple as a sprained wrist can take someone out of work for a week or more. More serious injuries like concussions can also result. If you fell in a retail store and sustained an injury, consulting an attorney to find out what type of compensation you may be entitled to is a good idea.

How Does Negligence in a Retail Setting Cause Falls?

The person charged with managing or controlling a retail store has a duty to take reasonable care to keep any areas open to the public safe for shoppers. This is why “wet floor” signs are a common sight - they are necessary to alert shoppers to take care to not slip. Not all stores are concerned enough about customer safety to take steps like this, however. Negligent retail stores may make mistakes like:

  • No “wet floor” sign - When customers are at least aware that the floor is slippery, they can take precautions like walking slowly or avoiding the area. Hitting an unexpected slick patch of floor can cause someone to slip.
  • Unattended equipment - When employees are using equipment like stepladders, tools, or even boxes on the floor, there should be a staff member present. Otherwise, people may not expect there to be objects sitting in the aisle and could trip.
  • Cords - Anything that needs to be plugged in can become a serious tripping hazard if the cord is not properly concealed behind the appliance or taped to the floor.
  • Plumbing - Public restrooms require a bit of attention and care. When sinks or toilets back up and overflow, the floor can become wet and slippery. If the overflow is not addressed promptly, quite a large pool of water can form on the floor, leading to slips.
  • Unaddressed spills - As soon as a store employee becomes aware of a spill, it should be addressed immediately. When staff fails to respond promptly to a spill, the odds that someone is going to slip go up. This is particularly common in grocery stores.

If you slip, trip, or fall due to a hazard in a retail store, you should get prompt medical attention and then call an attorney.

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IL injury lawyerCar crashes can be serious no matter where they happen. However, major highways like I-294 and I-90 can be particularly dangerous. Drivers are often either operating at high speeds or are in very condensed bumper-to-bumper traffic. It is particularly important for drivers to be cautious on the interstate because of the increased risk associated with a collision. Unfortunately, too many drivers let their guard down when they are on the highway. There are no stoplights or intersections to deal with, and there generally should not be any cyclists or pedestrians to account for. It is all too easy for drivers to relax when they should be exercising a high level of care. If you are injured in a car accident on a major highway, an attorney may be able to help you recover compensation.

What Risk Factors Are Associated With Highway Collisions?

Whether traffic is at a standstill or moving fast, car crashes on the interstate can do major damage. Most of these accidents are completely preventable. Here are a few common causes of serious accidents on the highway:

  • Complacency - Now that most workers have returned to their offices or job sites, I-294 and I-90 are once again filled with commuters. Drivers who take this route daily may begin to experience a sort of mental auto-pilot. Drivers in this state may fail to notice obstacles that were not there yesterday, like abrupt lane merges to accommodate a pre-existing crash or road work.
  • Road rage - Road rage incidents have been on the rise nationwide recently. One possible explanation relates to the sharp decrease in traffic during the height of the pandemic - people may have grown accustomed to having the roads almost to themselves, leading to increased frustration with traffic.
  • Chain reaction - If the driver four cars behind you rear-ends the car in front of him, there is a solid chance that you are also going to get rear-ended, and possibly pushed into the car ahead of you. All it takes to cause a large pile-up is one careless driver making one mistake.
  • Speeding - You have probably been told to stay out of the left lane unless you are passing. Some drivers, however, see the left lane as the designated speeding lane. These speeding drivers can easily lose control of their vehicles around turns and are prone to rear-ending vehicles who enter the left lane at a lawful speed.

Even if you are doing everything right and driving defensively, highway traffic may make it impossible to avoid careless or reckless drivers.

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IL injury lawyerSlipping and falling has the potential to cause serious injuries. While these accidents can be humorous if the person gets up completely unharmed, a slip and fall can also be extremely serious. Older adults, in particular, are vulnerable to suffering broken bones or internal damage when they fall hard on their back. Head injuries are a common risk, as the back of the head is less able to withstand impacts than the front. If you have suffered harm as a result of a slip and fall accident, you may be able to recover damages from the responsible party, whether that is a retail store, a restaurant, or even an individual whose home you fell in. An attorney can offer you further guidance about who could be liable for your injuries and what you claim might be worth.

What Illinois Rules About Slip and Falls Should I Be Aware of?

If you were injured after you slipped and fell, there are a few legal rules that can affect your claim. These rules include:

  • Statute of limitations - In Illinois, you have two years to file a lawsuit against the party who was responsible for your injuries. After two years, you can no longer decide to file a claim. This may seem like a long time, but it does go quickly, especially when you are coping with a major injury. Also, the sooner you contact a lawyer and file a claim, the easier it will be to find witnesses, security camera footage, and other evidence that can help your case.
  • Comparative negligence - In many cases, the person who slipped and fell is at least slightly at fault for their accident. Slip and falls often happen while a person is distracted, such as by looking at their phone while walking or wearing clearly inappropriate footwear for weather conditions. You can still recover damages if this is the case, but your award could be reduced based on your share of the fault.
  • Reasonable knowledge - The owner or operator of the premises where you got hurt must have either known about the slipping hazard and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent an accident, or the situation should demonstrate that they reasonably should have known about the hazard. For example, if a spill in a restaurant happened seconds before you slipped and no employees saw, your claim may not succeed. However, if the staff knew about the spill and did not clean it up promptly, or if it had been there long enough that they should have noticed, your claim is likely to succeed.

Slip and fall claims can be more legally intricate than they appear, and are best handled by a skilled attorney.

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IL injury lawyerResidents in nursing homes typically require constant, around-the-clock care. They frequently have significant medical needs, they may be confused or disoriented, and they can do very little to care for themselves. There are state laws in place that require a certain number of caregivers to be present in a nursing home depending on how many elders reside there and the level of care they need. When these legal standards are violated, residents may not receive the care they need to stay safe and in the best health possible. This can be a form of medical malpractice.

If you believe that your vulnerable loved one is being neglected in an understaffed nursing home, you may want to reach out to an attorney who can investigate further. Your loved one - or in severe cases, their survivors - may be entitled to compensation.

What Are the Risks of Understaffing in Nursing Homes?

When nursing homes do not have adequate staffing, there may not be enough caregivers to safely monitor and care for the vulnerable residents. Some types of injuries and harms are very likely to occur when there are not enough caregivers present. Predictable harms include:

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