Chicago, IL asked in Car Accidents for Illinois

Q: I was recently awarded an amount for a car accident and I feel like the lawyer is taking way too much

So back in 2020 I was in a car accident and because of the accident I did have to see get physical therapy I got injections in my back the first offer was like 13,000 something and I turned it down because I felt it was highly unfair that was a commercial vehicle that hit me they ran a light was their fault and I said no I will not except that I want to go to court so he says take a long time because of Covid I agreed three years later he talked me into doing an arbitration with a retired judge he said that A trial was still too far There will be a low number and high number and the judge will decide what you will get It took the judge three weeks to come up with an answer the low number was 30,000 the high number was 125,000 I got awarded 60,000 which was 10,000 more than my original offer. I waited three years for that now the lawyer says my share is still just 13,000 the money split up shouldn’t he pay the doctors first then split the money I feel this is unfair bs

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1 Lawyer Answer
Charles Candiano
Charles Candiano
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Chicago, IL
  • Licensed in Illinois

A: That is not possible. You should get a minimum of $16,000.

Though you do not tell us the amount of your medical liens, they must have exceeded $24,000 (40% of your recovery). Under the Illinois healthcare lien act, when that happens, by operation of statute, provider liens are limited to 20% of your recovery and healthcare Professional liens are limited to 20% of your recovery; and the attorney's fee cannot exceed 30% ($18,000). So before payment of Arbitration fees (usually split 50-50) and your medical records, you would have $18,000.

$60,000 (recovery) - $24,000 (medical liens) - $18,000 (attorney fee) = $18,000 Your medical records would NOT have exceeded $500 (PT provider usually give them to you) and the Arbitration costs would not have exceeded $1,500 so you should have a minimum of $16,000.

An experienced attorney guides your medical care, upfront. NEVER seek treatment from a provider who does not accept YOUR insurance. If you had put your medical care through Medicare, Medicaid, County Care, group health insurance, or your auto insurance med pay, you could have DRAMATICALLY reduced the amount you had to pay back AND you would NOT have any liens. Reducing what you pay back means more money for YOU.

An experienced attorney would also have emphasized, from the beginning, that recovery has NOTHING to do with what hits you and EVERYTHING to do with the injury you sustain. Being hit by a commercial vehicle is ONLY beneficial to you if you sustain truly severe injuries (think traumatic brain injury and amputation) because they have high-limit policies. In a whiplash case, they are the WORST defendants because they vigorously defend all claims.

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