Voted "Best Law Firm in 
Southern Illinois" in 2021

auto accidents

An automobile accident can turn your life upside down. Serious accidents can cost you: 
A fortune in unpaid medical bills, Your income, because you are too hurt to work, Your health, because of the seriousness of your injuries, or Your quality of life, because constant pain can ruin your ability to enjoy the things you love
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312,988 motor vehicle crashes occurred in Illinois during 2019, according to the most recent Illinois Crash Facts and Statistics published by the Illinois Department of Transportation. Twenty percent of those crashes reported injuries (63,834). In Southern Illinois, Williamson County reported 1,414 crashes, Jackson County reported 1,339 crashes, Jefferson County reported 1,065 crashes, Franklin County reported 857 crashes, Saline County reported 476 crashes, and Union County reported 377 crashes. No one wants to be involved in a motor vehicle crash, but it is important to know what to do in the event you are involved in a crash.


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to take

Get to a safe place. If you or others are in the roadway, try to move to the side of the road and if possible, activate hazard lights and set up warning cones or road flares further down the road toward oncoming traffic. These steps are important to lower the risk of a second crash.
Assess those involved in the crash for injuries requiring emergency medical treatment and contact law enforcement.

Remember, even if you do not see any visible injuries following a crash, or if adrenaline or shock prevents you from realizing the extent of an injury at the scene of a crash, it is important to get examined by a medical professional. When being examined, make sure you advise the doctor that you were in an accident, and explain all the symptoms you are having.
Stay calm. Being in a crash is naturally a high stress time; however, try to avoid yelling, cursing, and/or blaming the other driver(s).
Next, exchange contact information with the other driver(s) and photograph the scene and vehicles.
Report the facts of what occurred to the responding law enforcement officer so a written report may be prepared.
Contact your insurance company and advise them you have been in a crash. It is important to cooperate with your own insurance company; however, you should not give the other driver’s insurance company a recorded statement or sign any documents.

why choose us

After taking these initial steps, contact the Beard Law Firm for a free consultation at (618) 351-1000 to discuss the next steps in the claim process. The attorneys at the Beard Law Firm live and work in Southern Illinois and have successfully prosecuted car wreck cases all over the area. Unlike law firms that are outside Southern Illinois, we can and do travel to the scene of these accidents right away to begin collecting evidence in the case. Our experienced attorneys can assist you with negotiating with the insurance company, navigating healthcare liens and bills, and filing a lawsuit, if necessary.
Beard Law Firm staff

frequently asked questions

  • Q: Is it worth it to get an attorney after a car accident?
    A: It is ALWAYS a good idea to consult an attorney early in every case to avoid making mistakes. In many cases, an experienced attorney can get you a much larger recovery than you could get on your own. The Beard Law Firm gives free consultations so there is no downside to giving us a call.
  • Q: Should I give a recorded statement to the insurance company after the accident? 

    A: Generally speaking, you should consult an experienced attorney before agreeing to give a recorded statement. Oftentimes, especially with the at fault insurance, the adjuster will ask loaded questions in an attempt to try and get you to answer in a way that hurts your case.
  • Q: How long after a car accident can you sue?

    A: In Illinois, you usually have 2 years to file suit. However, that answer may change depending on other factors, and you may only have 1 year to file suit. Call us today to discuss the different factors and we can give you an answer.
  • Q: What can you claim for damages after a car accident?

    A: Past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages and other economic loss, past and future pain and suffering, past and future loss of normal life are the most common damages in car accident cases. Emotional distress and mental suffering are considered part of your pain and suffering.
  • Q: My car was totaled after the accident, but the insurance company’s offer does not cover what I owe on the car. What can I do?

    A: In Illinois, you are entitled to the fair market value of the car before the accident. Unfortunately, you may owe more on the car than the car was actually worth. You should try to buy “gap” insurance coverage when you buy a new car to cover the potential “gap” between what you owe and what the car is worth.
  • Q: I was hurt in a car accident, and I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt. Do I still have a case?

    A: In Illinois, the answer is yes, because whether you were wearing a seatbelt is not admissible at trial.
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