We represent skateboarders, too

Result: $11,500

A 29 year old man was struck by a taxi cab while riding his skateboard through the intersection of Lake Street and North Clinton Street in Chicago’s Loop. He was skating with his girlfriend to a movie theater.

As he skated off of the sidewalk to cross the street with the light in his favor a right turning taxi cab crashed into him. The driver did not stop immediately, and carried the man down the street on the hood of his vehicle before halting. Our client sustained a hip pointer and knee sprain from the collision, incurring about $5,300 in medical bills.

Steven Vance
Indiana driver does hit-and-run

Result: $30,000

A female bicyclist suffered a fractured collarbone after being struck by a driver at the intersection of Grand Avenue and Columbus Drive in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood. She did not have health insurance to cover her out-of-pocket costs which totaled about $3,000.

The driver fled the scene, but with the license plate number and a description of the vehicle we were able to track her down. She turned out to be a licensed lawyer and medical doctor in Indiana.

When we found her she denied any knowledge of the incident. We filed a lawsuit. By conducting an aggressive investigation to link the driver to the crash, which included subpoenaing 911 calls from the site of the crash and obtaining the doctor/lawyer’s cell phone location records, we were able to build a very strong case against her.

She was left with no choice but to settle with our client for an amount nearly ten times her medical bills to avoid what likely would have been an embarrassing and costly jury trial.

Steven Vance
"I didn't see her", driver claims

Result: $35,000

A 20-year-old female photography student was struck by a 74-year-old driver who was attempting to turn left from northbound Lincoln Avenue onto westbound Barry Avenue in Lakeview.

The driver claimed to have not seen the cyclist, but we were able to demonstrate that she would have been easily visible. The collision occurred during early twilight and there was plenty of natural light left as photos taken at the scene revealed. The front corner of the vehicle hit the left side of the bicycle flipping the rider onto the hood where she struck her face.

She suffered a cracked tooth and small scars under her lip and nose from the crash. Her total medical bills were about $7,600, but we were able to obtain a settlement far in excess of those bills by arguing that the effects of the facial scars, small though they were, could have very significant consequences for a young, single woman.

Steven Vance
Caution: Cabbies

Result: $70,000

A 24-year-old man was riding his bicycle to work at his Loop office when a taxi driver suddenly swerved the cab into him.

The bicyclist was thrown off his bike, crashing hard to the ground. He suffered a fractured clavicle requiring surgical repair.

Steven Vance
New Kinzie bike lane might reduce future doorings, but this bicyclist wasn't so fortunate

Result: $75,000

A 38-year-old man was riding his bicycle home from work in front of Chicago’s East Bank Club along West Kinzie Street when the driver of a Mercedes Benz opened her car door into his path.

The cyclist struck the door with his right shin resulting in a significant laceration requiring 11 stitches. The man experienced temporary nerve damage affecting his lower right leg that took several months to heal. This incident occurred just prior to the installation of Chicago’s first separated bicycle lane along West Kinzie Street.

Steven Vance
FK Law uses inventive defense

Result: $75,000

A 31-year-old Chicago man riding his bicycle home from dinner with his girlfriend and was struck by a motorist who blew a red light in the Logan Square neighborhood.

The bicyclist suffered facial injuries but recovered fully. The cyclist was riding without a headlamp as is required under Illinois law. However, we used photographic evidence, along with the testimony of a witness, to demonstrate that the intersection was very well lit at the time of the crash and the cyclist’s lack of lighting was not a contributing cause of the collision.

Steven Vance
Don't always trust the ambulance report

Result: $82,500

A bicyclist was struck by a driver making a left turn in their car across a marked bike lane. The collision happened at night.

The ambulance report showed that the bicyclist was dressed head to toe in black without a functioning headlight at the time of the subject accident. The bicyclist suffered two broken teeth.

Steven Vance
Sidewalk bicycling doesn't invalidate driver's requirement to practice due care

Result: $100,000

A 42 year old Chicago cyclist was struck by a SUV emerging from an alley on the 4800 block of West Belle Plaine Avenue. The bicyclist suffered a torn right labrum (shoulder) requiring arthroscopic surgical repair.

He had been riding on the sidewalk, which adults are not permitted to do in Chicago, before entering the alley where he was hit. We successfully argued, however, that the city’s prohibitive ordinance may not be used to bar an injured cyclist from receiving just compensation.

Pursuant to Garcia v. City of Chicago, 240 Ill.App.3d 199 (1st Dist. 1992), the ordinance was enacted to protect pedestrians and young cyclists from adult bicyclists using the sidewalk. It was never intended to protect drivers from cyclists and, therefore, could not be used as a shield under the circumstances of our case.

Steven Vance
Dooring does damage

Result: $100,000

A Chicago bicycle commuter was doored by a driver stopped along the curb on North Lincoln Avenue in the Lakeview neighborhood. The bicyclist was riding in the bicycle lane when the carelessly-opened door sliced into the bottom of his left leg causing a serious injury requiring surgery.

The motorist was uninsured, so resolution of the case was reached with the cyclist’s own auto insurer pursuant to his uninsured motorist coverage.

Steven Vance
College student hit on Sheridan Road

Result: $100,000

A Northwestern University student was struck from behind by a driver on Sheridan Road in Chicago. The female bicyclist was in the midst of merging left when she was hit by the motorist.

She sustained a fractured vertebrae without paralysis, incurring more than $50,000 in medical expenses. The case settled for the full amount of available insurance.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Moving van strikes bicyclist

Result: $130,000

A male bicyclist suffered a fractured leg after colliding with a friend who was cycling with him. The collision occurred when our client scrambled to get out of the way of an Allied Van Lines semi-tractor trailer which came perilously close to striking him from behind.

Though the truck never stopped and the driver was never identified, we filed a lawsuit against Allied in DuPage County, where the company was headquartered.

After all of the evidence was gathered, Allied Van Lines brought a motion to dismiss claiming that they were not liable for our client’s injuries. In support of their motion Allied pointed out that they did not employ any drivers, nor did they own any trucks.  Allied Van lines is a sort of umbrella corporation.  It contracts with moving companies who own trucks and employ drivers. When Allied contracts with a company they funnel business to the company and they allow the company to use Allied’s logo.

Illinois law dictates that a commercial truck bearing the logo and U.S. DOT number of a corporation is operating pursuant to the corporation’s authority, and therefore, the corporation is vicariously liable for the driver’s negligence. Because of this law, we argued that identification of the driver, ownership of the truck, and actual contact were all irrelevant.

The only relevant question before the court was whether or not there was a reasonable question of material fact as to whether or not the subject truck bore the Allied Van Lines logo and U.S. DOT license number.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Driver sideswipes bicyclist in bike lane

Result: $175,000

A car meandered into a bicycle lane and almost struck a bicyclist. In order to avoid the collision the bicyclist pushed off the car and straddled her bicycle.

When she pushed off the car she felt a “pop” in her shoulder. She ended up with a latent injury to her shoulder, and she eventually had a surgery to correct the problem.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Defense: "Bicyclist darted in front of the truck"

Result: $245,000

A 23 year old Chicago man was struck by a right-turning dump truck with an attached trailer.

The defense claimed that the bicyclist came off of a sidewalk and darted in front of the truck as it was entering an expressway on-ramp. The trucking company and its insurer defended the case aggressively, hiring an accident reconstruction expert who created a computer animation demonstrating what they believed was the bicyclist’s culpability for causing the crash.

However, after extensive investigation we learned that the truck’s right turn signal was not working at the time of the collision and that our client had no warning that the vehicle was turning into his path.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Rural truck driver

Result: $250,000

A woman driving a pick-up truck struck and killed a bicyclist as she was overtaking him on a rural road.

The defense claimed the bicyclist “swerved suddenly” into the path of the truck, but they eventually paid their full policy limits.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Taxi driver hit-and-run

Result: $300,000

A 33 year old female bicyclist was struck from behind in Chicago by a taxi cab driver who fled the scene. She suffered torn cartilage in her left knee requiring surgery.

Employed as a flight attendant, her injuries left her unable to work for a significant period of time. She incurred over $60,000 in medical bills.

Steven Vanceover 100k
FK Law finds eyewitness

Result: $375,000

An elderly man was struck and killed by a minivan driver while riding his bicycle through a traffic intersection in Mattoon, Illinois.

The defense was prepared to present extensive scientific evidence from an accident reconstruction expert that the deceased man himself was at fault for the incident.

However, investigation uncovered a witness to the scene who observed the defendant driver speeding through the intersection while not paying proper attention.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Bicyclist spent months in wheelchair

Result: $490,000

A 59 year old Chicago accountant was struck by a left turning driver while riding his bicycle to work. The male cyclist suffered fractures to both lower bones of his left leg, a torn left meniscus, a fractured left hand and a broken nose. He underwent several surgeries to treat his injuries and spent months in a wheelchair.

The 24 year old driver was ticketed by police for failing to yield. Months after the crash, we accompanied the cyclist to traffic court, making sure that he was prepared to testify against the driver. His presence at the hearing compelled the driver to plead guilty to the charges against him. That admission of guilt could have been used against the driver if the civil personal injury case went to trial.

We later secured a settlement from the driver’s insurance company for the full amount of his coverage, $100,000, plus $1,600 for the damage to his bicycle. Thankfully, our client’s own auto insurance policy had a high underinsured motorist limit. Though he was not driving at the time, we were able to secure a $390,000 settlement from our client’s auto insurer bringing the total settlement to over $490,000.

Steven Vanceover 100k
Distracted downstate driver

Result: $2,550,000

A downstate Illinois male bicyclist was struck from behind by the driver of a pickup truck. The driver fled the scene but was arrested after a few days and charged with felony hit-and-run.

He later admitted that he had dropped a cigarette onto the floorboard of his Ford F-150 and reached down to pick it up. By the time he looked up it was too late to avoid hitting the cyclist.

The settlement was the all-time largest reported verdict or settlement in the county in which the case was brought.

Steven Vanceover 1m