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        Do I Lose My Right to Justice When a Company Goes Bankrupt?

        150 150 Clifford Horwitz

        Question:

        Is it right when a lawyer tells you that the company that the person who hit you while you were crossing the street and you lost part of your leg declared bankruptcy and that the person who hit you will leave the country and it’s better, because a deposition will be requested before he leaves the country and settlement will be faster? When does a lawyer file for a case?

        –Cely, Skokie, IL

        Answer:

        You lost part of your leg? That is a tragic and horrifying injury!

        There is no rush to judgment here. There is no rush to settlement! The main concern should be justice. Your lawyer’s job is to obtain maximum justice under the law regardless of time. You will be living with this devastating injury for the rest of your life.

        Even if the underlying company has gone bankrupt, the story doesn’t end there. The company likely had insurance that will pay the damages. Further, many companies come out of bankruptcy reorganized and therefore can still pay the debt. Even if they don’t come out of bankruptcy, one must research the issue of “piercing the corporate veil” and suing the corporate officers individually.

        As to the speed of the case, I have to disagree. If you take the defendant’s deposition faster, which is fine, it will not likely speed up the case. Justice in this type of case usually results only from a jury trial or the threat of a pending jury trial. That threat only exists when the trial is coming up shortly. Since it takes approximately three to four years to get to trial in Cook County, the early deposition is usually meaningless from a time standpoint.

        Please make sure you are well represented. This injury is too horrid to take a risk.

        Clifford Horwitz
        AUTHOR

        Clifford Horwitz

        As Principal Partner and lead trial lawyer of Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates, Cliff has devoted his entire career to achieving justice for those who have been victimized by corporate negligence. He has won numerous record-setting jury verdicts and settlements, as well as what was the largest personal injury verdict in Illinois for an individual.

        All stories by: Clifford Horwitz