Drivers in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, typically enjoy quiet streets and low-stress traffic. AccidenWauwatosaur, however, just as they do on roads and highways throughout the surrounding areas of Waukesha County. While some collisions are simple fender benders, major crashes happen as well.
A Wisconsin Department of Transportation analysis of six years of traffic data calculated an average of 116,301 vehicle crashes per year in the state. In 28,908 of these accidents, occupants sustained injuries. Fatalities occurred in 501 of the crashes. Milwaukee County, which encompasses Wauwatosa, contributed an average of 21,062 accidents and 75 deaths a year during that period.
An automobile accident can be a stressful event for Wauwatosa, Wisconsin drivers, because car accidents are scary, unpredictable, and have lasting consequences for those involved. Being in a vehicle accident can mean car repairs, time off work, injuries, and even funerals.
If you or your passengers are injured, you deal with treatment costs and lost wages from time off work. Disabilities further diminish your earnings capacity. Injuries from a serious crash cause catastrophic injuries and death. When a negligent driver injures you or your family, our Wauwatosa car accident attorneys believe you should hold them accountable for the damages they cause.
Thus, if you are overwhelmed by what to do after a car accident, contact a Wauwatosa car accident attorney at Groth Law Firm today. Immediately after a car collision, you should contact your insurance company and inform them of the incident.
Be aware that the other driver will most likely do the same. Once informed, their insurance company is going to do their best to avoid paying a claim. Do not accept the first offer they make to settle the insurance claim. They probably are not offering you what you deserve for your pain and suffering. Instead, start working with a skilled car accident attorney who can help assess your case and put pressure on the liable party’s insurance company to pay an acceptable amount for your claim.
Groth Law Firm Wauwatosa Lawyers
One of our first priorities is identifying the liable parties. It’s often the most complicated step in resolving your injury claim. Sometimes liability extends beyond the driver of the other vehicle in an accident. Potentially responsible parties also include a vehicle owner, a manufacturer, or a maintenance or repair company. We place all responsible parties on notice and evaluate their involvement before they slip through the cracks.
Establishing liability is critical in car accident cases as insurance companies sometimes fight against paying out claims. At Groth Law Firm, our car accident attorneys evaluate complex legal and damage concerns and examine liability issues. We rely on our experience when interacting with insurance companies and dealing with their claim-avoidance tactics.
Our Firm’s Results
At Groth Law Firm, our attorneys focus on personal injury cases only. Through our years of experience, we’ve developed the skills for confident legal representation. Our lawyers rely on their extensive personal injury backgrounds. We understand Wisconsin statutes and how they affect complex legal issues. Our team works closely with our clients. We see how injuries disrupt their lives and we understand their injuries’ true value. In every case we handle, we work for the best possible outcome for our client.
Our firm has resolved many auto accident cases. As we maintain client confidentiality, we don’t reveal our case details. For an impartial evaluation of our firm’s knowledge, compassion, and dedication, we invite you to review our client testimonials.
Auto Accident Injuries
Some people receive such horrific injuries they don’t survive a crash. During the most recent reporting year, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration documented 26 auto accident fatalities in Waukesha County and 613 fatalities across the state. Vehicle occupants who survive major crashes often sustain traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other life-changing traumas.
Serious and catastrophic injuries require extended hospital stays, continuous treatment, and lifelong therapy regimens. Lost income and mounting medical bills cause financial hardships. Catastrophic injuries also shorten an injured person’s life expectancy and permanent disabilities steal away their independence.
Recoveries are often traumatic even when the injuries are non-life-threatening. Many accident-related injuries require emergency room diagnoses, medical follow-up, and ongoing care. When an injured person can’t work, they lose income and sometimes suffer financial setbacks.
All auto-accident injuries are significant. These and other conditions change the injured person’s life one way or another.
- Spinal cord trauma
- Traumatic brain injury
- Traumatic amputations
- Internal organ damage
- Nerve damage
- Severe Burns
- Multiple fractures
- Disc and spine injuries
- Muscle sprains and strains
- Fatal injuries
When a person is injured in a car accident, he or she may recover monetary compensation for the harm they have suffered. Determining what financial damage a car crash has caused requires a complex analysis. Attorney Jonathan Groth and the Groth Law Firm assists our clients in obtaining the full compensation they deserve for their Wauwatosa automobile accidents. Our lawyers seek damages for past and future costs for these and other economic losses.
- Medical costs – If any individuals in your vehicle went to the hospital or to see a doctor, the liable party’s insurance is responsible for covering those bills.
- Future medical costs – If you or a passenger sustained long-term injuries, the medical costs may drag out for years into the future. It is crucial you account for this when approaching an insurance company. They won’t want to pay for potential medical costs down the road, but you’ll need the money so you can afford any surgeries or physical therapy that become necessary.
- Property damage – Insurance companies take into account the depreciation of property. If you were driving a ten-year old car, it won’t be worth as much as a new car. Still, it depends on the condition of the property that was damaged and how easy it would be to replace it with something similar. We work with insurance companies to get the best value estimate for your property.
- Lost wages – If you or your passengers’ injuries have kept you from working, the liable party may be responsible for lost wages.
- Ramps and other assistance devices
- Physical therapy
- Home care and assistance expenses
- Funeral and burial expenses
Settlements also include general damages. These consider emotional, social, and other non-economic losses:
- Pain and suffering – Car crashes can cause long-term injuries or death. Pain and suffering damages acknowledge the emotional repercussions of an accident that don’t come with a bill or receipt. While there are precedents set for how much different cases cost, your case is unique and an experienced lawyer can fight to get you the compensation you deserve.
- Diminished spousal and family relationships
- Loss of bodily functions
- Temporary and permanent disabilities
- More – Including permanent scarring or disfigurement, emotional or psychological harm, loss of joy of life, loss of consortium in the event of a death of a loved one, lost earning capacity, and other damages.
In rare instances, juries award punitive damages as punishment for a defendant’s actions. Wisconsin Statutes, § 895.043 Punitive Damages, explains the required evidentiary proof. A plaintiff must prove that a defendant …acted maliciously toward the plaintiff or in an intentional disregard of the rights of the plaintiff. The statute also sets a monetary cap on punitive damage awards.
Car Accident Liability Issues
Even in the face of overwhelming evidence, insurance companies sometimes defend cases instead of settling them. This position is often a part of an ongoing strategy to avoid or delay paying claims. Insurance companies sometimes speculate that a defendant will settle for less so they can avoid litigation costs. They sometimes rely on legal defenses, anticipating that a jury will produce a better outcome than negotiation or Alternative Dispute Resolution.
- No negligence – If a defendant convinces a jury that he didn’t cause the accident or the plaintiff’s injuries, the jury finds in favor of the defendant and awards the plaintiff no damages.
- Contributory negligence – Wisconsin’s Contributory Negligence Statute, § 895.045 Contributory Negligence, recognizes that more than one person can cause an accident. When a defendant/insurance company proves the injured person was negligent, a jury reduces the damage award by their negligence percentage. If an injured plaintiff is found 40 percent negligent, she receives a judgment for 60 percent of her injuries. If her negligence is 51 percent or greater, her negligence bars her damage recovery.
- No defect – If a plaintiff or defendant sues a manufacturer alleging a defective vehicle or part caused the accident, the manufacturer sometimes avoids a judgment by proving there was no defect.
- Disputed damages – Insurance companies and defendants reduce damages by convincing a jury that the plaintiff wasn’t injured in the accident or that the accident didn’t cause all of the injuries claimed.
Our attorneys understand insurance company defense tactics. We prepare our clients’ cases long before settlement negotiations or courtroom presentations so we can overcome their strategies.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
One of the biggest hassles for car accident victims is dealing with an auto insurance claim. The insurance company’s priorities are very different from a car accident victim’s priorities. What you do after an accident can have a significant impact on the amount of compensation you are able to receive. To avoid jeopardizing your claim, contact a Wauwatosa personal injury attorney at Groth Law Firm (414-240-0707) when you’re injured in a car accident.
Types of Auto Insurance Coverage
As the Insurance Information Institute describes, there are multiple types of auto insurance. Some are mandatory while others are optional. In Wisconsin. property damage liability insurance and bodily injury insurance cover a victim of any car accident the insured party causes. According to the Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles, the minimum insurance requirement is $10,000 for property damage, $25,000 for injury or death of one person, and $50,000 for injury or death of multiple people.
Additional insurance coverages include rental insurance, if the car is not owned by the driver, and uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance, which protects you if you were hit by a driver who does not have enough insurance to cover your costs or who fled the scene at the time of the crash. Personal injury protection insurance pays for medical costs and lost wages of the driver or passengers of a vehicle where the driver was not liable.
If you were in a car accident, multiple insurance policies may apply. Often, the insurance companies will try to avoid paying a claim, stating that there are other insurance companies that should have to pay out first. The best course of action you can take as the injured party is to carefully document all of your property damage and injuries. Then contact the Groth Law Firm to speak to one of our knowledgeable car accident attorneys about how to proceed with your claims. We will do the work to dig up what insurance applies to your case and how much your case is worthwhile you rest and recover.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Claims
When your car accident involves someone who doesn’t have insurance or your vehicle is struck by an unidentified hit-and-run driver, you may have a viable uninsured motorist claim. When an insured party’s low liability limits don’t cover all of your injury damages, your underinsured motorist coverage often covers some of your damages. In these situations, your own insurance coverage pays some or all of your injury-related damages. This means filing a claim with your own insurance company, which, once again, is more focused on protecting itself from paying out than providing you with the compensation you need after your accident.
An experienced Wauwatosa car accident lawyer can assist you during this time, but it’s important to discuss your case immediately. You must comply with insurance policy requirements and Wisconsin statutory guidelines under § 632.32 Provisions of motor vehicle insurance policies. Our lawyers have repeatedly assisted our clients in protecting their uninsured and underinsured motorists coverage rights.
Do You Really Need an Attorney? Yes!
When you’re injured in a car accident, claim-related issues move forward quickly whether you’re ready or not. You should consult with a personal injury attorney before you become overwhelmed by complicated details. Accident injury victims often have two primary concerns about hiring an attorney: When to call a lawyer after an accident, and how much does a lawyer charge for a car accident case?
- When to call a lawyer after a car accident. When you’re injured in a car crash, you should call a Wauwatosa car accident attorney as soon as possible. Car accident cases are driven by the facts, and often involve complex issues, such as evidentiary proof and fault. Working with an experienced personal injury attorney will help you identify your legal options. A car accident attorney will help you select the best course of action.
- How much does a lawyer charge for a car accident case? We schedule a free consultation so we can discuss your case and determine if we can help you. After an initial consultation, our Wauwatosa lawyers work on a contingency basis. We don’t charge you attorney’s fees until we resolve your case, whether through settlement or court judgment.
Contact Groth Law Wauwatosa Car Accident Attorneys
The compassionate Wauwatosa car accident attorneys of Groth Law Firm handle all types of auto accidents large to small, and will work tirelessly to ensure that your damages are fairly compensated.
If you or a family member has been injured in a car accident, you may need an attorney who will protect your legal rights. Our law firm has helped personal injury clients in Wauwatosa, Milwaukee, and across Wisconsin. Let us review your case and determine if we can help you.
To speak with an experienced car accident attorney call Groth Law at (414) 240-0707, or complete our online case submission form.