How does Wisconsin law impact my car accident settlement?
Wisconsin law mandates insurance with injury liability coverage of at least $25,000 per person. After an accident, exchange information. Report the crash if either party has bodily harm or $1000+ of property damage (for government vehicles, $200+ of damage). A personal injury lawsuit must be filed within 3 years of discovery of the injury per Wisconsin's Statute of Limitations.
Your insurance claim depends on:
immediate events after the accident
the party more at fault
government or civilian vehicles
insurance status of both parties
timeframe of filing the lawsuit
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, especially one that is fatal, you need a Milwaukee car accident lawyer who will fight for YOU. Warshafsky attorneys build a strong case in court and get you the compensation you deserve. We don’t sign and settle, and there’s no fee unless we win. Warshafsky Law is one of the only Wisconsin personal injury law firms with a nationally certified legal investigator on staff to analyze your car accident scene from all angles.
Record the name and badge number of the police officer
Contact your insurance company
Consult a lawyer to discuss your case and rights
Under Wisconsin Law drivers are required to
Stop at (or as close as possible to) the scene of the accident
Render reasonable assistance to anyone injured in the accident, including arrangements for transportation to a hospital if necessary
Call the police and report the accident
Remain at the scene of the accident and give their name, address, vehicle registration, and upon request show their driver's license to the other driver involved
If a law enforcement officer completes a Wisconsin motor vehicle accident report, you do NOT need to file a driver report of the accident with the Department of Transportation. If the at-fault driver fails to stop after a car accident they can be charged with hit-and-run, and you may be able to pursue punitive damages in your personal injury lawsuit.
If you've been in a car accident involving a motorcycle, you want to know your rights. Warshafsky tells you what to do after an accident based on Wisconsin motorcycle accident laws. Don't lose out on compensation for your road rash, broken bones or other injuries.
Warshafsky Law employs a full legal investigation team to make sure no detail of your car accident is overlooked. Warshafsky car accident investigators have turned a $750,000 settlement into a $3.9 Mil victory. In cases involving car accident fatalities, our attorneys will fight for the highest possible compensation. Warshafsky Law will review your case for free, and there is never any fee until you receive compensation for your injuries. Don’t delay—the longer you wait, the greater the odds of crucial evidence fading!
Krista & Victor Challenged a 60-Year-Old Settlement Cap and WON!
Krista LaFave and Victor Harding made a recovery for almost nine times more than is allowed by law! My husband was killed in an auto accident because a municipality failed to erect warning signs alerting drivers of a road closure ahead. Early on, I was told that a municipality is protected by a $5...
Krista LaFave and Victor Harding made a recovery for almost nine times more than is allowed by law! My husband was killed in an auto accident because a municipality failed to erect warning signs alerting drivers of a road closure ahead. Early on, I was told that a municipality is protected by a $50,000 cap and that was the most that could be recovered for his wrongful death. A statutory $50,000 cap enacted 35 years ago is meaningless in today’s dollars. It provides no accountability or consequences for a municipality’s gross negligence. Krista and Victor discovered a statute that rendered the $50,000 cap inapplicable in certain situations. The statute written 60 years ago had never before been tested. Through their perseverance in applying this law, I was able to recover far more than the cap. I can only pray that this result causes the municipality to change its ways.You can’t find better representation out there than can be provided by Warshafsky.
2. Statute of Limitations for Wisconsin car accident lawsuits
Under Wisconsin law, you have 3 years to file a personal injury lawsuit for your auto accident. Time is measured from the date of the accident or discovery of the injury. If the car accident results in the death of a loved one, you have two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Time is measured from the date of death.
Understanding how the statute of limitations applies to your Wisconsin car accident lawsuit is crucial. If the deadline has passed, your case will likely be dismissed. Even if you believe your auto wreck claim will be resolved with an insurance settlement, you should talk to an experienced personal injury attorney about your case. An experienced Warshafsky lawyer will make sure you receive the greatest insurance settlement. Insurance companies know our reputation. We prepare every case to win at trial, resulting in higher payouts for our clients.
3. Wisconsin shared fault law
Wisconsin uses modified comparative fault law or shared fault law in auto accident cases. All those involved in a car accident are held responsible for part of the liability. Sharing a portion of the liability reduces your claim value by that percentage. To recover damages, you must prove the other driver is at least 50% at fault. Your claim value is then reduced by the same percentage as your portion of liability. For example, if the injured person is found to be 25% at fault, the damages recovered will be reduced by 25%. To maximize your settlement, our legal team will investigate the accident to determine the full scope of liability.
If your accident occurred on private property, you have an obligation to remain on the scene due to Wisconsin private property laws. Serious accidents and injuries occur in driveways, parking lots and garages all the time. Make sure you know who's responsible for your car accident.
Your right to compensation depends on proving fault
Wisconsin tort law allows an injured individual to seek financial compensation for injuries. A tort is a wrongful act resulting in injury to another person. All torts involve:
Breach of duty: drivers owe a duty to motorists, passengers, and pedestrians to operate their vehicle with care
Injury: the victim suffered actual injuries or was killed as a result of the actions of the liable party
Cause: the unreasonable or unsafe action of the liable party directly caused injuries or death of another
When people choose their personal injury lawyer based on the endorsement of a football player or actor, they risk choosing an attorney who has never won more money in a courtroom. Settlement mills forward your paperwork and take a cut of your damages. Hundreds of times we have prepared cases like yours beyond the brink of trial. Facing unlimited liability AND an expensive jury trial, insurance companies increase their settlement amount offered. They HATE when you choose Warshafsky. Insurance companies know: it IS about the money.
4. Damages available to Wisconsin car accident victims
In Wisconsin, there are 3 main types of damages car accident victims may seek: specific, general and punitive damages.
Specific Damages Specific damages are generally straightforward and include medical expenses, damage to property, rental car costs and lost wages.
General Damages General damages refer to suffering such as emotional and physical pain, loss of enjoyment, and disability.
Punitive Damages Punitive damages seek to punish the conduct of an extremely reckless driver and are rarely awarded in Wisconsin.
Depending on the severity of the accident, you and any injured passengers could be facing expensive treatments, surgeries, and other recovery costs. Medical expenses can rack up at a frightening pace for injuries. Warshafsky Law understands you’re already dealing with physical and financial hardship after a car accident. Our team of personal injury attorneys fights for victims of complex cases such as those who are injured while pregnant or face significant medical debts. Every case is no win, no fee, and we fully fund every case until compensation is awarded. Learn more about Wisconsin car accident death statistics.
5. Different rules for car accident claims against government entities
When filing a claim against the Wisconsin state government, you must:
Send a written notice to the attorney general by certified mail within 120 days
Include the facts, circumstances, injuries, names of the government employee(s) involved, and the damages you seek
Limit total damages to $250,000
Scenarios where government liability is a factor:
The accident involved a bus or truck owned and operated by a government agency
A government employee acting in an official capacity while driving a government-owned vehicle caused the crash
Dangerous highway conditions, roadside hazards, or a poorly marked construction zone had a role in the accident
Sovereign immunity is a legal concept that protects government agencies and employees from much liability, but federal and state governments have laws in place to waive such immunity. Due to the conditions of this waiver, government bodies have strict procedural rules for personal injury lawsuits filed against them. Failure to follow them precisely means you can lose your right to claim damages. Punitive damages are not an option.
Claims against municipal governments, such as the City of Milwaukee, have similar rules and a cap of $50,000 on total damages. The government will investigate your claim and decide to pay or deny it. If denied, you may file a lawsuit in court within three years of the date of denial. Filing a suit against any government agency is no small feat. Warshafsky Law has the experience, resources and determination to fight for your case, even against a government agency.
6. Wisconsin’s car insurance laws affect that impact your claim
In Wisconsin, the safety responsibility (SR) law states drivers must have the means to cover costs resulting from a car wreck they cause. The minimum insurance liability coverage for a car crash in Wisconsin is:
$25,000 for bodily injury or death per person
$50,000 total for injury or death per accident
$10,000 in property damage
Types of liability coverage
Wisconsin’s auto insurance laws require three specific types of coverage: liability, underinsured motorist, and uninsured motorist. For the at-fault driver in a traffic accident, liability car insurance covers costs from injuries and property damage. Underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage helps pay for damages when you’re injured in a car accident caused by someone who does not have enough car insurance or none at all. Minimum underinsured/uninsured driver coverage for Wisconsin car insurance policies is $25,000 for injuries per person, and $50,000 for the total injuries suffered in the accident.
Penalties for uninsured motorists in Wisconsin
Drivers must be able to show proof of car insurance if they are involved in an accident or pulled over. If you are caught without any insurance you can be fined up to $500, and if you have insurance but can’t provide proof when requested by a law officer you can be fined up to $10. If an uninsured driver is at fault in an accident, their driving and registration privileges will be suspended until they obtain an SR22 certificate (proving insurance coverage) and pay reinstatement fees.
Claims against uninsured drivers
If you are injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver, your own uninsured motorist insurance kicks in. You can collect damages for injuries up to the limit of your policy. This coverage also applies to hit-and-run accidents where you are not at fault. Getting the maximum compensation you deserve after a car accident can be challenging. It’s not in the insurance company’s best interest to make it easy for policyholders to collect the full amount of damages they are entitled to.
Wisconsin's toughest car accident lawyers protect victims’ rights
Insurance companies may offer what they tell you is a fair settlement, but never doubt their main concern is saving money for their business. Don’t trust your case to just any personal injury attorney—many work for settlement mills content to negotiate with insurers in order to settle quickly and collect a fee with minimum delay. Warshafsky’s aggressive lawyers won’t stop fighting for your case until a fair settlement amount is reached.
Warshafsky is not only good at getting compensation for your car accident. We take on clients who have experienced personal injury from a number of accidents including medical malpractice, slip and falls and even dog bites. If you've been injured by a dog, we can inform you on what Wisconsin dog bite laws could affect your claim. Don't miss out on what you're owed, contact Warshafsky.