Best Milwaukee lawyers for motorcycle crashes Receive a free consultation and file a claim today
A motorcycle accident can be life-changing for injured victims and the families of those who have been involved in fatal crashes. For decades, Warshafsky’s Milwaukee motorcycle accident lawyers have taken on cases to help injured motorcyclists receive record settlements for their injuries. If you are involved in an accident, you'll want help from the best motorcycle lawyers in the business. We have a certified accident investigator and a medical doctor who doubles as an attorney on our staff. You won't find better representation anywhere else.
What to do after a Milwaukee motorcycle accident
The steps you should take following a motorcycle crash will protect your rights and help you obtain maximum compensation for your injuries.
Get out of traffic. Stay at the scene but move out of the way of oncoming traffic.
Call 911. Render reasonable assistance to anyone injured in the accident, including calling 911 to get an ambulance on the scene.
Exchange information. Provide your name, address, phone number, insurance information, and vehicle registration to the other driver and passengers involved.
Seek medical attention. Once you’re permitted to leave, go straight to a hospital.
Report the accident. Within 24 hours you should file a report with the police or DMV and the insurance company of the liable party.
Don’t talk to anyone and document everything. Anything you say can be used against you when filing a claim. Save the police report, pictures, and bills.
Contact a motorcycle accident attorney. Before speaking to an insurance agent, speak with a lawyer about your case. Warshafsky can help you understand your rights and help you obtain the most compensation.
In 2020, Wisconsin was estimated to have over 275,000 registered motorcyclists on the road. Because motorcycles are much smaller than most vehicles on the road, cyclists are more vulnerable to impact with another vehicle, the road, or other objects.
Since 2015, there has been an average of 2,090 motorcycle crashes per year in Wisconsin. Though motorcycle accidents were on a steady decline for several years, they saw an increase of 16.5% between 2019 to 2020. Also in that same time frame, the number of motorcycle fatalities increased by 37%.
The chance of a fatality in a motorcycle accident is more common than in other motor vehicle accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to be killed in a car accident than occupants of passenger vehicles. The administration estimates motorcycle accidents result in death 15 times more often than car accidents. In the year 2020, Wisconsin DOT indicated there were 2,104 motorcycle crashes resulting in 1,796 injuries and 112 deaths.
Common causes of Milwaukee motorcycle accidents
A negligent driver is the main cause of motorcycle crashes in Milwaukee and throughout the nation. If a driver is distracted by their phone, exhausted, or under the influence of medication, their eyes may be off the road and their reaction times will be greatly impaired.
Our motorcycle accident lawyers have seen a number of cases with drivers following motorcycle riders too closely, failing to check their mirrors/blind spots, and making turns or changing lanes without a signal. All of these are acts of negligence that contribute to motorcycle accident fatalities. If you were in an accident that resulted from any of these, you have the right to make a claim for compensation:
Speeding - Regardless of the type of vehicle, reckless driving can cause fatalities.
Left turns - A misjudgment of the amount of space a motorcyclist has or confusion about who has the right of way.
Failure to obey traffic signs - Running a red light or stop sign.
Dooring - Opening a car door in the path of a cyclist on a busy street.
Lane splitting - When a motorcycle attempts to bypass slow or stopped traffic by riding between lanes or rows of cars. This is illegal in Wisconsin.
How cause affects the claim
In motor vehicle accident cases, it’s not unusual for a nearby property owner or business to have contributed to the accident. For example, the homeowner who leaves grass clippings in the roadway or the landscaping business truck that drops gravel on the road could cause a motorcyclist to slide out. A defect or poor design in the motorcycle could also have caused or contributed to your accident, in which case the manufacturer can be sued. Warshafsky Law has extensive experience holding manufacturers accountable, including one high-profile motorcycle maker that was forced to re-evaluate their product and make leg guards standard safety equipment.
Krista Fought for a Better Payday for Jimi
I had the pleasure to work with Krista G. LaFave at Warshafsky law firm. Not only was Krista available for my questions, but she worked hard to get more money than I expected. Because of her insight, and professional advice, I listened to her. I was very anxious and wanted to just get this over with...
I had the pleasure to work with Krista G. LaFave at Warshafsky law firm. Not only was Krista available for my questions, but she worked hard to get more money than I expected. Because of her insight, and professional advice, I listened to her. I was very anxious and wanted to just get this over with. Krista explained that she wanted to fight harder for me to end up with a better payday. I totally trusted her, I could tell she was fighting for me like I was a family member of hers. So happy to have had Krista fighting for me. I ended up with literally double the amount I had anticipated. Thank you again Krista.
"I couldn't have asked for a better experience with Krista"
Krista LaFave did a wonderful job on my case. She had realistic expectations and was able to guide me through the entire process. She explained difficult concepts and kept me calm and clear during the process. She was also responsive to questions or concerns i had over email and was able to reply qu...
Krista LaFave did a wonderful job on my case. She had realistic expectations and was able to guide me through the entire process. She explained difficult concepts and kept me calm and clear during the process. She was also responsive to questions or concerns i had over email and was able to reply quickly. I had a great outcome and couldn't have asked for a better experience.
"This is the place, and these are the people."
I want to thank Warshafsky Law Firm for everything that they have done for me and my daughter. Specifically, Victor C. Harding and Sue M. Soczka. I can't express enough how grateful I am for all of their hard work and dedication. From the beginning to the end, they took control of everything needed ...
I want to thank Warshafsky Law Firm for everything that they have done for me and my daughter. Specifically, Victor C. Harding and Sue M. Soczka. I can't express enough how grateful I am for all of their hard work and dedication. From the beginning to the end, they took control of everything needed to handle my situation. I was regularly contacted and informed about each and every step of the process while working for a positive outcome in my favor. Working with Victor and Sue was not only extremely professional, it was also very personal. I truly felt that I had the support of the entire firm behind me. This is the place, and these are the people, that I would highly recommend having work for you!
"Warshafsky Law is the Best Law Firm in Wisconsin"
The best law firm in the state!! Extremely professional and yet personal. They absolutely care about you and your family get the best legal representation you could ask for. I have known this firm for over 30 years and they are the gold standard for law firms. Frank Crivello is the smartest and most...
The best law firm in the state!! Extremely professional and yet personal. They absolutely care about you and your family get the best legal representation you could ask for. I have known this firm for over 30 years and they are the gold standard for law firms. Frank Crivello is the smartest and most honest lawyer I have ever had the pleasure to work with.
Antonio J. Z
Frank & Sue Went Above and Beyond for Kristi
Absolutely a great law firm!! If you want excellent representation ask for Attorney Frank Crivello and his paralegal, Sue. They went above and beyond when representing our Father.
Common motorcycle accident injuries
Catastrophic and permanent injuries are the most common injuries faced in motorcycle accidents. Survivors of motorcycle crashes often live with lifelong disabilities. Common long-term injuries include:
Physical scars and disfigurement
Internal organ damage
Loss of limb
Your head is particularly vulnerable in a motorcycle accident which is why Wisconsin law requires all motorcycle operators under 18 to wear a helmet. Even though riders over 18 are not required to wear a helmet, they still should. According to the CDC, wearing a helmet is 37% more effective in preventing death in a motorcycle accident and 69% more effective at reducing the risk of head injury. Not wearing a helmet may hinder your chances of obtaining compensation.
What damages can you recover with a Milwaukee motorcycle accident lawyer?
Each motorcycle accident case is unique in terms of injuries and damages. Offering lowball settlements is a common tactic used by insurance companies. In some cases, the initial offer will not even cover the damages to fix the bike. Hiring an experienced trial attorney with countless motorcycle accident lawsuits under their belt is the best way to ensure you are properly compensated.
You could receive compensation for:
Past, present, and future medical expenses for hospitalization, therapy, medication, etc.
Loss of income from missing work due to injuries
Repairing and replacing the damage done to your bike
Pain and suffering
Emotional damages and trauma
Wrongful death damages for surviving family members
If your loved one was killed in a motorcycle accident in Milwaukee, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the liable driver. The monetary damages you may be able to obtain include direct economic losses, funeral expenses, loss of companionship, and mental suffering.
Should I get a lawyer after a motorcycle accident?
You may be wondering whether to hire an attorney following a motorcycle crash. Know this: insurance companies always fight to pay less. They don’t want to agree to your entitled settlement and may offer a sum grossly below the basic costs of your motorcycle repairs and medical bills. It’s what they do every day.
Insurers have several tricks up their sleeves. They’ll attempt to pry statements of fault from you or claim a lawyer can’t help your case. Both are wrong. Don’t sign any of their paperwork, and don’t admit to any wrongdoing.
Accepting the insurer’s first offer may be tempting, but that’s where Warshafsky comes into the picture. Our attorneys battle for maximum compensation – we have the best Milwaukee motorcycle attorneys and investigators in the field.
Call Warshafsky Law right away if you’ve been in a motorcycle accident. Insurance companies know and respect our name.
Determining liability for motorcycle injury under Wisconsin law
Determining liability is critical to the success of any motorcycle injury lawsuit. It’s important to have an experienced accident investigator on the scene as quickly as possible. Warshafsky's certified investigator will collect evidence such as security camera footage to use in your case. There are 3 things you must show for the court to determine whether the other motorist is liable for your injuries/losses:
The law requires the defendant to be reasonably careful. This is always a given with any motor vehicle accident case.
The defendant’s actions did not conform with the actions of a “reasonable person.” Accident scene evidence and witness statements play a key role here.
In order to recover any damages, the other driver has to be shown to be at least 50% at fault for the accident.
Milwaukee's shared fault law
Wisconsin uses shared fault laws for vehicle accidents. This law acknowledges that all parties involved in a motor vehicle accident may share some blame, reducing the amount awarded to the injured party. For instance, if you were found to be 25% to blame for the accident that caused your injury the damages you are awarded will be reduced by 25%.
How long do I have to file a Milwaukee motorcycle accident lawsuit?
In Wisconsin, you have 3 years from the date of your accident or discovery of your injury to file a personal injury claim. If the accident was fatal, you have 2 years to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Let the deadline pass without filing a claim and you will be barred from doing so. Even if you think you’re on track to get a fair settlement from the insurance company you’re dealing with, you should consult an attorney—sooner rather than later.
Insurance companies are notorious for dragging their feet on settling claims, often with the goal of delaying your claim past the statute of limitations. They’ll try every trick in the book to minimize your claim or deny it altogether. We know exactly how they work because we have attorneys on staff who used to work for insurance companies. You don’t want to go up against an army of insurance agents without a car accident attorney on your side.
How much will I get for a settlement?
The amount of your settlement depends on a number of variables, including fault and types of injuries and damages. Other considerations include:
Length of hospital stay
Loss of work
At Warshafsky, we understand you may be physically recovering and paying off medical bills following a crash. That’s why Warshafsky is a proud no-win, no-pay law firm. We don’t get a penny if we don’t win.
Will my case go to trial?
Chances are, your case will be settled prior to a trial. In fact, less than 1 in 20 personal injury cases go to trial in Wisconsin on average. We’ll fight every step of the way to reach the settlement you deserve. Contact Warshafsky Law today if you’ve been in a motorcycle accident.
Frequently asked questions about motorcycle accidents
How long do personal injury negotiations take?
To give you some idea, though, it can take anywhere from weeks to months just for an insurance company to contact you about a settlement. During this time, they’re investigating the accident and determining who was responsible. The insurance company will frequently drag out their investigation in an attempt to make you anxious and more willing to accept whatever settlement they offer. You’re under no obligation to accept the first settlement offer an insurance company makes, and in most cases you’re better off not accepting it.
What is the average payout for a motorcycle accident?
Since all cases have their own unique circumstances, the payouts on settlements and judgments vary significantly. The only research for this is from a Thomson Reuters survey, which showed that between 1999 and 2006 the average motorcycle accident settlement was $73,700. Warshafsky Law has secured settlements and judgments for motorcycle accident injury victims well in excess of that $73,700 figure. Learn more about how we’ve helped injured motorcyclists get the compensation they deserve.
What can I do if my insurance company settlement offer is less than the value of my motorcycle?
It’s unfortunate, but if your bike was totaled in an accident the insurance company is only going to value your bike by the NADA (National Automobile Dealers Association) guide. They will not take into account any aftermarket parts, custom paint, or chroming that you’ve had done to your bike. They’re definitely not going to pay you what it would cost to replace the bike. The only way to ensure you get what your bike is truly worth is if you have gap insurance, which pays the difference of what the motorcycle is worth and what you owe on it, or if you have insured the bike for a certain amount.
Can I file a wrongful death suit for the death of a loved one killed in a motorcycle accident?
If you are the surviving spouse, domestic partner, child, parent, or guardian of the deceased, you have the standing to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Siblings can also file the suit if the deceased leaves no spouse, domestic partner, or children. A wrongful death claim can seek financial compensation for medical expenses incurred by you or your loved one’s estate, funeral and burial costs, the wages and income the deceased would have earned if not for the untimely death, and loss of society and companionship. The personal representative of the deceased can file a “survivorship claim,” which seeks damages for the pain and suffering the deceased endured from the moment of injury until death.
I was a passenger on a motorcycle that crashed. Is the driver liable for my injuries?
As an accident victim, you can file a personal injury claim against the operator of the motorcycle, the driver of the other vehicle, or both. If the motorcycle you were riding on was the only vehicle involved, it will likely be a negligence case. The exception is if some mechanical defect on the motorcycle caused the operator to crash.