Our Car Accident Attorneys Can Help If You Were Seriously Injured or Lost a Loved One in a Car Crash

In Wisconsin and throughout the country, car accidents are a leading cause of serious injuries and death. When you are hurt in an accident, the future may seem overwhelming. You may be facing significant medical bills, a lengthy recovery that keeps you from your job and the activities you love, changes in your family dynamic, and other hardships. If you have lost a loved one in a fatal car accident, you and your family may be overcome by grief and sudden financial challenges.

At Studinski Law, LLC, we do more to get you more. Our car accident lawyers have extensive experience pursuing compensation on behalf of clients who have been injured or who have lost a loved one in car crashes and other motor vehicle accidents.

Our Wisconsin Car Accident Lawyers Can Help You

To successfully navigate the process of dealing with law enforcement officials and insurance companies, an experienced legal team is necessary. Please call Studinski Law, LLC at (715) 343-2850 or fill out our online form to get your case started today.

what to do after a car accident | Studinski Law, LLC

What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents?

Your car accident lawyer will likely have to work along with law enforcement, expert witnesses, and the insurance companies to determine the cause of your crash. It is important to understand exactly what happened if you are to recover sufficient money to compensate you for your damages.

We have helped our clients through claims involving accidents such as:

These accidents can have multiple causes, including:

  • Driver Error: This is the most common cause of auto accidents. People behind the wheel can cause a dangerous accident if they are distracted or not following the rules of the road. Sometimes drivers that fail to look before changing lanes can sideswipe another vehicle. Or, before a turn they can fail to spot pedestrians on walkways. Driving under the influence is also a cause of many serious and deadly accidents each year.
  • Dangerous Conditions: Drivers are required to adjust their driving in adverse weather conditions, such as slippery roads or low visibility. Additionally, a third party could alter or obstruct the road or safety signs, which can lead to an accident.
  • Defective Equipment: Improperly installed or defective vehicle parts can result in a dangerous or deadly accident even if the drivers involved have done everything right. We have the knowledge to investigate whether defective equipment caused your vehicle accident, and we have the experience to seek damages on your behalf.

When you are seeking damages for an accident in which you were involved, it is important to establish what exactly happened and who is responsible. Our lawyers know how to investigate your claim and take action on your behalf against all of the liable parties.

What Can Studinski Law Do for You?

We can locate experts that can explain to the judge and jury the specifics of your case, from the impact of the wreck itself to the implications for your future medical care and treatment.
We understand how the insurance company looks at your claim. We can help you negotiate a fair settlement or take your case to trial, if necessary.
After an accident, you may need months to recover mentally and physically. We can help you obtain compensation so you can focus on being well again.

What Types of Car Accidents Are Common in Wisconsin?

No two accidents are alike in either their cause or outcome. Our Wisconsin car accident lawyers have helped clients determine what exactly caused their accident, and then recover from the responsible parties.

Accidents common on Wisconsin roads include:

Any car accident has the potential to cause serious injuries, even crashes that occur at low speeds. If you have been injured in an accident, it is in your best interest to speak with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.

Contact Studinski Law, LLC for a free consultation.

The Most Common Causes of Car Accidents

Wisconsin Car Accident Laws

If you have been injured in a car accident, you cannot wait too long to seek damages. In Wisconsin, you generally have to file suit for damages within 3 years of the accident. However, there are exceptions to this rule that make the time period shorter or longer.

For example, if you are in an accident involving a government worker or contractor, you have to file an intent to sue within 120 days or risk not being able to recover. Other exceptions involve the age of the person injured, when injuries were discovered, or whether a death resulted from the crash. The statute of limitations can be much more complicated than it seems, but our car crash attorneys understand how it will be applied in your case.

What If the Motorist Is Uninsured or Underinsured?

Wisconsin law requires drivers to carry minimum amounts of car insurance. Mandatory liability coverage includes:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury or death of a single person in an accident
  • $50,000 for bodily injury or death of multiple people in an accident
  • $10,000 for property damage in an accident

Unfortunately, some drivers operate a vehicle without insurance. In other cases, the coverage the at-fault driver has does not fully cover your losses.

Our lawyers will explore all of your legal options after an uninsured or underinsured motorist accident. This may include filing a claim with your own insurance provider, filing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver directly, and more.

Read more about insurance issues in your car accident claim.

Who Is Liable in a Car Accident?

Generally, the at-fault driver is responsible for the harm he or she causes. However, it may be more complicated if the driver was in a borrowed or rented car. If the driver was in a borrowed vehicle, you may need to make a claim against the vehicle owner’s policy. If the driver was in a rental, you may need to make a claim against the rental car company’s policy.

The at-fault driver may also be an employee of a business. If you were hit by an employee who was in a work vehicle while on the clock, then you may look to the business for financial recovery. However, if the accident involved a large commercial vehicle, other parties may come into play, like loaders and maintenance providers.

If the car accident you were in was not your fault, you need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you sort out the issue of liability. Our experienced lawyers can help you determine what happened in an at fault accident and hold those who caused your injuries responsible.

Car Crash Attorneys in Wisconsin

What Steps Should I Take After a Car Accident?

After a car crash, your mind is racing. It is an emotionally charged time that is often accompanied by significant physical pain and mental distress.

The most important thing you can do after a car accident is keep calm and assess the situation. If you are able, you should take these steps:

  1. Check yourself and anyone involved in the crash for injuries: What you do next will be determined by the seriousness of the accident. Give yourself a visual exam and use caution before trying to move, then ask after the occupants of your vehicle. If you are able to move without risk of injury, confer with the drivers and occupants of any other vehicles as to their condition.
  2. Call 911 or the police: Even after checking yourself and others, you likely won’t have a true sense of the injuries in the accident. You almost certainly won’t know the dollar value of damage to the vehicles. Therefore, it is in your interest to report the accident at the scene.
  3. Seek medical attention: When emergency workers arrive at the scene, wait for them to evaluate you for injuries. You may need to be taken to the hospital from the scene. If, however, you are treated on-site and released, you can take additional steps to start building your case.
  4. Exchange information: Get the name, contact information, driver license number, and insurance information for the drivers of all vehicles involved in the accident.
  5. Photograph the accident: Take pictures of your vehicle and the other vehicles involved, the damage to the vehicles, the intersection or roadway where the accident occurred, your injuries, and any other details you believe to be relevant.
  6. Speak to witnesses: If anyone witnessed the accident, ask them to share what they saw. Ask for their name and contact information.
  7. Give a statement to the police: If a police officer responds to the accident, give an honest account of what happened. Ask the officer for his or her name, badge number, and precinct so you know where to request a copy of the accident report.
  8. Report the accident to your insurance company: Even if the accident wasn’t your fault, you will need to report the accident to your insurer as soon as possible. Your insurance policy will specify the amount of time you have, and it is in your interest to stay within the filing deadline to ensure your losses are covered.
  9. Make an accident file: It is important to stay organized after being in a car accident. As you receive medical bills and other documents, keep them all in a folder or binder so you can easily keep track of expenses, correspondence, and more connected with the accident.
  10. Don’t speak with the other driver’s insurance company: If you file a claim with the insurer of the at-fault driver, an adjuster will try to contact you. This person’s job is to limit the compensation the company has to pay you. Your best course of action is to…
  11. Contact a car accident lawyer: You need an ally after an accident. The compensation you require to get on with your life often depends on finding an attorney who can advocate for your interest.

Attorney Jason Studinski and his team have extensive experience assisting clients throughout Wisconsin with car accident claims. We take a thorough, wholehearted approach to each case.

How Can a Wisconsin Car Accident Lawyer Help Me?

An experienced car accident lawyer will thoroughly investigate the crash on your behalf. This process may include:

  • Taking pictures of the accident scene
  • Identifying and interviewing witnesses
  • Flying a drone over the site of the accident to record a full view of the area
  • Requesting a copy of the accident report filed by the police
  • Requesting cell phone records, video footage, and other electronic evidence
  • Examine the vehicles and the damage done

With all of the evidence in hand, our team will work with experts to analyze the facts and determine who is at fault for the accident. Testimony from expert witnesses and professionally prepared exhibits can present the facts in vivid detail to a jury. We also get information from your medical team and other experts to understand the cause and severity of your injuries, as well as the damages you have suffered as a result.

Accurately calculating damages in a car accident case comes with experience. The car accident lawyers at Studinski Law, LLC are experienced litigators. We know the wide-ranging impact of the injuries in a car accident case, and we pursue a full recovery on your behalf.

Updated Car Accident Statistics for Wisconsin

What Types of Injuries Occur in Car Accidents?

Your car accident attorney must have a complete understanding of your injuries in order to fight for the compensation that you are owed. When you are in a serious car accident, you may suffer:

With offices in Plover and Marshfield, Studinski Law, LLC serves clients throughout Wisconsin. Whether you live in a large city or a rural town, regardless of the accident or the injuries you suffered, you have the right to be compensated for your losses. Our personal injury attorneys are familiar with the Wisconsin courts in your area, and we will fight to tell your story – wherever it needs to be told.

What Compensation Can I Recover After a Car Accident?

Car accidents are traumatic on many levels. They can lead to embarrassment, anger, depression, and anxiety, as well as severe physical and emotional suffering.

For instance, you may suddenly feel unsafe driving or be riding in a car – something you never thought twice about before. This limits your freedom, ability to work, and chances to see friends and family.

After a crash, you may no longer have the same physical capabilities. A disability may force you to grieve for the abilities you may never regain.

In addition to these injuries, the collision may seriously harm your family’s financial situation. Your savings may quickly dwindle in the face of medical bills and lost income.

All of these factors are why you have the right to seek car accident compensation. When you are injured because of another driver’s carelessness, recklessness, or intentional wrongdoing, then you can pursue economic and non-economic damages through a personal injury insurance claim or lawsuit.

Economic Damages in Your Car Accident Claim

Economic damages are objective expenses that often can be demonstrated by receipts and other records. For instance, you will have records and bills for all of the medical care you have received since the accident. You do not have to guess at how much you are owed by the at-fault driver.

Your attorney can help you accurately calculate your economic damages, including:

  • Repairs to or replacement of your vehicle and other property
  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Transportation expenses for medical care
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Home and vehicle renovations to accommodate your medical needs

Lawyers at Studinski Law, LLC will thoroughly build your case to determine the full extent of damages. We will work with medical and vocational experts to determine how much your continued medical care will cost and how much less you are likely to earn over your lifetime due to your injuries.

Non-Economic Damages in Your Car Accident Claim

After experiencing a serious car accident, you become deeply aware that the true costs of the crash are not merely financial. You are experiencing physical and psychological injuries each day, and you deserve compensation after a car accident for these non-economic injuries.

Non-economic damages may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress and mental anguish
  • Disfigurement
  • Disability
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of society and companionship

The non-economic damages you seek may be just as important as the economic damages. However, since they are often more subjective, they can be more difficult to calculate.

Our experienced car accident attorneys can help you determine how much compensation to pursue based on your non-economic injuries. The amount will depend on a number of factors, such as the type and degree of your injury, whether it is visible to others, whether the physical pain interferes with a healthy and independent lifestyle, whether you have been diagnosed with a mental health condition following the accident, and a variety of other factors.

Punitive Damages in Your Car Accident Claim

Punitive damages are not meant to reimburse you for your physical, psychological, or financial injuries. Instead, punitive damages are intended to punish the wrongdoer and prevent them from behaving similarly in the future.

You will not be able to gain punitive damages for a case based on ordinary negligence. However, if you can prove the at-fault driver acted maliciously toward you or showed an intentional disregard for your rights, then you may be able to obtain punitive damages.

Wisconsin law limits how much you can receive in punitive damages. You may not obtain more than twice the amount of any compensatory damages, or $200,000 – whichever is greater. However, there is an exception to the state’s punitive damages cap: It does not apply to your case if the at-fault driver was intoxicated at the time of the accident.Punitive damages are often not considered in car accident settlement amounts. They are generally only available if you pursue a personal injury lawsuit in court. However, your attorney can help you understand your legal options in your specific situation.

Compensation in a Car Accident Claim

What Compensation Can I Recover If My Loved One Was Killed in a Fatal Car Accident?

As a spouse or child, losing someone unexpectedly has financial as well as emotional ramifications. The loss of a primary breadwinner or caretaker significantly alters your future.

This is one of the strongest reasons to consider survival and wrongful death actions following the loss of a loved one in a fatal car accident. By pursuing compensation, you have the potential to mitigate the financial ramifications of your loss and move forward with your life.

You and/or your loved one’s estate may have two options to pursue a financial recovery after a crash. Under Wisconsin law, your loved one’s estate may be able to bring a survival action, which is a legal claim that seeks the compensation to which your loved one would have had a right if he or she had survived the wreck. It is called a survival action because your loved one’s cause of action survived their death.

You may also have the right to file a wrongful death claim. The compensation you can pursue in a wrongful death claim is for losses you and your family members have suffered.

A Survival Action Following a Fatal Car Accident

In some situations, Wisconsin entitles a decedent’s estate to bring a survival action for the financial recovery the decedent would have been entitled to before their death. This type of recovery may be particularly important if your loved one did not pass away immediately after the accident.

If your loved one was seriously injured and survived for days, weeks, or months after the crash before passing away, then they would have accrued a significant amount of economic and non-economic damages, including:

  • Medical expenses
  • Wage loss
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress and mental anguish
  • Loss of earning capacity

If the estate wishes to bring a survival claim on behalf of your loved one, then the estate representative has 2 years from the date of injury to do so.

A Wrongful Death Action Following a Fatal Car Crash

While a survival action is brought by your loved one’s estate to pursue compensation on the decedent’s behalf, a wrongful death action can be filed by a spouse, parent, child, or potentially others. If you were immediately related to the decedent, then you may be able to bring this type of action in court within 2 years of the date of the accident.

You may be able to recover the following through a wrongful death action:

  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Loss of your loved one’s financial contributions
  • Loss of future inheritance from your loved one
  • Loss of your loved one’s society and companionship

It is important to note that Wisconsin caps the amount of recovery you can obtain for loss of society and companionship at $350,000 per deceased adult or $500,000 per deceased minor.

Contact Our Wisconsin Car Accident Lawyers Today

It is not uncommon for attorneys to leave money on the table when negotiating a car accident settlement. When you work with Studinski Law, LLC, we calculate the full value of your losses and pursue maximum compensation on your behalf. We resolve most of our clients’ car accident claims out-of-court through favorable settlements, but we fully prepare to go to trial if that is the best way to recover in your case.

View Our Case Results.

Please call (715) 343-2850 today for a free case evaluation. Our car accident lawyers serve clients throughout Plover and Marshfield, Wisconsin.

Car Accident FAQ

What Should I Do After a Car Accident?

Car accident victims are faced with a number of questions, sensations, and emotions in a very short time. You may be in pain. You may not be sure if you should call the police. You may be wondering what you should or shouldn’t say to the other driver.

Fortunately, the answers to these and other questions are relatively straightforward.

Your first priority is getting medical attention for your injuries and any injuries your passengers and/or people in the other car have sustained. In Wisconsin, accidents involving injuries or death must be reported to the police, so don’t hesitate to dial 911 for help.

If you don’t require medical attention or you are treated and released at the scene, next you should:

  1. Move your vehicle out of traffic. If your vehicle is still operable after the accident, move it to the shoulder of the road so you aren’t in the path of traffic. If you can’t move your car, focus on getting yourself and your passengers out of danger by standing on the side of the road or behind a guardrail or cement barrier.
  2. Exchange information with the other driver. You will need the other driver’s name, contact information, and insurance provider and policy number, as well as the license plate number from the vehicle.
  3. Document the scene of the accident. Using a camera or your smartphone, take pictures of the damage to your vehicle, your injuries, and conditions at the scene (including the road surface, weather, etc.). You should also take notes of anything you can’t document visually or events leading up to the crash.
  4. Speak to witnesses. If anyone saw the accident, ask them to share their account with you, as well as their contact information should you or your lawyer have any followup questions.
  5. Cooperate with the police. The police will ask you to give a statement. Provide a clear, calm account of what happened and truthfully answer any questions the officer may have.

Once you have received treatment for your injuries and (if possible) completed the steps above, your next priority is to contact a Wisconsin car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

What If I Was Partially at Fault for the Accident?

Whether you are speaking to the other driver, the police officer, or even bystanders at the scene, be careful what you say. Do not apologize, and don’t say anything to suggest you may be at fault for the accident. Accepting blame for an accident that was completely or primarily the fault of the other driver may harm your ability to recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

If you believe you may have been partially at fault for the accident, speak to your attorney about what this means for your case. Wisconsin follows the law of contributory negligence, which means you can still recover damages so long as you share in 50 percent or less of the fault for the accident.

How Do Car Accident Settlements Work?

Generally, the first step in your car accident case is to file a third-party claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The insurer will investigate the accident, but the company’s priority is protecting its own interests, not compensating you fairly.

As a result, representatives of the insurance company will do whatever they can to pay you as little as possible, if not deny your claim. They may also ask you to sign a medical records release or make a recorded statement, both of which are not in your interest.

If the insurance company offers you a settlement, it will likely be for far less than your case is truly worth. If you accept the insurance company’s settlement offer, you will lose your right to pursue additional compensation in the future.

Before accepting a settlement, it is worth speaking to a car accident lawyer who can advise you how much you may be able to recover through a lawsuit.

When negotiating a fair settlement, your lawyer will account for all of the damages you have suffered as a result of the car accident. These damages may include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

Negotiations may result in a favorable settlement offer, or the insurance company might not budge. If this happens, your lawyer will need to pursue compensation on your behalf by going to trial.

Why Should I Hire a Car Accident Lawyer?

The process of handling a car accident claim on your own is daunting. You may be recovering from serious injuries, dealing with chronic pain, and trying to adjust to the long-term effects of physical and mental trauma. Meanwhile, the insurance company will push you to resolve your case for less than you deserve.

An experienced car accident lawyer will protect your rights and serve your interests in this difficult time. From investigating the accident to negotiating with the insurance company to representing you in court as needed, an experienced attorney is a valuable asset if you have been injured in an accident.

When Does a Car Accident Need to Be Reported?

Wisconsin law requires you to report a car accident to the police if any of the following occur:

  • Injury or death of one or more people
  • $1,000 or more in property damage
  • $200 or more in damage to state or government property

It is generally better to be safe than sorry and call the police after any accident. After all, your injuries might not be immediately apparent, and it is difficult to estimate how much it may cost to repair your vehicle or replace other property. You might also be unaware that property owned by the government was damaged in the accident.

There is no penalty for calling the police to an accident scene that ultimately does not require police response. Failing to do so, however, could deprive you of a police report that may be helpful in building your accident claim against the at-fault driver.

What Happens in a Car Accident Without Insurance?

All drivers in Wisconsin are required to carry minimum amounts of liability coverage. Insurance will cover at least some of the costs in the event of an accident. However, if the driver is uninsured, you may be at a loss for where to turn.

If the driver who caused the accident does not have car insurance, an experienced attorney can discuss the other options available to you for pursuing compensation.

One such option is pursuing a personal injury lawsuit directly against the driver who caused the accident. You may also be able to file a claim with your own insurance company for benefits under your uninsured motorist coverage.

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