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It can be overwhelming to be hurt in an accident. Many people have similar questions and we’ve created a section of our website that answers the most frequently asked questions we hear. We invite you to browse the questions and answers to learn more about your own claim.
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What are my options after I’ve been hurt in an accident?
Generally, you have two options if you have been injured by someone else’s negligence. You can do nothing, or you can take action. Before you decide what to do, however, you need to know the consequences of your decision.
What Happens If You Do Nothing After a Personal Injury Accident
You have the right to do nothing after a personal injury accident. You may seek medical care, deal with any lost income, and manage your pain and suffering on your own.
If you choose to do nothing then you will recover nothing. Once the statute of limitations expires, you will no longer have the right to bring legal action and you will not be reimbursed for your damages.
What Happens If You Take Legal Action After a Personal Injury Accident
Generally, if you decide to take legal action then your case may be decided through settlement negotiations or in court. Taking legal action requires thought and planning. There are decisions to be made at each stage of litigation. For example, you will need to decide:
- What you are requesting in damages.
- What evidence to request and gather.
- What motions to make to the court.
- Whether to enter settlement negotiations with the insurance company.
- Whether to accept a settlement that is offered by the insurance company.
- Whether to try your case in court.
Thus, if you choose to take legal action, then you will have options at each stage of litigation that could impact your recovery and your future.
You Have the Option to Hire an Attorney
You have a lot at stake. Before you make any decisions about your case, it is important to discuss all of your options with a personal injury lawyer who can advise you about your rights, about how a personal injury lawsuit works, and about the damages that you might recovery if you decide to take action. To discuss your options in more detail, please contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced attorney.
Do I have the legal right to bring a lawsuit if I’ve been hurt in Wisconsin?
If you are 18 years or older and you have been hurt because of someone else’s negligence, then you have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit in Wisconsin.
The right to file a lawsuit is known as “standing.” You have standing to sue if you are the one who was hurt and you have the legal right to make decisions for yourself—in other words, if you are an adult who does not have a legal guardian.
But What If You Aren’t an Adult, What If You Can’t Make Decisions for Yourself, or What If the Person Who Was Hurt Died?
Children, adults with legal guardians, and the estates of people who have died because of someone else’s negligence also have the right to recover damages even though they can’t bring lawsuits themselves. In these situations, Wisconsin law allows other people to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the injured party. For example:
- Children can recover for personal injuries. However, they cannot bring personal injury lawsuits. Typically, one or both of the parents will contact a personal injury lawyer on the child’s behalf. A guardian ad litem may be appointed to represent the child’s interests. This may be the attorney hired by the family. If a settlement is reached or a court verdict is determined, then the money will be put into an interest-bearing account until the child reaches the age of 18 or until the conditions met by the court are satisfied.
- Adults with legal guardians can recover for personal injuries. The legal guardian may contact a personal injury attorney on behalf of the person who was hurt. Any recovery will be used for the benefit of the person who was injured.
- Estates of people who have died in wrongful death accident can recover for personal injuries. The personal representative of the estate has the right to bring the lawsuit for the benefit of the person’s estate.
If you try to bring a lawsuit and you lack standing, then you can expect that your case will be dismissed. Accordingly, it is important to know if you have the right to start a lawsuit and how a personal injury lawsuit works. To learn more, please contact us any time via this website or by phone to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
What happens if I’m partly at fault for the accident that caused my injury?
The truth is that you are likely to have been partially at fault for the accident that caused your injury. Few accidents are completely the fault of one person, but in most two-person accidents there is one party that is more at fault than the other. If you are the person who is less at fault than the other person, then you have the right to make a legal recovery of financial damages for your injuries.
What Does This Mean to Your Personal Injury Recovery?
It means that if you can prove that someone else was primarily responsible for your accident then you will make a financial recovery. In Wisconsin, contributing to the negligence that caused your injury is not a bar to recovery—assuming that your negligence was not greater than the negligence of the person from whom you are seeking damages. In a two-party accident, this means that you can recover from the other party if you can prove that the other party was at least 51% responsible for the accident and your resulting injuries.
Wisconsin’s contributory negligence law does, however, make it clear that the amount that you recover will be reduced by the percentage of negligence assigned to you. For example, if it is determined during settlement negotiations or in court that you are 30 percent responsible for the accident and that the damages from your accident totaled $100,000, then you would be able to recover 30 percent less than $100,000, or a total of $70,000 in damages.
It is important that the exact percentage of fault be determined so that you can get the fair recovery that you deserve. This requires evidence and persuasive arguments. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you determine what your fair recovery may be, help you gather evidence, and make persuasive arguments on your behalf. Do not risk your fair recovery by representing yourself. Instead, contact our experienced personal injury lawyers today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today to discuss how a personal injury case works and what your fair recovery may include.
How should I choose a personal injury lawyer?
You have choices when it comes to hiring a personal injury lawyer to represent you after an accident. It can be overwhelming. However, despite what other websites say, there is no secret to finding the right personal injury lawyer.
Here’s How to Decide on a Personal Injury Lawyer
As you make this important decision, it is important to consider:
- Experience. You want to hire an attorney who has experience trying cases and negotiating settlements for accidents similar to the one that hurt you. For example, if you were hurt in a motorcycle crash, then you will want to hire someone with experience representing people who have been hurt in motorcycle accidents.
- Client satisfaction. Client testimonials are important because they can provide you with detailed information about what clients liked about their lawyer and law firm.
- The law firm’s philosophy. It is our law firm’s mission to “give our clients the best possible representation from the beginning of their case to its conclusion; to help our clients in any way we can; and to go above and beyond the call of duty.”
Additionally, it is important to take your gut feeling into account and to hire an attorney you trust.
Is Hupy and Abraham the Right Firm for You?
You can browse our website to find out more about our experience, our case results, and what our clients think about us. We are proud of all of this information and we hope that you find it useful in your search for an attorney.
However, we encourage you not to make a final determination about whether Hupy and Abraham is right for you before you call us. Come in for a free meeting with one of our lawyers to get all of your questions answered, to learn how a personal injury lawsuit works, and to see if we are a good fit for you. Whenever you are ready, you can schedule a meeting by calling us or by contacting us through this website. We look forward to meeting you.
How can a personal injury lawyer help me?
An attorney can help you at each stage of your claim—from your first question after you are hurt until your recovery is secured and deposited in your bank account.
Six Ways a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You
Specifically, a personal injury lawyer can:
- Make sure that all of your questions are answered. The first step in a personal case is not filing a complaint in court, but rather getting your questions answered. Do you have a case? What could you recover if you do you have a case? What is the legal recovery process like? Your lawyer will answer all of these questions—and more—so that you can make an informed decision.
- Protect your rights. It is important to begin protecting your legal rights immediately after an accident. An attorney can advise you on what to do and what not to do so that you can’t accidently hurt your case.
- Investigate your claim. You will need evidence to resolve your claim. That evidence can be difficult to get without an attorney requesting it in a way that compels others to give you the information that you need.
- Represent you in settlement negotiations. Many personal injury cases are settled outside of court. However, insurance companies are not working for you and, instead, want you to accept as little as possible so that they can maximize their profits. An attorney can negotiate on your behalf and help you get the recovery that you deserve.
- Represent you in court. If your case does go to court then your attorney can comply with all of the court rules and zealously advocate for your fair recovery.
- Secure your recovery. Once a recovery is negotiated or ordered by the court, your attorney will make sure that you get the money that you are owed.
You can have all of the benefits without paying attorney’s fees out of pocket. Instead, the experienced lawyers of Hupy and Abraham will take your case on a contingency fee basis. That means that we are paid a percentage of your settlement or court verdict.
If you have any questions about what an attorney can do for you or about how a personal injury lawsuit works, then we encourage you to contact us for a free and confidential consultation at your convenience. You can reach us at any time of day via this website or by phone.
What witnesses will I need in a personal injury lawsuit?
Witnesses can be very important to proving the critical elements of your personal injury case. Specifically, witnesses can help you prove someone else’s negligence and liability for your injuries, and witnesses can help you prove the value of your damages and what should be included in your recovery.
Each personal injury case is unique, however. Below, are some of the witnesses that may be useful in a personal injury lawsuit. However the best way to know which witnesses are important to your case is to talk directly with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can evaluate your case and use his experience and education to help you make the right decisions to protect your recovery.
Ten Witnesses to Consider in a Personal Injury Case
Some of the people who may testify in your personal injury case include:
- Eyewitnesses to the accident.
- First responders.
- Accident reconstructionists.
- Manufacturers or engineers.
- People who see you doing your daily activities who can testify about how your injuries have impacted your life.
- Life care planners.
- Vocational experts.
- Property specialists such as contractors, builders, inspectors, or security experts.
Of course, not every case needs every type of witness. A car accident case may need witnesses who are different than a slip and fall claim, for example. When you are considering whether a specific witness should testify, it is important to consider the potential value that the witness can bring to your case and whether the witness is trustworthy and believable.
Make Sure You Have the Witnesses You Need
An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you identify the type of witnesses that could help you make a fair personal injury recovery and just as importantly evaluate each specific witness to determine whether that person should testify in your case. Witnesses can be important, but they can also hurt your claim in some cases. Accordingly, if you’ve been hurt and you are considering a personal injury lawsuit, we encourage you to contact us directly any time—24/7/365—to schedule a free consultation with an experienced lawyer who can advise you about how a personal injury lawsuit works and about how to best protect your claim.
How should I deal with an insurance adjuster after a personal injury?
If you’ve been hurt in any kind of personal injury accident, then it is important to deal with the insurance adjuster cautiously and with a complete understanding of his job. Additionally, it is important to know that you always have the right to contact a personal injury lawyer and to have your lawyer deal with the insurance adjuster on your behalf.
You may put your fair recovery at risk if you say too much or if you say something that is misconstrued by the insurance adjuster. Don’t risk making a mistake that could have been easily avoided. Instead, learn how to protect your rights after someone else has hurt you.
Know What the Insurance Adjuster Is Trying to Do
It is the insurance adjuster’s job to get you to accept as little as possible for your injuries even if the insured is legally responsible for your injuries. Insurance companies maximize their profits by paying out as little as possible in settlements, and insurance adjusters are looking out for their employers.
To that end, insurance adjusters may try to use anything that you say against you. They may try to make it seem like they are looking out for your best interests, but their loyalty is to the insurance companies that employ them.
Accordingly, if you must speak with an insurance adjuster, then it is important to stick to the facts such as the date the accident occurred, where it occurred, and who was involved in the crash. Any further discussions should be directed to your personal injury lawyer.
How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You Negotiate With an Insurance Adjuster
Experienced personal injury lawyers know what information to provide to insurance adjusters and just as importantly how and when to provide it. An attorney can make sure that your rights are protected. He can explain how a personal injury lawsuit works and can advocate for your full and fair recovery.
Once the insurance company is notified that you are represented by counsel then you should no longer have direct contact with the insurance adjusters. That stress—the worry of always having to watch what you say—should be removed from your shoulders while your attorney works hard to get you the settlement that you deserve.
If you would like to speak with a personal injury lawyer about your claim and about how to protect it, please reach out to us via this website or by phone at any time. We are here to help you.
What should I do if I suffer a personal injury?
If you’ve been injured in any kind of accident, such as a car crash, motorcycle wreck, slip and fall or other type of accident, then you are probably facing some difficult questions. You may wonder:
“How will I pay for my medical treatment?”
“What about all the time I have to miss from work?”
The answers to these questions aren’t the same for every injured person, but if your injury was the result of someone else’s negligence, then you should not have to shoulder these costs by yourself. Instead, a Wisconsin injury claim could ease some—or all—of the financial burden associated with your injury, and you can help protect your own recovery by knowing what to do after a personal injury accident.
What to Do at the Scene of an Accident
Accidents are stressful and disorienting. If you’ve been in an accident and you are physically able to do so, you should:
- Seek immediate medical attention.
- Notify the police or property owner, as applicable.
- Watch what you say—anything you say can be used against you.
- Take pictures and videos of the accident scene.
- Write down the names and contact information for any witnesses and for other parties to the accident.
- Request a copy of any reports done by the police or others
Of course, you may not be able to do all of these things after every injury. If your injury or the chaos of the accident scene left you unable to do these things, don’t panic. Instead, learn what you can do now to protect your rights.
What to Do After an Accident
After a personal injury accident, it is important to:
- Contact your insurance provider (if applicable).
- Keep records of all of your injuries and expenses.
And it is important to hire an attorney to help you prove your case, to avoid mistakes after a personal injury, and to get the fair and just recovery that you deserve.
A Wisconsin accident can impact more than just your short-term health. Serious or permanent injuries may require hundreds of thousands of dollars in treatment and rehabilitation costs. If your injuries prevent you from working for an extended period of time, you likely will not be able to handle these costs on your own.
Thus, it is important to begin protecting your rights today. Contact us via this website or by phone to schedule your free consultation today.
How can I avoid common mistakes after a personal injury?
You ask a great question, and you certainly want to avoid as many mistakes as possible after you suffer a personal injury in any kind of accident. That said, it is important to remember that the aftermath of an accident is stressful and often chaotic. Additionally, you may be in pain and unable to think clearly. Many people who suffer personal injuries make mistakes and our personal injury lawyers know how to fix them.
That’s why it is important to contact us as soon as possible after you have been hurt—so that we can help you fix any mistakes that have been made, avoid future mistakes, and get the recovery that you deserve.
Don’t Do These Things After an Accident If You Can Help It
Immediately after your accident and in the weeks to follow it is important that you do not:
- Fail to report the accident, as appropriate. This could include reporting to the police, to a property owner, or to an insurance company, for example.
- Admit fault or apologize for the accident.
- Refuse medical care.
- Fail to keep medical appointments.
- Fail to follow your doctor’s treatment plan.
- Talk to the insurance company to try to negotiate your own settlement.
- Delay filing an insurance claim.
- Fail to preserve evidence from the accident scene.
Additionally, it is very important that you do not accept a settlement for less than you deserve. While we may be able to help you fix a different kind of mistake, we may be unable to help you after a settlement has been reached.
The Other Mistake You Can’t Afford to Make After An Injury
Failing to hire an experienced personal injury lawyer is another mistake that we urge you not to make. An attorney can not only help you avoid mistakes, but can also help you do the right things to protect your personal injury recovery. To learn more about protecting your rights and making a fair recovery, please contact us today via this website or by calling 1.800.800.5678 to schedule your free consultation.
Will I have to go to court if I file a personal injury lawsuit?
Most people who file personal injury cases are able to resolve their lawsuits before trial. Whether your case will need to go to court or not depends on a lot of different factors. Some of those factors are within your control. For example, your case may be more likely to settle if you have evidence to prove your claim and an experienced attorney to help you negotiate with insurance adjusters. Other factors, such as the willingness of the defendant to settle the case, are not within your control.
However, you should not allow any apprehension or anxiety about going to court keep you from filing a case.
Going To Court Can Get You The Personal Injury Settlement You Deserve
We don’t want you just to take our word for it. As experienced lawyers, it is easy for us to say that you shouldn’t worry about going to court, but we understand that courtrooms are not part of your typical work day. Yet the possibility of going to court should not stop you from pursuing a recovery after a personal injury claim because:
- Hupy and Abraham is able to resolve the majority of our personal injury cases through skillful negotiation. If your case settles then you may never have to go to court.
- If you do go to court, then you will never go alone. Your lawyer will always be with you to represent your interests, to speak on your behalf, and to guide you through the proceedings.
- You will never go to court unprepared. Your lawyer will make sure that you are thoroughly prepared for what will happen in the courtroom before you go to court.
- Going to court is not a bad thing. Sometimes it is necessary to get the fair recovery that you deserve and that can make a significant difference for your future.
We understand that your goal is to resolve your personal injury claim as quickly as possible, with as little stress as possible, and without spending too much in personal injury attorneys’ fees. You want to settle your case, and we want to help you do that if it can be done fairly. To discuss your personal injury case, and how to resolve it fairly, please contact us online any time—24/7/365— or by calling 1.800.800.5678 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.