Legal Question in Personal Injury in Wisconsin

drunk driver

I was a passenger in a vehicle totaled by a hit-and-run drunk driver. My fiance was taken to the hospital by ambulance with a concussion as well as neck and back pain. My 11-month old son and I were treated and released, but I am suffering from back pain as well. The drunk driver has been arrested and does have insurance through Progressive. Should we sue, and what kind of compensation could we receive? My fiance will miss at least one week of work.


Asked on 11/20/07, 8:02 pm

4 Answers from Attorneys

Re: drunk driver

You need to discuss your case with a Wisconsin drunk driving accident lawyer for a full explanation of your rights. Briefly, you can sue the person responsible for your economic damages: lost work, medical bills, replacement services, etc. and your non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, etc. The amount that you can recover depends upon your medical bills, lost wages, effect that the accident has had on your free time activities and other factors. Please feel free to contact me for more information. drunkdrivingaccident.net will provide some information. Best wishes.

I hope that I have helped, answered all of your questions, and that I have provided you with useful information. Please contact me if I have not answered all of your questions.

Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely information. You and I have not entered into an attorney/client relationship. The only way that I am legally responsible for your legal rights is if you have signed a written retainer agreement with my law firm.

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Answered on 11/20/07, 8:11 pm
Frank Pasternak Pasternak & Zirgibel S.C.

Re: drunk driver

You, your fiance and your son have injury claims for your reasonable medical expenses, lost wages, pain suffering, and disability. If you would like to meet in person to discuss this, my firm has recently moved to Brookfield, Wisconsin and you may contact me at 785.0802.

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Answered on 11/21/07, 8:54 am
JAY Nixon nixon law offices

Victims Compensation for Drunk Driving Injury Accident

Whether or not the opposing driver is drunk, you are entitled to a judgment against ďat fault" drivers in an accident as well as certain other drivers or parties who may be partially at fault, provided that the claimant passenger is not also somehow at fault to a greater degree (i.e., did not knowingly remain in the car when an obviously impaired person was preparing to drive, grab the steering wheel away from the driver, or supply alcohol to a minor driver). The jury will determine all of this, as well as the amount of any compensation. Items of compensation in WI include all out of pocket expenses (wage loss, medical and property damage), anticipated future residual disability or pain, and past pain and suffering caused by the accident. Driversí insurers are responsible for each of these items in proportion to their insuredís degree of fault, up to the limits of their liability under the driversí insurance policies. The drunken driving is significant in determining fault. Drunken driving can also lead to additional punitive or exemplary damages being added to the judgment, for which the insurer is NOT responsible. Your only recourse on punitive damages due to drunk driving is to collect them from the adverse driver personally. Damages for drunken driving cannot be discharged in a chapter 7 bankruptcy, but can sometimes be modified in a confirmed chapter 13 bankruptcy plan. Good luck!

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Answered on 11/21/07, 11:48 am
Michael End End, Hierseman & Crain, LLC

Re: drunk driver

You do not necessarily have to sue, but you should file a claim with the insurance company to see whether the case can be settled. It is impossible to determine the value of the claims of you, your fiance, and your son without actually knowing the specifics of the injuries, treatment, and bills. I think you should contact a lawyer in your area who does personal injury work to have the lawyer represent you in the case. I think a lawyer will usually get an injured person more money in his or her pocket than if the injured person tried to settle the case himself/herself.

Keep in mind that there is a 3-year statute of limitations in Wisconsin for filing a personal injury case. That means that you will have to file a case within three years of the accident or you will lost your right to receive compensation from Progressive Insurance.

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Answered on 11/21/07, 1:31 pm


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