As you go through the aftermath of a car accident, you’re going to be dealing with the insurance company quite a bit. Wisconsin operates on a traditional “fault” insurance system, meaning when you file a claim following a crash, you’re seeking compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. As such, they may not be looking out for you.
Insurance companies are large businesses with lawyers who are used to defending against car accident claims with the hopes of paying out as little as possible. Whenever you need to deal with the insurance company, it’s vital to recognize their tactics and have an attorney on your side to help you.
Our firm can help you with understanding the following:
- What Wisconsin’s at-fault system means after an accident and how to file a claim
- What the insurance company may try to do to lower a settlement offer
- What your rights are after a crash
Call our firm at (414) 206-1295 today if you need help filing a claim.
Filing a Claim in Wisconsin’s At-Fault System
After a crash occurs, you want to take the necessary steps that can help you protect your rights when dealing with the other driver’s insurance provider. You should ensure that you’re gathering all documentation pertaining to the other driver’s license, license plate, contact information, and insurance policy. Knowing the insurance provider can help your insurance company manage your claim.
Call law enforcement and your insurance company to report the accident after it occurs. Law enforcement can help you with a report regarding the specifics of the accident. Similarly, reporting the accident with your insurance can help you get your statement on record early in the process.
Evidence can also include:
- Any witness statements you receive from people who saw the accident. Speak with these people and get their contact information to provide to your insurance company.
- Photos you take at the scene of the accident. This should include photos of tire marks, missing traffic signs or signals, damage to both vehicles, and visible injuries.
- Medical records once you see a doctor. Make sure you get medical help quickly, whether at your doctor’s office or with a paramedic. Your health is the most important priority and you can use the medical records as evidence.
When you file a claim with the insurance company, it’s in your best interests to have a lawyer with you to help you navigate the claim. The insurance company will often look to take advantage of your rights and a good attorney can help to prevent this.
Tactics the Insurance Company May Try
Insurance companies often promise care and compassion after an accident. However, in an at-fault state when you’re working with the other driver’s insurance company, this large corporation doesn’t have an obligation to you; rather, they’re protecting their own policyholder and their profits.
The insurance company often tries to take advantage of you during this time, especially when you’re most vulnerable and need a quick resolution. They may try various tactics that threaten your ability to pursue compensation:
- Delaying payment: The insurance company knows you’re in a rough position and need money. They may try to deny your claim in hopes of you settling for much less than you deserve simply because you’re in a position of need.
- Recorded statements: Insurance companies ask for recorded statements from parties involved in an accident. They may ask you for one so they can compare your statement to the initial report at the scene of the accident, and any discrepancies can hurt your claim.
- Wrongful denial: The insurance company may claim that their policyholder’s insurance limits your recovery, that the policyholder’s coverage has lapsed, or that you were at fault. Anything they can do to pay as little as possible or nothing is possible.
Recognizing these tactics can help you when it comes to filing a claim, but having a legal representative on your side can be even more important.
Your Rights After a Car Accident
Whenever you find yourself dealing with the insurance company after a crash to receive compensation for your property damage, physical injuries, and financial losses, you need to protect your rights. A lawyer can help you understand your options, especially if the insurance company denies your claim.
Once you file a claim, you find yourself waiting for an answer regarding liability and the compensation you need. The insurance company may take their time, and when you need it most, they may deny your claim. If this is done wrongfully, you can file a lawsuit to pursue justice.
With a lawyer, you can gather the necessary documentation and evidence you need to go through the process. Your evidence can be used during the discovery phase to prove liability, working to show that you have a viable case, which often results in a settlement offer. We’ll help you understand if that settlement is adequate or if you should proceed with a potential trial to get the amount you deserve.
At Dunk Law Firm, our Milwaukee car accident attorneys are ready to help. We are relentless when it comes to helping our clients deal with the insurance company because we know what their tactics are and why they do it.
We know how difficult this time can be for you, and it’s our highest priority to safeguard your best interests through complex legal matters. Our goal is to support real people within our community who are dealing with real problems. You focus on your recovery, and we’ll handle the rest.