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Pam M. Baumgartner
Eisenberg Law Offices, S.C.
608-256-8356

New Liability Auto Insurance Act Impacts Wisconsin Personal Injury Law

MADISON, Wisconsin – August 18, 2009 – Signed into law on June 29, the Wisconsin state budget for 2009-2011 (2009 Wisconsin Act 28) contains a number of provisions that expand options for personal injury settlements, and change the state’s auto insurance restrictions and coverage minimums. This new legislation also makes liability and underinsured motorist insurance mandatory for Wisconsin drivers.

Section 3171 of the Act allows injured policy holders to access the full benefit of their own insurance plan, prohibiting insurance companies from deducting the amount of insurance carried by the negligent driver in the accident. In addition, health insurance companies cannot deny coverage for medical care if personal injury coverage is included in one’s auto insurance. The result being that injured individuals may have access to a greater amount of financial coverage for medical costs due to injuries.

“These new laws are extremely important for people injured in car accidents as they can have a big impact on the settlement you may be eligible to receive,” said Steve Eisenberg, Wisconsin personal injury attorney and one of the founders of Eisenberg Law Offices, S.C., of Madison, Wisconsin. “You need a lawyer that understands the new laws and how to maximize your recovery.”

The budget also mandates that insurance companies will no longer be able to deny coverage for hit-and-run accidents because physical contact did not occur. This gives injured drivers access to uninsured motorist coverage if they can provide independent, third party evidence of the accident. 

New minimum coverage amounts have been set for auto liability insurance, requiring that policies must cover “$50,000 because of bodily injury to or death of one person in any one accident and, subject to such limit for one person, $100,000 because of bodily injury or death of two or more persons in any one accident, and $15,000 because of injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident.”

Other changes include the requirement of all liability policies to include underinsured motorist coverage that is limited to $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident. Along with the new insurance mandate is the repeal of a 14-year stipulation that banned insured drivers from stacking auto insurance policy limits for uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.

Eisenberg Law provides superior representation in Wisconsin personal injury, criminal defense, family and divorce, drunk driving, and civil litigation cases. They have over 25 years of experience representing injured victims of auto, truck and vehicle collisions and have won millions for their clients in Wisconsin personal injury cases.