Crook County Personal Injury Lawyers
Resting in the northeast corner of Wyoming, Crook County draws travelers from all across the United States to explore the natural beauty of the Thunder Basin National Forest, the Black Hills of Wyoming, and, of course, the iconic Devil’s Tower, the first national monument in U.S. history. Whether by car, mountain bike, or ATV, travelers have a host of options to choose from when traversing this stunning region. Sadly, with that versatility comes several dangers.
The influx in traffic from travelers, whether road tripping across the United States in the summer or enjoying the snowy slopes in winter, can lead to serious auto collisions for drivers who are unfamiliar with Wyoming’s rural roads. Beyond our roadways, residents are also put at risk from negligent property owners who fail to keep their stores, museums, and offices secure from tripping hazards. This is especially true for the wintertime, when pathways and parking lots can become coated in black ice, leading to serious fall injuries.
The legal team at Steven Titus & Associates, P.C. understands just how costly an injury can be for a Crook County resident. You may be dealing with a mountain of medical bills, weeks to months off of work, and be frustrated having to deal with insurance claims on your own, especially if the accident was not your fault. Our Crook County personal injury attorneys understand that frustration, which is why we offer each potential client a free consultation to discuss their case. With our years of experience, our trial attorneys can review your case, investigate who was at fault, and advocating on your behalf for proper and fair compensation. Call us at (307) 257-7800 after an accident to learn what options are available to you.
Personal injury is a wide legal field that covers a variety of cases, ranging from car accidents to slip and falls. Each county in Wyoming has their own unique attractions and characteristics, but there are many types of accidents that cross county lines. The cases that we have seen from clients in Crook County include:
- Car accidents caused by reckless drivers
- Trucking accidents, often related to the local mining industry
- Motorcycle accidents
- Off-roading accidents involving snowmobiles, ATVs, and mountain bicycles
- Slip and fall accidents on poorly maintained properties
- Boating accidents in Keyhole Reservoir
- Dog bites as a result of careless owners
- Nursing home abuse and neglect
High tourist traffic can overwhelm I-90 and the rural roads that surround Sundance as travelers cross over from Yellowstone to explore the Black Hills. While experienced road trippers understand how to handle themselves on rural roads and respect local laws, many can get caught up in their wanderlust, causing serious auto collisions. Beyond travelers, the mining industry has long had a hold on Crook County since the early days of the Gold Rush. As a result, major trucking routes operate throughout Eastern Wyoming.
In the Summer, when tourist traffic is at its peak, motorcyclists travel across Wyoming into South Dakota for the famous Sturgis Rally. While many of these riders are law-abiding citizens who know how to keep themselves on I-90, other drivers may not care to respect a motorcyclist’s right of way or safety. Motorcycle accidents can be extremely dangerous, resulting in costly injuries that often come with catastrophic disabilities.
While travel may slow down in the winter, accidents are still a common occurrence. Rain, ice, and snow can easily overtake our roadways. While Sundance and other city governments can quickly respond with snowplows and deicing, many local businesses are still responsible for scheduling snow removal after sudden storms. If they fail to clean up a parking lot or warn visitors, their inaction could lead to a serious slip and fall on hard concrete or pavement, leading to everything from chronic back pain to brain damage.
Sadly, there are several ways for you to become injured in Crook County, but not all of them are eligible for compensation. To be able to file a personal injury claim, a victim of a serious injury must demonstrate that another person’s or company’s careless or negligent actions led to the injury. Proving this is not as simple as stating that another driver T-boned your car or a fall was caused by a wet floor. Negligence laws in Wyoming are complex and require a thorough understanding of the law to interpret them properly, otherwise you may be offered a lower settlement than you deserve.
You will also need to determine if an insurance policy covered you during the accident, such as a general liability policy in a store, an auto insurance policy, or a homeowner's insurance policy in a dog bite incident. After an injury, you will want to make a claim against that policy for damages, which can include your medical bills, time off work to recover, and any personal trauma you suffered, such as pain and suffering. However, insurance companies are not known for their generosity, and may reject your claim if you do not have the backing of an experienced legal team and significant evidence.
When reviewing your case, we will assess how your injuries occurred, who is responsible for them, and if negligence occurred. It may seem simple to you and us that a car accident led to a broken leg or brain trauma, but insurance companies may argue that your actions led to the accident or that you have a pre-existing condition.
To be eligible for proper compensation, we must demonstrate that another person or company:
- Had a duty to care for you;
- Broke that duty through negligence;
- That negligence caused your injuries; and
- That injury led to damages, or costs, such as medical bills.
If it is determined that another injury caused your injuries through a negligent action, such as failing to clean up an icy pathway or by driving recklessly, you may be able to file a personal injury claim.
Proving negligence occurred is a major part of your claim and requires a thorough investigation into your case. Starting as early as possible on your case is also necessary, as you only have four years after an accident to file a claim in Wyoming. While this may seem like a long time, you have to take into account that you need to have gone through the majority of your medical treatment before filing. If you file too early, we may not fully understand the extent of your injuries and miss out on including important medical bills.
We will also need time to collect evidence, review your case with experts, calculate the total costs of the accident, and negotiate with insurance adjusters. How long those negotiations take is hard to say, as every case is different. Some cases that involve a large amount of evidence can go quickly, but if your injuries come with a high bill, the insurance company may be less willing to settle with a fair compensation package.
Though this only occurs in one out of ten cases, your claim may go to trial where a jury will judge whether or not the insurance company should pay you compensation. While our trial attorneys are well versed in handling courtroom cases and are afraid to go toe-to-toe with the insurance company’s lawyers, you will now be subject to Wyoming’s comparative negligence laws. Based on these laws, you may be limited in the amount of compensation you receive.
Comparative negligence means that a jury can find multiple parties at-fault for an accident, including the victim. For example, let us say that a drunk driver struck you while you were crossing the street. The insurance company may claim that the crosswalk light was red, meaning you were not allowed to cross the street at the time of the collision. Even though the other driver committed a DUI, the jury may find you partially at blame for your injuries. However, so long as you are only found less than 50% at fault, you can still collect compensation. Though it will be reduced by the amount of fault applied to you. If you are awarded a $100,000 in compensation, but are found to be 40% at fault, you may only receive $60,000.
Personal injury claims can be especially difficult for accident victims. You may be dealing with a sudden disability, having difficulty with your job, and unable to take care of your spouse and children. Most people do not want the added stress of dealing with insurance companies. You may be tempted to accept a quick settlement, but we are here to tell you that is not the best idea. Insurance companies are well known for not paying out fair settlements and may even deny your claim if it will benefit them.
To ensure you receive a fair shot at compensation, contact a knowledgeable law firm that will advocate for your best interest. Contact Steven Titus & Associates, P.C. Our trial attorneys can explain to you whether or not you have a case and how to move forward with a claim. We will focus on lifting the legal burdens off of your back so you can focus on recovering. Call us at (307) 257-7800 to schedule a free consultation.
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