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When discussing trials and court cases, most people probably think about criminal cases where the defendant faces prison time. However, not every trial is for criminal activity, and not every defendant was arrested by the police. Civil cases, unlike criminal ones, are private disputes between individuals, and the state does not have a say in the outcome. Instead of prison time or other criminal penalties, money is usually the biggest issue in a civil trial. While there are many kinds of civil cases, personal injury cases are perhaps the most common.

Personal injury cases can vary from minor or even downright petty to extremely serious. Every case is different, and it may be difficult to determine what kind of case you have. The term “personal injury” does not refer to a single type of case. Instead, it can include many different types of cases involving a wide variety of injuries and accidents. Many personal injury cases are due to someone’s negligence, while others stem from the defendant’s intentional act of harm. You need a skilled, experienced lawyer to help you with your personal injury lawsuit.

If you believe you have been harmed because of someone else’s negligent actions, you might be looking at a possible personal injury case. Every case is unique, and you will need an attorney who can handle the unique needs of your case. Our Hammond, IN personal injury attorneys will fight for your compensation in any way necessary. Contact our offices at Wruck Paupore to talk with our staff about a free, private legal consultation. Call us as soon as possible at (219) 322-1166 .

How Do I Know if I Have a Personal Injury Case in Hammond, IN?

Personal injury cases cover a broad spectrum of legal troubles. While many cases involve accidents, other cases are a bit more complex. The kind of evidence you need to support your case will also vary depending on your unique problem.

Some personal injuries may result from intentional torts or a civil wrong that happens because of the intentional or willful conduct of the defendant. For example, if you were hurt in a car accident, but the other driver purposefully drove their car into yours, you would be dealing with an intentional tort. This kind of personal injury case requires proving that the defendant acted with the intent to cause harm.

Other personal injury cases involve defendants acting with negligence rather than on purpose. Negligence cases are very common and often involve more “accidents.” The defendant did not necessarily hurt you on purpose, but they are still responsible for their actions. In a negligence case, the defendant owed a legal duty of care to the plaintiff and failed to fulfill that duty, resulting in the plaintiff’s injuries. A duty of care can be explicitly agreed upon by the parties or even mandated by law. It can also be implied by the relationship or behavior of the parties.

A strict liability case involves personal injury caused to the plaintiff under circumstances where the actions or intent of the defendant do not matter. It does not matter if the defendant acted with intent, acted maliciously, or took precautions to prevent harm. They are responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries, and the law takes away any questions of duty or motive.

Call our Hammond, IN personal injury lawyers for help determining what kind of case you have and what your legal needs are.

Proving Liability in a Hammond, IN Personal Injury Case

In order to succeed with a personal injury lawsuit in Hammond, you will need to prove that the defendant was liable for the injuries you sustained. Liability exists when a defendant breaches a duty that they owe to someone else, and that breach results in injury. Thus, to demonstrate liability, you will have to identify what type of duty the defendant owed and how they failed to meet it.

Legal duties of care depend on the accident's circumstances, the defendant's background, and the relationship between the defendant and the injury victim. For instance, the duties that a doctor owes a patient might be different from those that a restaurant owes to its patrons.

If a defendant violates some law or official regulation, that is a good sign that they breached their duty. A good example might be driving under the influence or running a red light in breach of a driver’s duty to other motorists to exercise reasonable care behind the wheel and follow traffic laws.

However, just proving breach is not enough. The breach must have actually caused the injurious accident. In situations where multiple parties might share blame, this could cause serious confusion. You will always want a seasoned Hammond personal injury lawyer with you while you evaluate your claims.

Modified Comparative Negligence Rules in Hammond, IN Personal Injury Cases

Some personal injury plaintiffs do not pursue their claim because they played a role in causing their own injuries. However, you should know that personal injury plaintiffs may still be able to recover compensation through a lawsuit even if they negligently contributed to the injurious accident themselves.

The State of Indiana uses a modified comparative fault rule that provides that a plaintiff’s recovery value should be reduced proportionally based on their own contribution to the accident or injuries. To do this, the jury will assign a percentage of blame to each party involved. This way, the plaintiff can still recover at least some of their claimed damages, so long as their percentage of fault is not greater than the defendants’, in which case the law bars them from recovery.

Depending on the type of personal injury at hand, it is not uncommon for a defendant to argue comparative negligence to attempt to reduce their liability in a personal injury lawsuit. Our Hammond personal injury lawyers can apprise you of how this argument may affect you so that you have a thorough understanding of what your case will look like well before your trial date arrives.

Why Should I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Hammond, IN?

In many situations, people who suffer personal injuries due to some other person or entity’s negligence have a choice. They can either file a lawsuit against the party responsible or submit an insurance claim. Most often, it makes sense to begin by filing an insurance claim with the at-fault parties’ insurance company. This will allow them to begin evaluating your claim for recovery and to set “reserves.” Reserves are an amount of money the insurance company is required to set aside to pay your claim in the event you are successful.

The type of insurance claim that may be available depends on the circumstances. If you are involved in a car accident, you can submit a claim with the appropriate auto insurance company. If you suffer an injury while at work, you may have to file a Workers’ Compensation claim. Some slip and falls can be covered under homeowners’ insurance.

However, the one commonality amongst insurance claims is the application of policy limits. Insurance companies will only approve claims up to the available dollar amount provided under the applicable plan. Therefore, if you suffer a personal injury that causes you to incur $80,000 in medical expenses, but the policy limit only provides $50,000, you will not get all the compensation you need through an insurance claim.

If an insurance company is not willing to pay the fair settlement value of your case, you should proceed with filing a lawsuit against the at-fault party. This allows you to gather evidence as part of a court process called “discovery.” This includes serving subpoenas for the production of documents and electronic records, as well as taking the sworn testimony of witnesses, including the at-fault party. The court can also order inspections of products or physical locations which may be at issue. For example, let’s say that you were injured at one of Northwest Indiana’s steel mills because of a dangerous condition there. A court could require the defendant steel company to allow you to inspect the steel mill with qualified experts that can then testify regarding the nature of the dangers involved.

Typically, negotiations with insurance companies will continue throughout the litigation process and oftentimes these cases settle through a court ordered negotiation process called mediation. If the case still does not settle, however, you will have a right to have your case tried before a jury of your peers, often in a downtown Hammond courthouse in front of a jury of your peers drawn from residents of Lake County.

Damages in Personal Injury Cases in Hammond, IN

In any civil case, you must prove damages. “Damages” refers to any injuries, losses, or other harm you suffered because of the defendant. There are many different ways you can plead damages, depending on the unique circumstances of your case. However, there are several broad categories of damages to think about when filing a personal injury lawsuit.

Compensatory Damages

Compensatory damages are the most common form of damages and include compensation to make the plaintiff “whole” again. Compensatory damages include bills and other expenses the victim incurs because of the defendant’s actions. For example, in a car accident, a plaintiff might end up paying hospital bills and bills for vehicle repairs. Compensatory damages are intended to make a plaintiff “whole” again, but only in a financial sense. Things like permanent disfigurements or disabilities that can never be truly fixed are still included in compensatory damages, even though a plaintiff might not be physically made “whole.”

Non-Economic Damages

Courts can also compensate a personal injury victim in Hammond for the harms they sustain that aren’t directly financial in nature. This can include any pain and suffering that the victim experiences as a result of their experience in the injurious accident, the injuries themselves, or the difficult rehabilitation process. Common considerations in determining non-economic damages may include chronic pain, loss of enjoyment of life, and the onset of psychological conditions such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Because assessing the monetary value of these consequences is difficult without experience dealing with these cases, we urge you to reach out to a seasoned Hammond personal injury attorney as soon as possible for a personalized case assessment.

Nominal Damages

Nominal damages are more usual and apply when the plaintiff has suffered very minimal damages. Nominal damages are worth very little money, sometimes as little as just one dollar. The purpose of pleading nominal damages is not to recover money to cover your expenses but to prove a point. If you believe the defendant wronged you, you can plead nominal damages even though you suffered minor damages.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant rather than compensate the plaintiff. Punitive damages may vary based on the conduct of the defendant. More outrageous or shocking behavior by the defendant may mean greater punitive damages. Many states, including Indiana, place limits on punitive damages. According to Indiana Code § 34-51-3-4, a punitive damages award cannot be greater than three times the amount of compensatory damages or $50,000, whichever is greater.

Contact our Hammond, IN personal injury lawyers today for help understanding what kind of damages you can plead in your case.

Evidence Needed in a Personal injury Case in Hammond, IN

Every personal injury case requires evidence to back up your claims. Exactly what kind of evidence you need will depend on what kind of case you have. In some cases, physical evidence from the scene of the accident or incident might be important. In other cases, testimony from experts may be crucial to your lawsuit.

First, you should consider evidence that proves that your accident actually happened. For something like a car accident, a copy of the police report on your accident would suffice to prove that an accident did indeed happen. Next, you’ll need proof of damages. This is necessary to calculate the amount of money your case is worth and how much compensation you think the defendant should pay.

Perhaps the trickiest bit of evidence you’ll need is proof of fault. You need something that demonstrates that the defendant is liable for your injuries. This could include eyewitness testimony, physical evidence, or anything else that may be available. Call our Hammond, IN personal injury lawyers to discuss evidence in your case.

Statute of Limitations for a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Hammond, IN

If you are thinking about pursuing your legal recovery for a personal injury in a Hammond court, you must act quickly to make sure you file in time. Under the Indiana statute of limitations, personal injury plaintiffs generally only have two years from the date they sustained the injury before their ability to file their claim runs out.

There are some exceptions across the wide area of personal injury law that could impact a plaintiff’s timeline. For instance, minors may have an extended period of time to file. Victims who do not discover their injury or connect it to the cause due to the defendant’s improper concealment may also enjoy a delayed filing period.

However, if you do not fit into one of these narrow exceptions but still rely on it to delay filing your case, you could lose out on your entire recovery. Waiting to file also increases the chances that evidence dries up. To get your compensation as soon as possible while minimizing the chances of a critical mistake, bring your case to the attention of a seasoned Hammond personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.

Call Our Hammond, IN Personal Injury Lawyers

If you were injured because of the actions of another person, call our Hammond, IN personal injury attorneys for help. We can help you recover the compensation you need to recover. Call (219) 322-1166 to set up a free legal consultation with us at Wruck Paupore.

Proven Results

$875,000

Nursing Home Abuse

Woman suffering physical and emotional abuse at nursing home.

$25,000,000

Traumatic Brain Injury

Client injured in auto accident after driver ran stop sign.

$940,000

Post-Concussion Disorder

Women rear-ended while stopped at red light

$1,250,000

Medical Malpractice

Patient suffering nerve damage following hip operation.

$12,000,000

Semi-truck Accident

Woman suffering a traumatic brain injury following semi-truck accident.

$10,500,000

Slip and Fall

Woman suffering severe hip and ankle fracture after falling on defective step.

$797,000

Post-Concussion Disorder

Man suffered headaches and other post-concussion symptoms from vehicle crash.

$1,750,000

Semi-Truck Accident

Woman suffering post-concussion syndrome after vehicle rear-ended by tractor trailer.

$7,250,000

Traumatic Brain Injury

Man physically assaulted at his workplace.

$945,000

Auto Accident

Woman suffered from an ankle fracture after a truck turned in front of her vehicle.

$1,525,000

Auto Accident

Man suffered back injury after head-on collision.

***Every case is unique and your results will differ. Contact us for a free case review of your circumstance.

"A great experience from beginning to settlement. Handled our case from start to finish. Explained every step and communicated very well."
– William H.
"Don did a great job on my case! Staff was amazing! Kept me in the loop the entire time. I highly recommend!!!!"
– Dana L.
"Wruck Paupore did more than they promised and did all of the work. I was worried about bills and dealing with insurance people. They did everything while I recovered. They were not concerned about earning money but about helping me and my husband."
– Edithe P.
"It was awesome watching Donald Wruck at work during mediation. He really fights for his clients."
– Lisa L.
"Great results in our auto accident case. Everyone was very helpful and I got a fantastic result. All my bills are paid and I can move on with my life."
– Trisha L.
"Wruck Paupore was fantastic. I was informed every step of the way, they did all of the work, and I got my case settled."
– Idell J.
"Exceptional team. They took on my case and made sure that I was consulted on every issue. If it wasn’t for the caring staff and my legal team I don’t know what I would have done. Everyone did an awesome job thanks so much for your help."
– Rhonda M.
"Attorney Wruck did an amazing job in settling my personal injury case. His knowledge and experience specific to semi-truck accidents made all of the difference in the outcome of my case; the settlement exceeded my expectations!"
– James M.
"I can’t say enough about Don Wruck and the staff at Wruck Paupore PC Law Offices. When we were in our accident we were already very shaken and confused and in pain. Don and his staff took over with a gentle hand and took care of everything."
– James H
"We are so thankful with how the lawyers and staff handled our case. The folks at Wruck and Paupore were always pleasant and helpful in all their phone calls and letters. It was always a pleasure to get their calls. We were especially pleased with their tenacious pursuit of the goal of full recovery which was far greater than we could have imagined."
– Jay Zoellner
"A great experience from beginning to settlement."
– William R.
"From start to finish, Wruck Paupore PC Law were the best! Knowledgeable and straightforward, they explained the process, start to finish, and gave guidance while allowing us to determine the best course of action to take. We would highly recommend them and would certainly use them again."
– Chris V.
"My case wasn’t very large, but they made it easy to recover damages when the insurance company didn’t even want to cover basic costs. The firm was responsive to my inquiries, and very clear about what was required and what could be expected, during every step of the process."
– Wayne M.
"Attorney Wruck did an amazing job in settling my personal injury case. His knowledge and experience specific to semi truck accidents made all of the difference in the outcome of my case; the settlement exceeded my expectations! The staff at his firm was helpful, responsive and caring during a difficult time following a life-altering experience. I highly recommend Attorney Wruck and his firm."
– J B
"After being involved in a car accident, I was very fortunate to work with Don Wruck. He explained everything to me and my family and made me feel involved in all decisions. I was very happy with the result of my case and happy to have found this firm!"
– Kayla D.
"Wruck Paupore didn’t just represent me. They truly understood my case, but also what I lost. They simply refused to quit. Professional, accessible, informative, transparent, immensely qualified and completely honest. I basically trusted this firm with my future. One decision I’ll never regret. There’s a certain peace of mind you feel when professionals of this level have your back."
– Pat D.

Your Legal Team

Your Legal Team


Top-Rated Litigator.
Helping injury victims move forward.

Don is a founding partner and one of the nation’s top-ranked personal injury litigators. He is a member of the Multi-million Dollar Advocates Forum, which includes less than 1% of the nation’s trial lawyers, and awarded the highest ranking given by Martindale Hubbel and AVVO.

More importantly, Don understands representing personal injury victims is about more than recovering the best settlement: it’s about helping clients get back on their feet and supporting them in every aspect of their recovery.

Best Indiana Auto Accident Lawyer
Understanding the Insurance Company:
Getting Results.

In nearly all cases, our clients seek compensation from the wrongdoer’s insurance company. Before forming Wruck Paupore, Jason worked for a prominent law firm representing some of the world’s largest insurers. This experience gives Jason a deep understanding of the insurance industry and the strategies it uses to pay injury victims as little as possible.

Jason -- and our entire team -- put this inside knowledge to work to force insurance companies to pay what is actually owed. Often, we use the insurance company’s own tactics against them as we fight for the full compensation our client deserves.

Best Personal Injury Lawyers Indianapolis
More than 40 Years of Experience.
Still Fighting for Justice.

For more than four decades, Keith has been fighting for injury victims. During that time, he’s watched the insurance industry change, with insurers now more interested in protecting their stock price than treating injury victims fairly.

Since the beginning, Keith has put people first. From his childhood in Gary, Indiana during the 1960’s and working his way through law school, Keith has risen to become one of the Midwest’s most respected trial lawyers. He has never forgotten that being a lawyer is about helping people -- and seeing injury victims through struggles in a way that could change their lives forever.

Over the decades, Keith, Don and Jason have fought relentlessly for clients, even when other lawyers have said the case was impossible to win.

Best Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers Indiana

Real Client Testimonials


Proven Results

$875,000

Nursing Home Abuse

Woman suffering physical and emotional abuse at nursing home.

$25,000,000

Traumatic Brain Injury

Client injured in auto accident after driver ran stop sign.

$940,000

Post-Concussion Disorder

Women rear-ended while stopped at red light

$1,250,000

Medical Malpractice

Patient suffering nerve damage following hip operation.

$12,000,000

Semi-truck Accident

Woman suffering a traumatic brain injury following semi-truck accident.

$10,500,000

Slip and Fall

Woman suffering severe hip and ankle fracture after falling on defective step.

$797,000

Post-Concussion Disorder

Man suffered headaches and other post-concussion symptoms from vehicle crash.

$1,750,000

Semi-Truck Accident

Woman suffering post-concussion syndrome after vehicle rear-ended by tractor trailer.

$7,250,000

Traumatic Brain Injury

Man physically assaulted at his workplace.

$945,000

Auto Accident

Woman suffered from an ankle fracture after a truck turned in front of her vehicle.

$1,525,000

Auto Accident

Man suffered back injury after head-on collision.

***Every case is unique and your results will differ. Contact us for a free case review of your circumstance.

"A great experience from beginning to settlement. Handled our case from start to finish. Explained every step and communicated very well."
– William H.
"Don did a great job on my case! Staff was amazing! Kept me in the loop the entire time. I highly recommend!!!!"
– Dana L.
"Wruck Paupore did more than they promised and did all of the work. I was worried about bills and dealing with insurance people. They did everything while I recovered. They were not concerned about earning money but about helping me and my husband."
– Edithe P.
"It was awesome watching Donald Wruck at work during mediation. He really fights for his clients."
– Lisa L.
"Great results in our auto accident case. Everyone was very helpful and I got a fantastic result. All my bills are paid and I can move on with my life."
– Trisha L.
"Wruck Paupore was fantastic. I was informed every step of the way, they did all of the work, and I got my case settled."
– Idell J.
"Exceptional team. They took on my case and made sure that I was consulted on every issue. If it wasn’t for the caring staff and my legal team I don’t know what I would have done. Everyone did an awesome job thanks so much for your help."
– Rhonda M.
"Attorney Wruck did an amazing job in settling my personal injury case. His knowledge and experience specific to semi-truck accidents made all of the difference in the outcome of my case; the settlement exceeded my expectations!"
– James M.
"I can’t say enough about Don Wruck and the staff at Wruck Paupore PC Law Offices. When we were in our accident we were already very shaken and confused and in pain. Don and his staff took over with a gentle hand and took care of everything."
– James H
"We are so thankful with how the lawyers and staff handled our case. The folks at Wruck and Paupore were always pleasant and helpful in all their phone calls and letters. It was always a pleasure to get their calls. We were especially pleased with their tenacious pursuit of the goal of full recovery which was far greater than we could have imagined."
– Jay Zoellner
"A great experience from beginning to settlement."
– William R.
"From start to finish, Wruck Paupore PC Law were the best! Knowledgeable and straightforward, they explained the process, start to finish, and gave guidance while allowing us to determine the best course of action to take. We would highly recommend them and would certainly use them again."
– Chris V.
"My case wasn’t very large, but they made it easy to recover damages when the insurance company didn’t even want to cover basic costs. The firm was responsive to my inquiries, and very clear about what was required and what could be expected, during every step of the process."
– Wayne M.
"Attorney Wruck did an amazing job in settling my personal injury case. His knowledge and experience specific to semi truck accidents made all of the difference in the outcome of my case; the settlement exceeded my expectations! The staff at his firm was helpful, responsive and caring during a difficult time following a life-altering experience. I highly recommend Attorney Wruck and his firm."
– J B
"After being involved in a car accident, I was very fortunate to work with Don Wruck. He explained everything to me and my family and made me feel involved in all decisions. I was very happy with the result of my case and happy to have found this firm!"
– Kayla D.
"Wruck Paupore didn’t just represent me. They truly understood my case, but also what I lost. They simply refused to quit. Professional, accessible, informative, transparent, immensely qualified and completely honest. I basically trusted this firm with my future. One decision I’ll never regret. There’s a certain peace of mind you feel when professionals of this level have your back."
– Pat D.