Mackall, Crounse & Moore, PLC has joined Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

The newly formed DeWitt Mackall Crounse & Moore S.C. will provide clients with enhanced legal services
and efficiencies as well as access to more than 100 attorneys practicing in nearly 30 areas of
law in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Dismiss this message

×

News & Education

Back to Firm News

Filter by:

Catastrophic Accidents CMV Involvement - Avoiding Nuclear Verdicts, Settlements Within Policy Limits

DeWitt’s Transportation & Logistics Group  has developed a process for dealing with catastrophic motor carrier accidents.

During the last several years, the DeWitt team has dealt with catastrophic CMV accidents for mid-sized motor carriers with significant exposure above policy limits. One carrier recently settled within policy limits; another carrier is headed in the same direction. DeWitt serves as the carrier’s “corporate defense” counsel, working with the insurer while vetting and selecting appropriate “personal injury and damages defense” (“BIPD”) counsel who, along with the insurer, deals directly with plaintiffs’ counsel.   

Briefly, DeWitt’s primary role in dealing with catastrophic motor carrier accidents is to act as a liaison for the carrier and, in some cases, deal directly with plaintiffs’ attorneys. About the DeWitt defense team:

  • Consists of defense-oriented attorneys knowledgeable in trucking and the full range of insurance coverage issues which can arise from above coverage limits claims;
  • Attends to issues that arise for the carrier due to the catastrophic nature of the accident (not run of the mill BIPD claims);
  • Has deep knowledge of the tactics and practices of plaintiffs’ injury lawyers who sometimes serve as advisors to the carrier’s corporate defense counsel; and
  • Understands that during the last decade or more, lawyers on the plaintiffs and defense side, respectively, have become very specialized in their approach to catastrophic claims.

DeWitt also assists the insurer in vetting and selecting capable motor carrier frontline defense counsel (which can be distinct from the insurer’s usual defense attorney panel lawyers). Given insurer selected defense counsel for commercial vehicle accidents can be mixed, DeWitt’s assistance serves the best interests of the carrier and the carrier’s insurer in selecting qualified, frontline BIPD defense counsel paid by the insurer.

More generally, DeWitt works with motor carriers and their commercial vehicle underwriters and various trucking associations on countering the experience of carriers’ feeling that their insurers are more interested in representing the insurer’s own interests than the carrier’s interests. DeWitt is exploring third-party claims administration and potential for use of “captive” insurers.

See related June and July 2021 updates for the DeWitt Transportation & Logistics Group:

About the Author

John Duncan Varda has acquired a broad knowledge of the transportation industry during more than 40 years of advising carriers, shippers, intermediaries, and others along the supply chain. He served as lead counsel in a series of landmark cases that established national standards related to truck size and safety. John also practices in the areas of attorney professional responsibility, ethics, and practice organization – an outgrowth of more than 25 years of service in law firm management, as the firm’s managing partner/CEO.

He can be reached at jdv@dewittllp.com.

Our Locations

Greater Milwaukee - Get Directions

Green Bay - Get Directions

Madison - Get Directions

Minneapolis -Get Directions

 

 


Get to know us

DeWitt LLP is one of the ten largest law firms based in Wisconsin, with an additional presence in Minnesota. It has more than 130 attorneys practicing in Madison, Greater Milwaukee, Green Bay and Minneapolis in over 30 legal practice areas, and has the experience to service clients of all scopes and sizes.

Partners

We are an active and proud member of Lexwork International, an association of mid-sized independent law firms in major cities located throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia and an active member of SCG Legal, an association of more than 140 independent law firms serving businesses in all 50 state capitals and major commercial centers around the world.

Awards

Super Lawyers 2021
Best Lawyers 2013 – 2021
Compass Award 2012
Top 100 Lawyers: National Trial Lawyers Association

NOTICE

While we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you (an “engagement letter”). You will not be a client of the firm until you receive such an engagement letter.

The best way for you to initiate a possible representation is to call DeWitt LLP at 608-255-8891. We will make every effort to put you in touch with a lawyer suited to handle your matter. When you receive an engagement letter from one of our lawyers, you will be our client and we may exchange information freely.

Please click the “OK” button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.