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Does Driverless Mean Less Responsibility?

In recent months talk regarding driverless cars has reached a fever pitch as companies continue to pour resources into creating the first consumer-ready prototypes. Uber, an established leader in the ride-sharing gig economy, is on the forefront of this movement. Although is it easy to get excited at the prospect of our cars driving us to our errands, or through rush hour traffic, recent events raise questions about the safety and responsible use of these cars.
Although reports of minor accidents early in the development of these vehicles was met with little media coverage or caution, a fatal accident on March 18th, 2018, exposes serious concerns with this new technology. Elain Herberg, a 49-year-old woman, was struck while walking her bicycle across the street in Tempe Arizona. Elain was transported to the hospital from the scene and passed away from her injuries at a local hospital. Although preliminary reports are short on details, Tempe Police Detective Lily Duran reported that the car could have been traveling approximately 40 mph in a 35 mph zone. Local authorities from the Tempe Police Department are investigating, and the National Transportation Safety Board is also pursuing it’s own investigation.

Uber offered the following statement via a spokesperson, “Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We are fully cooperating with the local authorities in their investigation of this incident.”
Despite Uber’s condolences to the family of the deceased, it is unclear if the company will accept full liability for the vehicle’s actions. Negligence in the age of driverless cars is uncharted territory, and although there has been significant speculation about how to handle driverless car accidents, very little has been incorporated into any new law.

At the time of the crash the Uber vehicle was in “self-driving mode.” Perhaps as precautionary measure, a vehicle operator was in the vehicle at the time of the crash. As of now, it is unclear how much control this operator had prior to, or at the moment of the crash. Arizona is well known as an early adopter of self-driving cars. In fact, just this month the Governor of Arizona, Doug Ducey signed an executive order allowing for self-driving cars to be used on state roads without a human driver behind the wheel. A few factors influenced this decision and include; Arizona’s dry, static climate and the large population of nearby retired individuals who are expected to benefit from this technology.

In this instance, the self-driving car that caused this accident was owned and being tested by Uber. Other major manufacturers, such as Google and GM have analogous test models and are still investing heavily in the development of autonomous vehicle tech.

This technology raises a myriad of legal issues. Is there a products liability case if something inherent in the vehicle causes an accident? If the vehicle acts in accordance with it’s programming and an unforeseen variable causes a wreck, is the operator negligent if they do not adapt to this variable? Most self-driving cars have an onboard camera system that shows all angles of a vehicle’s surroundings. Will this affect how accident reports are constructed? If a crash is imminent will a self-driving car take action to save it’s own occupants over other cars? Pedestrians?

It can be scary and almost impossible to approach this issue on your own. If you or someone you know has been in an accident with a self-driving car you need not only an experienced attorney, but a law firm that is willing to dive into unexplored areas of law on behalf of their clients. As mentioned, there is little law on this topic and you can be sure that major corporations will fight tooth and nail to protect their investments. If you want a law firm that is unafraid to take on the big guy, call Groth Law Firm.

The New Trend: Legal Apps

This new digital technology is revolutionizing the practice of law. Some of the earliest well-known justice apps are legal aid attorneys. These apps can help individuals when they find themselves in the middle of a crime. There is an app called Stop & Frisk Watch that does just that, by helping prevent police brutality by being able to record an encounter between a police officer and the individual being questioned. A few other useful apps include: Citizenship Works, My Attorney Apps, Oh Crap, Ask a Lawyer, and Berniesez.

It has been found that legal apps can help deal with the legality of things from a much more informed vantage point. In addition, it has been debated that legal apps would come in handy while in the courtroom. It is believed that these new legal apps may end up educating citizenry and will be able to engage them in a meaningful way in the political process.

The hard part about creating and incorporating these apps into society however isn’t the technology. Politics, turf, funding, and other barriers are the obstacles that developing these legal apps face. With the creation of legal apps, it is believed that for some of the most basic questions an individual might not need to pay for a lawyer. It is predicted that in less than three years as much as eighty-five percent of all customer interactions, when dealing with cases, will not include a human being. For this reason, many highly encourage law firms to embrace this new technology and even create an app for their own firm.

Groth Law Firm, S.C. is on the cutting edge of technology. Our clients can communicate with us with email, text, sms or any of the “old fashioned” ways.  If you have questions about how we utilize technology to help our clients please ask one of our attorneys.



The Stress Pain Causes in a Relationship

Chronic pain can be uncomfortable and stressful not only for the individual who is injured but also to their significant other. Pain can affect more than the individual who has obtained an injury, and it can affect other areas of their life.  Injuries often affect the people around the individual who is injured, and it is not always in a positive way. It is often the case that the significant other of the injured individual isn’t a hundred percent sympathetic. The reality is that when people hear someone talk about being in pain it can be kind of a drag, and they often end up tuning them out. This can end up having negative effects on the relationship and put stress on both individuals involved.

Sometimes partners become unsympathetic and tell their partner to just get up and deal with it and stop complaining about it. It is difficult to maintain a good relationship when there is hostility because their partner believes the pain is either exaggerated or all in their head. Once this doubt begins to surface, it is possible that the relationship itself begins to be doubted as well.

In some cases, partners become frustrated because they find themselves doing small tasks for their significant others that they do for their children. It becomes frustrating that your partner is of the same age as you but are behaving as an elderly person, constantly needing help and special attention. This frustrating begins to create a toxic relationship and can lead to deeper problems. If the injured individual doesn’t feel like they are receiving the proper understanding and support from their partner, it can lead to resentment. People want to feel loved and cared for when they find themselves in this situation, and when you don’t receive it, it can cause feelings of resentment.

Resentment, aversion and unmet expectations can lead to a stressful relationship. Partners that find themselves in pain may feel that they deserve a special kind of attention. If they don’t have these needs met, the unbalance of the relationship can cause problems in other areas of agreement, like finances or how to spend leisure time. It has been documented that relationships in which one partner is in pain tends to lead to a strenuous relationship, can cause more marital distress, more conflict and has a greater likelihood of divorce.

Lack Of Mobility Is Isolating

The loss of physical mobility is frightening and generates multiple other complications for the struggling individual. The loss of mobility is often caused by aging but can also be caused by tragic accidents. In either case, lack of mobility has far-reaching consequences not only physically, but also emotionally and socially.

An article published in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior states, “Mobility is central to fulfilling needs beyond basic survival, such as social engagement”[1] The article highlights the many repercussions of the lack of physical mobility. One of the negative effects of immobility is reduced social engagement. This connection makes sense when applied to our everyday lives. The places and events we connect with people often require a level of physical mobility to allow us to be present.

Many people live through the disappointment of realizing their inability to attend a football game with friends or go shopping at the mall with their family. These events used to be part of their everyday lives, but with reduced mobility, they become difficult and time-consuming. The thought of slowing down friends and family down as they enjoy life burdens them. To avoid this feeling, they retract themselves from the social interactions they once actively participated in.

Even though society has made great strides in opening venues and events to those with mobility struggles, people often choose to withdraw anyway because of the inherent difficulties of their mobility level.

As the article mentioned above indicates, this sort of retraction from society causes harm to the individual’s social well-being. Relationships are built and maintained by steady interaction, and when that interaction is cut off, the relationship suffers. This effectively renders the individual socially isolated, which on its own is troubling. However, studies show that social isolation has even deeper effects on a person’s well-being.

In 2012, a study was conducted by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) that reported, “Reducing both social isolation and loneliness are important for quality of life and well-being.”[2] Engaging in healthy social interaction is a major force in increasing physical well-being and consequently life expectancy.

A study published by Brigham Young University in 2010 reiterates the importance of social interaction with overall health.[3] The study found that those with the strongest social relationships had a 50% higher chance of survival than those without strong social relationships. This data establishes that, “low social interaction harms longevity as much as alcoholism and smoking, has more impact than lack of exercise, and is twice as harmful as obesity.”[4]

Overall, the damaging effects of a lack of mobility extend farther than one would expect. In many cases, the lack of mobility causes a forced withdrawal from society. This withdrawal negatively impacts the individual and potentially shortens their life span. It important for people with mobility struggles to stay engaged with society, family, and friends even when it may be difficult. As humans, we require a certain level of engagement with others to stay healthy.

If you have lost mobility because of an injury as the result of a someone else’s negligence, see a doctor, and, as always, please call Groth Law Firm, S.C. with any questions.  We are available 24/7 to discuss your options as the victim of negligence. Our initial consultations are always free.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not legal advice and should not be used as legal advice. It is not medical advice and should not be used as medical advice. The legal statutes, laws, and procedures contained in this article may not be current and may have been revised since the time of publication or contain errors. An attorney can provide legal guidance only after reviewing the details of your individual case.






Distraction-Free Teens Are Better Drivers

Teen driver’s see the acquisition of a driver’s license as a step towards freedom. Teens may be eager to drive but they are not ready for the same level of driving responsibility as adults. Teens have a higher rate of fatal crashes due to the lack of maturity, absence of driving skills, and a absence of experience.

Don’t Text and Drive

A teen’s inexperience makes them more susceptible to become distracted when operating a vehicle. One in three teens who text, have stated that they have done so while behind the wheel of a car. Even though texting seems innocent and quick, looking away for five seconds can have greater implications. Researchers have found that dialing a phone number while driving increases the risk of crashing by six times. Texting while driving increasing the risk of crashing by twenty-three times.

Simple tasks may seem innocent; however, they can take a teen’s focus away from the road and it reduces their ability to react to a possible roadway hazard, an incident, or prevents them from driving efficiently in inclement weather.

Texting, or making phone calls on the road are common reasons to become distracted, but there are many others. Distracted driving includes eating or even drinking coffee while driving. While seemingly harmless, a possible food or drink spill can distract the driver when operating a vehicle. Other possible distractions include: applying makeup, taking selfies or snapchatting, looking through music on your cellphone, checking social media, or even other passengers in the car.

As a parent of a teen, there are several precautions that can be taken to ensure their safety. Being a good example when behind the wheel of a car can be key to instilling good driving in a teen. Parents should also make sure that they communicate with their teen, and make sure they are aware of the seriousness of being behind the wheel of a vehicle. Parents should make sure that they are able to communicate the dangers of being distracted on the road.

A few tips that can prevent distractions while a teen is operating a vehicle are setting some consequences. Possible consequences include suspending driving privileges or limiting the times and locations they are allowed to drive to. Parents can also set a ‘Do Not Disturb’ safety feature on their child’s phones to prevent them from using them while driving unless they are connected to the car’s Bluetooth or another hands-free accessory.

Crash Debris Piling Up on Milwaukee’s South Side

As winter rears its ugly head in Southeastern Wisconsin, road conditions are likely to remain hazardous, but not for the reasons you think.

Over the past few weeks, the City of Milwaukee has seen a number of traffic accidents, likely as the result snowy and icy conditions. But even without snow or icy, the roads in some parts of the city continue to be hazardous. These crashes are leaving behind debris: broken glass, bolts, and even bumpers. On Milwaukee’s south side, these hazards are being left behind after the cars themselves have been removed. Residents of the area are reporting that they are having to clean up the broken car parts themselves to keep the streets clear.

You can contact the City of Milwaukee at (414) 286-CITY (2489) to report any road debris, but, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, neither the State nor the County is liable for damage to your vehicle caused by road debris. So be careful driving and be sure to report any hazardous road conditions to the city. While the State may not by liable, it is possible that road debris is the result of someone else’s negligence possibly making them liable.

If you think you have been injured as the result of road debris see a doctor, and, as always, please call Groth Law Firm, S.C. at 877-375-7001 with any questions.  We are available 24/7 to discuss your options as the victim of someone else’s negligent actions. Our initial consultations are always free.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only.  It is not legal advice and should not be used as legal advice.  The legal statutes, laws, and procedures contained in this article may not be current and may have been revised since the time of publication or contain errors. An attorney can provide legal guidance only after reviewing the details of your individual case.

After a Car Crash Video


A car crash happens. Your car is totaled. You need to take off work to go to the doctor, then PT, then follow up appointments. It seems every few hours the insurance company for the at fault person calls, then sends letters then someone shows up at your house. You need to concentrate on getting better and getting the right medical care. That’s one of the benefits of hiring a personal injury law firm. Groth Law Firm, S.C. has decades of experience helping injured people. Our firm is there from the very beginning and are only paid if you win. No risk and much, much less stress. Call or text Groth Law Firm, S.C. 414-375-2030 or go to

Uber Nation – Information for Uber Drivers

What happens when an Uber driver is involved in a car crash?uber-driver-1100x550

Talk about getting complicated mighty fast!  If you are an Uber driver the question you have to ask is whether your insurance will cover your property damage and the damage or injury to any of your passengers. If you think you have your own private insurance and that will cover these losses, think again. Most insurance companies have a very specific exclusion for “drivers for hire.” If that is the case you will have to go through Uber’s insurance which, many times, has a $1,000.00 deductible.

There are many sides to a car crash.  For now we are just discussing the Uber driver’s perspective.

Our firm has worked with many Uber drivers who were victims of car crashes.  Uber’s corporate insurance is not local to Wisconsin.  Many times the adjusters are on West Coast time and have to hire independent contractors to deal with property damage adjusting.  James Rivers’ insurance adjusters are certain to inquire about whether this truly was a “Uber ride” or “personal ride.”  At the same time the driver’s personal insurance is taking the opposite stance.

Another thing to consider as an Uber driver is wage loss and the loss of earning capacity. If you have an established track record as an Uber driver, accounting for this wage loss is manageable but still somewhat difficult to prove given the independent contract nature of Uber.

Many times wage loss can be complex from the start given Uber’s “surge pricing.” For example, if the Milwaukee Bucks have a game against the Cavaliers or Lakers we all know that Uber will pay its drivers more for these busy days.  The same goes for the Milwaukee Brewers.  Missing the home opener as an Uber driver can mean hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars lost.

I have placed some links into this post that will hopefully help you to understand and work through the maze that can be created when an Uber driver is involved in a collision.  No matter what be sure to consult with an experienced attorney who gives free initial consultations.  Better safe than sorry.

Worst Milwaukee Mugshot, Period. On The Lighter Side For Monday

Yes, it is Monday again.  Let’s start the week out with a little humor and a reminder that you don’t want to be on the “Smile!” side of a mugshot.  Here’s a mug shot of a Milwaukee man who had a bad day beginning October 21st.  Read more below.


Worst Milwaukee Wisconsin Mugshot
Something Else To Think About On Monday

According to the Daily Mail:

The toothless crook was escorted to the police station after going on a one man crime spree across the largest city in the US state of Wisconsin.

The serial petty criminal allegedly pushed someone to the ground, kicked a windscreen in and shouted obscenities at a supermarket, although when he lost his teeth exactly no one is quite sure.

Read more:


I do think it is a little odd that there aren’t more stories with this mugshot in Wisconsin’s media markets.  Enjoy, and have a great, SAFE week!