If an auto accident was caused by someone else’s negligence, you should get fair compensation for your injuries. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to get the compensation you deserve. A Lafayette auto accident lawyer can help you settle your case and ensure that justice is served.
No one ever anticipates being involved in an auto accident, but they can have long-lasting consequences. To assist those affected, it’s important to be informed about car accidents and the services a Lafayette car accident lawyer can provide.
Preventable deaths in the US due to poisoning, slips falls, and motor vehicle crashes amount to 83% of the total. This highlights how common car accidents are in this country. Data from Injury Facts corroborates this point. In Lafayette, Louisiana, traffic accidents are unfortunately very common. Such collisions often lead to personal injuries and the need for an accident injury claim.
In Louisiana, you can file a claim if you’ve been in an at-fault accident. The liable party will then have to pay compensation to the victim, however this process is not always simple or straightforward. You may need assistance to make sure that your rights are respected and that you receive a fair financial settlement for your injury.
Injury accident lawyers can help you get the maximum compensation possible for your accident insurance claims or personal injury lawsuits. They can guide you through the necessary steps overcome any hurdles that might come in your way. If you’ve been involved in an accident, the best way to ensure success is by choosing a specialized accident law firm like Wright & Gray. Call us immediately – we’ll provide you with all relevant information and explore the available compensation options.
Don’t take chances with your claim. Give our attorneys a call as soon as you can to get your claim handled with the attention you deserve.
What Causes Motor Vehicle Accidents?
Last year, Lafayette saw an unfortunate rise in fatal crashes with a total of 681 and 727 deaths. The majority were caused by recklessness negligence on the part of drivers other road users. Here are some of the top factors why these tragic accidents occurred:
Driving Under the Influence
As per CDC, every day, 29 people in the US lose their lives due to drunk driving incidents. This is why Louisiana has a law that states that if someone’s blood alcohol concentration is 0.08% or above then they will be considered legally drunk. As a result, someone under the influence of alcohol who causes a car accident will likely both face criminal and civil charges.
According to the Centers for Disease Control Prevention, on a daily basis, 8 people in the US lose their lives due to car accidents caused by distracted drivers. Distraction is defined as any type of behavior that takes away one’s focus from driving; it can be manual, visual or cognitive (mental). Distracted driving takes a mere three seconds to cause an accident, thus it is pivotal to keep your attention on the roadway steer clear of any distractions.
Every street has a speed limit for drivers to follow. Nonetheless, drivers tend to exceed these limits, which can be very dangerous. Going over the speed limit decreases the driver’s reaction time and puts everyone on the road at risk. Exceeding the speed limit can be deadly as drivers are unable to brake in time and prevent collisions. Thus, it is imperative that we stick to the prescribed speed limits in order to stay safe on roads and prevent fatal accidents from occurring.
Conditions such as heavy rain, fog and other adverse weather can significantly reduce road traction and visibility in Lafayette, making driving very dangerous. This often leads to motor vehicle collisions, which are a major cause of concern. It’s recommended to avoid driving in hazardous conditions as it can be dangerous.
Other known causes of car accidents are:
- Running red lights and stops signs
- Bad roads
- Aggressive driving
- Reckless driving
- Drowsy driving
- Road rage
What Are the Most Common Types of Car Accidents?
Car accidents can be caused by various factors and each one manifests differently. The type of crash generally depends on the position of the vehicles and where they make contact. Here are some of the most prevalent collision types:
- Head-on collisions
- Rear-end collisions
- Side-swipe accidents
- Rollover accidents
- T-bone collisions
When a car crash happens and it’s the fault of the driver, it is referred to as a single-vehicle collision. In this case, the victim must handle any damage to property cover their own medical expenses as no one else can be held accountable. Consequently, the sufferer of an accident can turn to their respective health or auto insurance policy to cover the cost of any injuries. If your incident involves another person or persons, you may be able to file an insurance claim or pursue legal action to get the financial compensation you deserve.
What Types of Injuries Can You Sustain in a Car Accident?
Traffic collisions can be devastating and cause a wide range of physical harm. From minor to catastrophic, car crashes, pedestrian accidents, motorcycle crashes and truck wrecks could all lead to serious injuries. The amount of compensation you can receive for your car accident-related injuries depends on the type of injury sustained. Here are some of the most frequent types:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones/fractures
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Internal injuries
- Sprains and strains
- Cuts and lacerations
- Soft tissue injuries
Connect with a Lafayette Car Accident Attorney
Wright & Gray make it their mission to ensure that people recovering from accidents and other collisions get the settlement they deserve. Our goal is to help you cope with the trauma and give you a chance to rebuild your life. It doesn’t matter if you’re hurt or grieving, we’ll be there for you every step of the way. We offer free consultations so you can be sure that we can settle your case before signing any agreement.
What Step Should You Take After a Car Accident?
Accident claims can be successful if they are handled properly. Our auto accident attorneys have gathered the most important steps to follow after a traffic collision in order to increase your chances of receiving the compensation you deserve. These steps are crucial, so make sure you carry them out:
Make a Report
Fleeing a crash scene without reporting it is considered a hit-and-run offence. Even if you were not at fault, staying and filing an accident report to the suitable law enforcement agency is necessary. Therefore, it’s important to stay put and make the necessary reports in such cases.
Get Medical Treatment
If you have sustained any injuries after the accident, seeking medical attention is essential. Generally, paramedics will rush victims with serious injuries to the hospital for medical help. But people with minor wounds may sometimes not opt for prompt medical treatment. Even if you’re feeling well, it is important to get a full medical checkup for your own safety. Such checkups can alert you to any underlying medical conditions that may be present.
It’s important to be aware of any internal injuries, and getting a medical evaluation can make all the difference. Furthermore, an official medical report is a key piece of evidence should you ever decide to file a personal injury claim. All medical costs associated with your injury and treatment are included in this document, giving you an accurate glimpse of the extent of your injury.
Collecting evidence is an important part of settling an accident. This includes snapping pictures, obtaining video recordings and receiving witness statements. Unfortunately, those who are severely injured may not be able to go through this process. Don’t forget that you can always request a copy of the police report which will have some of the important evidence that you need for your case.
Contact an Auto Accident Attorney Today
It is important to contact an injury attorney as soon as possible following an incident. They will represent you, even in the most difficult of cases, and make sure that your personal injury claim is successful. If a victim does not seek legal representation early on, it can complicate their case and lead to long drawn out negotiations with the insurance carrier of the at-fault driver. It’s important to hire a trusted lawyer from a reliable personal injury law company as soon as possible after an accident occurs. Doing this can help ensure that you get the best possible legal advice and representation.
What Damages Can I Collect for a Car Accident?
Louisiana law provides for two types of compensation to victims of car accidents: compensatory damages and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are a form of reimbursement for any physical, mental or financial losses you suffered due to the accident, such as medical expenses or property damage.
This type of compensation is for quantifiable losses that have an exact monetary value. Everything you spent as a result of the accident will be fully reimbursed, provided you have all the legal documents. Things like medical bills, lost wages etc are examples of economic damages:
- Medical expenses (past, present, and future)
- Loss of income
- Vehicle repairs/property damage
- Out-of-pocket expenses, etc.
In the event of death, any legal survivors may bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Along with other reliefs, they will be entitled to recovery of funeral burial expenses.
Non-economic damages do not have a set dollar amount and can be complicated to compute. This is why insurers usually use a multiplier method when determining compensation for victims. You should, however, anticipate being reimbursed for things like:
- Emotional distress/anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship
- Punitive Damages
Punitive damages are not something that insurers include in their accident insurance policies. Instead, if a court finds the responsible party to have behaved with gross negligence, the individual can receive punitive damages via a personal injury lawsuit. Punitive damages are not intended to provide any financial compensation, but rather to serve as a form of deterrence against repeating the same illegal action in the future. It is essentially a kind of punishment for wrongdoers.
How Do You Prove Fault in Car Accident Cases?
If you have been involved in a car accident, then you need to demonstrate that the incident was not your fault so as to be absolved from any legal responsibilities. This can be done by adhering to the “he who asserts must prove” principle and proving that:
- The negligent driver owed you a duty of care
- The driver breached the duty of care by engaging in a negligent act
- The breach caused an injury
- You suffered damages as a result of the injury
- Is It Worth Getting a Lawyer for Minor Car Accidents?
Although many think that a minor car accident doesn’t call for the help of a personal injury attorney, it is always best to get one. Even if you were involved in a small fender bender, an attorney can help make sure your rights are protected and that you get the compensation you deserve.
Consulting a knowledgeable auto accident lawyer is the surest way to understand the true value of your claim. This is because damages are often greater than initially estimated, thus, requiring an expert’s opinion. Lawyers are well-versed in understanding the nuances of car accidents tailoring the right questions to understand a case. They can provide you with the proper legal solution that will help you get compensated fairly by the at-fault party. Having an attorney when involved in minor car accidents is beneficial to ensure that you get your deserved compensation.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases?
Statutes of Limitations are laws that set a deadline to file a lawsuit – if you don’t do so before that date, the court won’t accept it. It’s important to keep in mind this restricted timeline when initiating legal action. Louisiana has strict legal restrictions for filing any type of automobile accident-related action, such as a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit, known as Statutes of Limitations.
As per the rules set out in Article 3492 of the Louisiana Civil Code, any cases regarding vehicular accidents should be opened within one year from the date of the crash. You have one year to file a lawsuit in this case, beginning from the date of the accident. For wrongful death actions, the deadline begins on the day of the deceased’s passing. Time passes by rapidly, especially when you’re bargaining with insurance companies – making the past year seem like it flew by in a flash.
Insurance companies are aware that they can make use of delaying tactics to keep you in discussions with them. There is a time limit when it comes to making a claim, meaning that if the time passes, you won’t be able to file any legal action. At this point, the money they have offered becomes your only option. When you try to go through the process alone, it leaves you vulnerable to unfair deals. For this reason, partnering with a personal injury attorney is essential for obtaining a fair settlement.
What Happens If I’m Partly at Fault for an Accident?
In the event of an accident, when parties involved try to pass the blame, two laws may come into play – contributory negligence rules or comparative negligence. According to contributory negligence, even if the injured party was only 1% responsible for the accident, they will not receive any compensation.For the latter, the compensation for the victim would be limited to what percentage was their fault.
Louisiana’s pure comparative negligence system means that if you are partly at fault for your injury, the amount of compensation that you receive will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if 20% of the fault is yours, then instead of receiving a full $100,000, you would only get 80% – or $80,000. Your take-home pay would be $80,000, not the entire hundred. In this case, the pure comparative fault rule is more forgiving than contributory negligence.