If your auto accident was someone else’s fault, you deserve and should expect compensation for your injuries, but it can be difficult to get. Speak with a Lake Charles car accident lawyer for help getting your case settled.
Car accidents have long-lasting impacts on the lives of those involved. Learn about auto accidents and the functions of a Lake Charles car accident lawyer.
Car accidents are quite common in the United States. According to Injury Facts, poisoning, slips and falls, and motor vehicle crashes make up 83% of preventable deaths. In Lake Charles, Louisiana, the story is no different. In addition, these traffic accidents often result in accident injuries, which brings forth an accident injury claim.
An injury claim is possible because Louisiana is an at-fault accident compensation state. It simply means that the person responsible for the accident pays compensation to the accident victim. However, the road to getting a financial settlement for an accident injury is not an easy process.
Submitting an accident insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit can be complex and require a lot of steps to maximize your chances of getting compensated. That’s why experienced accident lawyers are essential in such cases, as they can help you overcome any obstacles and increase the likelihood of success. Working with an experienced accident law firm is usually the best choice when it comes to this type of case. If you’ve been in an accident, speaking to the experts at Wright & Gray is your best bet to learn more about your rights, what compensation may be available. Don’t hesitate, get in touch with them today!
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.
Lake Charles Car Accident Guide
- What Causes Motor Vehicle Accidents?
- What Are the Most Common Types of Car Accidents?
- What Types of Injuries Can You Sustain in a Car Accident?
- Connect with a Lake Charles Car Accident Attorney
- What Step Should You Take After a Car Accident?
- Contact an Auto Accident Attorney Today
- How Do You Prove Fault in Car Accident Cases?
- What Is the Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases?
- What Happens If I’m Partly at Fault for an Accident?
What Causes Motor Vehicle Accidents?
In 2019, Louisiana experienced 681 fatal crashes and saw a total of 727 fatalities, largely due to reckless behavior by drivers and other road users. The following are some of the main causes behind car accidents in Lake Charles:
Driving Under the Influence
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have reported that years on year, 29 people die in the United States due to accidents caused by intoxicated drivers. Furthermore, Louisiana’s current law states that a driver is considered to be drunk when they register 0.08% or higher blood alcohol concentration. Because of this, if someone gets behind the wheel while intoxicated and causes an auto accident, they will not only face criminal consequences but also civil ones.
The Center for Disease Control Prevention (CDC) notes that 8 fatalities in the US occur daily due to distracted driving. A distracted driver is someone whose focus is not fully on driving, and can be caused by manual, visual, or cognitive distractions. Taking your eyes off the road for three seconds can have dangerous consequences, so it’s essential to keep your focus while driving and leave any distractions behind. Staying alert while on the road is key to staying safe.
The speed limits on roads are provided for the safety of drivers, passengers and pedestrians. Unfortunately, many drivers ignore these laws and exceed the speed limit to get to their destinations faster. However, doing so not only jeopardizes safety but it also reduces a driver’s reaction time in an emergency situation. When individuals speed, it becomes difficult for them to halt in time and as a consequence, most such collisions end up being fatal. Therefore, it is essential to be mindful of the speed limit when driving to avoid a disastrous outcome.
Adverse weather conditions often lead to motor vehicle collisions in Lake Charles. For example, driving under heavy rainstorms or foggy weather can be challenging. This is because inclement weather reduces road traction and affects visibility. So, it’s better to avoid driving in such conditions.
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?
A variety of different factors can contribute to a car crash, with the position of the cars and point of contact having a major influence. Below are some common types of car accidents often seen on roads today: Head-on collisions
- Rear-end collisions
- Side-swipe accidents
- Rollover accidents
- T-bone collisions
Car accidents can range from single-vehicle to multi-car wrecks. In case of a single-car crash, the person suffering from the incident has to personally take charge of their medical treatment and the damage incurred to their property; this is because it was due to their negligence that caused the accident, thus leaving no one else be held accountable. For their medical bills, accident victims can either use their health insurance coverage or car insurance policy, depending on the plan. If the crash involves more than one driver, they can also file an accident claim or lawsuit for a possible compensation.
What Types of Injuries Can You Sustain in a Car Accident?
Traffic accidents are a major cause of physical harm, regardless of whether it’s a car, pedestrian, motorcycle or truck crash. Injuries range from minor to catastrophic in severity and the type of injury will ultimately determine the value of your compensation. Some typical injuries from car accidents include: whiplash, broken bones, contusions, head trauma, lacerations and more. Knowing the types of injuries can help you better prepare and protect yourself in the event of an accident:
- 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 Lake Charles Car Accident Attorney
At Wright & Gray, we strive to make sure that all clients can get the compensation they need for any injury or pain caused due to a collision. We understand the trauma you might go through after such an incident and are here to assist you in recuperating and having a smooth recovery. As an added bonus, we offer free consultations so you can assess if our services are right for you be sure that your case will be settled without any hassle.
What Step Should You Take After a Car Accident?
Accident claims are a complex matter and the success rate of your injury claim depends largely on how carefully you proceed right after the crash. To ensure that you get maximum compensation, our auto accident attorneys recommend that you take the following steps right away:
Make a Report
Fleeing the site of an accident is a serious crime referred to as a hit-and-run offense. Therefore, regardless of whether you are responsible for the incident or not, you must remain at the scene and file an accident report with the applicable law enforcement agency.
Get Medical Treatment
If you have been hurt in a mishap, it is important to get medical attention straight away. More often than not, paramedics will take someone with life-threatening wounds to the nearest hospital as soon as possible. Nonetheless, sometimes people with minor injuries may refuse to get help from a hospital. Even if you’re feeling healthy and fit, it is important to get a complete medical examination done for your own benefit.
Even if you don’t feel any sort of pain, you should still get yourself checked for possible internal injuries. Doing so can help save your life in the long run. Additionally, a medical report is an essential document when filing for compensation due to injury. It contains information about the severity of your injury and the treatment expenses associated with it.
Evidence collection is a crucial part of any accident investigation, which may involve taking photos of the scene, securing video recordings and getting statements from witnesses. It’s worth noting that those who suffer severe injuries in an accident often cannot carry out this task themselves. You can obtain the police report, that includes necessary evidence to back up your assertion, if you make an official request.
Contact an Auto Accident Attorney Today
In the aftermath of an accident, it’s essential to get in touch with a reputable injury attorney who can help you with your compensation claim. Not having an experienced attorney by your side could lead to protracted negotiations and damage your chances of getting a successful outcome. To ensure that you obtain the best legal representation for your personal injury case, it is highly recommended to hire a qualified Lake Charles personal injury lawyer from a well-known personal injury law firm as soon as possible after the accident.
What Damages Can I Collect for a Car Accident?
According to Louisiana law, an individual injured in a car crash is eligible for two types of compensatory damages and punitive damages. These compensatory damages include compensation for any physical injury, pain suffering, property loss they have experienced.
This compensation is for tangible losses which have a direct monetary cost. As long as you are able to provide receipts, you will get back all of the money spent due to the accident. Examples of economic damages include:
- Medical expenses (past, present, and future)
- Loss of income
- Vehicle repairs/property damage
- Out-of-pocket expenses, etc.
In the event of a wrongful death claim, bereaved family members may be able to receive an indemnification covering funeral and burial expenses as well as other damages.
Calculating non-economic damages can be a difficult task, so insurance companies typically use a multiplier method to determine the amount owed. Despite this complexity, victims can still expect some form of compensation for intangible losses such as:
- Emotional distress/anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship
- Punitive Damages
Punitive damages are not awarded in accident insurance cases, however they can be granted in personal injury lawsuits – when the responsible party has shown gross negligence. Punitive damages serve as a form of punishment rather than compensation and are intended to discourage liable parties from repeating any wrongful conduct.
How Do You Prove Fault in Car Accident Cases?
If a car accident occurs, the claims resulting from it are usually civil in nature. This means that the person making the claim (plaintiff) must be able to prove that they were not at fault (defendant). To show they weren’t responsible, they must demonstrate 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?
It is commonly thought that if a car accident is minor, there is no need for a personal injury lawyer. However, this may not be the case. Even in the event of a minor crash like a fender bender, we still recommend accident victims to seek legal advice from an attorney to ensure that all avenues are explored and their rights are protected.
It’s beneficial to get help from an experienced auto accident lawyer for your claim. They’re experts at calculating the full extent of your damages, as there might be more than you initially realize. Furthermore, they will ask all the right questions and provide a suitable legal solution. An attorney can be a great help in minor car accidents as they can help you to get the correct amount of compensation from the party at fault. Having an attorney ensures that your rights are protected and that justice is served.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases?
If you fail to follow the Statute of Limitations, it would be highly unlikely that the court would take notice of your case. Therefore, it is essential to file a lawsuit within the legally set deadline in order to make sure that your legal rights are protected. The Louisiana Statute of Limitations applies to any action resulting from a car accident, such as a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit.
According to Article 3492 of Louisiana Civil Code, all legal proceedings regarding a car accident must be initiated within twelve months of the incident. This law requires claimants to submit their case in court within one year after the accident occurred.When dealing with wrongful death cases, the countdown begins from the day of the victim’s passing. A year may not seem long but it can pass quickly when you are busy working out negotiations with insurance companies.
Insurance providers often use delay strategies to keep you in discussions with them. They understand that once the deadline passes, you have no choice but to accept the money they offer since it’s not possible for you to pursue a legal case. Unscrupulous people can attempt to deceive you out of fair compensation. To avoid this and ensure your safety, it’s recommended to reach out to a reputable personal injury law firm when starting your claim. They can provide the knowledge and resources required for a successful outcome.
What Happens If I’m Partly at Fault for an Accident?
During an incident in which two or more parties are pointing the finger of blame at one another, two main legal principles apply – contributory negligence and comparative negligence. The former suggests that if a victim was partly responsible for the occurrence of an accident, they won’t be eligible to receive compensation – even if only partially. For cases when the victim is partially to blame for the incident, their compensation would be subject to proportional limitation based on their fault percentage.
Louisiana follows the Pure Comparative Negligence system, which means that if you were partially responsible for your damages, the amount of compensation awarded to you will be reduced by your fault percentage. As an example, if you were 20% at fault and the court awards you $100,000 as a settlement, then your total payment would be reduced by 20%. You would get $80,000 as your take-home salary and not the entire hundred. The pure comparative fault rule is more forgiving than contributory negligence.