Louisiana Car Accident Auto Lawsuit Lawyer
Louisiana Car Accident Lawsuit Lawyer
Louisiana is among the states with the highest number of reported car crashes in the United States. On an average, the state witnesses over 400 accidents each day. On July 6, 2012, a roadway departure led to the death of two and injury to three passengers near Zwolle in Sabine Parish. Within hours a 49-year-old man was killed in a two-car collision in Westlake. Three days later, a deputy of Jefferson Parish sheriff was suspended for drunk driving that led to a Louisiana car crash. Next day, an 11-year-old girl died and two other children were hospitalized after the car they were traveling in went off the road and hit a tree. A car-SUV collision at Lacombe caused death of a 62-year-old man on July 25 evening while two teens died next morning in a single Louisiana car accident. On December 29, 2011, a stretch of I-10 near Michoud Boulevard in New Orleans east remained closed for 12 hours following a 40-car accident. Two persons died on the spot while the accident left 25 critically injured and 30 others with minor injuries.
Louisiana Auto Accident Statistics
- There were 147,543 Louisiana car accidents in 2010 leading to 721 deaths and about 68,800 injuries.
- The average mileage fatality rate was 1.59. In rural areas, it is almost double than urban areas.
- Drunk driving was responsible for 43 percent of all Louisiana car accident fatalities and about 9 percent of 42,449 crashes that resulted in one or more injuries.
- About 58 percent of drivers and 65 percent of passengers killed did not use seat belts.
- Drivers accounted for 65 percent of all car accident fatalities where 23 percent were passengers.
- One in every 10 persons killed in Louisiana traffic crashes was a pedestrian.
- The majority of fatal crashes occurred during evening and early hours of the day while afternoon hours saw maximum number of injury crashes.
- Passenger cars accounted for 48 percent of all traffic crashes followed by pick-up trucks (22 percent).
Louisiana Auto Accident: Causes, Counties, Cities
DUI is the biggest issue in Louisiana. Of all crashes in 2010, about 43 percent are related to drunk driving. It was found that 285 of 306 alcohol-related crashes that year had alcohol in their blood. Single vehicles were found to be involved in 58 percent of fatal traffic accidents whereas 30 percent were due to speed. A large number of single vehicle accidents and high pedestrian causality are indicative of preponderance of driver error and distraction among important causes of Louisiana auto accidents. Head-on, rear-end, and interaction-related collisions comprise 70 percent of Louisiana traffic crashes involving more than one vehicle.
Orleans has the least secured roads in Louisiana. The parish accounted for the highest number of accidents both in 2010 and 2011. Caddo, Calcasieu, East Baton Rouge, Jefferson, and Lafayette are other parishes that witnessed a high number car crashes, injuries, and fatalities in 2011. New Orleans and Baton Rouge, two largest metropolitan areas in the state, lead the list of maximum number of auto accidents reported every year. Lafayette, Lake Charles, Alexandria, Monroe, and Bossier City are other urban areas that witness hundreds of Louisiana car accidents each year.
Louisiana Car Accident: Most Common Injuries
- Partial or permanent disability
- Loss of limb
- Injuries leading to prolonged hospital stay
- Brain, spinal, and head injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Injuries to brain and spinal cord
- Fractures, disfigurement, and deformity
- Permanent scars caused by injuries
- Psychological trauma and suffering
Louisiana Car Accident Claim Types of Compensation
Anyone injured in a Louisiana car accident is entitled to seek damages for:
- disturbed physical, financial, and psychological conditions
- punitive damages
- medical expenditure, both present and future, caused by accidents
- loss of employment, wage, and property
- disability costs
- damages for emotional distress and loss of family life
Louisiana Auto Accident Making Claims
An accident victim can file a claim with his own insurer as per the terms and conditions of his personal protection insurance coverage. He is entitled to seek compensation from the driver responsible, either through asking him to compensate or sending a direct claim to the insurance provider of the at-fault driver. The victim is also at liberty to file personal injury lawsuit seeking comprehensive damages.
Louisiana Personal Injury Lawsuits The Litigation
- Consult a personal injury lawyer experienced in Louisiana car accident laws and inquire from him about possibility of your compensation lawsuit.
- Your Louisiana car accident lawyer gathers all information on accident, police investigation, expert opinion, medical reports, and other direct and indirect injury details.
- The lawyer prepares a detailed report on your losses and makes an estimation of compensation you can claim from the at-fault driver or insurer. He notifies the other party seeking damages for suffering undergone by you due to the accident.
- If both parties do not agree on the compensation amount, they can go for mediation or arbitration to expedite the claim process. While arbitration ruling is mandatory, mediation is more flexible and compensation is decided on mutually agreed terms.
- If the at-fault driver or the insurer rejects the claim bid or offers a compensation for substantially less than your damages, you have the option to file a personal injury lawsuit. A soon as your Louisiana auto accident lawyer files the claim, a demand notice is sent to the defendant by the court informing him about the lawsuit.
- The next stage is discovery, where Louisiana car accident lawyers appointed by both parties gather evidence to back their respective positions. Any party to the litigation may approach the court seeking a summary judgment based on its findings. The judge is the competent authority to grant the request or order for the trial to proceed.
- The trial includes days of arguments, witness cross examination, and presentation of evidences at the court. The jury makes a decision on the award based on facts and state laws.
- Negotiated settlement is the most preferred way to dispose personal injury lawsuits filed following Louisiana car accidents. Most of the defendants seek to settle the claims out of courts through negotiation with lawyers. An experienced Louisiana car accident lawyer backing your claim is almost certain to help you bargain for a good amount of compensation.
Louisiana Car Accident Statutory Regulations Governing Personal injury Claims
- All personal injury cases with less than $3,000 claim are required to be filed in state small courts.
- Justice of the Peace courts can take up Louisiana car accident lawsuits claiming up to $5,000 in damages.
- All Louisiana accident personal injury lawsuits must be filed within a year of the incident.
- Damage claims against government are limited to $500,000 except medical cost and loss of employment.
- No compensation for plaintiffs with more than 25 percent responsibility in Louisiana car accidents or with blood-alcohol level higher than permissible 0.08 percent.
Louisiana Accident Insurance
- Louisiana follows “fault” insurance policy. The driver responsible pays damages for medical costs and all financial and physical sufferings.
- All motorists in Louisiana are required to buy minimum insurance coverage of
- $15,000 for bodily injury or death of one person
- $30,000 for injuries per accident
- $25,000 for property damaged
- There is no requirement in Louisiana to buy uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.
Louisiana Seat Belt Law
- Seat belt is mandatory for all occupants in the vehicle, including drivers.
- Infants less than 12 months should be restrained in rear-facing booster seats while those above one year can be secured in front-facing booster seats.
- Children less than six years must be secured in booster seats or federally approved child safety seats.
- Those between six and 12 years must be restrained with a lap and shoulder belts.
Louisiana Car Accident Lawsuits
In February 2012, a Louisiana jury awarded $1.6 million to an 11-year-old girl who lost her mother an auto accident caused by a Baton Rouge police vehicle nine years ago. Three months later, a Louisiana car accident lawsuit resulted in $1.3 million settlement in favor of the husband of a woman, who was killed in a 2005 crash in Mansfield. A Louisiana man who received spinal injuries in a highway auto accident got over $11 million in settlement.