Catastrophic injuries can permanently change your life or the life of someone you love. The limitations they force on your mobility may affect more than just you—they can create change for your family as well.
In the days immediately after suffering a catastrophic injury, you likely will be focused on your physical and emotional recovery or the recovery of a loved one. If you believe another party’s negligence caused your accident, you can seek to hold them accountable and collect damages that can help you pay your medical bills and other losses.
You can learn more about your legal options from a Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers team member during a free consultation today. Our New Orleans catastrophic injury lawyers are here to help.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries and Why They Happen
Various accidents can cause life-changing catastrophic injuries. Among them are:
- Spinal cord damage that could cause temporary, permanent, full, or partial paralysis, paraplegia, or quadriplegia
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) that might cause cognitive delays or leave accident victims in a persistent vegetative state
- Limb loss that can lead to prosthetic limbs and long-term physical and occupational therapy
- Severe burns that can lead to skin grafts and a permanent change in your physical appearance and ability
- Internal organ damage
- Eye injuries, vision loss
Recovering from the physical damage of a catastrophic injury can be a lifelong pursuit. In many cases, recovery may mean learning to live with, and cope with, a new set of limitations. Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers is there every step of the way for our clients who find themselves facing new challenges to restore their lives as fully as they can.
Laborde Earles injury was great for me they took care of me very fast and professional. If for any reason I need legal help they will be who I use.Client
Accidents That Can Cause Catastrophic Injuries
We represent victims who suffered catastrophic injuries in a wide range of accident types, including:
- Car and truck accidents
- Maritime accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Defective product accidents (product liability)
- Slip and fall, trip and fall accidents
- Other types of premises liability accidents
Even injuries that are less-than-catastrophic, such as broken bones or whiplash, may qualify you for compensation in a personal injury insurance claim or lawsuit. If you or someone you love suffered a catastrophic injury, you may be forced to make adjustments to your lifestyle and even to your home.
I thank God for Digger & David. I don’t know what we would have done if it hadn’t have been for them.Rick Smith | Client
Who Could Be at Fault for Your Catastrophic Injury in New Orleans?
Establishing fault is one of the most important responsibilities your catastrophic injury lawyer will have after taking on your case. After all, one of the few ways you will be able to recover compensation for your damages is by proving another party is responsible for causing your injuries.
The type of accident you were involved in will point your attorney in the direction of the liable party. For example, if you were involved in a motor vehicle accident, some of the different parties who could share fault for your injuries include:
- Negligent drivers
- Government agencies
- Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD)
- The city of New Orleans
- Other municipalities
- Auto parts manufacturers and distributors
- Safety inspectors
- Maintenance technicians
- Other third parties
But if you were involved in a premises liability accident, your lawyer’s attention would then turn to the property owner of the premises where you were injured. Likewise, if you were injured in a medical malpractice case, your attorney would look to physicians, surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, midwives, pediatricians, and even the hospital to determine liability.
You may even have a chance to file a workers’ comp claim if your injury happened on the job. In this situation, a New Orleans workers’ compensation lawyer could pursue funds from your employer.
As your attorney is investigating the cause of your accident, the evidence will reveal who is responsible for your injuries.
The reassurance from Digger and his staff gave me that renewed hope that it’s going to be okay down the road.Client
How to Maximize Your New Orleans Catastrophic Injury Settlement
To ensure that you are awarded full compensation for your damages, your attorney may advise you to file both an insurance claim and a civil lawsuit. Dealing with the insurance company is one of the most difficult elements of any injury claim.
With catastrophic injuries, you do not have time to wait for the insurance company to settle your claim fairly. You need compensation, and you need it now. By also seeking compensation through a New Orleans catastrophic injury lawsuit, you can hold the liable party accountable to the fullest extent of the law and recover damages that may not be available through the insurance company.
Insurers are often only required to compensate victims for certain types of economic damages. This might include property damage, lost income, and medical bills. But when you move forward with a civil action, you can also seek recovery of your non-economic damages as well.
Make sure to go over your damages in detail with your attorney to ensure that every single loss is accounted for when calculating the value of your New Orleans catastrophic injury claim.
They treated us like no other people would. Whenever we needed something they were there for us. I put my trust in them and I don’t regret it.Client
How Our Lawyers Can Help With Your Catastrophic Injury Case
Laborde and Earles Injury Lawyers has recovered more than $200 million in verdicts and settlements by representing victims just like you. While you work to restore your health, our New Orleans-based attorney can start building your case against the liable party to seek compensation for your catastrophic injuries. We want you to receive the maximum financial recovery you deserve that can help you rebuild your life. Our firm could assist with your catastrophic injury case in the following ways:
Investigate your Accident
Before you can file a lawsuit or accept a settlement, your attorney must have a clear picture of how your injury occurred. Investigating your accident involves two important steps. First, it is necessary to understand how your accident occurred. Second, you will need to determine the extent of your injuries and the compensation you are entitled to recover. Your attorney could assist with each of these efforts.
Negotiate a Settlement
Many catastrophic injury cases are concluded through a negotiated settlement. An offer might come immediately after your injury, but that does not mean accepting is a good idea. Our attorneys could help you evaluate a settlement offer and push for a fair amount.
File a Lawsuit
When a catastrophic injury case does not reach a settlement, a lawsuit can become necessary. Our personal injury attorney could determine the at-fault party in your case and file a lawsuit against each of them. During the litigation process, your attorney can handle the complex aspects of your case, even if it goes to trial.
We Will Seek Fair Compensation for Your Catastrophic Injury
Once we prepare your case, we will negotiate with the insurance company for a fair settlement on your behalf. Louisiana is a fault state for car accidents and insurance purposes. This means you will be filing a claim with the liable party’s insurance company to recover a portion of your losses.
It is important to know how insurance companies operate. You might have assumed that filing an insurance claim was going to be the easiest part of your catastrophic injury claims process. However, insurance companies often offer the lowest settlement, and we are prepared for that possibility.
Insurers have also been known to manipulate the statements given to them by well-intentioned claimants. For this reason, you should never speak with the insurance company without first discussing your case with your lawyer. In fact, if you want to avoid having your words twisted and used against you, have your attorney step in and handle the negotiation process on your behalf.
We will continue to work on compensation that meets your needs. If negotiations fall flat, we can take your case to civil court and seek fair compensation there.
Recoverable Damages in Your New Orleans Catastrophic Injury Case
Catastrophic injuries can lead to long-term, sometimes permanent, treatment plans. The recoverable damages in a personal injury case may cover the financial impact of your injuries as well as compensation for lost income streams and emotional trauma.
There are two broad categories of compensation in a catastrophic injury case: economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are intended to cover your out-of-pocket expenses following an accident. Once you recover these damages, you should be back in the financial position you found yourself in prior to your injury. Medical expenses are the most common example of these damages.
Non-economic damages are not related to your out-of-pocket costs. Instead, they compensate you for the subjective hardship you suffered. There are numerous types of damages that cannot be measured objectively, including disfigurement or pain and suffering.
If you have evidence proving that an at-fault party was negligent in causing your life-changing injuries, we can help you seek compensation for damages such as:
- Medical care, both current and future
- Assistive medical devices and in-home support
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capability
- Pain and suffering
- Physical disability
- Mental anguish
- And more
Some of these damages are easy to prove with receipts, pay stubs, invoices, and other similar documents. Others, such as pain and suffering and physical disability, are not. We can calculate the monetary value of these kinds of damages and determine a value for your case.
You May Be Able to Seek Wrongful Death Damages
We can also help you recover wrongful death damages if your loved one died from fatal catastrophic injuries due to another’s negligence. We can determine if you are eligible to bring this legal action forward under CC Art. 2315.2.
State law allows only designated individuals to recover damages that could help them pay for their loved one’s final medical expenses, funeral and burial arrangements, and other losses. We can answer your questions about wrongful death actions during a free consultation.
You Will Need Evidence to Prove Your New Orleans Catastrophic Injury Case
A catastrophic injury lawyer from Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can identify your damages and collect evidence of their value when we represent you in New Orleans. This evidence can include:
- Medical records and bills
- Employment records, such as pay stubs
- Receipts for out-of-pocket expenses
- Testimony from medical experts on your future costs of care
How We Can Help You Prove Negligence Caused Your Catastrophic Injuries
If another party’s negligence caused your injuries, they may owe you compensation. We can review the details of and evidence from your accident to do the following:
- Define the negligence that led to your current medical condition
- Identify and pursue the at-fault party
- Fight for the compensation you may be entitled to
Whether your injuries were caused by a car accident, a collision with a large truck, a slip and fall accident, or something else, our team can compile the evidentiary items that help show the cause of your accident and injuries. Evidence can include:
- Police reports
- Incident reports
- Crash report
- Injury photos
- Witness statements
- Testimony from accident reconstruction experts
- And more
How Comparative Negligence Could Affect Your Case’s Outcome
Even if you were partially at fault for the accident, you may still be able to recover compensation for your damages, per CC Art. 2323, Louisiana’s comparative negligence law. Under this law, you could recover partial damages from your accident.
For example, if you are supposed to receive $25,000 but are found to be 30 percent responsible for your injuries, your award would be reduced by $7,500. This means you would collect $17,500.
You have the opportunity to pursue damages for negligence from any party that is partially at fault in your case—even if you were primarily at fault. Of course, you could also face legal action from the other parties for their own injuries.
You Can Afford Our New Orleans Catastrophic Injury Attorneys
Hiring an attorney is an important part of the process following a catastrophic injury. The good news is that the cost of legal counsel could be less than you realize. Our firm accepts catastrophic injury cases on a contingency basis. That means we are only paid our fee if we successfully recover damages on your behalf.
With a contingency fee agreement, our firm retains a portion of anything we collect on your behalf. We agree on this fee before we take on your case, and we will never increase our rate as your case goes on. A contingency fee agreement allows you to pursue your lawsuit without paying anything out of pocket for your legal fees.
Louisiana’s Statute of Limitations Deadline Applies to Your New Orleans Catastrophic Injury Case
The time to recover compensation may be limited by Louisiana’s statute of limitations. Per CC Art. 3492, there is a general one-year statute of limitations on personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Louisiana. This means that you generally have a year from the date of your injuries to file a lawsuit. If exceptions to the deadline apply to your case, we can discuss them with you.
If time runs out before you act, you may put your right to pursue compensation via a lawsuit at risk. With early intervention, Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can make sure your personal injury lawsuit is filed on time.
Call Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today
You do not need to face the legal process alone; we can help you. A New Orleans-based lawyer from Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can fight for compensation on your behalf to compensate you for damages for your catastrophic injuries.
For a free consultation on your case, contact the personal injury team today. We offer representation on a contingency fee basis with no upfront payments due. In this payment arrangement, our clients do not owe us attorney’s fees unless they recover compensation via a settlement offer or court award.