When it comes to insurance requirements and accident claims, every state has its own laws and proceedings. In regard to collision liability, though, states must adhere to just one of two systems: fault or no fault.
The “fault” system is more prevalent than the no fault one, but each approach has its own drawbacks and advantages. According to FOX Business, 12 states and Puerto Rico currently rely on no-fault insurance laws to award compensation following motor vehicle collisions.
Louisiana, on the other hand, is one of the 38 “fault” states. That means motorists who breach the duty of care they owe to those on the road around them are financially responsible for the damages that might occur.
Filing a third-party claim with the liable motorist’s insurance company can be challenging, though, and you have enough to worry about without having to navigate complicated legal proceedings. If you suffered car accident injuries in a collision that was not your fault, a Marksville auto accident lawyer may be able to simplify the claims process for you and help you secure a fair settlement.
Laborde Earles Law Firm is an award-winning firm in Louisiana that helps clients navigate the state’s various fault laws every single day. Our legal team will be happy to assess the circumstances of your case in order to determine if you have grounds for a claim.
If it turns out that you are eligible for compensation, we can help you pursue the maximum payout to cover the costs associated with medical bills, lost wages, and non-economic damages like pain and suffering. Call today to schedule a free case evaluation.
How Will Louisiana Being a Fault State Affect My Injury Claim?
If you file a personal injury claim in Louisiana, the court will try to determine who was at fault for the incident that caused your injuries in order to hold him or her financially accountable. In most cases, though, the accident victim will not actually negotiate with the at-fault motorist; rather, he or she will seek compensation from the responsible party’s insurance provider.
Typically, a personal injury lawsuit will begin as a third-party claim. In many cases, the liable party’s insurance adjuster and the accident victim’s legal counsel can reach a fair settlement, which will resolve the claim. If the adjuster refuses to negotiate fairly or there is disputed liability, though, the case may evolve into a full-fledged lawsuit. The damages we pursue through the settlement negotiation process include:
- All accident-related medical care
- Injury and recovery-related lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
Filing a personal injury lawsuit is not always an option for accident victims in no-fault states, but since Louisiana happens to be a fault state, it can be an effective way to secure the compensation you deserve. It can also serve as a deterrent to negligent drivers which makes Louisiana’s streets and highways safer for everyone.
When you hire our law firm to represent you, we do everything we can to settle your case out of court. If that cannot happen, we make sure your right to go to court is protected by filing your lawsuit in time to comply with Louisiana’s personal injury statute of limitations. According to CC Art. 3492, that generally means you have only one year from the date of the accident to file your lawsuit.
For a free legal consultation, call (337) 777-7777
What Evidence Will I Need to Prove the At-Fault Driver’s Financial Liability?
The at-fault driver’s insurance company will not settle your case based solely on your word. Their interest will be in protecting their driver — and their own bottom line. The evidence you present to the insurance company can prove liability and turn the negotiation process in your favor.
The evidence must demonstrate that the at-fault driver breached their implied duty to provide you with reasonable care, caused the collision because of their negligence, and caused your injuries and property damage. The evidence you collect can include:
- A copy of your crash report that will contain impartial information, contributing factors, and witness statements or contact details
- Photos and videos from the investigating officer, witnesses, bystanders, surveillance cameras, and even your own post-accident smartphone footage
- Your medical records that will detail your injuries, their cause, and their current and future costs
Each accident is a unique event and yours may provide additional evidence that proves your case and leads to compensation. Our legal team will collect evidence for you so you can concentrate on getting well.
How does Louisiana Being a Pure Comparative Fault State Affect My Claim?
More than being a “fault” state, Louisiana is also a pure comparative fault state which will impact the amount of compensation you receive. According to CC Art. 2323, if any percentage of fault for causing the accident is legally attributed to you, any compensation you might receive will be reduced by a comparable amount. For example:
- If your recoverable damages total $100,000 but you are found 10% responsible for causing the crash, you will recover $90,000
- If your recoverable damages total $100,000 but you are found 25% responsible for causing the crash, you will recover $75,000
Pure comparative fault can cost you compensation you might otherwise be entitled to. It can make personal injury compensation a complicated situation to handle on your own. It may come into play, and can be particularly complicated, in crashes that involve multiple vehicles.
How Much Will I Have to Pay a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Most personal lawyers will work with you on a contingency fee basis. This means you can start preparing your case far in advance of the state’s statute of limitations. It also means you can do so without worrying about adding to the immediate costs of the accident. On a contingency fee basis:
- You will pay no out-of-pocket expenses including no upfront costs
- Your lawyer will receive a percentage of your compensation as their fee
- Your lawyer will not receive any payment unless and until you do
Review your case with our lawyers who will explain his percentage, the payment process, and the potential timeline.
If you were injured in a car accident that was not your fault and you want to sue the liable party for damages, contact Laborde Earles Law Firm. A Marksville car wreck lawyer can gather evidence, track medical bills, interview witnesses, and negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf. Call today to schedule a free consultation.