Helping Car Accident Victims in Baton Rouge
Every year, motor vehicle accidents cause tens of thousands of fatalities, leaving the families and loved ones of the victims devastated. Getting into a car accident can have long-term and life-changing effects. While insurance companies are obligated to cover some car accident expenses, they will aim to pay out as little compensation as possible. Contact Dudley DeBosier to consult with a car accident lawyer in Baton Rouge and learn about your rights under the law.
Common Causes of Car Accidents
Car accidents are one of the leading causes of death and serious injuries across the United States. An accident can and will happen. Knowing what typically causes them can help drivers stay safe.
Common causes of car accidents include:
- Speeding: Speeding can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle and crash. Speeding also gives drivers less time to react to unexpected conditions on the road ahead. Furthermore, speeding increases the force of a collision and the severity of injuries in a car accident.
- Distracted driving: Increased use of cell phones and texting while driving has caused a dramatic rise in car accidents caused by distracted driving.
- Drunk driving: despite a generation’s worth of stricter laws and public campaigns against drinking and driving, drunk driving remains a leading cause of car accidents across the U.S.
- Driver fatigue: Drowsy drivers have slower reflexes and poor perception and can even fall asleep at the wheel.
- Aggressive driving: Tailgating, frequent or improper passing and lane-changing, running stop signs and red lights, and similar reckless behavior are identified as forms of aggressive driving. Many states have adopted specific aggressive driving laws to penalize reckless drivers.
- Faulty equipment: When brakes, tires, steering systems, or other automotive systems or parts fail, a driver may lose control and crash.
- Bad roads: Poorly designed or maintained roads also contribute to car accidents.
- Product liability: Lawsuits often seek compensation for drivers injured due to the negligence of auto parts manufacturers, distributors, and automobile manufacturers.
Common Injuries Caused by Car Accidents
To understand common car accident injuries, one needs to understand a bit about the dynamics involved in a car accident. Typically, one vehicle strikes another vehicle or a stationary object, causing a forceful impact. The occupants of the vehicle go from traveling at a significant rate of speed to a full stop all in a few seconds. What’s more, the occupants are often slammed into stationary objects inside or outside the vehicle.
That said, it should come as no surprise that car accidents can result in common serious injuries, including:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back and spine injuries
- Bone fractures
- Nerve damage
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage; and
The most serious car accident injuries require both immediate and ongoing medical treatment. Some injuries can take months or years to recover from, while some will leave accident victims with permanent disabilities or chronic health conditions.
Who is Liable for a Car Accident?
The determination of fault for a car accident is typically made by taking statements from the drivers and any witnesses who can help piece together how the accident happened. Other helpful items include surveillance video of the accident and the location of the damage on the vehicles involved. The police report may also contain information regarding any citations or traffic tickets that were issued and the reporting officer’s opinion of fault for the accident.
Typically, the party whose negligence caused the accident will be held liable for the injured party’s injuries and losses. Some of the various parties that may be held liable for a car accident in Louisiana include the vehicle’s driver, owner, manufacturer, or mechanic. Furthermore, under Louisiana’s anti-dram shop and social host liability laws, bartenders, social hosts, and others may be held liable if they provided a minor with alcohol and that minor subsequently caused a car accident.
Types of Baton Rouge Car Accident Claims
Car accident claims frequently stem from one of the following three circumstances:
- Defective products
- Wrongful death
A person can be liable to another for monetary damages and other relief if they were negligent in causing a car accident that resulted in injuries. For example, if a driver failed to stop at a stop sign or ran a red light and caused an accident, a court is likely to find that the driver acted negligently and hold them liable for the victim’s injuries.
Under Louisiana product liability law, an automobile manufacturer may be responsible for injuries sustained in an accident caused by sudden acceleration or some other safety defect. If the automobile manufacturer knew about a defect or safety issue and failed to warn buyers about these dangers, the victim of any resulting car accident may be entitled to substantial compensation.
Finally, although no amount of money can ever replace a loved one who died as a result of a car accident, the victim’s family may be entitled to pursue a wrongful death claim. This will allow them to hold the party responsible for their loved one’s death financially accountable.
Police Reports Are Important
Police reports are important to car accident claims for three very good reasons:
- The police report will prove that the other driver was involved in the accident. Sometimes, when there is no police report, the other driver will deny that they were even there.
- Drivers are more likely to admit responsibility for an accident when being interviewed by a police officer immediately after. If the police do not come to the scene, and the driver is allowed to think about the accident for several days, they will come up with reasons to justify their actions and blame the other driver.
- A police report, particularly where the other driver has admitted fault, is a powerful tool for settling a car accident case. When the liable insurance company sees that their driver admitted to causing the accident and was given a ticket, they will be more willing to settle, and for a fair amount of compensation.
Types of Damages Covered in a Baton Rouge Car Accident Claim
After being involved in a Baton Rouge car accident, victims can collect several different categories of damages. First, a car accident victim can recover economic losses resulting from the accident, including:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future lost wages and income
- Damage to their vehicle; and
- Other out-of-pocket expenses
Second, non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment and quality of life, emotional distress, and inconvenience, must be considered. Furthermore, damages related to physical impairment could lead to financial compensation after a serious car accident. These include disfigurement, loss of a limb, scarring, burns, or other types of disfigurement.
Calculating current and future damages after a car accident requires the insight of an attorney that practices Louisiana personal injury law. At Dudley DeBosier we have worked with injured car accident victims for years to secure the deserved compensation unique to each case.
When to Hire a Baton Rouge Car Accident Lawyer
If another driver’s negligence caused the accident, the injured party could be owed substantial compensation. Consulting with an experienced personal injury lawyer is important and should be done as soon as possible following an accident.
So, when should a car accident lawyer be hired?
- When the insurance company wants to settle – Remember, insurance companies want to settle for as little as possible. A lawyer can ensure any settlement is fair and accounts for various factors, including your lost wages and diminished quality of life.
- When the victim’s injuries are serious – Car accident injuries can have a long-term effect on the victim’s life and health. An attorney can help ensure compensation accounts for these.
- When there are multiple parties involved – This makes the case more complex. An attorney can sort through the details and holds the negligent parties responsible
- When the car accident victim is being treated unfairly by the liable insurance company – An attorney can protect the victim’s rights and look after their best interests.
Our team of Baton Rouge car accident lawyers is ready to help. We will review the car accident case for free, and if we agree to handle the claim, we will fight aggressively, from beginning to end, to obtain the best possible results.
Call Dudley DeBosier in Baton Rouge for Help
If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured in a car accident in Baton Rouge, speak with a car accident lawyer at Dudley DeBosier.. We offer a free consultation and charge no legal fee unless we recover compensation on your behalf.