Is It Illegal to Ride a Bike Without Reflectors in Louisiana?

by Dudley DeBosier | May 3rd, 2021

More and more people are using their bikes to commute to work, particularly in cities. As the weather becomes warmer, people are also getting their bikes out of storage for exercise. While biking is a wonderful alternative to driving, with its significantly lower carbon footprint and its associated health benefits, it also comes with some dangers.

Biking in heavy city traffic can increase your chances of receiving an injury in an accident, especially at night. You can also receive tickets for failing to follow relevant road laws on a bike, including those concerning lights and reflectors. To protect yourself from accidents and fines, make sure you know all the regulations for bicyclists before you hit the road.

Know the Law

Just like driving a car, it’s essential you learn about and follow all the legal requirements for riding a bike on the roads in Louisiana. Generally, bicyclists must follow the rules of the road, including only riding in appropriate lanes, maintaining distance from cars, and refraining from weaving in and out of traffic.

While bicyclists who also drive cars are familiar with the road rules, they may be unfamiliar with the specific laws relating to bicycles. In Louisiana, after dark, you must have lights and a reflector on your bike, both for your safety and the safety of others. Your lights, like a car’s headlights, make it easier for other drivers to spot you and avoid collisions.

Louisiana law requires a front lamp that other drivers can see from at least 500 feet away. If you want to save on batteries, you can use a light powered by your pedals. You also need to have a rear lamp that either flashes red or has a steady red glow, also visible from at least 500 feet away.

Besides the lights, you must also equip your bicycle with reflectors on the front, back, and both sides. Ensure the reflectors make your bike visible to all cars up to 600 feet away.

If you prefer, you can wear your reflectors and lamps on your person instead of attaching them to your bike. However, all retailers who sell bikes in the state of Louisiana must sell them with lights and reflectors, so you may want to just keep your batteries charged and reflectors clean.

If you bike at night without a lamp and reflectors, you can receive a $25 fine.

Besides these statewide regulations, some parishes in Louisiana have enacted legislation for bicyclists, which may increase the distance your bike’s light must be visible, or have speed limits for bikes near parks. Check your local parish and any area you plan to bike in, ensuring you comply with the law across the whole of the state.

Stay Safe While Riding

While not legally required, you may also wish to wear a high-vis vest and place a reflector on your helmet for added visibility.

Additionally, you must use hand signals before turning and stopping to help inform other drivers what your intentions are and reduce the chances of an accident.

Some parishes, like New Orleans, prohibit riding a bicycle on a sidewalk for everyone over the age of 15, while other parishes don’t allow anyone to bike on the sidewalk. This law protects pedestrians from bikers but also means bikers must share the road with cars and trucks, which may be unused to seeing a bicycle.

Just like when driving a car, bicyclists should ride defensively, and always stay alert for speeding cars. Even if your area has bike lanes, you should always look for people exiting parked vehicles. Many bicyclists are seriously injured when drivers open doors into a biker’s path. However, accidents can happen no matter how safe you are, and if you experience one, contact a personal injury attorney at our law firm today to learn how you can get compensation for your injuries.

Get Compensation After an Accident

Bicycle, and even motorcycle, accidents can result in severe injuries because bikers have much less protection than car or truck drivers. If you have recently been in an accident and believe the driver of the passenger vehicle was at fault, contact the experienced personal injury lawyers at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers.

At your free consultation, we’ll examine your case and help you determine whether you can file a lawsuit and get the compensation you deserve.

With our No Fee Guarantee, you don’t need to worry about paying us unless we win your case.

How to Safely Share the Road with 18-Wheelers

by Dudley DeBosier | April 19th, 2021

There are few feelings more terrifying than being boxed in by semi-trucks on the highway. After all, when big trucks and cars collide, things often don’t end well for the occupants of the passenger vehicles.

According to the National Safety Council, 71% of people who die in large truck crashes are occupants of other vehicles. 18% of deaths are truck occupants, and the remaining 11% are pedestrians and cyclists. 

Because collisions between trucks and other vehicles can be so dangerous, it’s important for drivers of other vehicles to know how to safely share the road with big trucks to reduce their chances of a crash.

Important Things to Remember About Semi-Trucks

There’s a reason you need a special license to drive a commercial vehicle like a semi-truck, and that’s because big trucks are very different from cars! Yes, there’s a steering wheel, a shifter, an accelerator and a brake pedal. But trucks behave differently, and that changes how a truck driver needs to drive.

  • Semi-trucks need more space to complete a turn.
  • Semi-trucks need a lot more time to come to a complete stop than your vehicle.
  • Semi-trucks have massive blind spots.
  • Semi-trucks are more likely to experience tire blow-outs (due to the long distances truck drivers travel combined with heavy trailer loads). 
  • Semi-trucks can jackknife and are more likely to experience roll-overs (due to a higher center of gravity).

When Driving Behind Trucks

You should always leave enough room between you and the semi-truck so that you can have time and space to react and get out of the way or stop if something goes wrong.

Industry experts recommend always keeping a four-second following distance from semi-trucks. When driving, start counting when the truck in front of you passes a landmark, such as a road sign. There should be at least four seconds before you pass that same road sign. If you reach the sign before you count to four, it means you’re following too closely.

Additionally, semi-trucks with tractor-trailers attached have massive blind spots, and when you are driving directly behind a truck, there is a very good chance the driver does not know you are there.

A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t see the side mirrors of the cab, the driver can’t see you. If necessary, slow down to put enough space between you and the truck ahead so that its mirrors are always visible (and you’re always visible to them). 

When Driving Beside Trucks

Always drive on the left-hand side of 18-wheelers and other large trucks.

Trucks are generally instructed to keep right on highways to allow for faster moving traffic to pass. However, large trucks may occasionally drive in the left lane on the highway to pass another truck, or on city streets because they need to make a right-hand turn and need two lanes to make the turn.

Because a truck driver cannot see a car that is on their right-hand side and in their blind spot, drivers who are driving on the right-hand side of a truck risk getting into a collision if the truck driver tries to turn or pass into the right lane.

When Passing Trucks

Just as you should never drive on the right-hand side of an 18-wheeler, you should also never attempt to pass an 18-wheeler on the right-hand side.

Secondly, never cut off a truck! When trying to pass a truck, don’t move back over until you can see the entire front of the truck in your mirror, and always signal when you do so. Your vehicle can move, speed up or down, and stop faster than the truck can, and the truck won’t be able to quickly stop if you don’t give enough space before changing lanes in front of them. Furthermore, the truck has another blind spot directly in front of the cab, and if you are not far enough ahead of the truck before you move back into their lane, the driver may not see you.

When Driving in Front of Trucks

Trucks cannot quickly slow down, so if you need to slow down or stop for any reason, such as a flat tire or mechanical failure (and if you need to stop, make sure to pull over to the shoulder of the road if possible), make sure to tap your brake lights and put on a turn signal or your hazard lights to alert the driver of the truck behind you what you are doing and give them time to start slowing down early to avoid colliding with you.

Were You Injured in a Truck Collision Through No Fault of Your Own?

Because auto wrecks involving commercial vehicles can involve multiple parties (including the drivers, the employer of the truck driver, the company that owns the truck–if it is different than the employer of the driver, the company that employs the people who maintain the truck or load the truck, and so on) it can become extremely complicated for victims to get compensation on their own.

Because truck accidents so often result in serious injuries that require a great deal of compensation, potentially for years to come, we know how important it is for victims to get all the money they need to make up for their medical bills and lost wages.

At Dudley DeBosier, we know what to do after big truck accidents, and we want to help you. Call our Louisiana truck accidents attorneys today for a free consultation

Can You Get Compensation for a Single-Car Accident in Louisiana?

by wpengine | March 15th, 2021

A car accident doesn’t always involve two cars colliding. In fact, 58% of all fatal car crashes in Louisiana in 2018 were single-car accidents, meaning only one car was involved.

If you were injured or if someone you love was killed in a single-car accident, you likely need help paying your medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses. You’re also likely wondering if it is possible to get compensation for your losses. This depends entirely on how the accident occurred and what type of coverage you have.

In most cases, the driver in a single-car accident will be considered at fault for their own injuries and can’t sue for damages. This is true even when the driver wasn’t breaking a traffic law (such as speeding or driving under the influence) and when the cause of the accident was beyond their control. This is because drivers are expected to take potential hazards into consideration and take precautions to prevent accidents.

For example, while a driver may have been obeying all traffic laws before hydroplaning on a rainy day or hitting an animal that crossed the road in front of their vehicle, they are also expected to slow down and be extra cautious in bad weather or after passing a deer crossing sign, when they know their crash risk is higher.

Are There Any Exceptions?

Yes, there are a handful of cases where a single car accident could be the fault of another person. If someone else is potentially at fault, it is possible to sue for compensation. These cases include:

Miss-and-run accidents: A miss-and-run is a type of accident where a reckless driver causes another driver to crash (usually by swerving to avoid the reckless driver). There is no contact between the vehicles, but the reckless driver could be considered at fault for the crash. If the reckless driver (who typically leaves the scene) can be identified, it may be possible to hold them liable for your damages.

Defective auto parts: When a vehicle or any parts used in a vehicle are defective and lead to injuries or crashes, the manufacturer can be held liable for those injuries in a defective product lawsuit. Some common examples of defective auto parts that can cause crashes are brakes, ignition switches, steering control systems, and tires.

If a vehicle is repaired incorrectly or with defective parts, the auto shop that made the faulty repairs or the manufacturer of the faulty aftermarket parts could potentially also be held liable.

Dangerous Road Conditions: When road conditions are dangerous or a road is poorly designed, it may be possible to sue the entity responsible for maintaining the road. Examples of this include roads that are missing a guardrail or traffic sign where one was necessary.

Objects in the road: If poorly secured objects fall off the back of a vehicle and hit another vehicle, it might be possible to pursue the owner of the object for compensation for their negligence in poorly securing their cargo.

What About When No One is A-Fault?

Sometimes a single-car accident occurs where the driver isn’t at fault for their own crash, but no one else is, either. For example, maybe you were injured when a tree landed on your vehicle in a storm, causing you to crash.

In this case, you would need to file a claim through your own collision or comprehensive vehicle insurance to cover your vehicle repairs.

You likely would not be able to get any compensation for your medical bills unless you have medical payment coverage. This is a type of auto insurance coverage that we highly recommend purchasing. Although it is not required coverage in Louisiana, MedPay insurance will pay up to the purchased amount in medical expenses after a car accident, including ambulance transportation, surgery, follow-up visits, and so on, regardless of who is at fault.

Injured in a Single-Car Accident Caused by Someone Else?

When you or someone you love is injured in single-car accident, we recommend contacting an experienced Louisiana auto accident attorney right away. This is because it is extremely difficult to prove that the driver of a single-car accident was not at fault. Contact the team at Dudley DeBosier today for a free consultation; we want to hear about your accident, and we’ll let you know if you have a case.

Can I Get Compensation for an Airbag Injury?

by Dudley DeBosier | February 8th, 2021

Like the seatbelt, airbags are an invention that have saved countless lives. Unfortunately, airbags have also caused a large number of injuries.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), front airbags reduce driver fatalities by 29% in crashes, and front passenger death by 32%. Many newer models of vehicles are also equipped with side airbags, which reduce driver death by 37% in cars, and by 52% in larger vehicles like SUVs.

In other words, risking injury from an airbag is still a much better option than dying in a car crash because there was no airbag. But that doesn’t mean that people who suffer serious injuries from an airbag simply need to accept no one is responsible for their injuries, either.

If someone is injured by their airbag going off after another driver collides with them, they can get compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance for their medical bills. Additionally, if they are injured by an airbag that malfunctioned, they can get compensation from the airbag manufacturer.

Defective Airbag Lawsuits

Airbag injuries caused by defective airbags usually fall into three categories:

  • The airbag did not go off when it should have.
  • The airbag went off when it should not have (e.g. for no reason, or in a very low impact collision that would not have caused injuries on its own).
  • The airbag went off incorrectly (e.g. with too much force, underinflated, or too late to be effective).

The Takata airbag recall is the largest and most famous example of defective airbags. When these defective airbags went off, there was a high risk of them exploding and injuring or killing the vehicle’s occupants with shrapnel.  

If you suspect your airbag did not deploy correctly, causing you to be injured or even resulting in the death of someone you love, it’s important to contact an experienced defective product lawyer like those at Dudley DeBosier to learn if you may be eligible for compensation.

Additionally, you will need to preserve any evidence related to the airbag, which means you should not allow any pieces of the airbag to be thrown out, or allow the insurance company to take possession of the vehicle, which they will attempt to do if the vehicle is declared a total loss after the crash.

What Type of Injuries Do Airbags Cause?

Even when airbags deploy correctly, they can result in serious injury. This is because the extreme speed and force of their inflation can cause abrasions or burns, and the chemicals used to inflate them so rapidly can irritate the lungs and airways.

Common airbag injuries include:

  • Head and brain injuries, including skull fractures and concussions
  • Eye injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Internal bleeding
  • Heart muscle rupture
  • Burns and irritated skin
  • Asthma attacks, throat irritations, or coughing fits
  • Fetal injury (in pregnant women)

Many injuries caused by airbags require medical treatment. If the crash that caused the airbag to go off was caused by someone else, you can file a compensation claim for the medical bills you receive after being treated for your injuries.

How to Reduce Your Risk of Airbag Injury

Airbags are intended for use by an average-sized adult, which is why children and smaller or elderly adults (who tend to sit closer to the steering wheel) are more at risk of injury.

Following these tips can reduce your chances of injury by airbag:

  • Don’t allow children under the age of 13 to sit in the front seat, where they are at risk of being injured by the front passenger airbag. If a child under the age of 13 must sit in the front seat, turn off the front passenger airbag.
  • Never place an infant rear-facing car seat in the front seat, since it places the infant’s head closer to the airbag.
  • Keep your seat positioned at least 10 inches back from the airbag, whether you are sitting in the driver’s seat or the front passenger seat.
  • Keep your hands on either side of the steering wheel, instead of on top of the steering wheel.
  • Passengers in the front seat should not rest their arms or feet on the dashboard above the airbag.
  • Always wear your seatbelt. Keep the belt of the seat belt over your hips rather than across your stomach, and keep the strap across your shoulder rather than under your arm or behind your back.

Injured in a Car Crash Where the Airbag Went Off? Call Our Team

Any time you are injured due to someone else’s negligence, whether that’s another driver slamming into your vehicle or an auto manufacturer who failed to properly safety test their products, the person or party at fault should be held responsible for the harm they caused.

Our experienced Louisiana auto accident lawyers know how to help you get the compensation you need after a crash, especially one serious enough to set off the airbag and cause you injuries. Call today for a free case consultation, and if you hire us, you owe us nothing unless we win.

Why You Could Be “Driving Impaired” Even if You Haven’t Been Drinking

by Dudley DeBosier | January 11th, 2021

Almost everyone is aware that drunk driving is dangerous, but drinking alcohol before getting behind the wheel isn’t the only dangerous activity that can impair your ability to drive.

In fact, you could be “impaired” without taking a single sip of alcohol.  While alcohol impairment is one of the most publicized forms of impairment, it is not the only kind, and it’s not even the most common form of impaired driving. It’s important to know what the other forms of impaired driving are, because they are all dangerous, and you may be impaired without realizing it. 

Drugged Driving

Just as nearly everyone is aware that drunk driving is dangerous, driving while under the influence of drugs is also dangerous. In fact, the CDC estimates drugs other than alcohol are involved in roughly 16% of all motor vehicle crashes.

But this doesn’t just refer to dangerous and illegal street drugs. So-called “harmless” drugs like marijuana, and even over-the-counter medications, can dangerously impair your ability to drive, even if you believe your ability to drive is unaffected (it’s not).

In fact, marijuana users are roughly 25% more likely to be involved in a crash than drivers with no evidence of marijuana use, while other studies show that driving under the influence of opioids such as painkillers can double your risk of being involved in a crash.

If you are currently taking any prescription or over-the-counter medication, check the warning label. If it states, “do not operate heavy machinery while taking this medication,” you should not drive a motor vehicle while the medication is in effect.

Drowsy Driving

Alcohol and drowsiness affect the brain in nearly the same way, but unlike drunk driving, drowsy driving isn’t illegal, and is far more prevalent.  Unfortunately, drowsy driving is no less dangerous than drunk driving.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drowsy drivers cause at least 100,000 crashes, 71,000 injuries, and 1,550 fatalities every year.

Drivers who had less than six hours of sleep the night previous are more likely to fall asleep at the wheel, so to reduce your risk of an accident, you should always get a minimum of seven hours of sleep.

If driving long distances at a stretch, reduce your drowsy driving risk by driving with a companion. Talking to your companion can help keep you alert, and you should swap with your companion every 100 miles or every two hours.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving includes anything that takes your hands off the wheel, your eyes off the road, or your mind off the task of driving.

Common examples of distracted driving include:

  • Changing the radio station
  • Entering an address into the GPS
  • Reading or answering a text message
  • Reaching for something on the floor of the car
  • Turning around to talk to someone in the backseat of the car
  • Eating or drinking
  • Letting a pet sit on your lap

Any of these are examples of tasks that you may perform often, or even every day, and likely consider harmless, since they only take a moment to complete at most. However, accidents can happen within only fractions of a second, so anything that distracts you can have dangerous consequences.

According to a survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, more than 84% of drivers surveyed agreed that texting while driving is dangerous, but 36% of the same respondents also stated that they had texted while driving at least once within the past 30 days, despite knowing it was reckless. And alarmingly, roughly one in five people killed in distracted driving crashes are not drivers – they’re pedestrians and cyclists. When a driver knowingly acts recklessly, they should be held accountable for the harm they cause.

Injured by an Impaired Driver? We Can Help

Every driver has a responsibility to not harm the people around them. If any driver gets behind the wheel knowingly impaired or having knowingly engaged in activity that would impair their ability to drive, such as drinking alcohol, taking medication that causes drowsiness, or answering a text message while in motion, they can be held liable for the injuries they cause.

If you or someone you love was harmed by an impaired driver, we want to help you hold them accountable. Contact our Louisiana car accident lawyers today to learn how we help injured victims get compensation for their medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering after serious auto accidents.

How to Get Someone’s Car Insurance Information After the Fact

by Dudley DeBosier | December 21st, 2020

After a car crash, one of the first and most important steps you should take after ensuring your safety is to get the insurance information of the other driver involved in the crash.

Unfortunately, this is sometimes easier said than done.

Requesting Someone Else’s Car Insurance Information After a Crash

The best and easiest way to get insurance information is to simply ask the other driver for it. It is usually helpful to take a picture of their insurance card with your phone’s camera – that way you will be sure to get all the important information without making any potential mistakes in copying it down.

You should also do the same with their driver’s license, vehicle registration card, and vehicle license plate.

If you did get their insurance information at the scene, but misplaced it after the fact, you can request a copy of the police report, which will include this information. 

What to Do When the Other Driver Refuses to Give You Their Insurance Information

The best thing to do in this circumstance is sit tight and wait. When the police officer arrives to file the accident report, they will collect the other driver’s insurance information. You can then request that information from the police officer or find it in their accident report.

Tensions run high after an accident, so you should never escalate the situation by demanding the information and potentially starting a fight if the other driver is uncooperative, especially if you are already injured.

What to Do If You Decided Not to Contact the Police or Your Insurance, but Later Changed Your Mind

It happens all the time – when injuries or vehicle damage seem minor, both parties may agree to sort it out privately without involving insurance so they can avoid higher rates after a crash.

Unfortunately, it can be extremely difficult to determine the extent of your injuries or the cost of the damage to your vehicle at the scene. For example, what could seem like just a bruise could actually be torn ligaments requiring surgery to repair. This is why it’s important to always see a doctor after a crash to be evaluated, even if your injuries seem minor.

However, it is possible to file an insurance claim days after the accident, although there is a time limit. For most insurers, they require you to inform them of an accident within 7 days, although you should check your policy language to be sure. If you pass the time limit, expect to have your claim denied.

You may also be fined up to $100 or even face up to 60 days in jail if you fail to report a crash to the police within 24 hours, since Louisiana requires any crash resulting in injury or damage of more than $500 to be reported. To be safe, never leave the scene of an accident with suspected injuries or any amount of vehicle damage without calling 911 and waiting for police to arrive.

However, even if you left the scene without reporting the crash, the police or your insurance company should be able to help determine the other driver’s insurance carrier from the contact information you exchanged with them, if you did so intending to resolve it with the other party privately.

What to Do if the Other Driver Flees the Scene

Unfortunately, when the other driver flees the scene of an accident, getting their insurance information can be extremely difficult or even impossible.

Here’s what you can do to improve your chances.

  1. Write down what you can remember about their vehicle, especially the make, model, color, and license plate number, as well as any unique features, such as visible damage, modifications, and so on.
  2. Look around for witnesses. Speak to them to learn if they saw anything you may have missed, including what direction the vehicle left in. Get their contact information.
  3. Provide all this information to the police, your attorney, and your insurer.

Hopefully, the police will be able to identify the other driver in a post-accident investigation, and subsequently, their insurance details.

However, if the other driver can’t be identified, you can still apply for compensation through your own uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage or medical payments coverage, if your policy includes it.

When to Contact an Attorney for Help

As soon as a crash involves injuries, it starts to get complicated, so it never hurts to explore your legal options. It’s much better to have a lawyer on your side when your damages turn out to be bigger than you expect. In fact, the greater your damages, the less the insurance company will want to pay out on the claim, and the greater your need for experienced legal representation.

An experienced attorney can calculate what you are owed, work hard to prove you weren’t at fault for your accident, and take the claim to court if the insurance company still refuses to pay.

When You Need an Attorney, Call Dudley DeBosier

The Louisiana auto accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers know what to do after an accident, even when you weren’t able to collect the other driver’s insurance, to increase your chances of getting the compensation you deserve. And the sooner you put us on your case, the sooner we can take the stress of the crash off your shoulders.

Best of all, your initial consultation with us is always free. Contact us today.

December 7-11, 2020 Is Older Driver Safety Awareness Week

by Dudley DeBosier | December 7th, 2020

It’s an old cliché that if you get stuck behind a car going well below the speed limit, it must be an elderly driver. And while people may like to joke that older people make the worst drivers, the joke is no longer funny once it’s our own loved ones getting up there in years.

As our loved ones age, we start to worry about their safety. And for good reason: according to the CDC, drivers over the age of 75 are more likely to die in a crash than middle-aged drivers.

“Are they more likely to get into a crash?” “What happens if they do?” “What can I do to keep them safe?”

These are the questions that Older Driver Safety Awareness Week is meant to answer and bring attention to. If you’re worried about an older driver in your life, here’s how you can take action to keep them safe.

Have a Conversation With Your Loved One About Their Driving

In some ways, older drivers as an age group are safer drivers than others.

Older drivers are more likely to:

  • Wear a seatbelt
  • Only drive when conditions are safest (in daylight with clear weather)
  • Not drink and drive
  • Not text and drive
  • Not speed

However, older drivers also may have worsening vision or hearing, as well as slower reaction times or more difficulty controlling the vehicle. That means they are less able to recognize and respond to emergency driving situations in time to prevent a crash.

If your older loved one has recently been involved in a minor crash or received a traffic ticket, then now’s a good time to discuss their driving capabilities.

These conversations should always be approached delicately, because older drivers often feel that losing their ability to drive also means losing their ability to live independently. When that happens, they may not want to accept that changes to their driving routine are necessary. Make your conversations solution-focused.

Plan Ahead for Changes That Can Affect Driving

As we grow older, we often begin to find we have more difficulty doing things we used to easily be able to do before, both physically and mentally. Unfortunately, while there isn’t much we can do to stop the effects of the aging process, we can plan for it and plan around it.

For example, knowing that eyesight tends to grow worse with age, make sure your older family members get an eye exam at least once a year, and suggest driving only during daylight hours when weather conditions are clear.

Planning routes and knowing where they will park ahead of time can also reduce stress on elderly drivers and make it so they don’t need to make any sudden traffic maneuvers that could increase their risk of an accident.

Regular driving checkups are also important. Make sure your loved one can reach all vehicle controls and pedals, all mirrors are adjusted to their eyeline, all lights are working, and all tires are properly inflated and have a safe amount of tread.

If they are suffering from injuries, infirmities, or conditions like arthritis that make it painful or difficult to drive, there are also a number of adaptive devices and technologies that can be purchased to make it easier.

  • If your loved one has difficulty entering or exiting a vehicle, they should consider a removeable support bar (which can be attached to the door latch), swiveling seat cushion, or swing-out seat.
  • If your loved one has trouble reaching up and across their body, they should consider attaching a pull ribbon to their seatbelt to make it easier to put on.
  • If your loved one has difficulty reaching or pressing the pedals, they should consider adding pedal extenders or installing hand controls.
  • If your loved one has difficulty twisting around or finds it painful to turn their head, they should consider installing extra wide mirrors and a backup camera.
  • If your loved one finds themselves becoming lost or more easily confused, they should consider a subscription to a navigation and emergency assistance system such as OnStar.

Finally, ask your loved one to speak to their doctor to make sure any medications they may be taking do not interfere with their ability to drive.

Ways to Stay Active Without a Car

Without access to transportation, elderly people often experience social isolation, depression, and the feeling that they’ve lost control over their lives. But losing one’s ability to drive does not have to mean a loss of independence.

  • Find rides with family, friends, or neighbors. If your loved one doesn’t want to be dependent on the goodwill of others to be driven somewhere, they could consider “paying” for rides with chores of similar value, such as signing for packages or feeding a pet for a neighbor who works during the day in exchange for a ride.
  • Explore public transportation options. Some grocery stores, malls, and places of worship offer transportation services such as bus lines to seniors and others who can’t easily get there themselves.
  • Use rideshare services. Services like Uber and Lyft are an increasingly popular way to get around for those who can’t drive themselves for on-demand rides from most anywhere at most any time of day.
  • Use volunteer driver programs. Check for volunteer driving programs in your area, which often offer complimentary transportation to the elderly and disabled to doctors’ appointments, shopping centers, the bank and post office, and more.
  • Relocate to a walkable community. If your loved one lives in an area that requires a car to get around, it may be time to think about moving if driving is no longer a safe option. It does not necessarily even mean they need to move into an assisted living center, if they can reach major destinations such as the grocery store, social club, etc., without the need for a car.

If Your Elderly Loved One Has Been Injured in a Car Accident Through No Fault of Their Own, We Want to Help

The elderly often experience far worse injuries in auto accidents than other age groups, making them some of the most vulnerable drivers on the road. If your loved one has been injured, their health and quality of life may be at serious risk, and they will likely need significant compensation to cover their medical bills, pain, and suffering.

When their accident is not their fault, senior drivers don’t deserve to be stuck dealing with this kind of significant financial debt on their own. They deserve compensation. And our Louisiana car accident lawyers want to help get it for them. Contact us today for a free case review.

Insurers Found to Use Unsafe Repairs Following Car Accidents

by Dudley DeBosier | November 19th, 2020

When a motor vehicle collision occurs, we often depend on our insurance policy to cover the expenses. It’s important to remember though, insurance companies are businesses looking to make a profit.

Because they make less the more they pay on claims, they may not always have their customers’ best interests at heart. This is true not only when they deny injury claims, but also when they try to pay as little as possible to repair your car after a crash.

Unfortunately, insurers trying to cut costs when repairing something as complex as a car or truck could end up killing you. When repairs are done cheaply rather than correctly, you could easily end up in another accident. No one wants to have something on their car re-break at 70 MPH on the highway.

Why and How Unsafe Repairs Happen

Louisiana state insurance requirements state all drivers should carry a minimum amount of coverage to handle expenses in the event of an accident. Despite consistently paying policy premiums, many motorists have found insurance companies utilized cheap or dangerous parts and labor to repair their vehicles after an accident.

Some of the practices employed by insurers to lower repair costs include using refurbished and used parts. Many of these parts have been taken off vehicles that were damaged in other crashes. Using shortcuts to reduce the time and labor of a repair are also common practices.

CNN News reports insurance companies guide customers to repair centers that will abide by the insurer’s repair demands, what’s known “steering,” even if those demands mean the vehicle will not be repaired correctly. This practice led more than 500 garages from across 36 states to file a lawsuit against top insurers who have been coercing them to skimp on repairs, claiming the business practices of these insurers are not only unethical, but unsafe as well.

What You Can Do

After a crash, your insurer will provide you with a list of its “preferred” auto repair shops for you to take your vehicle to. However, you are not required to use any of these shops. You have a legal right to take your vehicle to any auto repair shop you like after a crash, and your auto insurance can’t refuse to pay for your repairs just because you didn’t pick a shop they want.

However, if you choose to use a shop not recommended by the insurance company, prepare to be a bit more “hands-on” with the repair process than you would be otherwise, since the insurance company and repair shop will more than likely argue about price. That means asking questions to make sure you know what is being done to your car.

  1. Read the reviews for the repair shop. Make sure to check multiple sources, including Yelp, Google reviews, Better Business Bureau, and Carwise, or ask for recommendations from people you trust.
  2. Ask about the shop’s warranty on repairs. If your car breaks down again after getting collision damage repaired, and the reason is because the repairs weren’t done correctly, your insurance should pay to get the vehicle repaired again. However, the insurance company may try to claim they will not cover the repairs because you didn’t use one of their preferred shops. But you may not need to argue with the insurance company at all, because just about any reputable auto shop will offer a lifetime warranty on their repairs.
  3. Request only OEM parts. OEM stands for “original equipment manufacturer,” a.k.a. the manufacturer that made the parts that came on your vehicle when it rolled off the assembly line. So if you drive a Ford, this means new Ford parts, not generic parts, and not recycled parts.
  4. Ask that all repairs follow the manufacturer guidelines. Otherwise, the insurer may ask the shop to use a quicker, cheaper (and usually less safe and effective) method of repair, even if cutting corners puts you in danger.

Hopefully these tips will ensure you don’t use unsafe parts for your vehicle. Know that when it comes to dealing with insurance companies, you almost always have more flexibility than they lead you to believe.

When Your Car Is Wrecked, AND You’re Injured, It Can Get Even More Complicated

Getting your car repaired after a crash is expensive, but getting injured in a car accident is even more expensive. And since you aren’t (or shouldn’t be) the one footing the bill, the insurance company will be even more motivated to pay less or try to deny responsibility altogether after an injury-causing crash.

Knowing how insurance companies use “steering” to cheap out on car repairs only highlights the need to have an experienced Louisiana personal injury lawyer by your side if you have an insurance dispute stemming from a car, truck, or motorcycle accident. Contact Dudley DeBosier to let us help you get on the road to recovery today.

This article was originally published in February 2015. It has been updated to make all information current. 

Why Your Car Crash Risk Has Gone UP During the Pandemic

by Dudley DeBosier | November 16th, 2020

If you’ve been driving to work or the store recently and noticed that the people around you seem to be driving even worse than before, it’s not just you. And it’s not that quarantine has put other drivers out of practice either.

The coronavirus pandemic means that there are less drivers on the roads, but that reduced traffic has also made the drivers who are out and about more reckless than before. Specifically, the culprit is speeding.

At the height of lockdown, national traffic dropped by as much as 60%. Since lockdown orders have lifted, traffic levels have increased to just below normal, or about 10-20% less than what they were at this point last year.

However, less traffic means less congestion, which typically forces people to drive at slower speeds. And while that’s good for drivers’ commutes, it’s definitely not good for drivers’ safety.

Drivers being ticketed during the pandemic are regularly driving more than 20 MPH over the posted speed limit, and according to the Washington Post, some cities are seeing drivers going more than double the posted speed limit.

In fact, drivers are being reported as reaching speeds of 100 MPH 20% more often than pre-pandemic levels, according to Arity, a driving analytics company.

Traffic Deaths Have Gone Up All Over the Country

While minor or no injury crashes have decreased nationally since the start of the pandemic, serious and fatal crashes have either remained at the same level or have actually increased.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT) for early 2020 was 1.25, compared to 1.06 for the same period in 2019. In the second quarter, the fatality rated jumped to 1.4.

This is a disturbing reversal, considering 2019 was the third year in a row with fewer traffic deaths. However, the combination of less congestion and police departments dialing back traffic stops in light of the COVID-19 pandemic appears to have undone these efforts to reduce traffic fatalities.

Is it Just Speeding?

It’s not just speeding that’s making roads more dangerous, although that seems to be the primary cause of the increased number of traffic deaths.

More people are also driving while under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

When hospitals and morgues tested the blood of people involved in fatal crashes throughout the pandemic, alcohol was found 26.9% of the time (compared to 21.3% pre-COVID), cannabinoids were found 31.2% of the time (compared to 21.4% pre-COVID), and opioids were found 12.9% of the time (compared to 7.6% pre-COVID).

Overall, fatal crashes involved at least one active drug 64.7% of the time, compared to 50.8% pre-COVID.

Driving in the Pandemic Safety Reminders

Lockdown may have lifted, but many people are still working from home and avoiding going out as often due to the pandemic, which means less traffic than you may typically be used to.

However, that doesn’t mean it’s safe to ignore precautions you would normally take when you get behind the wheel, such as:

  • Always wear a seatbelt – Buckling up can reduce your risk of serious injury by 50%!
  • Never use your phone while driving – You could cover the length of a football field in the time it takes to read a single text, which is more than enough time and distance to get into an accident.
  • Stay the speed limit – Speed limits are set to give people enough time to react to road and traffic conditions. Ignoring them makes it easier to lose control of your vehicle or be unable to react in time to prevent a crash.
  • Never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol – It may sound like an exaggeration,  but even one drink can make you an unsafe driver by lowering inhibitions (making you more likely to drive recklessly) and slowing your reflexes (making to harder to react to prevent a crash).

Injured in a Wreck in Louisiana? Call Dudley DeBosier Today

Reduced traffic is no excuse for ignoring traffic laws, especially when those actions cause others to get hurt. If you’ve been injured in a crash caused by someone else, our Louisiana car accident attorneys ready to help.

We’ll work hard to get you the compensation you deserve, while practicing COVID-19 precautions, so you can focus on recovering from your injuries without worry.

6 Types of Auto Insurance You May Not Know About

by Dudley DeBosier | October 28th, 2020

A Guide to Auto Insurance Coverage in Louisiana

Most people are only concerned about two things when shopping for auto insurance. “Do I have enough to satisfy the legal requirement?” and “am I getting the best rate possible?” But focusing solely on those two concerns means that they aren’t always paying attention to what they’re actually paying for (or not paying for).

Everyone likes to save money on their car insurance, including us, but sometimes it makes sense to pay a little more to get a little extra protection, even if you can get away with paying only the bare minimum of coverage.

Too many times, we’ve had clients get into an accident and think their insurance will take care of their expenses, only to find out that the “great” insurance they thought they had doesn’t actually cover much at all.

To make sure that doesn’t happen to you, we’re going to walk through the six types of auto insurance coverage you can buy in Louisiana, and how they each work.

Full Coverage

“Full coverage” is often misleading, because it sounds like you are being covered for everything under the sun, right? What it really means is that you have the full coverage required by law, which in Louisiana is:

  • $15,000 bodily injury per person
  • $30,000 bodily injury per accident
  • $25,000 property damage

All of the above amounts are liability coverage only. Liability coverage means liability to others, and it will compensate other people if you cause a collision and injure them or damage their vehicle.

It will also protect and insulate you from being personally responsible for their damages up to the limits of your insurance policy, but will not compensate you for your own damages – neither your medical expenses nor the damage to your car.

Uninsured or Underinsured Coverage

Commonly referred to as “UM coverage,” this coverage will compensate you if you are in a collision that is not your fault and the other driver is unable to pay all or any of your damages. UM coverage includes both bodily injury coverage if you are injured and property damage coverage if your vehicle is damaged.

In an uninsured situation, it will be the only coverage in effect if the at-fault party did not have any insurance. In an underinsured situation, it will take effect once the at-fault party’s policy limits are exhausted. For example, if the person who hit you had the minimum amount of legally required coverage of $15,000 bodily injury liability, but your medical bills wind up being $30,000, that is when you’d want this type of coverage.

Medical Payments Coverage

Also known as “Med Pay,” this coverage provides a pre-determined amount – typically $1,000, $2,500 or $5,000, depending on your policy – that will help pay any medical bills you might incur as a result of a collision, regardless of who was at fault, up to the limits of your Med Pay policy. It will usually cover not only the driver but also any passengers in the vehicle that were injured as well.

Collision Coverage

This is a non-fault-based coverage that will help you pay for repairs to your vehicle for collision-related damage, even if you were at fault. Normally, there is a deductible you must pay or have deducted from the damage estimate. Your coverage will then pay for any vehicle repairs above and beyond your deductible amount.

Comprehensive Coverage

This coverage functions much the same way as collision, except that it covers any non-collision related damage such as vandalism, theft, and weather-related damage like flooding or wind damage. Again, you would pay or have your deductible amount deducted from the damage estimate, but your comprehensive policy would then pay for any repairs above and beyond that amount.

Rental Coverage

This is another common and useful optional coverage. No, this isn’t the insurance the rental company tries to get you to buy when you rent a car. This coverage comes from your own vehicle insurance, and will pay for you to rent a car to get around with if your vehicle is being repaired.

Normally, your insurance will pay for a rental car for either a specified period of time, like 30 days, OR up to a specified amount of money, like $1,000, whichever is less. So it is usually in your best interest to select an inexpensive rental vehicle because you may use up the amount of coverage before your personal vehicle is out of the shop.

So, To Recap

  • Liability coverage will only pay for the other person’s expenses, and none of your own.
  • Uninsured/underinsured coverage pays your medical bills and vehicle damage if the other driver was at fault but can’t pay due to lack of adequate insurance coverage.
  • Med Pay coverage will pay some (but probably not all) of your medical expenses, regardless of who was at fault.
  • Collision coverage pays for collision damage to your car, while comprehensive coverage pays for all other damage.
  • Rental coverage will pay for a rental car after an accident until your vehicle is repaired.

Insurance Refusing to Pay? Let Us Take Over

At Dudley DeBosier, we’ve heard every excuse in the book from the insurance company, and we know exactly how to respond. After an accident, contact our Louisiana car accident lawyers.

We have many resources at our disposal to help accident victims get the full amount of compensation they are owed after car crashes that weren’t their fault. And best of all, your initial consultation is always free.

What Vehicle Owners Need to Know During Hurricane Season

by Dudley DeBosier | October 26th, 2020

It’s hurricane season, and Louisiana has already seen damage. But information on how to prepare and protect yourself and your vehicle is as important as ever.

We’ve compiled some of the most important information car owners need to know before, during, and after a hurricane hits.

How to Prep Your Car for Hurricanes

Whether you are hunkering down for the storm or are waiting for evacuation orders, it is important to make sure you are ready for whatever comes next. Following these tips can mean the difference between being prepared, and scrambling to protect your vehicle from hurricane damage at the last minute, potentially putting yourself at risk in the process.

  • Make sure your gas tank is full and your battery has a full charge.
  • Check that your windshield wipers are functioning and your tires have a safe amount of tread.
  • Take photos of your car from all sides, so any damage potentially sustained from the hurricane can be clearly seen not to have been pre-existing.
  • Place important documents, such as the vehicle title, registration, and insurance, in a waterproof bag.
  • Pack an emergency supply kit with food, water, first-aid supplies, extra clothes, a flashlight with extra batteries, physical maps, and external chargers for your phone.
  • Close all windows, the sunroof (if applicable), and cover with a car cover (if you own one).
  • If parking outside, park on high ground away from trees and powerlines, and against a building that can provide protection from high winds.
  • If parking in a garage, remove hanging items or items from shelves that could fall and damage your car, and place them on the ground. Depending on whether you believe you will need to evacuate, backing into the garage can make it easier and faster to get out, while parking parallel to the garage door can help shore up the door.

How to Safely Evacuate by Car in a Hurricane

If you need to evacuate through a hurricane-damaged area, or while the hurricane is ongoing, follow these safety measures:

  • Be prepared to potentially spend a day or more in your car. Bring blankets in case you need to sleep in your vehicle.
  • Never drive over a downed power line.
  • Never drive through water – standing water could be much deeper than it appears, and as little as a foot of water could cause your vehicle to float and be carried away by underlying currents.
  • If your vehicle becomes trapped in rising water and you are unable to restart it, immediately abandon it and flee for higher ground. If you are unable to leave your vehicle safely, call 911.

What to Do If Your Car Is Flooded

If your vehicle was exposed to flood water in a hurricane, it is likely to have suffered severe damage and may even be considered totaled by your insurance company and need to be replaced. However, before it can be determined whether your car can be saved, you need to follow these steps.

  • Get your car out of water as soon as possible.
  • Don’t attempt to start the car until it’s been thoroughly cleaned and inspected. Attempting to start the car could cause further damage if there is still water in the engine.
  • Contact your insurance company and tell them the highest level of water exposure in the vehicle.
  • Remove the seats to help the carpet dry faster.
  • Use a wet/dry vacuum and towels to soak up water inside the vehicle.
  • Flush and replace all liquids, oil, and lubricants, and replace all filters and gaskets.
  • Bring your vehicle for a thorough inspection of all mechanical components to check for water damage.

Be Careful When Car-Buying After a Major Hurricane

Buyer beware when shopping for a used car after a major hurricane, even if you live outside of the area affected! Flood damaged cars don’t always end up off the market, even if they’ve been totaled by your insurer – they could be repaired then shipped outside of their original region to be resold to unsuspecting buyers.

Although cars that have been totaled and rebuilt are supposed to be issued a new “salvage” title that plainly declares if they were flood-damaged, some use obscure letter or number codes to do so. Other times, rebuilt cars are incorrectly issued clean titles.

Even if a car has been dried out and looks fine, that doesn’t mean it’s safe to drive. Floods can damage vital electronics like the airbag controller, corrode major mechanical parts including the engine, cause rust and mold, and more.

You can also look for evidence of prior flood damage, including:

  • Musty smell to the carpets
  • Visible waterline on lens of headlights
  • Evidence that the seat mounting screws have been removed (which could indicate the seats were removed to dry the carpet)
  • Mud in difficult-to-clean places, such as the gaps between the panels in the trunk and under the hood, where mud wouldn’t typically accumulate

If you suspect the vehicle you are considering purchasing may have been in a flood, Carfax offers a free flood damage check as well.

Dudley DeBosier Helps Injured Louisianans

If you’ve been injured in an accident, you don’t deserve to be swamped by your medical bills or suffer from lost wages as you recover, especially when you were hurt through no fault of your own.

Let Dudley DeBosier help you. Contact our firm today for a free case consultation.

What to Do if You Witness a Car Accident

by Dudley DeBosier | September 21st, 2020

Roughly six million car crashes occur in the U.S. every year. That’s nearly 16,500 crashes every single day! At those numbers, if you haven’t been in an accident yourself, chances are high you’ve seen one happen, or will at some point in the future.

And because motor vehicle crashes have a high risk of causing serious injuries, you may be wondering what you should do when you witness a crash. Call 911? Get out and help? Leave it to the professionals?

Read on to find out.

What to Do When You Witness a Crash

As a witness, you have no legal responsibility to stop and help after a crash, but if you choose to do so, your first priority is to provide assistance only when it does not cause harm to yourself or anyone involved in the crash.

Get out of harm’s way. After a crash,there may bebroken glass and other debris scattered across the road. If you are driving, pull over onto the shoulder or into a parking lot a safe distance away from the crash scene, leaving room for emergency vehicles to get around you, and only exit your vehicle if it is safe to do so. 

Call 911. Never assume someone else has already called 911 unless you see first responders on the scene.While the people involved in a crash may call 911 themselves, they may be unable to do so if they are severely injured, trapped, or unconscious. 

Don’t move victims or offer unqualified medical assistance. This is best left to the professionals, as moving an injured person could make their injuries worse, and EMTs can often arrive in minutes after being alerted to a crash. If a victim is bleeding heavily, applying pressure to wounds using a clean cloth or towel can help until paramedics arrive.

Do offer other forms of help. This can be as simple as offering water, a pen and paper to take down insurance information, or the use of your phone so the victim can call friends or family.

Wait for the police to arrive and give a statement. Car crashes are chaotic events for the people involved, and they may not be able to accurately describe what happened or how it happened, especially if they are in pain from an injury. As an outside observer, your account of what occurred can help determine who was responsible for the crash.

Offer your contact information to one of the drivers. As a witness, the insurance companies involved may want to speak to you to help determine liability, especially if one of the drivers is contesting the information presented in the police report. 

Keep calm and don’t get too involved. Car accidents can be tense scenes, and police and emergency responders need plenty of room to work, assist victims, collect evidence, and file their reports. Stay out of their way and be ready to leave after you’ve spoken with the responding officer and the drivers, if necessary.

If You or Someone You Loved is Hurt in a Crash, Call Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers

At Dudley DeBosier, we have years of experience helping people after serious vehicle collisions and wrecks. We also understand the importance of hearing from witnesses and compiling other forms of evidence quickly before it’s lost. When you hire our firm, we will handle the paperwork and dealing with the insurance company so you can focus solely on getting better. And we never charge you for our services unless we win. Contact us today for a free case review.

What Happens When You’re Injured in a Car Accident in a Parking Lot?

by Dudley DeBosier | September 14th, 2020

As many as one in every five car accidents occur in parking lots. Many people don’t treat parking lot accidents seriously, because they tend to be low-speed collisions. However, it is wrong to assume no one ever gets hurt in these types of accidents.

Being struck at just 15 mph has the same effect on a human body as falling seven feet! People in cars can suffer bruises, sprains, whiplash, and airbag-related injuries such as facial fractures.

Pedestrians who are struck by cars in parking lots can suffer far worse injuries, including traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), broken bones, neck and back injuries, internal organ damage, and even death. When these types of accidents happen, the victims deserve compensation.

How Do Parking Lot Accidents Happen?

Drivers are probably more distracted when exiting or entering a parking lot than at any other time. According to one National Safety Council survey, more than half of drivers use their phones to call, text, email, or check social media while driving through parking lots, and nearly two-thirds of drivers program their GPS while driving in parking lots.

In addition to keeping their eyes peeled for open spots, drivers may also be busy checking their shopping list, talking to passengers, digging through their purse, or any number of other actions that take their eyes off of watching out for pedestrians and other vehicles.

Other common causes of accidents include:

  • Drivers failing to obey speed limits or stop signs in parking lots
  • Drivers driving outside of designated lanes in parking lots
  • Drivers failing to yield right-of-way
  • Drivers failing to look for pedestrians or other vehicles before backing out of a parking spot, or pedestrians failing to watch for moving vehicles
  • Drivers and pedestrians assuming parking lot collisions are always minor, and acting more carelessly than they usually would

What to Do After an Injury in a Parking Lot

If you’ve been injured as either a driver, passenger, or pedestrian in a parking lot collision, you should follow the same steps as you would in any other type of accident.

  1. Get medical attention.
  2. Call the police to file a report. 
  3. Exchange contact information with the other party and any witnesses.
  4. If you are able, take pictures of the scene of the collision, and any vehicle damage and injuries. 

However, there are a few important differences for accidents in parking lots you should also take into consider.

  • Police may not respond to an accident in a parking lot, so it’s even more important to gather your own evidence at the scene.
  • Parking lots and garages may have security personnel who can act as witnesses, and security cameras that can provide evidence to who was at fault.
  • Because parking lots and garages, unlike roads, are private property, you may be able to file a premises liability claim against the property owner to get compensation if confusing or inadequate signage, poorly marked spaces, or bad lot design contributed to the accident.

If You’ve Been Hit by a Car in the Parking Lot, Call Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers

Don’t let the insurance adjuster claim that car accidents in parking lots aren’t severe enough to warrant compensation. If you’ve been injured through no fault of your own, you should never have to pay those medical bills out of pocket.

At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, we’ll review the details of your case with you for free, and if you decide to hire us, you’ll pay us nothing unless we win. Contact us today for your free case consultation.

The Dangers of Driving With a Dog in the Car

by Dudley DeBosier | August 17th, 2020

If seeing a dog hanging its head out of a car window brings a smile to your face, you’re not alone. Dogs are man’s best friend after all.

Whether they’re taking their furry friends to a dog park, the pet store, or simply along on errands, most pet owners have brought their dogs along on car rides at some point.

However, an unrestrained dog in your vehicle can significantly increase your risk of an accident, and the risk of injury to your dog!

What the Statistics Say About Dogs in Cars

  • 84% of pet owners have driven with their dogs in the car, but only 16% use any form of pet restraint system (AAA).
  • When pets are unrestrained and free to roam the cabin, drivers report being distracted more than twice as often, and they make more than twice as many dangerous driving moves (Volvo).
  • More than half of pet owners take their hands off the wheel to pet their dogs while driving if the animals are in the car (AAA).
  • One in five pet owners have to take their hand off the wheel while driving to prevent their dogs from climbing into the front seat of the car (AAA).
  • 17% of pet owners let their dogs sit in their lap while they drive (AAA).
  • Pet owners are more than three times as likely to use a pet restraint system in the car after becoming aware of how unrestrained pets can injure themselves or others (AAA).
  • 71% of pet owners say they would purchase a vehicle with built-in pet restraints (Volvo).

Why You Should Always Restrain Your Dog in the Car

Although you don’t need to ban your dog from the car completely, it’s important to make sure that if you do bring them anywhere, they should always be properly restrained in either a carrier, with a harness or seat belt intended for use by dogs, or behind a barrier to prevent them from accessing the front seat. 

When dogs and other pets are allowed to freely roam the cabin, they often want to be where you are! And this means:

  • Sitting in their owner’s lap while they are driving
  • Pawing or nudging at the driver
  • Blocking the view out of the passenger side window
  • Standing on the center console
  • Stepping on the gear shift
  • Jumping into the footwell and blocking the brake and accelerator

Any of these behaviors is extremely distracting and dangerous, especially when the car is in motion.

Car Accidents Involving Dogs

Whether your car accident was caused by your dog, a dog in another vehicle, or something else, having an unrestrained pet in the car can be dangerous for you and your pet.

In a crash, unrestrained animals can become dangerous projectiles, as they will be thrown by the force of the crash, likely injuring themselves and others in the car. If the dog is sitting in the front seat, they could also be seriously injured or killed by deployed airbags.

After a crash, an injured dog could also escape the vehicle. This puts the animal at risk of either being struck by another vehicle or causing another crash as other drivers swerve to avoid the animal. Dogs have also been known to aggressively defend their owners after crashes, preventing emergency responders from reaching them to treat injuries.

Any way you look at it, the best thing you can do for yourself and your beloved pet is to make sure they are always properly restrained whenever you let them get in the car. They’ll appreciate being safe and sound a lot more than being allowed to hang their heads out the window, we promise.

After an Accident, Call Dudley DeBosier

After a car accident, you will be facing a lot of bills – medical bills, repair bills, and especially all the daily costs of living you can’t afford if you’re unable to work due to your injuries.

When an accident isn’t your fault, we believe it isn’t right to be forced into debt over expenses caused by someone else’s negligence. That’s why we fight for accident victims by making sure insurance companies don’t get away with lowball offers or rejections.

If you have been in an accident, contact our firm today to learn what we can do for you.

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over This August

by Dudley DeBosier | August 10th, 2020

The summer months through Labor Day are among those with the most car accidents attributed to drunk or “buzzed” driving. Law enforcement is well aware of this trend, which is why local police departments and highway patrol will be making extra effort to catch drivers who may be driving under the influence of alcohol.

Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death in the U.S. In 2018, someone was hurt in a car crash nearly every 7 seconds, and someone was killed in a crash nearly every 14 minutes. That same year, Louisiana ranked ninth in the nation for most drunk driving deaths.

If you are planning on driving after drinking any amount of alcohol, it is important to keep in mind how drinking can increase your risk of a costly ticket, jail time, and serious injury. Too many people acknowledge that drunk driving is dangerous but do so anyway, and it only takes one mistake to ruin your life, or end someone else’s.

How Your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Affects Your Driving Ability

It is illegal to drive with a BAC of 0.08% or higher in all 50 states.

According to one survey, a staggering 31% of people age 18-34 said that they believe some people are “good” at driving when drunk. However, studies show that in actuality, drivers with a BAC of 0.08% are four times more likely to crash than drivers with a BAC of 0.00%. For many people, a BAC of 0.08%, which is considered legally intoxicated, may be as few as two drinks.

In fact, any amount of alcohol you consume will affect your driving ability, and you may be too impaired to safely drive even before you feel buzzed.

  • When your BAC is 0.02%, you’ll have a harder time tracking moving objects (such as other vehicles and pedestrians) and experience difficulty performing two tasks at once.
  • When your BAC is 0.05%, you’ll suffer reduced coordination and have slower response times to emergency driving situations.
  • When your BAC is 0.08%, you won’t be able to accurately judge how fast you are driving, may not notice traffic signals or street signs, and will easily lose your concentration.
  • When your BAC is 0.10%, you’ll have trouble keeping your vehicle in one lane, and may have trouble braking appropriately.
  • When your BAC is 0.15%, you’ll have substantial trouble controlling your vehicle, and may not even be aware of everything you are looking at or hearing.

If a police officer believes you are “noticeably impaired,” you can still be charged with an OWI even if your BAC is below 0.08%, as long as it is above 0.00%.

What is the Penalty for an OWI in Louisiana?

After being convicted of Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) in Louisiana, if it’s the first offense, the driver will face:

  • $300-$1,000 fine ($750-$1,000 if BAC is 0.20% or more)
  • 10 days to 6 months in jail
  • 12 months suspension of their driver’s license (24 months if BAC is 0.20% or more) with the possibility of receiving a restricted hardship license with the installation of an ignition interlock device on their vehicle
  • Possibility of 32 hours of community service
  • Possibility of court-ordered substance abuse and driver improvement programs

For a second offense, drivers will face:

  • $750-$1,000 fine
  • 30 days to 6 months in jail
  • 24 months suspension of their driver’s license (48 months if BAC is 0.20% or more) with the possibility of receiving a restricted hardship license with the installation of an ignition interlock device on their vehicle after 45 days
  • Possibility of 240 hours of community service
  • Possibility of court-ordered substance abuse and driver improvement programs

For a third offense, drivers will be charged with a felony, and will face:

  • $2,000 fine
  • 1-5 years in jail
  • 36 months suspension of their driver’s license with the possibility of receiving a restricted hardship license with the installation of an ignition interlock device on their vehicle after 45 days
  • Enrollment in a substance abuse program
  • Possibility of the seizure and sale of their vehicle

Have You Been Injured in an Accident with a Drunk Driver?

If you or someone you love was seriously injured or killed in a crash with a drunk driver, you can’t get the compensation you need to pay your medical expenses and lost wages through the criminal conviction of the drunk driver.

However, with the help of an experienced auto accident lawyer in Louisiana, you may be able to recover what you need to cover your accident-related expenses, and compensate your pain and suffering, through a personal injury lawsuit.

Our team is always available to listen. Call our firm 24/7 to request a free consultation with a lawyer at our firm after injuries caused by a drunk driver, and we guarantee that if we don’t win your case, you pay us nothing.

What to Do If You Didn’t See a Doctor After Your Injury

by Dudley DeBosier | August 3rd, 2020

When you are seriously injured after an accident, there is no question that you need to go to the hospital. But many Louisiana residents are injured in minor crashes and other small accidents every day without getting medical treatment afterward.

Maybe you weren’t in pain, or you thought your injuries were minor and would get better on their own, so you hoped to avoid an unnecessary doctor’s bill. This is common!

But there’s a reason why we strongly urge our clients and accident victims, no matter how minor their injuries may seem initially, to see a doctor right away. That’s because injuries can worsen over time, and when they don’t get better on their own, these unfortunate victims will have made it significantly harder to get the compensation they need by refusing medical treatment.

Have I Lost My Right to File a Claim If I Didn’t See a Doctor After My Accident?

No, you can file a personal injury lawsuit anytime up to one year from the date of the accident in Louisiana.

However, it will be harder to win your claim if you didn’t get medical treatment immediately after the accident. This is because it will be more difficult to prove that your injuries occurred during the accident (and thus are the fault of the defendant) and not afterward.

For example, if you only see a doctor after months of pain following a car crash, the insurance company will be highly skeptical if you file a compensation claim then. That’s because, from their perspective, your injuries could have many other causes and could have even occurred weeks after the crash—and you’ll have no evidence to suggest otherwise. 

Additionally, you likely will not be able to get as much compensation as you otherwise would have, as the insurance company will argue that you are not as injured as you claim or you would have seen a doctor sooner. But since injuries can worsen over time, you may actually need more compensation to treat your injuries.

What Should I Do If My Injuries Don’t Get Better on Their Own After an Accident?

As soon as you notice your injuries are not getting better or your pain is getting worse, see a doctor. Regardless of whether it has been just a few days or more than a month after the accident, seeing a doctor as soon as possible is still the best thing you can do for your case and your health.

This will get you treatment to prevent your injuries from getting worse, and reduce the amount of time and number of activities that could be blamed for your injuries aside from the accident.

Why Injuries Show Delayed Symptoms

One reason why you might not feel injured after a crash is simply because car crashes are frightening and chaotic. The state of shock and adrenaline your body produces during and after a crash can temporarily mask the pain of an injury. This is similar to the way an athlete may play through an injury, not having realized they were hurt until after the game.

The type of injury you suffered may also be a reason why your injuries aren’t immediately obvious at the scene of the accident. If you’ve ever had an especially tough workout at the gym, you’ll know that soreness usually peaks a day or even two days later! This is also true of soft tissue injuries to the back, shoulders, and neck caused from the g-forces of a car crash (commonly called whiplash).

Concussions may also be hard to recognize right away when they don’t cause loss of consciousness. Some symptoms include inability to concentrate, sleeping more or less than usual, headaches, nausea, and a general lack of energy.

Internal bleeding and organ damage are life-threatening conditions that can be caused by car crashes, but as symptoms can be dismissed as simple bruising or swelling around the abdomen, they can also go undiagnosed for days.

Dudley DeBosier Can Help

If you were injured in an accident through no fault of your own and didn’t see a doctor right away, you may still be able to get the compensation you need to cover the treatment of your injuries with the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer.

Contact our firm today to speak to a lawyer about your case. Your initial consultation is always free, and we promise that if we don’t get you money, you owe us nothing.

Does Someone Always Get a Ticket After an Accident?

by Dudley DeBosier | July 27th, 2020

After a car accident in Louisiana, you are legally required to call the police if the accident resulted in injuries or caused more than $500 in damage. And after the responding officer questions both you and the other driver about what happened, they will likely write a ticket to be issued to either you or the other driver.

Police officers issue tickets when they see or believe a driver was violating the law, such as speeding, running a traffic light or stop sign, following another vehicle too closely, or driving under the influence of alcohol, to name a few possible examples.

However, it is possible for a car accident to occur and no ticket to be written.

Why Was No Ticket Written After My Car Accident?

Although this usually isn’t the case, it is possible for a crash to occur even when no traffic laws were broken. In these circumstances, the officer would have no cause to write a ticket.

A more likely reason that an officer would not write a ticket after a crash is because they were unable to determine whether either driver broke the law without having been there to witness the crash.

For example, when responding to a rear-end collision at a stop sign, the police officer can easily conclude the driver of the second car failed to come to a halt and should be written a ticket. But other crashes may not be as clear-cut.

Can I File an Injury Claim If No Ticket Was Issued After My Crash?

Absolutely! While tickets are useful evidence in proving who may have been at fault for an accident, they aren’t necessary to file a claim.

An experienced car accident attorney can still build a case that proves the other driver caused your injuries by acting negligently using other evidence, such as damage to and position of the vehicles, skid marks on the road, witness statements, and more.

What If I’m Injured in a Car Crash, But the Officer Wrote Me a Ticket?

Louisiana follows “comparative fault” doctrine when it comes to accidents that cause injuries. This means it’s possible for more than one person to be at fault for an accident, and it’s possible for both drivers in a crash to be issued tickets!

As long as you are not determined to be 100% at fault for the accident, you can still get compensation. However, your compensation will be reduced by the amount at which you are deemed at fault.

For example, if your claim is worth $10,000 but are determined to be 50% at fault, you will only be able to receive $5,000 in compensation.

That’s why it’s important to contest a ticket and consult a lawyer even in an accident that was partially your fault. Doing so may decrease the percentage of fault you are assigned and increase the amount of compensation you can get. 

Can I Get a Ticket Days After The Accident Happened?

Yes, although this is rare. This usually happens when the other person involved in the accident files a police report days later rather than in the immediate aftermath of the accident

It can also happen when the police officer completes an investigation of the accident and is able to make a judgment on who was at fault after obtaining more evidence.

When You’ve Been Injured in a Crash, Call Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers

At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, we’ve helped many Louisianans get the compensation they need to cover their medical bills, lost wages, and more after car accidents caused by other people. We know how frustrating it is to face expenses you can’t afford due to other people’s negligence, and we want to help make things right again.

Contact us today for a free case review. When you hire our team, we guarantee you’ll never owe us a cent for fighting on your behalf unless we win your claim.

Do Pedestrians Always Have the Right-of-Way in Louisiana?

by Dudley DeBosier | July 20th, 2020

Pedestrians deaths in 2019 were the highest recorded in the last 30 years, according to data collected by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA). And while traffic deaths overall increased only 2% between 2009 and 2019, pedestrian deaths rose by an estimated 60% in the same timeframe.

While these numbers are scary, what they tell us isn’t anything we don’t already know: in car accidents involving pedestrians, the pedestrians are far, far, more likely to be severely injured or killed than the occupants of the vehicle.

And when pedestrians are hit by cars, the driver is often considered at fault. But are drivers always at fault in pedestrian accidents?

The answer is no. Pedestrians typically have the right-of-way, but there are circumstances in which a pedestrian could be considered at fault or partially at fault in a traffic accident.

What Does Louisiana Law Say About Pedestrians?

Louisiana law is especially favorable to pedestrians. Even when pedestrians don’t have the right-of-way, drivers still have a legal responsibility to prevent endangering any and all pedestrians on the road.

What the Law Says Drivers Must Do

  • Drivers must take every precaution to avoid hitting pedestrians, even when they are crossing outside of crosswalks or against the light. This includes using their horns and taking evasive action in all circumstances.
  • Drivers must take extra precautions to look for and avoid hitting children, the intellectually disabled, and any obviously confused or intoxicated people who may be more likely to enter the road outside of a crosswalk.
  • Drivers must always yield to blind people using a white cane or who are accompanied by a guide dog, regardless of where they are crossing the street or what the traffic lights signal.
  • When traffic lights or stop signs are not present or functioning, vehicles must always yield to pedestrians in marked crosswalks.

What the Law Says Pedestrians Must Do

  • Pedestrians must yield right-of-way to all vehicles when crossing outside of a crosswalk.
  • It’s illegal for pedestrians to walk on a highway if sidewalks are present as an alternative option. If sidewalks aren’t present, pedestrians should only walk on the shoulder of the road facing against the flow of traffic.
  • Pedestrians can’t cross an interstate highway at any time outside of an emergency.
  • Pedestrians can’t suddenly leave a sidewalk or place of safety, such as a traffic island, and then walk or run in front of a vehicle that is close enough that it is impossible for the vehicle to take evasive accident.

Why Are Pedestrian Deaths on the Rise?

There are several reasons experts believe that pedestrian deaths have been increasing year-over-year for the last decade.

One reason is the increased popularity of light trucks and SUVs. In 2018, light trucks and SUVs accounted for nearly 70% of new vehicle sales. Studies show that pedestrians who are struck by an SUV are twice as likely to be killed as pedestrians struck by cars.

Another reason could be the increase in people using cellphones while driving. In 2018, 400 pedestrians and 77 bicyclists were killed in distracted driving crashes. 

Where and When Are Pedestrians Most at Risk?  

Most pedestrian deaths occur not on highways or in major intersections, but instead on local roads and away from intersections. These accidents are often caused by speeding, distracted, drowsy, or drunk drivers.

Traffic calming may be one method to combat this type of pedestrian accident. Traffic calming involves designing roads specifically to reduce this type of unsafe driving behavior, such as by adding speed bumps, raised medians, diverters, or curb extensions.

Pedestrian deaths are also far more likely to happen at night. Between 2009 and 2019, daytime pedestrian deaths increased by 16% while nighttime pedestrian deaths increased by 67%. When walking at night, it is important to avoid walking along or near roadways whenever possible and to wear reflective clothing to make yourself more visible to drivers.

We Help Injured Pedestrians and Their Families

If you have been severely injured or lost a loved one because of a reckless driver, you need and deserve compensation for your medical expenses and everything else you’ve lost and suffered.

Car accidents are physically painful and emotionally stressful. But when pedestrians are struck by cars, victims often suffer to an even greater degree. In circumstances like these, the last thing you need is an insurance agent trying to deny you compensation for all your expenses resulting from the accident or trying to push blame for your accident onto you.

After a pedestrian accident, contact Dudley DeBosier right away. Our consultations are always free, and our promise to you is that you will pay us nothing unless we win your case.

How Spare Tires Cause Accidents

by Dudley DeBosier | July 13th, 2020

If you’re really lucky, you’ll never have to change a flat tire on the side of the road. Unfortunately, most of us don’t get that lucky! But if you’re like most drivers, you may go many years without needing to change a flat, by which time the spare tire in or under your trunk may have outlived its usefulness and even become dangerous.

Being stranded on the side of a busy highway or interstate is not the time you want to discover that you don’t have a way to get your vehicle moving again! By periodically inspecting your spare tire, you can save yourself the headache and the potential risks of driving on a bad spare tire and avoid having to call highway assistance or a tow truck in the future.

Here’s how to know if your spare tire is safe to use.

Check to See if Your Tires Are Expired

That’s right; spare tires can expire! They’ll break down and stop working effectively the older they are, even when they haven’t been used before. Heat like we experience in Louisiana can accelerate how fast the rubber in your spare tire degrades as well. When the rubber degrades too much, it can cause a rupture in the sidewall or tread separation while you’re driving, which can cause a serious accident.

To determine how old your spare tire is (or any of your tires are!), look for the letters “DOT” stamped on the side of the tire. Following this will be a series of letters and numbers. The last four numbers indicate the month and year it was manufactured. All tires compliant with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s laws and regulations for tire manufacturing will have this information printed somewhere on them.

For example, a tire stamped with 2210 was manufactured in the 22nd week of 2010, a.k.a the first week of June in 2010. Conventional wisdom says tires should be replaced every 6-10 years. If your tire is older than 10 years, it should definitely be replaced. If your tire is at least six years old, you should examine it for signs that it may be starting to degrade. 

Signs Your Spare Tire Is Unsafe to Drive On:

  • There are cracks in the rubber.
  • There are bulges or blisters on the sidewall.
  • The tread is excessively worn.
  • The tire has been exposed to dirt, water, or sunlight for long periods (such as full-size tires mounted on the exterior of the vehicle).
  • The tire is flat or severely under the recommended air pressure (compact “donut” tires should be inflated to around 60 PSI).

What Happens When Spare Tires Are the Wrong Size?

New tires are expensive, even spare tires. However, when you find yourself with the unexpected expense of a flat or punctured spare tire that can’t be patched, don’t buy the first affordable aftermarket tire you find. 

Since compact spare tires are not intended to be driven on for days or long stretches at a time, many drivers make the mistake of thinking any tire will do.

This is a dangerous misconception, as not all spare tires fit all vehicles. Putting the wrong size spare on your car can cause serious damage to your vehicle and increase your chances of an accident.

When a tire is too wide, it can rub against other parts of your vehicle and cause damage to the fender, fuel system, electrical components, and even the tire itself.

Furthermore, when you have two tires with different heights on the same axle, it can cause massive damage to your vehicle’s differential. A differential allows your vehicle’s tires to turn at different speeds, which is necessary when making a turn. The outside wheel has a farther distance to travel, so it needs to turn faster to keep pace with the inside wheel. When a differential fails, the wheels can lock up, which is not a situation you want to experience in the middle of the highway or while driving in heavy traffic.

It’s better to do your research to find the right-sized spare for your vehicle, even if it costs a few bucks more, before you end up with an even bigger repair bill!

You should also inspect the spare tire whenever you buy a car, new or used, and regardless of whether you are buying from an individual or from a dealership, to make sure it is the right size.

We Help Drivers After Car Accidents That Weren’t Their Fault

Were you in a car accident after another driver lost control of their vehicle? Or maybe you purchased a defective tire that caused your accident. Whether your accident was the result of a negligent driver or a negligent manufacturer, Dudley DeBosier has made it our mission to help victims who are injured in car accidents through no fault of their own.

Contact our team today for a free consultation on your case.

Can You Identify Defensive Driving Tactics?

by Dudley DeBosier | June 29th, 2020

No doubt you’ve been coached to “drive defensively” by parents when getting your license, or by government and law enforcement campaigns stressing the importance of road safety. But what does it mean to drive defensively?

Defensive driving is a set of skills and strategies to help you avoid collisions.

Furthermore, practicing defensive driving isn’t only a smart thing to do, it can also help you legally and financially.

Unlike many states, Louisiana doesn’t have a point system attached to driving tickets, but that doesn’t mean moving violations aren’t added to your driving record. Racking up too many violations on your driving record  can affect your credit score, car insurance rates, and can even get your license suspended. However, you may be able to get violations removed from your driving record by taking a defensive driving course.

While our defensive driving quiz won’t get a ticket wiped off your driving record, it can give you a better idea of what are considered appropriate actions to take in a variety of situations to keep yourself and other drivers safe.

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Were you surprised by any questions on the quiz? Regardless of whether you aced it or didn’t do as well as you hoped, it never hurts to refresh your knowledge of defensive driving tactics. The Louisiana Driver’s Guide is an excellent resource for improving your driving ability and reducing your risks of being involved in an accident.

Dudley DeBosier Helps Car Accident Victims

If you’ve been involved in a car accident caused by someone else that left you with injuries you can’t afford, the experienced auto accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers can work with the insurance company on your behalf to get you the compensation you need. And if they refuse to cooperate, we won’t hesitate to take them to court.

What Are the Most Dangerous Roads in Louisiana?

by Dudley DeBosier | June 22nd, 2020

Every time you get behind the wheel of your car, you face the risk of being in an accident. As your mom or dad probably told you when you were first learning how to drive, it doesn’t matter how safe of a driver you are – it’s the other drivers you have to look out for to avoid an accident.

And in Louisiana, your risk of getting into a serious or even deadly car crash may be higher than most other places in the U.S. A 2018 survey found that Louisiana ranked 7th in the nation for deadliest roads, with 777 deaths per 100,000 people. Fatalities on our roads have been on the rise for the last decade, according to the Highway Safety Research Group at LSU.

So, what are Louisiana’s most dangerous roads, and how deadly are they?

Louisiana’s 10 Deadliest Roads

Safer America, an organization dedicated to gathering and sharing consumer safety information, recently completed a study of the most dangerous roads in Louisiana based on the number of recorded fatalities between 2015-2017.

The top 10 are:

10. US-171: 26 fatal crashes, 26 deaths

9. I-12: 25 fatal crashes, 26 deaths

8. US-165: 30 fatal crashes, 31 deaths

7. I-49: 29 fatal crashes, 37 deaths

6. US-61: 34 fatal crashes, 38 deaths

5. SR-1: 45 fatal crashes, 48 deaths

4. US-90: 50 fatal crashes, 52 deaths

3. I-20: 49 fatal crashes, 52 deaths

2. US-190: 48 fatal crashes, 54 deaths

Leading us all up to…

1. I-10: 121 fatal crashes, 136 deaths

I-10 was the only road on the list to enter triple digits, with more than double the number of fatal crashes and fatalities over the span of the three-year survey than any other road in Louisiana.

But it’s no surprise I-10 came in at first place. I-10 sees a truly enormous amount of traffic, since it connects four of the largest cities in the state – Lake Charles, Lafayette, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans  – as well as connects Louisiana to Texas and Mississippi. Between the commuters, tourists, and long-haul truckers, there’s a lot of vehicles on the road. And the more traffic there is, the more likely it is that crashes will occur.

Primary Causes of Accidents and Traffic Deaths in Louisiana

So what can you do to avoid accidents when you can’t avoid taking these roads? Practice safe driving habits as much as you can. The same factors that cause crashes on less trafficked roads are in effect here, just on a more massive scale.

  • 78% of all fatal traffic accidents in Louisiana in 2017 included one of the following factors: alcohol, aggressive driving, distraction, or failure to wear a seatbelt, according to data collected by LSU’s Highway Safety Research Group.
  • In 2017, more than 40% of all motor vehicle crashes in Louisiana were alcohol-related, according to the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission.
  • In 2018, Louisiana ranked 9th in the nation for most drunk driving-related deaths, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, up from 10th in 2017.
  • An average of 38 Louisianans die and 5,400 are injured annually due to distracted driving, according to the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission.
  • In 2015, 52% of all victims of fatal traffic accidents in Louisiana were not wearing seat belts, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • In 2019, Louisiana was ranked as having the 4th worst drivers in the nation by’s annual survey, in particular for drivers’ failure to obey traffic signals.

If You’ve Been Injured in an Accident That Wasn’t Your Fault, We Want to Help

We can’t make other drivers stop drinking and driving or obey the speed limit, but when they act recklessly and put you or your loved ones in harm’s way, we are here to help you get the compensation you need.

Whether you were hit on I-90, or in the parking lot at Rouses Market, your injuries are real. Contact us today for a free consultation, and if you decide to hire us, you don’t pay unless we win. 

What Is a “Miss-and-Run?”

by Dudley DeBosier | June 15th, 2020

No phrase fills a driver with dread quite like “hit-and-run.” Although it’s illegal to leave the scene of a crash without exchanging insurance information with the other driver, at least one hit-and-run accident occurs every minute in the U.S., according to data collected by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

Everyone has heard of hit-and-runs, but what about “miss-and-runs”? Don’t be confused by the name; miss-and-run accidents can be just as damaging and deadly as hit-and-run accidents.

This type of accident occurs when a driver (Car A) swerves to avoid another vehicle (Car B) and crashes as a result of this evasive action, with the driver of Car B continuing on without stopping. It’s essentially the same as a hit-and-run accident, but with no actual physical contact between vehicles.

Miss-and-runs are more common than you might think. Typically this happens when the driver of Car B is driving while impaired or distracted. They may deliberately flee the scene to avoid consequences, or they may not have even noticed the accident they caused!

In the insurance world, Car B is what’s known as a “phantom vehicle,” because neither the driver nor the vehicle itself can be identified.

How to Get Compensation After a Miss-and-Run Accident

Even if there was no physical contact between your vehicle and the other driver’s, if their actions directly caused the accident, such as by swerving into your lane unexpectedly, they can legally be held at fault.

But if they can’t be identified, you will need to file your compensation claim against your own uninsured or underinsured driver coverage to get payment.

To help your claim, you will also need to file a police report and call your insurance representative right away, the same as you would do if the other driver had remained at the scene.

Why It’s So Important to Get a Lawyer in Louisiana Miss-and-Run Accidents

If you’ve ever had a co-worker hit your car in the parking lot and try to deny it, there was likely still a tell-tale scrape of paint on the side of their car. After serious hit-and-run accidents, police can occasionally locate the perpetrator by the corresponding damage on that person’s vehicle. But in a miss-and-run, there is usually little or no evidence at all.

Unless you have dashcam footage that can prove there was another vehicle and that the other driver caused your crash, your insurance will try to deny your claim.

They will argue that you caused your own crash and tried to blame it on another driver and car that was not there.

The requirements for proving a phantom vehicle claim differ from state to state, and the laws in Louisiana are especially strict. They state that to recover compensation for either property damage or personal injuries after a crash caused by a phantom vehicle, “the plaintiff bears the burden of proving, through an independent and disinterested witness, that a phantom caused the accident.”

(In this situation, an “independent and disinterested witness” means someone who is not also filing a compensation claim for the same accident.)

In other words, your word alone is not enough.

This makes phantom vehicle, or miss-and-run, accidents extremely difficult to prove. However, an experienced lawyer can help build a case using testimony from passengers or even passersby who did not see the crash itself but can confirm a vehicle left the scene that matched the description the driver gave of the phantom vehicle.

We Want to Help You After a Miss-and-Run

At Dudley DeBosier, we know how to improve your chances of getting compensation in situations like these. If you or someone you love was injured in an accident caused by another driver’s reckless behavior, even if they didn’t collide with you, we want to help.

Contact our team today for a free case review.

Is Your Car Ready to Leave Quarantine?

by Dudley DeBosier | June 8th, 2020

It’s been more than two months since Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards issued a Stay-at-Home order to combat the spread of COVID-19, and some of us have been in self-quarantine for even longer. But now that the state is beginning to open up again, most of us are happy to get out and back to ordinary life again (while taking reasonable safety measures, including wearing masks).

However, while you may be more than ready to get back into your daily commute, is your car ready?

Depending on how long your vehicle has been sitting unused, it may not be as simple as turning the key to get it started again. Even leaving your car unused for only two weeks can cause battery issues.

What happens when a car sits for too long?

Your car may not start.

Your car sucks up power from the battery even when it’s turned off and parked, while driving it helps recharge the battery. That’s why most experts suggest driving your car for at least 15 minutes every two weeks to keep the battery charge healthy. But if your car doesn’t start on your first time back behind the wheel, you may need to give it a jump-start.

The tires may be flat.

Your tires are always slowly losing pressure, but this occurs faster when the vehicle isn’t driven. Your tires may even deform and develop a “flat spot” from the weight of the car pressing down on them when your car sits in place for too long.

Flat spots can usually be “driven off.” As you drive, your tires heat up and the rubber becomes more flexible, essentially molding them back into the proper shape. But depending on how long your car has been sitting, the flat spots may be permanent, and the tires may need to be replaced.

Animals may damage your vehicle.

Rodents like mice and chipmunks may crawl up in the engine compartment or the exhaust outlet to nest. While they’re in there, they tend to chew up wires. Check for visual signs of rodents, strange sounds, or bad smells before getting into the car again for the first time after quarantine.

If you see evidence of rodents in your engine compartment, disconnect your battery to avoid shocking yourself, put on gloves to protect yourself from rodent-carried diseases, and thoroughly clean the engine bay using a diluted bleach solution (1 part bleach to 9 parts water). Make sure to really drench it! Wait to reconnect the battery until the engine bay is dry.

You should also get your vehicle inspected for any other damage these tiny invaders may have caused.

Your gasoline could have gone bad.

Believe it or not, gasoline does go bad. Usually it’s not a problem, since it’s used up before this ever has a chance to happen. But if your vehicle has been sitting for a long time, a number of problems can occur.

For starters, as the fuel degrades, it becomes less effective, reducing engine performance and potentially even causing engine knocking (damage to the piston and cylinder wall of the engine). You’ll lose fuel economy and might experience stalling as well.

More dangerously, as the fuel evaporates, it can also leave behind deposits that clog up gas lines and filters (a process called “oxidation”).

Worse, if your gasoline has a high concentration of ethanol, it will attract condensation (especially if the tank wasn’t full when you parked it) and potentially even corrode your gas tank. 

A smell test will probably be able to give you an idea if your gas has gone “off.” It will smell sour and will also be a darker color. If your gas has gone bad, you may want to drain the tank and refill it with fresh gas.

Your brakes may stick.

Rust develops on brake rotors very quickly when they aren’t in use, especially if they were damp (such as after rain) when the car was parked.

The act of braking will help rub the rust off once you start driving again. Try depressing the brakes a few times before shifting out of park, then lower your window and brake a few times more times while the car is in motion. If you hear scraping, brake only gently for the first few trips, avoiding hard braking until you can no longer hear a scraping noise (indicating the rust has been worn off).

Proper Maintenance Prevents Accidents

Vehicle accidents aren’t always the fault of inattention or reckless driving. They can also happen when a vehicle isn’t maintained properly. This increases the likelihood the driver will lose control of the vehicle or be unable to avoid a collision.

All of us have to do our part to prevent accidents when possible, so before leaving quarantine, it’s important to also make sure your vehicle is working correctly and safely.

But when you’re involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault, we want to help. Call the car accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers today for a free consultation when you’ve been injured.

How to Choose the Right Bicycle for You

by Dudley DeBosier | May 18th, 2020

May is National Bike Month! The pleasant weather makes it an ideal time for bike riding. However, there’s more to buying a bike than simply pick out one that’s the right size and a color you like.

Before you spend hundreds of dollars on a bike, make sure you stop and think about what you’ll primarily be using it for. Then, depending on how you plan to use your bike, you’ll have several options to consider. You may even purchase a bike, and then swap out the seat, handlebars, or even the tires to suit your needs!

Types of Handlebars

Before we talk in depth about different types of bicycles, let’s talk about the various types of handlebars, and why they can make a big difference in your bike ride.

Drop handlebars

These are handlebars that curve downward at each end in a ‘C’-shape. This type of handlebar requires cyclists to lean forward, which creates a more aerodynamic shape and allows riders to go faster.

Flat handlebars

Flat handlebars extend straight out, allowing riders to sit upright, which is usually more comfortable. It is also very easy to attach bells, phone mounts, lights, and other accessories to this type of handlebar.

Upright handlebars

These handlebars swoop back in a wide ‘U’-shape. This type of handlebar offers great control when sitting upright, is the most comfortable on your wrists, and leaves room to place a basket at the front of the bike.

Specialized Handlebars

Other types of bike handlebars you might see are bull horn bars, which curve up and forward and are great for riding uphill but bad at making turns; aero bars, which are two parallel bars typically used in time-trial cycling; and butterfly bars, which loop around in an almost complete circle to allow a huge number of hand positions and even more space to add attachments than flat handlebars. 

Types of Bicycles

There are as many types of bikes as there are ways and places to ride them. That means the same bike that’s great for building up a sweat on weekends may not be the bike you want to use on your morning commute.

Road Bikes

Road bikes feature thin tires, lightweight frames made from aluminum or carbon fiber, and drop handlebars. Racing bikes and city bikes are examples of your typical road bike.

Road bikes are built for aerodynamics and endurance. They perform best on smooth pavement and are intended to help riders travel long distances very quickly.

Touring Bikes

Also called comfort bikes, touring bikes are considered a type of road bike because they are meant to be ridden on pavement. However, there are several important distinctions between touring bikes and other types of road bikes. 

Touring bikes often have attachment points to add accessories, such as lights, racks to carry bags or other items, water bottle holders, or mud flaps. Because of this, touring bikes typically have steel frames, which makes them slower but allows weight to be distributed more evenly so you can carry heavy items without overbalancing. They also have wider tires, a longer wheelbase, and a lower center of gravity, which make them easier to control.

Mountain Bikes

Mountain bikes feature wide tires with heavy-duty rims, partial or full suspensions, heavy-duty brakes, and multiple gears designed for steep slopes (both up and downhill). Mountain bikes are designed for riding on uneven surfaces and are a good choice for taking on trails. Although they can be used for everyday riding, they’re not the best option because they are usually heavy and slow.

Hybrid Bikes

Hybrid bikes are the best of both worlds. Partly road bike, partly mountain bike, hybrid bikes usually feature flat handlebars that let you sit comfortably, wide tires to improve handling, and stronger brakes that make it easier to stop suddenly in urban traffic. They perform well on both smooth and rough or wet surfaces, but it’s not recommended to take them truly off-road.  

Specialized Bikes

You might also consider BMX bikes, for trick riding; e-bikes, which use a small, lightweight electric motor to assist the rider; folding bikes, which as the name implies, can be folded up to take on a train or plane; fat bikes, a type of mountain bike with tires as wide as 5-in. across that is designed for riding on sand or through thick mud; and triathlon bikes, a type of racing bike for the serious cyclist. 

Women’s Bikes vs. Men’s Bikes

What’s the difference between women’s bikes and men’s bikes? It’s not a marketing scheme – women’s bikes are built differently to be more comfortable for women to ride, based on typical differences in body types between males and females.

Women’s bikes typically include:

  • A shorter distance from the ground to the seat
  • A shorter distance from the seat to the handlebars
  • Shorter and wider seats
  • Narrower handlebars
  • Shorter-reach brake levers
  • A sloping top tube in the frame instead of a horizontal tube

However, many women can comfortably ride a “man’s” bike, so don’t let these design distinctions stop you from purchasing a bike that is comfortable for you, even if it’s not labeled “for women.”

Stay Safe When Biking

Cycling is a great pastime, a great way to get around, to get exercise, or to just enjoy a nice day outside. However, when sharing the road with cars and other vehicles, cyclists face a lot of risk. Not many cities are bike-friendly, and bike accidents result in thousands of injures each year.

If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident through no fault of your own, you deserve compensation for your injuries. Our Louisiana bike accident law firm has helped hundreds of bicyclists get the money they needed for their medical bills and pain and suffering after a negligent driver harmed them. If you ever find your loved one or yourself in a similar situation, don’t hesitate to call Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers. Your consultation is always free.

What to Do When You’re Blamed for a Car Accident You Didn’t Cause

by Dudley DeBosier | April 20th, 2020

It’s an unfortunately familiar situation for many of us. You’re driving down the road when another car comes out of nowhere. Suddenly, you’ve been hit. Or maybe you slam on the brakes but can’t stop fast enough to avoid the other car.

In the best-case scenario, the worst thing that happens is some minor damage to one or both vehicles. But even accidents that don’t end with a totaled car can result in sprains, contusions, damage to the neck and spine, and other painful injuries that may take weeks or months to heal. And when you’ve been injured, you have big hospital bills you need to pay.

When your accident wasn’t your fault, you can get compensation through the at-fault driver’s insurance, but what happens when the other driver says the accident was your fault and not theirs?

Louisiana is a “Pure Comparative Negligence” State

Depending on which state your accident occurs in, different laws will dictate what happens next.

Louisiana follows a “pure comparative negligence” doctrine, which means that more than one person can be held at fault for an accident, and all parties are eligible for compensation for their damages and injuries. However, it is still very important to make sure that the correct percentage of fault is assigned, because each driver’s compensation is reduced according to their own percentage of fault.

For example, if a driver sustains $100,000 in damages, and is assigned 30% of the fault, their settlement will be reduced by 30% ($30,000) and they will receive only $70,000. But that doesn’t reduce the driver’s needs after an accident. Unless you want to come up $30,000 short of what you need to pay your bills after your crash, you will need an experienced Louisiana car accident lawyer to help you prove you were not at fault.

How Fault is Determined in an Auto Accident

After a car crash, insurance adjusters will conduct an investigation by reviewing the statements from the drivers, analyzing the police report, and inspecting the damage to the cars to determine who was at fault. 

However, if you disagree with the assessment of the insurance adjuster, the burden of proof lies on you.

What You Can Do to Protect Yourself

If you’re able to do so after the crash, following these steps can help you and your lawyer prove you weren’t at fault for the accident:

  • Take pictures at the crash scene right away, including any damage to the vehicles involved and any injuries you and your passengers suffered, so their severity and origin can’t be called into question.
  • Take pictures of anything at the scene of the accident that may have contributed to the crash, such as a tree branch obscuring a stop sign or debris in the road.
  • Get the names and contact information of any witnesses. Impartial witnesses are best – the word of your spouse might be considered biased, but a bystander’s won’t be.
  • If you receive a traffic ticket, you MUST dispute the ticket in traffic court. Paying the ticket means you are legally accepting fault.
  • Ask for a copy of the police report. If the police report suggests you were at fault, write up your version of events and ask that it be added to the report as a supplement.
  • If the insurance company assigns you fault, notify the insurance adjuster by phone and a follow-up letter that you dispute their ruling.

When insurance adjusters refuse to pay what you need or assign you an unfair percentage of the fault after a crash, you may need a lawyer to take the matter to court.

How an Auto Accident Lawyer Can Help

An experienced auto accident lawyer, like those at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, will have seen many accidents similar to yours and know how insurance adjusters think. They will be able to bring in witness testimony, recreate the scene of the accident, and demonstrate precisely why you are not at fault, or why your percentage of fault should be reduced.

A lawyer will also be able to take care of the paperwork to make sure you don’t miss out on any important deadlines while you recover. They can also prepare a demand letter on your behalf that explains your side of events, refutes any arguments toward your fault, and explains the damages you are owed.

Unsure whether legal representation can help you after an accident where you were unfairly assigned some or all of the blame? Contact the team at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers. There is no charge for your initial consultation, and no obligation to hire us unless you are satisfied we can help.

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month: Learn the Most Common Causes of Driver Distraction in Louisiana

by Dudley DeBosier | April 13th, 2020

Distracted driving is becoming a major problem, both in Louisiana and nationwide, largely because of the near-total adoption of smartphones by Americans of all ages. But there is more than one way to become distracted behind the wheel.

Have you ever groaned at rubberneckers disrupting the flow of traffic when they slow down to gawk at a crash? Nearly hit another car because you were juggling your coffee and breakfast sandwich and missed the light turning red? Or have you ever been rear-ended by someone who was reading a text instead of watching the road? Then you know what we mean about multiple kinds of distraction.

The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission reports an average of 38 deaths and 5,400 injuries each year caused by distracted driving. Nationally, distracted driving deaths totaled 3,166 in 2017, 599 of them pedestrians. That’s nine deaths every day.

So what are the most common forms of driver distraction and what can we do to stop it?

Common Causes of Distracted Driving

There are many ways to become distracted while driving, including:

  • Talking on your cell phone, whether by holding it up to your ear or using hands-free functionality
  • Reading and sending text messages or social media posts
  • Talking to passengers
  • Eating and drinking
  • Adjusting the stereo, air conditioning, or navigation system
  • Reaching for something in the car, such as a travel mug, CD, or wallet
  • Reacting to a moving object in the car, such as a pet, insect, or shifting cargo
  • Staring at distracting objects outside the car, such as animals, signage, or a crash
  • Inattention, fatigue, or daydreaming

What Can I Do About Distracted Driving?

A study of 2,000 Americans conducted by The Zebra in January 2020 found that although 37.1% of respondents believed that texting while driving impaired their ability to drive safely, 28.6% admitted to doing it regularly, and 56.7% of respondents admitted to eating and drinking in the car.

If we want to help prevent distracted driving accidents, we need to stop allowing ourselves to become distracted. We can make adjustments to our daily routines and be more conscious of potential consequences to a small decision.

We can also make sure that those around us practice safe driving habits and obey Louisiana state laws about cell phone use as well.

Louisiana State Laws concerning distracted driving include:

  • It is illegal for all drivers to text or post to social media while driving.
  • It is illegal for all drivers to use their cell phones while driving in a school zone.
  • It is illegal for drivers under the age of 18, in their first year of licensure, or who have a learner’s permit or intermediate license, to use their cellphones while driving.

If you are the passenger in a vehicle where the driver is using their cell phone behind the wheel or looking away from the road to perform some other task, remind them that paying attention to driving comes first. You could even offer to complete whatever task distracted them, such answering a phone call or reading a text message, for them. It is also important for parents to lead by example and always make sure to avoid falling prey to distractions when their children are in their vehicles.

Injured By a Distracted Driver?

A text can always wait, and when you or someone you love is injured because someone else wasn’t paying attention to the road, we believe you shouldn’t be responsible for paying for your medical bills out-of-pocket.

When you hire Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, our distracted driving accident attorneys will collect evidence to prove the accident wasn’t your fault, and do everything we can to  get you the compensation you deserve for the injuries and pain you suffered.

In addition, we know that auto accident injuries often mean temporary or even permanent disabilities—and that can mean weeks, months, or even years of lost wages. That’s why we’ll work hard to help you get compensation for any paychecks you missed while you were away from work recovering.

We care about helping you get your life back together after an accident. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference. So contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Truck Crash?

by Dudley DeBosier | March 23rd, 2020

Getting the compensation you need to fix your car and, more importantly, pay your hospital bills, is never easy after a crash. It seems like the insurance company is always trying to shortchange you. And if you were injured in a crash with a commercial truck? That process just got much, much harder.

So why is that? For starters, the drivers actually involved in the crash may not be the only people legally liable.

Who Can Be Named in a Lawsuit After a Serious Truck Accident?

When you are hit by a commercial truck, you don’t just have to deal with another private citizen – you are dealing with an on-the-clock employee and their employer, and potentially several additional parties as well, including:

  • The company that owns the truck, AND/OR
  • The company that leases the truck
  • The company that employs the driver, AND/OR
  • The company that leases the driver
  • The company that built the truck or any of its parts, AND/OR
  • The company that repaired or performed maintenance or inspection on the truck
  • The company that loaded the cargo
  • The company or party responsible for maintaining the road and signage the accident occurred on

For more information on these potentially liable parties, and why and under what circumstances they could be held responsible for your injuries, download our free guide by clicking the image below.

Truck Accidents are Different, So You Need a Truck Accident Attorney

You may think a truck accident is the same as a car accident, just on a larger scale, and they can be handled the same way. This isn’t true. Truck accidents need to be negotiated and litigated differently.

Firstly, there are numerous parties that may need to be held responsible for their part in contributing to your injuries.

Secondly, the process of proving fault is different, in part because the physics behind a truck crash are different. Trucks are harder to turn and harder to bring to a complete halt, and the distance needed to slow or stop a truck changes depending on how much cargo they are carrying. 

Truck drivers and trucking companies are also held to their own additional laws – including how much cargo they can carry, how long a driver can drive in a single stretch, who can legally drive a commercial truck, and more.    

The last reason is potentially the most important to your case. Because truck accidents have the potential to cause so much more harm than an ordinary car crash, trucking companies are required to carry much higher insurance policies which pay out much higher settlements. But when you or a loved one have suffered severe, disabling, or even fatal injuries, you will need every penny of that or maybe even more to recover.

Insurance companies will be reluctant to pay. Only an experienced truck accident attorney can negotiate a settlement that covers all the expenses and pain and suffering you’ve faced and will likely continue to face after a truck accident.

Call Dudley DeBosier for a Free Case Review

At Dudley DeBosier, we know how devastating truck accidents can be. That’s why we offer the No Fee Guarantee®: you pay nothing, unless we win.

When you are severely injured and likely unable to work, you don’t need to worry about how to afford a lawyer, so we got rid of that problem entirely. We don’t charge for your initial consultation to discuss your case, and if you decide to hire us, we don’t charge until you get your compensation check in the mail. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

Contact us today for your free case consultation.

Make Sure You Know What to Do in a Trucking Accident

by Dudley DeBosier | March 19th, 2020

Truck accidents are terrifying. They have a much higher fatality rate and involve more complicated state and federal laws than car accidents. At Dudley DeBosier, we know just how difficult this experience can be. When you’re on the scene, you can easily become overwhelmed with the multiple parties involved, including the lawyers and insurance adjusters trying to reach you. First thing’s first: breathe and take it one step at a time.

Step 1: Make sure you’re safe, then call 911. If possible, remove your car from the roadway and make sure you’re in a safe spot to call 911. You don’t want to jeopardize your own safety (or someone else’s) unnecessarily. You’ll want to get the complete police report even if it’s a minor accident. It’s the best way to have immediate documentation of the accident and can be presented as evidence if you end up in court.

Step 2: Seek medical help. You might think you’re fine, but you should still get evaluated on the scene and at a doctor’s office. You may be experiencing internal bleeding, which a doctor will be able to diagnose.

Step 3: Identify and document all parties involved. If you’re uninjured and it’s safe for you to be walking around, you’ll want to document as much as you can. Take pictures, gather contact information of witnesses and people involved, and write notes about the road, weather conditions, or other factors that could have affected the accident.

Tips for taking pictures: Getting an overview from several angles of the accident can help tremendously. Vehicle damage and other property damage are important, but traffic signals and the weather are significant too.

Step 4: Be careful with what you say. Don’t be mean, never lie, and don’t be too nice and admit fault if you are not responsible. Some trucking companies will send a whole team of lawyers to the site, or your own insurance company might call you to “make sure you’re okay,” but they use all these tactics to get you to say you’re in better health than you actually are.

If you’ve been in a truck accident, you can find an experienced attorney to fight for you with Dudley DeBosier.

Is the Future of Vehicle Technology Scary or Promising?

by Dudley DeBosier | February 24th, 2020

Whether you embrace the future of vehicle technology or you scoff at the latest trends, you will likely soon be driving a car equipped with gadgets you and your instructors never would’ve imagined when you first took Driver’s Ed.

Just like you, we are both hopeful and hesitant when it comes to the future of vehicle technology. Before we dive into the potential advantages and disadvantages of these advancements, let’s first look at what we might expect in the years to come.

What is the Future of Vehicle Technology?

Features that we might expect include:

  • Cars that drive themselves, partially or fully
  • Interactive, informational windshields
  • Cars that can “talk” to each other and traffic lights
  • Brain-assisted driving technology
  • Enhanced vehicle diagnostic tools
  • Health monitoring technology

How soon these features will be widely used in new cars isn’t clear. But it’s entirely possible that the next vehicle you purchase will contain at least one variation of the technologies listed above.

What We Like About the Features That Future Vehicles Could Offer

Without a doubt, the most exciting thing about the future of vehicle technology is how it might save lives. Vehicles today are safer and more efficient than those of the past, and we all reap the benefits.

If innovation continues to make our cars safer, we’re all for it. The Department of Transportation (DOT) clearly has high hopes for automated driving systems. A few of the benefits the DOT sees in automated technology include:

  • Fewer crashes on our roads, which means fewer crash-related injuries and deaths
  • Shorter commutes
  • Improved road access for elderly people and people with disabilities

In addition to safety improvements, new vehicle technology also improves the user experience of our vehicles. Just think about how much more convenient and safe plugging your phone into your dashboard to play music is than riffling through a collection of cassettes or CDs!

Our Concerns About the Potential Drawbacks

Living in a world with super safe vehicles sounds great. But getting there presents challenges. First, the push to be the first manufacturer to make an autonomous vehicle available to consumers incentivizes automakers to innovate quickly. If that innovation comes at the expense of safety, as it potentially has with Tesla’s autopilot settings, then it’s worth asking if the progress will be worth it.

Drivers are increasingly worried about how automated features affect their ability to safely drive their vehicles. In a survey conducted by Esurance:

  • 10 percent of drivers said automated technology hampers their driving ability
  • Nearly one-third of those surveyed said that warning sounds are distracting
  • Approximately a quarter of drivers are opting to disable some of these new safety features

Cybersecurity is also becoming a concern with many new “smart” devices, including new vehicles. Hackers don’t just retrieve sensitive information about vehicles’ owners; they can also manipulate the vehicles themselves.

Another potential drawback of new vehicle technology is how expensive these features will make vehicles. Vehicle prices continue to skyrocket in the U.S., and it’s easy to see how more technologically advanced vehicles will only make cars more expensive for consumers.

So, there are several reasons that the future might not be so bright. For all the benefits that safety features might offer, there are just as many potential drawbacks.

No Matter What the Future of Vehicle Technology Holds, Accountability is Key

Until vehicles are no longer operated by human beings, negligent drivers must be held accountable when they injure others. As we become more reliant on driving assistance features in our cars, we will also be placing more trust in auto manufacturers to provide the safest possible products.

If the past is an indicator of what the future might hold, we should expect missteps by vehicle manufacturers. With recalls including Takata’s defective airbags and GM’s faulty ignition switches still fresh in our minds, we are right to have concerns about a future in which we depend on vehicles to perform an ever-increasing number of duties.

When Vehicles Cause Harm, You Have the Right to Compensation

At Dudley DeBosier, our job is making sure clients are given the compensation they deserve after car accidents, whether they were caused by driver error or vehicle malfunction. We know that automakers and vehicle parts manufacturers sometimes get it wrong, and it’s often up to consumers to take a stand and make things right.

Injuries caused by vehicle defects are unacceptable. If you have questions about an unsafe vehicle or component you want answered, we encourage you to contact our team for a free consultation. Our defective product attorneys have years of experience holding negligent manufacturers responsible for the harm their products have caused.

We help clients with all types of car accident cases. It’s possible that your crash had many causes. When you hire Dudley DeBosier, we’ll work hard to determine who should be held accountable for your injuries. We fight to get our clients the payment they’re entitled to, so they can focus on their health.

How to Stay Safe on Super Bowl Sunday

by Dudley DeBosier | January 27th, 2020

Here at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, we’re big football fans. But even when the Saints or the Tigers aren’t playing, we still love to take in a good game, and the Super Bowl is the biggest game of the year. If you are planning on taking in the Big Game at a bar or watching with friends at a Super Bowl party, we want you to have fun, but we also want you to stay safe while you do so.

Super Bowl parties often involve alcohol, and when party goers drink and then drive home, they greatly increase their risk of getting in car accidents and injuring themselves or others. In 2018, Louisiana ranked ninth in the nation for the most fatal DUI collisions. Don’t let yourself become part of the statistic. Follow these rules when you head out to watch the game on February 2.

What Super Bowl Party Hosts Need to Know

Although motor vehicle crashes involving drunk drivers are one of the biggest threats to partygoers on Super Bowl Sunday, and one with the most potential to causes serious injuries or even death, they aren’t the only danger you’ll face.

If you are hosting a party this Super Bowl Sunday, keep these tips in mind to help protect your guests.

  • Clear your driveway, lawn, and porch of potential tripping hazards, and make sure the inside and outside of your home is well-lit to help reduce the risk of guests falling and injuring themselves as they come and go.
  • Make sure everyone has a plan on how they will get home when they arrive. If they plan to drive themselves, take their keys and evaluate for yourself when they leave. If they don’t appear safe to drive, offer to call a cab or let them stay in a guest room.
  • Make sure plenty of non-alcoholic drink options are available, and never serve alcohol to an underage guest. If a teenager has alcohol at your home, and gets in a car accident later that night, you could be liable.  
  • Stop serving alcohol at the end of the third quarter to allow everyone time to sober up. This is also a good time to bring out coffee and dessert. 
  • Check with all guests for food allergies, and make sure to clean your knives and cutting boards between each step when preparing food to prevent contamination.
  • Keep cold food cold and hot food hot, even if that means moving them back and forth from the table and fridge/oven. Letting food sit at room temperature for too long increases the risk of food poisoning.
  • Keep the family dog and cat in another room away from guests. Large numbers of unfamiliar people and loud cheering may cause a pet that’s normally friendly to become scared and bite or scratch.

We’re Here to Help After Super Bowl Injuries

If you or someone you love were injured at a Super Bowl party or in a crash involving a negligent driver on Super Bowl Sunday, we want to help. Car crash injuries are often extremely painful and can even prevent you from working and earning the paychecks you need to pay your hospital bills.

If your injury was caused by a drunk driver or someone else behaving negligently, you shouldn’t be the one forced to pay. You deserve compensation, and we want to help you get every cent you deserve.

Contact the team at Dudley DeBosier today for a free consultation, and if you hire us, you owe us nothing unless you win your claim.

Get the Facts About Road Rage

by Dudley DeBosier | January 20th, 2020

Americans today are more stressed than ever, and sometimes that spills over into the way they drive. Road rage is a growing epidemic on roadways in Louisiana and throughout the country, and it’s making highways and interstates more dangerous.

In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that the number of road rage-related traffic fatalities increased from 80 in 2006 to 467 in 2015. That’s nearly a 500 percent increase in a 10-year span.

Although road rage doesn’t get the same publicity as speeding, drunk driving, and distracted driving, it’s something that all drivers should be aware of, both in others and in themselves. Drivers who experience road rage often lose control of their emotions and judgment, significantly increasing the risk that they’ll engage in reckless and dangerous behaviors when they’re behind the wheel.

How to Spot Road Rage in Others

Some drivers silently seethe behind the wheel when they’re stuck in traffic or are cut off by other motorists. Other drivers take out their aggression in more obvious ways, which can put everyone around them at risk. If you recognize any of the following behaviors in other drivers while you’re on the road, stay alert and cautious, as they may indicate road rage:

  • Speeding—When drivers are running late, they may act out by speeding. Driving over the speed limit is still the top cause of crashes, so if a speeding driver is approaching you from behind in the same lane, change lanes as soon as you can safely do so.
  • Tailgating—When road rage-affected drivers feel slighted or slowed down by other motorists, they may tailgate them for miles as a form of revenge or as an attempt to intimidate them. Move over if you’re being tailgated and let the other driver pass to avoid a confrontation.
  • Honking—Car horns are designed to quickly grab the attention of nearby drivers. But they can also be used in an aggressive manner by angry drivers. Don’t get in a honking war with a road rage driver—instead, stay calm and avoid interaction.
  • Staring and gesturing—If an angry driver pulls up next to you, they may stare at you, gesture at you, or even roll down their window and scream at you. Engaging with them will only serve to escalate the situation. Instead, stay focused on the road ahead and consider an alternate route.
  • Ramming—Drivers who are completely overcome with anger and aggression may intentionally cause collisions by ramming into other vehicles. If another driver crashes into you on purpose, call 911 immediately, lock your doors, and stay in your vehicle until police arrive at the scene.

Follow These Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Road Rage

Although some people are more prone to experiencing road rage than others, almost everyone is susceptible to it if they’re feeling angry, frustrated, or impatient. In fact, even small changes in mood and demeanor can be enough for drivers to experience impaired judgment and to be more likely to make rash, dangerous decisions.

Stay safe while driving by following these tips:

  • Plan your route and leave early—Know exactly how long it will take you to reach your destination, whether you’ll encounter any road closures or work zones on the way, and give yourself plenty of time to get there to reduce frustration on the road.
  • Get enough sleep every night—Sleep-deprived drivers are accident risks to themselves and others for two reason. First, being exhausted delays reaction times and impairs judgment. Second, it can make drivers crankier and less agreeable, which can result in road rage.
  • Listen to calming music—Upbeat or aggressive music can have a dramatic effect on your mood. While it may make you feel more awake, it can also increase tension levels—which isn’t good when you’re stressed or angry because of traffic or inconsiderate drivers.

We’re Here to Help After Road Rage-Related Crashes

At Dudley DeBosier, we work hard to help innocent victims get the compensation they deserve after crashes that weren’t their fault. Whether those crashes were caused by speeding, following too closely, running red lights, alcohol or drug intoxication, distraction, or even road rage, it’s our goal to build strong claims for our clients and hold negligent drivers accountable.

If you were hurt in a crash caused by an angry or aggressive driver, we want to speak with you. We’re ready to investigate the accident, collect evidence that proves you weren’t at fault, and negotiate to get you maximum compensation. From the moment you contact us, we’ll be here to answer your questions and address your concerns. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

Follow These Tips to Keep Your Vehicle in Good Shape This Winter

by Dudley DeBosier | January 13th, 2020

Here in Louisiana, we’re lucky to avoid the harshest parts of winter that blanket other parts of the country for weeks or even months at a time. But cold weather is still a reality for us between December and March, and it doesn’t just affect the roads—it can also affect our vehicles.

Vehicle maintenance is important all year-round, but it’s even more essential during the winter. That’s because cold weather and the essential components of modern cars, trucks, and SUVs are natural enemies. Thankfully, keeping your vehicle running and looking its best this winter is as simple as following the steps we provided in this handy infographic.

Here’s What Not to Do This Winter

Ensuring your vehicle survives the winter in tip-top condition requires taking a few extra steps every year, but it’s well worth the added time and hassle to get to spring without incident. However, there are a few things that it’s equally important NOT to do during the winter to avoid seriously damaging your vehicle, and they include:

  • Don’t use hot water to clear ice off your windshield—Let’s face it—scraping ice off your windshield isn’t anyone’s idea of fun—especially for us Louisianans who aren’t used to doing it. Hot water melts ice almost instantly, but it can also instantly crack your windshield to the point of needing to be replaced.
  • Don’t swerve if you’re driving towards a pothole—Potholes are common after cold weather or even heavy rains. They can range from mild annoyances to seriously damaging. Keeping your eyes focused on the road ahead can help you avoid potholes, but if you don’t see one until you’re right upon it, don’t swerve or slam on your brakes, as doing so can increase your risk of a crash.
  • Don’t drive with a windshield encased in ice—Ice is a rarity in Louisiana, but if it happens here or while you’re traveling, be sure to completely clear it from your vehicle’s windshield and windows before you start driving again. Having limited visibility can be extremely dangerous, and the sun can reflect off the ice, making it even more difficult for you to see the road ahead.
  • Don’t drive during or into winter storms—Winter storms can be severe, and they can shut down even heavily trafficked highways and interstates in minutes, causing motorists to become stranded. Always check the weather before driving, especially while traveling, and stay off the roads if there’s a chance of snow or ice.

In addition, don’t forget to keep up with other routine maintenance tasks such as refilling your coolant, getting your oil changed at regular intervals, checking your lights and replacing burned out bulbs, and making sure your gas tank doesn’t get too close to empty – condensation can form and then freeze inside, damaging your fuel lines.

We’re Here for You After a Winter Accident

Freezing temperatures aren’t terribly common in Louisiana, but they do happen throughout the winter. Because of their rarity, snow and ice can be even more dangerous here than in other states, as most drivers are inexperienced with those conditions.

Protecting your vehicle isn’t your only priority between December and March—it’s also essential to drive safely. And if you or someone you love was hurt in a crash this winter, Dudley DeBosier is here to help. Regardless of the time of year, we know that crashes can result in expensive medical bills and lost wages, and it’s our goal to help victims get maximum compensation. Contact us today.

How Your Facebook or Instagram Posts Could Hurt Your Claim

by Dudley DeBosier | January 6th, 2020

Most of us have an account on at least one social media app or website, whether that’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, or something else. And while social media may be a convenient way of getting in touch with our friends and family, total strangers can also see your posts, and that may include insurance adjusters.

If you’re in the process of filing a compensation claim, or are considering that you might, that’s the last thing you want. And because your social media posts are considered part of the public record, insurance companies and their lawyers can see those posts without a warrant or subpoena, even if your account is set to private! Insurance companies are motivated to reduce or deny even legitimate claims to protect their profits, and your social media posts could accidentally help them do that.

Here’s How:

  • Your posts could accidentally admit fault. Examples: “I didn’t see the other car until it was too late,” and “I didn’t have time to stop.”
  • Your posts could accidentally minimize your injuries. Examples: “It was scary but I’m okay,” and “I’m lucky it wasn’t worse.”
  • Your posts could imply you contributed to your own crash. Examples: Photos or videos posted to your account that were taken on your phone while driving could cause the judge or jury to think you weren’t paying attention to the road when you crashed. Likewise, posts about being tired, stressed, or upset on the day of or the days leading up to the accident could cause the defense to argue your emotional state contributed to the crash.
  • Your posts could contradict your claim. No one has a perfect memory, but if you accidentally post that the crash happened at 6 p.m. when it happened at 5 p.m., for example, the insurance company could use it against you.
  • Your photos could misrepresent your physical and emotional health. Car crash injuries can be seriously debilitating and traumatizing, but if you are posting pictures of you smiling or attending events outside your home, the insurance company could argue you weren’t as seriously impacted by your accident as you really were.
  • Your posts could put your motivation in question. It’s natural to be angry when you are seriously injured because someone else behaved negligently, and most injury victims are only seeking the money they need to cover their medical expenses and put their lives back together. But going off against the at-fault party on social media could cause the judge or jury to think you are only filing a claim to get revenge, which could get your case thrown out.

What to Do Instead

The best thing to do after an accident, especially if you’re filing a compensation claim, is to stay off social media entirely until your claim concludes.

Sometimes avoiding mention of your accident isn’t enough. Insurance companies and their lawyers have previously tried to argue that when victims continue to post just as they usually would after their accidents, that it proves their mental and physical health weren’t seriously affected by their accidents.

However, because personal injury claims aren’t always wrapped up quickly, you may still want to be able to chat with friends and get updates through social media. So if you do use social media, follow these tips to reduce your risk of accidentally posting something you shouldn’t.

  1. Set all your social media accounts to private and do not accept any new friend requests.
  2. Speak privately with friends and family and request they do not post anything about you or your accident, and not to tag you in any photos.
  3. If possible, adjust your settings so that other users can’t comment on or share your posts.
  4. Avoid mentioning your settlement even after your claim is resolved. If your settlement involves a confidentiality agreement, posting about it could result in your settlement being revoked.

Hurt in a Car Accident? Call Dudley DeBosier!

If you were injured a car accident, you need Dudley DeBosier. To us, our clients aren’t just another number—they’re part of our family. We want to help you get your life back together, and we’ll do whatever it takes to get you there, including offering advice on how to protect yourself on social media while your claim is ongoing. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference! Contact us today for a free case review.

Winter Driving Tips

by Dudley DeBosier | December 30th, 2019

Being firmly rooted in the Deep South, most parts of Louisiana enjoy mostly ice and snow-free winters. However, that doesn’t mean Louisianans are exempt from having to worry about the dangers of winter weather when they’re driving between the months of December and March.

The state is known for occasional freezing temperatures and accumulation of ice and snow, which are made all the more dangerous because of many local drivers’ inexperience with handling those conditions. In addition, many Louisianans travel to other parts of the country that are more likely to experience hazardous weather and road conditions during the winter months. Being unprepared for winter weather can make driving a more frustrating experience at best and a downright dangerous activity at worst.

Here’s How You Can Drive Safely in Winter Weather

Snow and ice are often seen as a novelty in Louisiana rather than the potential danger they can be—especially for drivers with little to no experience with these weather conditions’ effect on roadways. To stay safe this winter and in the years to come, whether you’re driving in Louisiana or any other part of the country, do your best to follow the tips below.

Overall, one of the best tips you can keep in mind is to never underestimate the danger that snow and ice can pose on roads. Even if your vehicle has the latest and greatest in safety technology, including all-wheel drive, all-weather tires, and stability control, it’s still important to drive cautiously and carefully when temperatures dip below freezing. You should also keep in mind that bridges ice over first in the winter, and it doesn’t have to be at or below 32 degrees outside for ice to form on them.

You Could Get Paid if a Negligent Driver Caused Your Crash

Unfortunately, following the tips above can only reduce your risks of being involved in a crash this winter—not completely eliminate it. When other drivers fail to obey the rules of the road, or they fail to adapt their driving behaviors to inclement weather, serious crashes can occur. And when their negligence causes others to suffer injuries, our Louisiana auto accident attorneys believe that they should be held accountable for the expenses and suffering they caused.

Expenses associated with winter weather crashes can be significant. They typically include expensive medical bills for all manner of auto accident-related injuries, including broken bones, head injuries, soft tissue damage, and even internal organ damage. In addition, many victims are unable to work for long periods of time due to their injuries, and that means no paychecks. Finally, crashes can be mentally and emotionally painful.

We believe that victims deserve to be compensated when accidents affect their quality of life, and seek to help our clients recover compensation for all the ways they’ve been harmed: physically, financially, and emotionally.

Don’t Trust Just Any Law Firm after a Winter Weather Accident

At Dudley DeBosier, our legal team knows how important it is for victims to get the compensation they deserve after crashes that weren’t their fault. But we also know how difficult it can be to get a fair settlement from insurance companies that are more concerned about their own profits than paying victims the money they’re truly owed.

That’s because insurers have many tricks up their sleeves to either reduce or deny otherwise valid claims, resulting in injured victims coming away with paltry settlements—or sometimes, no money at all. When you contact us, you’ll get a legal team on your side that stays one step ahead of the insurance company from the moment we take on your claim until the day you collect your check.

And throughout the process, you can count on us to answer your questions, address your concerns, and keep you up to date on the progress we’re making on your claim. We treat our clients like family and battle with the insurance company to get them the results they deserve—that’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

Fun Games and Tips for Traveling with Kids

by Dudley DeBosier | December 23rd, 2019

Whether you’re traveling to a relative’s home for the holidays or are enjoying a vacation, road trips are a great way to make memories. But when you are traveling with small children, they can also be a very frustrating experience. At Dudley DeBosier, we know how easily small children get bored or distracted, which is why we’ve put together this guide to help parents keep their kids entertained on long car trips so they can stay safe when navigating traffic-packed roads.

What to Pack

We recommend adding these items to your list when packing up the car for your trip.

  • Kid-friendly books, activity sheets, or electronic devices such as tablets or portable DVD players.
  • Portable chargers and/or batteries for any toys or electronic devices 
  • Healthy snacks such as baby carrots or crackers
  • A garbage bag to clean up any messes
  • Paper towels and wet wipes or hand sanitizer
  • A lap desk—cookie sheets make a cheap and easy alternative
  • Toys—avoid toys that are small enough to get lost underneath the seats
  • A pillow for when your kids get tired
  • A disposable camera, which kids can use to entertain themselves taking pictures

Our Tips for Roadtripping with Children

These methods have been tested and approved by parents in the Dudley DeBosier team.

  • Allow each child to choose for themselves what toy or book they’d like to bring when packing.
  • Always doublecheck that car seats are properly secured and children correctly strapped in. A 2015 study found only 5% of parents make no mistakes when installing car seats, and a determined child may be able to escape their seat if they are not restrained correctly.
  • Consider having one parent sit in the back of your vehicle to allow more facetime with your children on long trips—you may find it helps reduce crankiness!
  • If your child is prone to motion sickness, try bringing kid-friendly audiobooks instead of paper books or electronic devices. Make a visit to the library ahead of time to check-out audiobooks for free.
  • Plan plenty of bathroom breaks, even if it delays your arrival time, and always remember to plan for a bathroom break shortly after a meal break. 
  • Try making “snack jewelry” ahead of time using a piece of string and adding cheerios, pretzels, and other fun and easy to eat snacks that kids can munch on in the car. 
  • Give your kids something to look forward to by handing out a new snack or toy every hour. This also helps prevent them getting bored of what they brought too early. 
  • Make a “trip tracker” by printing out a map of your route and giving your kids stickers to mark their progress as you get closer to your destination. This also prevents the dreaded, “are we there yet?”

Games You Can Play Without Paper or Pens

When you don’t have toys or activity books, or when your kids lose interest, these games can save the day.

20 Questions

One player thinks up a person, animal, or object, but does not tell the other players what it is. The other players have to try to guess what it is, but they can only ask yes-or-no questions, such as “Is it bigger than the car?”, “Is it yellow?”, and so on. The goal is to try to guess what the mystery object is within 20 questions.

Guess the Word

One player traces a short word on a body part of the person sitting next to them, such as on an arm, using only their finger, and that player must guess what the word is.

The Alphabet Game

Each player competes to find every letter of the alphabet using only road signs and billboards. However, they must find the letters in order. For example, a player can’t look for the letter ”b” until they’ve found the letter ”a”.  Players looking for the same letter also cannot use the same sign. For example, if both players need the letter “x”, and both see a sign that says “exit”, only the player who saw the sign first can move onto the next letter, while the other player must wait for another “x”. The first player to spot every letter of the alphabet wins.

License Plate Abbreviations

Players use their imagination to come up with ideas of what the random letters on license plates they pass stand for. For example, a license plate that has “LEP” on it might stand for “Let’s eat pizza”. Whichever player comes up with the silliest or best answer wins.

Alphabet Categories

Players agree on a category (ex: food, animals, cartoon characters, etc.) and then take turns coming up with one answer for each letter of the alphabet that fits that category. For example, if the category is animals, answers might be antelope, baboon, cat, and so on.

The Picnic Game

Players take turns describing what food items they are bringing to a picnic, with each player adding one additional item. Each item must start with the next letter of the alphabet. The goal is to remember the entire list, starting from the first item, until you reach the end of the alphabet. For example, the first player must remember “apples”, the second player must remember “apples and bananas”, the third player must remember “apples, bananas, and cake”, and so on.

A, My Name is Anne

Players take turns moving through the alphabet and filling in the phrases, “My name is”, “I come from”, and “I have a suitcase full of” with words that start with that each letter of the alphabet. For example, the first player might say, “My name is Arnold, I come from Alaska, and I have a suitcase full of apples,” while the second player might say, “My name is Beth, I come from Brazil, and I have a suitcase full of bananas.”

Team Storytelling

Players take turns telling a story, one sentence at a time and one sentence per person until every player has had a turn. Then it’s the first player’s turn again. Players have to use their imagination when other players start to steer the story in new directions.

The Counting Game

The first player starts the game by saying “one,” and then another player must say “two” and another “three” and so on until they reach twenty. However, players can respond in any order but if two players respond at the same time, the game must start over at one. The game also starts over if more than five seconds go by without anyone responding.

Download Our Free Activity Book

If you are looking for more ways to keep your kids entertained in the car, check out our free downloadable activity book! We’ve put together several fun activities to keep your kids entertained on your next car trip, including:

  • Coloring pages
  • Word searches
  • Mad libs
  • Mazes
  • Tic-tac-toe

Before your trip, simply download this book and print it out.

After a Car Accident, Call Dudley DeBosier

Car accidents have the potential to be devastating, especially when they leave you or a loved one injured. If you or someone you love have recently been involved in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you need to call the team at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers. We know what it takes to make insurance companies back down when they try to reduce or deny claims of injury victims. And when you call us, your consultation is always free.

How to Gift a Car

by Dudley DeBosier | December 16th, 2019

Louisiana may not see snow as consistently each winter as other states do, but one thing we do see an awful lot of is car commercials advertising winter sales events. While a brand-new car is a gift many of us would be thrilled to give to our loved ones this holiday season, it’s usually not in the budget. However, it’s not unusual to give an older car to a loved one who needs it, any time of year.

If you are considering gifting a vehicle to a friend or family member, here’s what you need to know.

Can They Afford It?

This is the most important question you need to ask before deciding to gift someone a car. If the person you want to give the car to only needs help getting the money together for the purchase, then that’s great! It will be a gift they will surely appreciate. However, if the person you want to give the car to is not in a good financial place to afford monthly insurance payments or gas, then buying them a car may do more harm than good.

Gifting Your Old Car

If you are planning to gift someone a car you currently own, you need to locate the title. If you are still making payments, then the loan company will have the title and you will need to pay off the loan before receiving it.

If you purchased your car outright or finished paying off your loan and can’t locate the title, you can request a duplicate copy from your local OMV, although you will need to pay a replacement fee.

Transferring the Title

The person gifting the car will need to fill out the seller’s portion of the transfer section on the back of the title, and the person receiving the gifted car will need to fill out the buyer’s portion. In the field where it asks for the sales price, you may simply fill in “gift.” In Louisiana, you will also need to:

Buying a Car as a Gift

If you are buying either a new or used car to gift to someone, you will have four main options.

  • Purchase the vehicle outright and follow the steps outlined above.
  • Take out a loan in your own name but register the title under both your name and the gift recipient’s name.
  • Bring the gift recipient with you to the dealership, gift the down payment, and have the gift recipient finance the vehicle themselves.
  • Bring the gift recipient with you to the dealership and co-sign the loan.

Auto Insurance

Make sure the person you are gifting the car to purchases auto insurance. They will not be able to legally drive or register the car in their name without showing proof of insurance.

Gifting a Vehicle to Someone in Another State

Title-transfer requirements can vary from state to state. If you are unsure whether to follow the requirements for Louisiana or for the state the person you wish to give the car to lives in, always follow the rules of the state the car will be registered in.

How Gifting a Car Affect Your Taxes

In the majority of cases, gifting a car will not affect your taxes for better or worse.

Unless you are gifting a car to a charity or religious organization, you will not be able to get a tax deduction for gifting your car. You may be charged taxes on large gifts, but this federal “gift tax” only applies if the value of the car you want to gift is more than $15,000. If the car is worth more than $15,000, the giver will be required to pay gift tax and the recipient may be required to pay a tax on the gifted car.

When You Have Questions After a Car Accident, Call Dudley DeBosier

If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident that totaled your car and left you unable to work, you shouldn’t need to depend on the goodwill of others to help you get back on your feet. Our team of Louisiana car accident attorneys help injury victims get the money they need after car accidents caused by others’ negligence, and we aren’t afraid to take your claim to court if the insurance companies try to reduce your benefits or deny you compensation. Call today for a free consultation.

What Happens After an Accident in a Rental Car

by Dudley DeBosier | November 18th, 2019

Whether traveling for business or pleasure, wanting to impress, or to test out a new car before making a purchase, people all across Louisiana rent cars for many reasons. But there are few situations more nerve-wracking than being involved in a car accident in a rental car, especially when it wasn’t your fault. And unfortunately, getting compensation after an accident in a rental car can be far more complicated than in a car you own.

What Makes Rental Car Accidents Different?

In any collision, the at-fault party should have a liability policy which provides coverage for injuries caused by the accident. However, the rental agreement you signed means you are still responsible for any and all damage to the rental vehicle while it’s in your care, even if the damage was not your fault.

What does this mean? You will likely be required to pay your insurance deductible directly to the rental company, and you may even be charged for the cost of damage and be required to seek reimbursement from the insurance company afterward.

Furthermore, you will likely need to pay “loss of use” fees to cover the rental company’s loss of profit while the rental vehicle is being repaired. Your insurance may include loss of use coverage, but if the policy limits are below the rental vehicle’s going rate, you will be required to make up the difference.

What To Do Immediately After an Accident in a Rental Car

The first steps to take after any accident in a rental car remain the same as in any car accident:

  1. Call emergency services, if immediate medical attention is needed, or see a doctor as soon as convenient if immediate attention is not.
  2. Call the police and file a report from the scene.
  3. Exchange contact information with the other driver.
  4. Take pictures of all vehicles involved, and the scene of the accident.
  5. Notify your insurance provider.

However, there are two additional steps to take care of in a rental accident. First, notify your rental company. Secondly, because you may need to seek compensation for your expenses from multiple insurance companies, we suggest hiring a lawyer to help you file the paperwork and negotiate on your behalf if you’ve been injured.

The Three Potential Sources of Compensation

There are three main sources of insurance coverage available for rental car accident claims:

  1. Your Personal Insurance: Louisiana requires auto insurance to operate a motor vehicle. This includes bodily injury liability coverage, property damage liability, medical payments, and uninsured motorist bodily injury. Your personal insurance will usually also cover injuries and damage caused in a collision in or with a rental car. 
  2. Insurance Provided by Your Credit Card: Some credit cards provide car insurance for rental cars if you make the entire payment for the rental on the card. However, speak with your credit card representative to learn the terms of this insurance. It usually only covers collision damage, not injuries, and may only kick in after the policy limits of your personal insurance.
  3. Supplementary Insurance Provided by the Rental Company: The rental company offers supplementary insurance as well. This is typically collision insurance, but other types of insurance are usually also available for purchase.

The Four Types of Rental Coverage

Most major car rental companies will offer these four types of coverage for purchase when you rent a car:

  1. Collision Damage Waiver: This covers any damage to the rental car, as well as theft of the rental car. 
  2. Liability Coverage: When the renter is at fault for the collision, this covers collision damage and injuries sustained by the other party.
  3. Personal Accident Insurance: This covers medical expenses of the renter and any of the renter’s passengers.
  4. Personal Effects Coverage: This covers lost or damaged personal property kept in the rental vehicle.

What if I Was Hit By Someone Driving a Rental Car?  

Federal law protects rental companies from liability when someone is injured in an accident involving a rental car, unless the victim can prove the rental company was negligent in putting the car on the road or in renting to the at-fault driver. In most cases, if the other driver does not have liability insurance, you may need to seek compensation from your own insurance company to cover your medical expenses.

Contact the Car Accident Attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers

If you’ve been in a car accident and don’t know how to get compensation for your expenses, we want to help. Our team of experienced Louisiana car accident lawyers is skilled at negotiating with the insurance company to get you compensation for your injuries and lost wages after an accident caused by someone else’s negligence. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Tailgating Safety

by Dudley DeBosier | November 4th, 2019

The days are getting shorter, leaves are starting to fall, and the race for the playoffs is fully underway. Yes, football season is in full swing, and with it comes tailgates with friends, family, and fellow fans. Tailgating is a great way to spend time with those you love and meet new people, but it’s not without its share of dangers.

At Dudley DeBosier, we love everything about tailgating—in fact, we even host our own! But we also know that tailgating should be done properly and safely to prevent guests and bystanders from suffering serious injuries.

As Louisiana personal injury lawyers, we know what can go wrong at tailgates, and that’s why we’re dedicated to being as safe as possible whenever we watch the Saints or the Fighting Tigers play. To stay safe at your own tailgate this football season, check out the tips below in our Tailgate Safety infographic:

If You Get Hurt at a Tailgate, We’re Here for You

Accidents and injuries can happen to anyone, anywhere, and at any time. Tailgates are no exception, and in fact, they can be dangerous places when proper safety precautions aren’t taken by everyone. Unfortunately, not all tailgaters are concerned about their own safety or the safety of others, while others may be unaware of how to tailgate safely.

If you or someone you love was hurt at a tailgate because of someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. It’s important to call a lawyer right away after a tailgate injury, as collecting evidence and proving who was at fault are critical aspects of successful personal injury claims.

Dudley DeBosier is Louisiana’s Personal Injury Attorneys

Our passion for Louisiana football is exceeded only by our passion for helping injured Louisianans. Tailgate injuries can be serious, and they can result in significant medical expenses and long periods out of work without the paychecks that you and your family depend on.

It’s important to have an experienced law firm on your side that knows what you’re going through and has the resources and dedication to help you. At Dudley DeBosier, our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers can collect evidence that proves the other party’s negligence caused your injuries, and fight to get you maximum compensation.

Contact us today for a free consultation. From the moment you call us, we’ll be there to answer your We’ll be here to answer your questions and address your concerns. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

What You Need to Know About Post-Accident Shock

by Dudley DeBosier | October 21st, 2019

Auto accidents affect victims in many ways. In addition to causing serious injuries, they can also lead to psychological issues that are difficult to treat or even diagnose. The physical and mental complications associated with the aftermath of auto accidents can often be attributed to shock. Physical shock can manifest itself through various symptoms, and it can be life-threatening. Psychological shock can be apparent immediately after a crash, or it may take time to show up, but in either case it can severely interfere with victims’ lives.

If you or someone you love was injured in an auto accident, it’s important to have an experienced legal team on your side that knows what you’re going through, including the effects that both types of shock can have on your life. Insurance companies don’t always fully understand the impact that crashes can have on victims, and that is often reflected in the settlements they offer.

At Dudley DeBosier, our Louisiana auto accident attorneys have helped many victims who experienced shock-related symptoms after crashes that weren’t their fault, and we want to put our track record of success to work for you, too. We treat our clients like family—not like numbers—and we do everything in our power to help them get the money they deserve. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

When you call us, we’ll investigate your crash, prove it wasn’t your fault, calculate how much money you’re owed for your accident-related expenses­––including psychological trauma, and negotiate to get you maximum compensation. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Watch for These Symptoms of Physical Shock

The most common type of post-accident shock is hypovolemic shock. It occurs when victims experience significant drops in blood pressure. It’s often associated with severe or rapid blood loss caused by cuts, wounds, and internal organ or arterial damage. It also can occur after incurring severe burns.

When people experience hypovolemic shock due to low blood volume or low blood pressure, their hearts struggle to pump sufficient blood throughout their bodies. That can result in organs failing to operate properly. If shock is severe enough, victims can even experience life-threatening complications.

Commons symptoms of hypovolemic shock include:

  • Weak or irregular heartbeat and pulse
  • Rapid, shallow, or labored breathing
  • Feeling faint, dizzy, or losing consciousness
  • Confusion and anxiety
  • Nausea and vomiting

Hypovolemic shock is a medical emergency that needs immediate treatment. First responders frequently check auto accident victims for hypovolemic shock, especially if they have open wounds. However, internal injuries can also result in hypovolemic shock due to internal bleeding. Unfortunately, victims aren’t always aware of internal injuries until symptoms become evident.

Other types of auto accident-related shock include neurogenic shock, which can be caused by spinal cord injuries; cardiogenic shock, which can be caused by damage to the heart, such as a heart attack induced by a car accident; and obstructive shock, which can be caused by blood flow blockages.

What Should You Do if You Experience Physical Shock?

If you believe you’re experiencing symptoms of physical shock, it’s important to get medical treatment right away. Physical shock may take time to manifest, but by the time it does, you may be at risk of severe complications.

In addition, you should also contact an experienced auto accident law firm. In addition to the pain and disability caused by your injuries, physical shock can lead to long-lasting physical complications that can result in expensive medical bills and time away from work. Our Louisiana car accident lawyers can evaluate your accident, determine how it affected you, and work hard to help you get the money you deserve for past and future medical expenses related to your accident.

Watch for These Symptoms of Psychological Shock

Many people associated post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with combat veterans. However, it’s a common condition that can occur after extremely stressful events, including auto accidents. PTSD is strongly associated with crashes, including those that don’t cause serious injuries.

Victims who experience PTSD may develop the following symptoms:

  • Repeating and intrusive thoughts about the accident
  • Emotional flatness or numbness following the crash
  • Constant fear and anxiety
  • Phobia of driving or riding in vehicles
  • Anger and irritability

The consequences of psychological shock can be just as debilitating as those caused by physical injuries. Victims may experience difficulties in their daily lives, and they may find it difficult or impossible to concentrate at work or do their jobs. That can result in termination and long periods without income.

What Should You Do if You Experience Psychological Shock?

Because psychological shock can be just as disruptive to your life as physical injuries and shock, it’s vital to have a legal advocate on your side who can maximize your chances of getting compensation.

When you call Dudley DeBosier, we’ll determine how your auto accident has affected your ability to work and enjoy life, and we’ll calculate exactly how much money you’re owed for the pain and suffering you’ve experienced. Then, we’ll negotiate with the insurance company to get a settlement offer that’s fair for what you’ve been through.

Don’t go it alone after an auto accident that wasn’t your fault, and don’t trust just anyone with your financial recovery. Get in touch with us today, and let us put our experience to work.

Would You Pass Your Driver’s Exam Today?

by Dudley DeBosier | October 14th, 2019

Many teens count down the days until their 16th birthday, as that’s the youngest age to apply for and receive a driver’s license in Louisiana and throughout the U.S. Getting a driver’s license is a significant milestone in many people’s lives, as it grants them newfound independence and represents a major step towards maturity and adulthood.

But getting a driver license isn’t an automatic process just because someone turned 16. First, drivers must acquire a learner’s permit, which they’re first eligible to do at age 15 in Louisiana. Then, they must hold a permit for at least 180 days and complete the require amount of supervised driving. Finally, they must pass a road skills test at their local Office of Motor Vehicles location.

Both the written knowledge test for receiving a learner’s permit and the road skills test for receiving a driver license can be difficult to pass, and many first-time applicants fail. However, while applicants can take the test multiple times until they pass, once they do, they never have to take the test again, provided their licenses don’t expire and remain in good standing.

Get Instant Feedback on Your Driving Knowledge with this 10-Question Quiz

Whether you passed your driving exams decades ago or last week, there are almost certainly a few things about Louisiana’s traffic laws and driving requirements that you may be unaware of. And while most of those knowledge tidbits aren’t information you need every day, knowing them can make a big difference in your overall safety.

Ready to find out where you stand in your overall driving knowledge? Click on the quiz below to get started!

Improving your driving skills can be as simple as requesting a copy of the Louisiana Driver’s Handbook and taking a few hours to brush up on facts you may have forgotten. Enrolling in a local safe driving course can also help you significantly improve your confidence and safety behind the wheel.

How did you do? Whether you aced the quiz or got a score you’d rather soon forget, it’s important to know that learning, refining, and retaining driving skills and knowledge are lifelong pursuits—especially since traffic laws are subject to change due to new legislation every year.

How Can Driving Knowledge Help You Avoid an Accident?

Almost everyone knows the dangers associated with unfortunately common driving behaviors, such as speeding, texting while driving, and driving under the influence. But there are many other traffic laws and vehicle regulations that drivers must follow to both avoid tickets and to reduce their risks of being involved in crashes.

Louisiana traffic laws are wide-reaching and cover a huge variety of situations and scenarios that can occur on roads, including U-turns, one-way streets, four-way stops, driving near buses, driving through school zones, and more. Knowing basic traffic laws can help you get around safely most of the time, but any gaps in your knowledge can put you, your passengers, and other people on the road in dangerous situations.

If You Get Hurt in a Crash, We’re on Your Side

Ignorance of the law is never an excuse when it comes to harming others or their property, and that includes auto accidents. If you were hurt in a crash that was caused by a negligent or careless driver, whether they were speeding, texting, impaired, or failed to follow Louisiana’s traffic laws in any way, you may be eligible for compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other accident-related expenses.

The Louisiana auto accident attorneys Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers want to help you get the compensation you deserve. From the day you contact us, we’ll treat you the way you deserve to be treated during this difficult time. Our clients are like family to us—not numbers and dollar figures—and we’ll do everything we can to maximize your chances of getting paid. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Your Fall Leaves Viewing Guide

by Dudley DeBosier | October 7th, 2019

October means cold weather is sweeping in, and with it, the trees begin to change colors. Louisiana has some beautiful fall foliage, but to see it at its best means getting out of the city and heading out to the woods and state parks.

When you will see “peak” color will vary depending on where you are in the U.S., with northern states seeing colorful leaves in late September to mid-October, while Southern states usually don’t get brilliant color until mid-October through early November. But weather conditions can also change when peak color hits, so if you are planning on taking a trip to see the fall foliage this year, make sure to call ahead to your destination to ask about color conditions.

Louisiana isn’t the only place in the U.S. with beautiful fall foliage. We’ve put together a list of some of the best places to see autumn colors this year.

Safety Tips for Roadtripping

Roadtripping is a proud American pastime, but that doesn’t mean it’s something you should take carelessly. Before you hit the road this fall, make sure to go over each item on our roadtrip safety checklist to see what you might need before leaving home. 

  • Ask your mechanic for a vehicle inspection. An inspection will locate any potential problems with your vehicle’s fluid levels, brakes, tires, battery, air conditioning unit, or other parts before they become a problem that could leave you stranded on the side of the road.
  • Consider renting a car. If you are going off-road, you will probably need a car with four-wheel drive and high clearance. You might also consider a rental if you’d prefer to keep the mileage off your personal car or if an inspection reveals a problem with your personal car.
  • Prepare for roadside emergencies. Always keep a spare tire, jack, gas can, and jumper kit in your car, and don’t assume your car has them already. Many newer cars only come with a tire patch kit rather than a spare tire.
  • Prepare an emergency kit. Good items to pack include sunblock, bug spray, a flashlight, batteries and chargers, a multitool, first aid kit, water bottles, and blanket or towel, but you aren’t limited to these items.
  • Carry Cash. Some small towns, state or national parks, and toll stations won’t be able to process credit card payments.
  • Download, don’t stream, your music. If, or rather when, you lose cell signal, your streaming will go with it. You might also consider checking out CD or audiobooks from your local library. 
  • Have a backup map. If you lose cell phone service, you will also likely lose your phone’s GPS. Have a back-up plan, such as a physical map or separate GPS unit, and make sure to call ahead to learn about any potential road closures on your route.
  • Get a good night’s sleep beforehand. Drowsy driving is as dangerous as driving under the influence.

 After a Road Trip Accident, Call Dudley DeBosier

At Dudley DeBosier, we know traffic accidents. And when you get in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, we’ll give your case the attention it deserves, whether it happened on a fall road trip or simply on your way to work. We care about our clients, and we want to help your life get back to as close to normal as possible after an accident: that’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference.

Our phone lines are open 24/7/365, so don’t hesitate to call when you need help after a car accident. Your consultation is always free.

It’s Child Passenger Safety Week

by Dudley DeBosier | September 16th, 2019

Join us in celebrating National Child Passenger Safety Week as we learn more about the proper use of child car seats to protect kids from harm in car accidents. National Child Passenger Safety Week 2019 kicks off on September 15 and ends on September 21, which coincides with National Seat Check Saturday.

It’s important to familiarize yourself with car seat laws and regulations, because they may have changed since you first learned them. Louisiana just passed a new, stricter set of car seat laws that went into effect August 1st, 2019.

  • All children under the age of 2 are required to ride in rear-facing car seats.
  • All children age 2-4 must ride in forward facing seats with an internal seat belt.
  • All children age 4-9 must ride in booster seats.

If you want to learn more about car seat safety in Louisiana, open our presentation below. 

What to Tell Your College Student About Drunk Driving

by Dudley DeBosier | September 4th, 2019

If you have a college-aged child, you’re probably worried about their grades, their tuition fees, and their safety—especially if they go to school far from home. You may feel like you’re helpless to keep them safe, but one of the biggest risks that college students face can be reduced with parental involvement. 

That risk is drunk driving. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that impaired driving impacts young people more than any other age group, and nearly 10,500 people died in alcohol-related crashes in 2016 alone. That accounts for almost 30% of all fatal accidents in the U.S. that year.  

3 Steps You Can Take to Reduce Your Child’s Risks 

Even if you think your child doesn’t listen to you, studies show that positive reinforcement from parents can help reduce dangerous behaviors in children, regardless of their age. Remaining consistent and persistent with these safety-oriented steps can help your child stay safe during this important stage in their life: 

  1. Emphasize the consequences of drunk driving—Your child may be aware of the potential risks of a drunk-driving crash, but they may not know about the severity of a DUI. Getting arrested for impaired driving means expensive fines, jail time, a suspended license, and even academic consequences such as loss of scholarship or dismissal from school. 
  2. Talk about other ways to get home—Appointing a designated driver, using ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft, calling a cab, using public transportation, or even calling you or your spouse are all safe and reliable ways to get home after drinking. Make sure your child knows their options. 
  3. Be responsible with alcohol—Set a good example for your child by never driving while intoxicated. In addition, avoid serving alcohol to your child and their friends if they’re under 21 or they’re planning on driving. Finally, keep alcohol in your home locked up and inaccessible.  

Were you or your child hurt in an auto accident? If so, our Louisiana car accident lawyers want to help. We have years of experience assisting injured victims after crashes, and we know what it takes to win. Contact us today for a free consultation

What to Expect: Truck Accident Claims

by Dudley DeBosier | August 21st, 2019

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, big trucks were involved in 107,000 injury-causing accidents and 4,657 fatal accidents in 2017 alone. Because of their weight and size, semi-trucks can cause significant damage to other vehicles during collisions, putting the occupants of those vehicles at risk of serious and even life-threatening injuries.

At Dudley DeBosier, we know how dangerous big trucks can be to other motorists. If you or someone you love was injured in an accident involving a tractor trailer, it’s important to get experienced and dedicated legal representation on your side. Big truck accident claims can be difficult to prove, and insurance companies often put up a fight when victims pursue compensation.

You’ve got enough to deal with after your truck accident. We’re here to protect your rights and help you get the money you deserve while you focus on getting better. Call or contact us online today for a free consultation.

We’ll Make the Legal Process Easy for You

Getting a lawyer and pursuing damages after an accident can seem intimidating. You may be worried about how you’ll prove the accident wasn’t your fault, how much money you can get, and whether you’ll have to go to court.

Our Louisiana truck accident lawyers are here to take the stress of the accident and your compensation claim off your shoulders. We’ll put our experience to work for you in the following ways:

  • We’ll collect evidence that proves you weren’t at fault—We’ll gather witness statements, the accident report, dashcam footage, and even accident reconstruction data to prove you didn’t cause the crash while also determining who is liable for your damages. For example, whether to demand damages from the driver or trucking company owner.  
  • We’ll prepare a demand letter to get you the money you deserve—We’ll investigate how the crash has affected you, and then we’ll prepare a demand letter for the insurance company of the responsible party or parties that shows how much money you and your family need for your accident-related expenses and how much you deserve for your pain and suffering.
  • We’ll handle all communication with the insurance company—We’ll handle all phone calls and emails from the insurance company and review any of their settlement offers with you to ensure you don’t accept an offer that isn’t sufficient for what you’ve been through.

From the day you contact us until the day you get your check, you can count on our legal team to treat you like family. We know that you’ve gone through a traumatic experience, and we also know that you deserve experienced and understanding legal representation. That’s the Dudley DeBosier Difference. Contact us today.

How Music May Affect Your Risk of a Car Accident

by Dudley DeBosier | August 7th, 2019

Looking away from the road to mess with the radio dial or to try to find the perfect song on your playlist is a form of distracted driving and one of the leading causes of car accidents, but did you know one study has suggested that just listening to music without looking at the audio source is distracting enough to affect your driving performance? There have been several studies conducted attempting to measure the effect of music on drivers, and the results may surprise you.

The Pros of Listening to Music while Driving

Listening to music you like is a major mood-booster! When you are stuck in traffic, a good tune can reduce stress and aggression, and at the same time, reduce traffic errors and road rage. 

Listening to music is also shown to elevate your heartrate and keep you awake and entertained on long trips, decreasing the risk of accidents caused by drowsy driving. Some studies have even shown listening to music can actually improve a driver’s ability to perform some driving tasks, such as matching the speed of the vehicle ahead and staying within lane markers.

The Cons of Listening to Music while Driving

If you can’t find music you enjoy anywhere up or down the radio dial, it can actually increase your stress levels, which has a negative effect on driving behavior. But music you love can also cause bad driving behavior, especially for younger and less experienced drivers. You may start to pay more attention to the song than the road, and begin making simple errors that can result in devastating consequences, such as forgetting to signal or check blind spots.

Fast music and loud music are also shown to have a negative impact on driving behavior. Drivers may subconsciously speed up to match the tempo of a song, while loud music is shown to reduce reaction time. Any music played at over 85 decibels can influence driver behavior for the worse.

What This Means for Your Playlist 

In general, music with a tempo of 60-80 beats per minute (BPM) is the safest to drive to, because it mimics the average human heart rate. Music with a tempo of 120 BPM or more can result in faster driving speeds and more traffic violations.

Researchers have suggested jazz, soft rock, and easy listening are the best options to listen to while driving, but if those aren’t your speed, we’ve created a Safe Driving Playlist for your next commute. Interested in how the songs on the Billboard Hot 100 scan? We’ve also charted out the top five safest and most dangerous on the radio now.

Today’s Hits – Top 5 Safest Songs to Drive To

  1. Old Town Road by Lil Nas X ft. Billy Ray Cyrus – 67 BPM
  2. Suge by DaBaby – 75 BPM
  3. Beer Never Broke My Heart by Luke Combs – 77 BPM
  4. Earfquake by Tyler, The Creator – 80 BPM
  5. 7 Rings by Ariana Grande – 70 BPM

Today’s Hits – Top 5 Most Dangerous Songs to Drive To

  1. bad guy by Billie Eilish – 135 BPM
  2. Talk by Khalid – 136 BPM
  3. Sucker by Jonas Brothers – 138 BPM
  4. If I Can’t Have You by Shawn Mendes – 124 BPM
  5. Sweet But Psycho by Ava Max – 133 BPM

Have You Recently Been in a Car Accident?

If you’ve been injured in a car accident where you were not at fault, we want to help. Regardless of what music was playing, you deserve compensation. Contact Dudley DeBosier today for your free consultation.

Electric Scooter Safety for Drivers

by Dudley DeBosier | July 17th, 2019

If you’ve ever hopped on an electric scooter for a quick trip, you know how fun and convenient they can be. Scooters also help decrease traffic congestion, making it easier for drivers to get to their destinations on time. But sharing the road can be a dangerous prospect for scooter riders, as even low-speed collisions can result in dangerous injuries. Help make Louisiana roads safer for everyone by following these simple tips. 

What to Expect: Car Accident Injury Claims

by Dudley DeBosier | June 12th, 2019

After a car crash, the most important thing you can do to protect your health and your rights to compensation is get medical attention. Even if you don’t think you have injuries, it’s important to still get evaluated by a first responder at the scene of the accident or at your doctor’s office after the crash. Getting medical attention can address any serious injuries immediately, as well as rule out any internal injuries that might show up later on. It also creates a medical record that links your injuries to the car accident.

But even after you get initial medical help, you may be facing weeks—or even months—away from work, and you may not know what to do next. At Dudley DeBosier, we don’t think you should have to pay out of pocket for injuries caused by another person’s negligence, and we’re ready to help you get the compensation you deserve to move forward with your life. Read on to find out what happens when Louisiana car accident victims come to us for help.

How We Help Louisiana Car Crash Victims

When you contact the Louisiana car accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier, we’ll listen to your story to learn more about your claim. If we decide to take your case, we’ll start collecting and analyzing evidence, such as photos from the accident scene, witness testimonies, and police reports, to support your claim and determine who can be held responsible for your injuries.

It’s our goal to help you get every penny you deserve for what you’ve been through. That’s why our legal team calculates the total cost of your injury-related expenses, including your current and future medical bills, current and future lost wages, and pain and suffering, to determine a fair settlement offer. We then present that offer to the responsible party’s insurance company. If they refuse to pay you the money you deserve, we won’t hesitate to take your case to trial.

After a Crash, Demand Dudley DeBosier!

If you or someone you love suffered injuries in an auto accident caused by another driver’s negligence, the Louisiana car crash attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are here to help. We put our clients first throughout every step of their injury claims, and it’s our goal to help you get maximum compensation for what you’ve been through. Contact us today for a free case review, and let us put our passion and experience to work for you today.  

5 Tips to Reduce Your Risks on Memorial Day Weekend

by Dudley DeBosier | May 22nd, 2019

Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer, and according to AAA, it’s also one of the busiest times to be on the road. 36.6 million people traveled by car during Memorial Day weekend in 2018—nearly five percent more than in 2017. But with more travelers on the road, the risk of being involved in an auto accident increases.

Whether you’re heading out for a weekend getaway or driving across town to celebrate with family and friends, reduce your accident risk this Memorial Day weekend by following these five tips.

We hope you have a safe and happy Memorial Day! – Dudley Debosier.

Sources: ValuePenguin, NHTSA, AAA NewsRoom

Move Over—It’s the Law.

by Dudley DeBosier | May 8th, 2019

When you hear a siren coming from behind or see flashing lights up ahead, it’s second nature to slow down, move over, and make way for emergency responders. But did you know that moving over for those vehicles is a state law?

While this is common knowledge to many, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently reported that multiple states have seen an increase in drivers crashing into emergency responders stopped on the side of the road. In response, the NHTSA is urging drivers to review their states’ “Move Over” laws.

Do You Know Louisiana’s “Move Over” Laws?

Next time you see an emergency vehicle on the side of the road, follow these steps to help keep yourself and emergency responders safe:

  1. Slow down.
  2. Move over if possible.
  3. If it is safe to do so, change lanes in the opposite direction of the emergency vehicle.

If traffic conditions don’t allow you to safely move over or change lanes, decrease your speed. Louisiana law 32.125 explains these procedures in more detail. Familiarize yourself with this protocol to keep yourself, emergency responders, and others on the road safe.

Louisiana Auto Accident Lawyers

At Dudley DeBosier, we know that even the safest drivers can’t prevent someone else’s negligence. If you were injured in a car accident, our Louisiana car accident attorneys are here for you. It’s our goal to help you get maximum compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.

The Dangers of Texting and Driving

by Dudley DeBosier | April 24th, 2019

Sending and reading text messages is one of the most dangerous things you can do when you’re behind the wheel of your vehicle.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that around nine people are killed and another 1,000 are injured every day in the U.S. due to distracted drivers. Although young drivers are the most likely to text while driving of all age groups, it’s a problem that affects all demographics—and it puts everyone on Louisiana’s roadways at risk.

Texting Involves 3 Types of Distractions

Anything that distracts drivers can increase their risks of being involved in accidents, but texting while driving is uniquely dangerous because it involves all three types of distractions:

  1. Visual—Sending and reading text messages requires taking your eyes off the road for seconds at a time. If you’re traveling at highway or interstate speeds, that’s enough time for your vehicle to travel the length of a football field.
  2. Manual—Unlocking your phone and then reading or writing a text message requires the use of your hands. And when your hands are on your phone, they aren’t on your steering wheel, and that puts you at risk of losing control of your vehicle.
  3. Cognitive—Safe driving requires focusing on the road ahead, maintaining a safe and steady speed, and tracking the movements of other vehicles around you. When you’re texting, you can’t devote your full attention to driving, and that can lead to accidents.

To reduce your risks, activate your phone’s “driving mode.” You’ll still receive text messages, but you won’t receive alerts until you’ve reached your destination.

Hurt by a Distracted Driver? You Deserve Compensation.

While you can do everything in your power to decrease your own risks of causing a crash, you can’t control the behaviors of other drivers. However, you can pursue compensation after an accident that wasn’t your fault—especially if the other driver was distracted.

Contact the Baton Rouge auto accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers today for a free consultation. We’re here to help.

What to Do After a Hit-and-Run Accident

by Dudley DeBosier | April 10th, 2019

Auto accidents can be expensive, but filing claims against the other drivers’ insurance policies can help injured victims recover compensation for their medical bills and lost wages. However, that option isn’t always available right away for victims of hit-and-run accidents—especially when the at-fault drivers can’t be tracked down or identified.

If you were recently the victim of a hit-and-run accident, you may feel like you’re out of luck when it comes to filing a compensation claim. However, there are still a few options available to you when it comes to recovering money for the damages you’ve incurred.

4 Steps All Hit-and-Run Victims Should Follow

Wondering what to do after your hit-and-run accident? Following these important steps can help you protect your health and your rights to compensation:

  1. Call 911—Calling 911 accomplishes two important things. First, it dispatches an ambulance to the accident scene, which can help you and other victims get immediate medical attention. Second, it dispatches a police officer to the scene, who can file an accident report and interview witnesses—which can help law enforcement find the person who caused the crash.
  2. Get medical treatment—Auto accident injuries can be serious, but they’re not always obvious. Even if you don’t think you were seriously injured, you should still go to the hospital or visit a doctor right away. In addition to ruling out internal injuries, it will also create a medical record of the other injuries you suffered during the crash.
  3. Report the crash to your insurance provider—Auto insurance companies require notification of auto accidents within a short timeframe—often just a day or two after crashes occur. Reporting your accident not only satisfies this requirement, but it can also open up the possibility of recovering compensation from your own insurance policy.
  4. Call a lawyer—Getting an experienced Louisiana auto accident attorney on your side can be the difference between paying out of pocket for your hit-and-run accident expenses and getting full compensation. At Dudley DeBosier, we’ll do everything in our power to help you get the money you deserve, regardless of whether the driver who caused the crash is identified.

We don’t think you should have to go it alone after a crash, and it’s our goal to help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact a Louisiana car accident lawyer at Dudley DeBosier today, and let us get to work for you.

Driving Distracted Could Cost You Your Life

by Dudley DeBosier | April 4th, 2019

The Dangers of Drowsy Driving

by Dudley DeBosier | March 20th, 2019

Speeding, driving while distracted, and driving while intoxicated are well known as some of the most common causes of auto accidents. But sleep-deprivation—a condition that affects millions of Americans—may be just as dangerous as those behaviors.

Drowsy drivers experience many of the same symptoms as drivers who are intoxicated or impaired due to alcohol, drugs, or certain medications. Symptoms may include:

  • Reduced attention span
  • Slower reaction times
  • Impaired judgment

Because drowsy driving is so dangerous, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) restricts the number of hours truck drivers can be behind the wheel without time off to rest and sleep. But because there are no laws against drowsy driving for non-truck drivers, any of the estimated 70 million Americans who suffer from sleep deprivation may be drowsy at any given time behind the wheel.

How Big Is the Problem?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that around one in 25 adult drivers has fallen asleep behind the wheel in the previous 30 days. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that drowsy driving caused 72,000 accidents, 44,000 injuries, and anywhere from 800 to 6,000 auto accident-related deaths in 2013.

People with obstructive sleep disorders, including sleep apnea, and people who get fewer than six hours of sleep per night are most at risk for drowsy driving-related accidents. To reduce your risks, practice good sleep hygiene. That means going to bed earlier at night, avoiding alcohol and electronic device usage before sleeping, and waking up at the same time every day.

Injured by a Drowsy Driver? Get the Compensation You Deserve.

Ultimately, drivers are responsible for remaining alert, cautious, and safety-oriented when they’re behind the wheel. When they fail to do that and cause accidents, they can be held responsible for victims’ injuries and accident-related expenses.

If you or someone you love was hurt by a negligent driver, the Louisiana car accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are here to help. Call today for a free consultation.

Post-Auto Accident Checklist

by Dudley DeBosier | March 11th, 2019

Motorcycle Safety Isn’t Just for Motorcyclists

by Dudley DeBosier | February 26th, 2019

Riding a motorcycle carries many inherent risks. That’s because motorcycles have no built-in safety equipment. When riders are involved in crashes, their helmets and riding gear are the only things that protect them.

Because of the dangers that motorcyclists face, it’s important for both riders and other drivers to be considerate, cautious, and safety-oriented on Louisiana’s roadways. Unfortunately, dangerous driving habits are common throughout the state. That fact, combined with the fact that drivers aren’t always on the lookout for people traveling on two wheels, means that motorcyclists face significant risks every time they ride.

What Types of Driver Negligence Contribute to Motorcycle Accidents?

Most motorcyclists are safety-conscious and take all of the necessary steps to protect themselves. But negligent and careless drivers can cause serious crashes in a split second. A few common causes of negligence-related motorcycle crashes include:

  • Not looking for motorcycles—Whether they’re turning left, entering an intersection, or changing lanes, drivers must always look out for other vehicles—including motorcycles.
  • Driving while distracted—Too many drivers rely on their peripheral vision or cursory glances at the road due to being distracted. When they do that, they may miss seeing motorcyclists in their path or next to them.
  • Speeding—Motorcycles can accelerate and slow down much faster than vehicles. When motorcyclists stop, speeding drivers behind them may be unable to slow down in time.

Other drivers aren’t always the ones at fault. Sometimes, governmental entities can even be held liable for crashes, especially when they know about but fail to address dangerous conditions on roadways such as potholes, debris, or broken asphalt.

Hurt in a Crash? We’re Here to Help.

At Dudley DeBosier, our Louisiana motorcycle accident lawyers know that motorcyclists often suffer severe and debilitating injuries in crashes. If you or someone you love was hurt on a motorcycle, we’re here to help. Call today for a free consultation.

Railroad Crossing Safety: What to Know

by Dudley DeBosier | February 19th, 2019

After a spike in fatal accidents involving passenger vehicles and trains in 2016, the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission began re-emphasizing the dangers associated with railroad crossings and the need for drivers to make smarter decisions when approaching them. In 2017, Louisiana ranked seventh among all states for total number of train collisions, which included six deaths and 31 injuries.

Stay Safe With These Tips

Although railroad crossings are equipped with many safety features, including alarm bells, flashing lights, and barrier arms, drivers still face risks when they drive near or over train tracks. To protect yourself and your loved ones when driving near railroad crossings, it’s important to follow these tips:

  • Never try to beat a train—If you hear a train’s horn or a railroad crossing alarm bell, prepare to stop your vehicle before you reach the train tracks. Trains may be just moments from railroad crossings by the time you hear their horns or the crossing’s alarm bells.
  • Never drive onto railroad tracks unless there’s room ahead to fully cross them—Traffic can back up anywhere, including on roadways with railroad crossings. Always leave plenty of room between your vehicle and the tracks in front of you when congestion is heavy and you don’t have enough space to drive beyond them.
  • Never cross without looking both ways, even if a train has already passed—Some railroad crossings have multiple tracks heading in multiple directions. That means another train may be traveling towards you immediately after the previous train passes through the area. Continue to yield after a train passes and look left and right before proceeding.

We’re Here for You After an Accident

At Dudley DeBosier, we’re proud to help victims of all types of motor vehicle accidents. Whether you were injured in a train collision or a motorcycle accident because of another person’s or parties’ negligence, we’re here for you. Call us today for a free consultation.

When the Roadway Is at Fault for a Motor Vehicle Accident

by Dudley DeBosier | January 16th, 2019

Studies show that most auto accidents are caused by driver error. In fact, around 90 percent of crashes can be attributed to things like speeding, following too closely, distracted driving, inexperience, and driving while impaired. But what about the remaining percentage of crashes?

An often-overlooked cause of crashes is the roads, streets, highways, and interstates we travel on every day. It’s easy to take the safety and reliability of roadways for granted, but they must be designed properly and they also require constant monitoring and frequent maintenance to be safe for all types of vehicles.

What Is the Government’s Role in Designing and Maintaining Roads?

Federal, state, and local governments are in charge of roads in Louisiana, and when they fail to keep them free from hazards, these parties can be held liable when crashes occur.

Some of the tasks that government departments and agencies are required to perform to keep roads safe for drivers include:

  • Building roads that are easily navigated and traversed—Roads are supposed to be designed with drivers in mind. But some roads are dangerous due to their initial design because of unnecessary winding curves or steep inclines.
  • Repairing damage after storms or inclement weather—Potholes, flood damage, rockslides, and downed trees can all make roads dangerous or impassable. It’s up to the government to make timely repairs or detour drivers away from those areas.

If you or someone you love was hurt in a crash that was caused by poor road conditions, you may be eligible to file a claim against the governmental body that was supposed to make it safe for you and other drivers. Call Dudley DeBosier today to find out how we can help.

What is “Discovery” in a Car Accident Lawsuit?

by Dudley DeBosier | December 19th, 2018

After a car accident injury, you have two choices: pursue an injury claim yourself with the insurance company or hire a personal injury attorney to handle the injury claim on your behalf. If you handle the claim yourself, the insurance company will most likely provide a quick settlement offer for you to sign. But things aren’t always what they seem. The amount of compensation they offer to provide may seem large—until you discover the true cost of your injuries.

If you hire an attorney to handle your claim, you’ll probably hear them mention the “discovery” phase of your claim if a lawsuit is filed. During this step, both sides (you and your attorney and the other driver and their attorney) complete the following 3 steps:

  1. Written questions – Often called interrogatories, these questions may be related to the accident or they may cover broad topics. You must answer these questions truthfully and to the best of your ability, but your attorney can help you object to any questions that are unclear or confusing.
  2. Request for production of documents – Paperwork related to the injury and the accident is gathered. Documents such as medical treatment records, wage loss documents, and photographs of the accident scene may be exchanged between both sides of the lawsuit during this step.
  3. Depositions – This step gives both attorneys a chance to ask people involved in the accident about their involvement and the extent of their injuries while under oath. Your attorney can help ensure the process is fair by objecting to unfair questions on your behalf.

Why is Discovery Important?

The information shared during the discovery phase can provide an experienced car accident attorney with the information necessary to determine a fair value for your case. Think of it this way: you can either take the insurance company’s word at face value, or you can rely on the facts of the case to help determine what your case is actually worth.

At Dudley DeBosier the choice is easy, and access to the evidence allows us to fight for the best interests of our clients every day.

Our Louisiana Attorneys Want to Help

We know the discovery phase of a car accident lawsuit may seem scary or intimidating—especially while you’re recovering from an injury. That’s why we do everything we can to make the process as painless as possible for the clients we help. Our Louisiana attorneys handle car accident cases every day, and we’re here to provide the guidance you deserve every step of the way. So don’t wait if you need help after a car accident—contact us now for a free case review.

The Holiday Season is Also DUI Season

by Dudley DeBosier | December 12th, 2018

The weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day are filled with opportunities to get together with family and friends, and many of those festivities can involve alcohol. In fact, 16% of adults admit that they drink more than usual during the holiday season*, which means an increased risk of driving under the influence or sharing the road with intoxicated drivers.

At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, our commitment to safety doesn’t stop within the courtroom. That’s why our team urges you and your loved ones to arrange a safe ride home after any event where you choose to drink.

In fact, during recent years, we’ve provided thousands of Uber discount codes for free rides home after sporting events and during holidays where drinking is common. Want to learn more? Follow us on Facebook to stay up to date on our latest community efforts or fill out the Get Updates form at the bottom of our website to receive email updates from Dudley DeBosier.

Louisiana Lawyers Dedicated to Preventing Injuries

Our injury attorneys know the devastating effects of car accidents caused by drunk driving, and it’s our goal to help spread awareness of DUI accident dangers in Louisiana. We also know that injuries caused by negligence can happen anytime—even over the holidays. We’re here if you need us—just contact our  24/7 legal team to get the help you deserve.

From everyone here at Dudley DeBosier, we wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy holiday season!

*Source: Harris Interactive Survey for Caron Treatment Centers

Insurance Companies Profit When Car Crash Victims Go Without an Attorney—Here’s Why

by Dudley DeBosier | November 22nd, 2018

Auto insurance coverage is supposed to help you cover the costs of your medical treatment and injury-related expenses after a car accident caused by someone else. Unfortunately for many injured drivers, passengers, and pedestrians, this situation can get complicated fast. That’s because every car accident is different—including the ways that injuries can affect the lives of those involved.

After all, a broken bone requiring surgery that leaves a medical technician out of work for a month is certainly a different scenario than a welder who faces a lifetime of back pain. So, how do insurance companies decide how much each case is worth?

The Business Model Behind a Quick Car Accident Settlement Offer

Insurance adjusters aren’t always transparent about the methods they use to determine case value, but one fact is clear: insurance companies are businesses designed to maximize their profits. This means paying out less than they take in, and they can accomplish this in one simple way: making quick settlement offers to victims who don’t know the true value of their case.

Here’s an example: A car accident victim suffers back pain after a rear-end collision. An insurance adjuster reaches out to chat with the victim and begin the claims process. After investigators determine both parties are partially at fault, a $15,000 settlement offer is presented to the victim in question, just weeks after the crash. The victim accepts, and by doing so, signs away their rights to pursue the any further compensation.

$15,000 covers the medical bills up to the date of the settlement and leaves a few thousand extra—not too bad, right? Not so fast. Consider this:

  • The victim hadn’t finished treatment when they signed the offer, and over time, learns that they will never recover to the way they felt before the crash. Treatment can help, but it isn’t free, and it may be required for years to come.
  • The victim is forced to consider another job with less physical labor—but also less pay.
  • The victim’s physician recommends surgery as an option to relieve the pain, but the full costs are not covered by their health insurance.

This Is Why We Want to Help

Unfortunately for many injury victims who go without a lawyer, the complications that follow the accident in the months and years to come can be devastating.

As injury lawyers, it’s our job to think ten steps ahead to ensure the clients we help have access to the resources they need to get their lives back. This means calculating past, current, and future wage loss, the full cost of their treatment over time, and the toll that pain and suffering may inflict on their daily life. And in many cases, the results we achieve are significantly  higher than the initial offer from the insurance company.

Don’t sign away your rights and let an insurance company profit from one of the most difficult times in your life. Contact Dudley DeBosier today, and let us work one-on-one with you to help determine the true value of your case. , Our goal is clear every step of the way—we want to change the way people think about attorneys, one relationship at a time.

Crashes Increase When Daylight Saving Time Ends—Know the Risks!

by Dudley DeBosier | November 1st, 2018

A telltale sign that fall is in full swing is the end of Daylight Saving Time. And at 2 a.m. local time on November 4, we’ll turn our clocks back an hour. But before you celebrate an extra hour of sleep, you should know the driving safety risks that come with the end of Daylight Saving Time.

Statistics show that the likelihood of a car crash increases around the autumn time change. Knowing the reasons why can help you avoid potential dangers and stay safe on the road!

We’re Here to Help

At Dudley DeBosier, it’s our goal to make the community we serve a better, safer place to live—because we want to change the way people think about attorneys, one relationship at a time. If you need help after a Louisiana car accident, the attorneys at Dudley DeBosier want to help. Contact us today—the case review is free, and there is no cost or obligation to get started.

What to Do After a Car Accident Caused by a Friend or Family Member

by Dudley DeBosier | September 26th, 2018

As Louisiana car accident lawyers, we often recommend that people who are hurt in crashes caused by others should pursue compensation claims for their accident-related expenses. After all, why should victims pay out of pocket for medical bills and lost wages when they didn’t cause their own accidents?

However, many auto accident victims are hesitant to pursue claims if they were hurt in crashes caused by friends or family members. No matter who caused the accident, the facts remain the same if you were hurt: you have expensive medical bills piling up and you may be too hurt to go back to work.

It’s important to remember that filing a compensation claim “against” your friend or family member isn’t a personal issue, and it’s not designed to “punish” him or her. Auto accident claims are generally designed to recoup crash-related expenses from insurance companies—not from the pockets of the people responsible for accidents.

You Deserve Compensation. We Can Help You Get It.

Auto accident claims are business as usual for most insurance companies. When there’s enough evidence to prove that policyholders were at fault for injury-causing crashes, most insurance companies offer fair settlements—especially when victims have lawyers on their sides. That means the process is often over in a matter of months with no trial and no courtroom visits.

You won’t be pitted against your friend or family member, and you won’t be taking money out of his or her pocket when you file a compensation claim. Instead, you’ll get the money you need for your medical bills, lost wages, and other accident-related expenses from the legally required insurance policy of the person who caused the crash.

Let the Louisiana auto accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier help you with this sensitive matter. Call today for a free consultation.

What Is the Louisiana “No Pay, No Play” Law?

by Dudley DeBosier | September 14th, 2018

Content Updated March 26, 2021 

In addition to having a valid driver license to legally drive a vehicle in Louisiana, you also must be covered by a valid auto insurance policy providing liability coverage, meaning it will provide compensation for the other driver’s medical and vehicle repair bills if you cause a crash.

Uninsured or underinsured drivers who cause accidents can be held personally liable for the damages they cause to other people or property, and that money often comes straight out of their pockets.

If you’re a good driver who has never been in a car accident before and can’t ever see yourself causing a crash, you may be wondering why you need to buy liability coverage at all.

But did you know that not carrying any auto insurance means that you may lose out on the chance to get any compensation for a crash, even one that wasn’t your fault?

Louisiana’s No Pay, No Play statute, passed in 2011, states that victims of another driver’s negligence are prevented from collecting the first $15,000 of bodily injury damages and the first $25,000 of property damages if they’re uninsured at the time of the accident.

Why do they do this? Very simple: they want to encourage people to buy insurance. The reasoning is two-fold: drivers who break the law and drive without insurance should not be “rewarded” by still getting compensation when they get into crashes, and drivers who follow the law and buy insurance should not be “punished” by not being able to get compensation because the other driver didn’t have liability coverage.

4 Things to Know about No Pay, No Play in Louisiana

Here are four things to know about the No Pay, No Play law, including important exceptions:

  1. The law only requires that drivers carry the minimum required liability insurance, which is $15,000 in medical costs per person ($30,000 per accident) and $25,000 in vehicle repair costs. You aren’t required to purchase any other type of auto insurance.
  2. The law doesn’t apply to drivers from other states with different insurance requirements who get into crashes in Louisiana.
  3. The law doesn’t apply if the at-fault driver broke certain laws before the crash, including driving while intoxicated, intentionally causing the accident, fleeing the scene, or if the at-fault driver was committing a crime or fleeing after committing a crime.
  4. The law doesn’t apply if you were legally parked when the collision occurred.

If you have questions about whether this law affects you after a car accident, or whether any of these exceptions apply to you, contact our legal team today. We’re here to help.

Can I Still Get Compensation?

If you are seriously injured in a crash caused by someone else but you don’t have auto insurance, you can still get compensation in some circumstances.

The law prevents you from collecting the first $15,000 of medical expenses and the first $25,000 of vehicle repair and other property damage (it’s not a coincidence that those are the amounts everyone is required to purchase), but for expenses over that, you may still be able to receive compensation.

For example, if you suffer $25,000 worth of medical bills after a crash that wasn’t your fault, but you don’t have liability insurance, the No Pay, No Play law means you will have to pay $15,000 out of pocket, but you can pursue the remaining $10,000 from the other driver’s liability insurance.

The Importance of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

All auto insurance providers in Louisiana are required to offer uninsured motorist coverage, although drivers are not legally required to buy any like they are for liability coverage.

However, we recommend purchasing uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (usually packaged together) to ensure that you always have a way to get compensation after a crash, even if the other driver doesn’t have any insurance.

If you are in a crash caused by someone else, and that person doesn’t have insurance, you may be left in the lurch for your accident-related expenses unless you have uninsured motorist coverage (UIM).

This auto insurance coverage allows you to file a claim with your own insurer if the other driver doesn’t have insurance and can’t pay.

Likewise, underinsured motorist coverage provides you the extra amount you need when the other driver only has the minimum amount of coverage and your expenses exceed that amount. For example, if the other driver only purchased the minimum amount of $15,000 in coverage, but you have $25,000 in medical bills, you would receive $15,000 from the other driver’s liability insurance and the remaining $10,000 from your own underinsured motorist coverage.

Get Insured to Ensure You’re Eligible for Compensation

At Dudley DeBosier, our Louisiana car accident lawyers fight for the rights of injured victims like you. It’s important to always get in touch with a lawyer if you were hurt or your vehicle was damaged in a crash. We’ll review the facts and help you choose your next steps.

Ready to speak to a lawyer? Call us today for a free consultation.

What Are the Time Limits to File an Injury Lawsuit?

by Dudley DeBosier | September 5th, 2018

If someone else’s negligence caused injury to you or someone you love, you can file a lawsuit to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

However, it’s important to note that you and your lawyer don’t have an indefinite time period to initiate the lawsuit. All jurisdictions, including Louisiana, have a “statute of limitations”—or time limit—that dictates how long victims have to file personal injury claims.

The statute of limitations for most accident and injury cases in Louisiana is one year from the date of the accident or injury occurring. That’s shorter than many other states, which may give victims two or more years to file a lawsuit.

Statutes of Limitations for Common Damages Claims

The one-year statute of limitations is true for almost all injury claims in Louisiana. It applies to all personal injury claims, including car accident claims. It also applies to wrongful death claims and medical malpractice claims.

However, because medical malpractice isn’t always obvious or noticed by victims until a significant amount of time has passed, victims can file claims up to three years after the malpractice took place—but the claims still must be filed within one year of victims discovering malpractice.

Another exception exists for injury cases involving victims under the age of 18 who were hurt by defective or dangerous products. Minors and their parents aren’t bound to the statute of limitations for filing claims for the injuries they suffered in those cases.

As you can see, understanding the statute of limitations for personal injury claims and its exceptions can be complex and confusing. If you have questions about your rights after an injury, we’re ready to help you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call (866) 897-8495 to get started now.

365 Days Go Fast. Call Us Today.

Don’t jeopardize your claim by waiting too long to get compensation. A calendar year can pass in the blink of an eye, and with it goes your chances of getting the money you deserve. Contact our Louisiana injury attorneys to get the help you deserve.

Louisiana Motorcyclists: Here’s Why You Need to Wear a Helmet

by Dudley DeBosier | August 22nd, 2018

At Dudley DeBosier, our injury lawyers are very aware of the dangers motorcycle riders face in Louisiana. From distracted drivers to roadway hazards, the lack of protection offered by motorcycles can lead to severe or even fatal injuries that drivers of larger vehicles may not face.

Because our lawyers handle motorcycle injury claims every day, we want to offer one important piece of advice: wear your helmet, and make sure your passengers wear a helmet, too.

Not All Motorcycle Accidents Are Preventable

No matter how safely you ride or how experienced you are, you can’t prevent an accident caused by someone else. A helmet is your first line of protection against serious, or even fatal, injuries in the event of a crash. If you or someone you love were involved in a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault, call (866) 897-8495 or contact us online to get the experienced help you deserve.

Car Wreck Injuries: Not Always a Driver’s Fault

by Dudley DeBosier | July 23rd, 2018

Whether a car wreck involves multiple vehicles or a single vehicle, it’s common for many people—including law enforcement officers and insurance companies—to suspect that driver error was the cause of the crash.

While studies show that around 90 percent of auto crashes are caused by drivers making mistakes behind the wheel, 10 percent of crashes are due to other factors—and those factors mean other parties may be to blame.

At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, it’s our goal to help all auto crash victims—including those who were hurt in crashes that weren’t caused by negligent drivers, but instead by negligent auto and parts manufacturers or even negligent governmental bodies.

How can other parties be held responsible for crashes?

Whether it’s a driver commuting to work, an auto manufacturer installing parts on a new line of trucks, or the government designing and building an interchange on a major interstate, all of those parties have a responsibility to uphold certain safety standards.

When a driver is negligent behind the wheel, he or she can be held liable for any accident-related expenses incurred by victims. The same should be true for big entities like billion-dollar auto manufacturers and state and federal governments.

Our lawyers handle cases involving auto manufacturers and the government the same way we handle all injury claims: we gather evidence that proves they breached their duty and we link that negligence to the damages that innocent victims suffered.

Don’t Pay Out of Pocket for an Accident That Wasn’t Your Fault

After a crash, we’ll investigate to determine if any of the following factors played a role in the accident or your injuries:

  • Defective parts—Auto manufacturers don’t always properly inspect or test the parts that go into their vehicles—and that means innocent victims sometimes pay the price.
  • Defective design—Governmental agencies in charge of road design and improvement are responsible for safety above all else—but they don’t always follow through on their promises or their obligations.

Don’t pay out of pocket for a crash that wasn’t your fault. Let our legal team investigate, gather evidence, and fight for your rights. Call us today at 225-224-8465.

One Statistic Car Insurance Companies Don’t Want You to Know

by Dudley DeBosier | July 20th, 2018

After a crash, you expect the car insurance company to pick up the bill for your damages—and if your injuries aren’t your fault, it’s only right for them to provide a fair settlement offer. Yet despite the industry’s multimillion dollar advertising budgets, there’s one message that their spokespeople and mascots often neglect to mention—how much more money injury victims get from car insurance companies if they hire a lawyer.

According to a 2014 report from the Insurance Research Council, injury victims with a lawyer, on average, get 3.5 times more money than people without a lawyer.

Not sure if you should hire a lawyer?

by Dudley DeBosier | July 11th, 2018

Take it from someone who’s been in your shoes.

At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, we know that making the decision to hire a lawyer after an accident or injury isn’t always easy. And even if we tell you that we offer free case reviews and charge no fees unless our lawyers get money for you, you may still be worried about what others think.

So, what do others think? You might be surprised to find out the answer!

Let Us Change the Way You Think About Attorneys

At Dudley DeBosier, we want to change the way people think about attorneys, one relationship at a time. That’s why we make it our goal to provide you with high-quality legal representation and excellent customer service. Call us at (866) 897-8495 to find out why so many of our clients give us 5-star reviews.

What If More Than One Party Is At Fault In A Louisiana Car Accident?

by Dudley DeBosier | June 18th, 2018

At Dudley DeBosier, our lawyers help Louisiana injury victims with car accident claims every day. Many of those car accidents fall into categories such as rear-end collisions, intersectional accidents, or lane-change crashes. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, determining which driver caused the crash is not always clear—and in some cases, both parties share the blame.

So, what happens if you are partially at fault for a car crash?

Let’s say you’re involved in a lane-change crash with another car that was speeding. You changed lanes without signaling, and the other driver struck your vehicle. In this case, Louisiana’s pure comparative negligence doctrine would come into play when determining damages. That means that each driver is assigned a percentage of blame for the accident, which is then reduced from the total amount of damages you could receive.

Determining the percentage of blame for each driver relies on a full investigation of the accident, but two facts are true in car accident cases where liability is disputed:

  1. You may still be entitled to compensation for your car accident, even if you were partially at fault for your crash.
  2. An experienced attorney can fight for the maximum amount of compensation you deserve by ensuring the facts of your accident are interpreted as fairly as possible.

Get a Free, No-Obligation Consultation Today

If you have questions about your rights after a car accident, even if you believe you may be partially at fault, contact Dudley DeBosier today. Our attorneys can review your claim and help determine your rights to compensation—dial 866-971-5201 now to get started. The call is free, and because we offer the No Fee Guarantee®, you won’t pay us anything unless we win money for you.

Case Understanding: The Life Cycle Of A Case

by Andrew Reynolds | May 16th, 2018

If you have been injured in a car crash due to another person’s negligence and have decided to pursue a claim for your injuries, you may not know what to expect and will probably have many questions.  How long will my case take? How much is my case worth?  The length and value of your case depends on several factors, so these questions can be difficult to answer since every case involves different facts and injuries.  However, while each case is unique, the lifecycle of a personal injury case generally remains the same and can typically be divided into three stages: Investigative Stage, Treatment Stage, and Resolution Stage.

Investigative Stage

The Investigative Stage begins immediately after the wreck, so it is important to gather as much information as possible at the scene of the crash.  If you can, you should try to do the following:

  • Contact the police
  • Take photographs of the scene, any visible injuries you sustained, and the damages to your vehicle as well as any other vehicles involved in the collision
  • Get the at-fault driver’s name, address, telephone number, insurance information, driver’s license number and license plate number
  • Obtain contact information for any witnesses

When you are able to, you should then consult with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.  At Dudley DeBosier, one of our attorneys will thoroughly review and investigate your case by obtaining and reviewing the crash report, investigating insurance coverage, interviewing eyewitnesses, requesting copies of your medical records, and obtaining evidence essential to your case.

Treatment Stage

If you are hurt or experience any pain after a wreck, you should seek immediate medical treatment.  Regardless of whether you intend to make a claim against another party for your injuries your health and wellbeing should be the primary concern.  Even after seeking initial medical care, you may not know the extent and severity of your injuries; therefore, it is important that you continue to seek medical treatment for any ongoing symptoms.

Insurance companies will frequently try to get you to accept a quick settlement after a wreck before you even know the full nature and extent of your injuries.  Imagine if your vehicle was damaged in a car wreck.  Would you accept a settlement for your property damages without knowing the extent of the damages to your vehicle?  Of course not.  The same should go for your own body.  Therefore, you should never accept a settlement offer without knowing the extent and severity of your injuries and consult with a qualified personal injury attorney.

Resolution Stage

Once your case is ready to be resolved, your attorney will attempt to settle your case with the insurance company or other responsible parties. Many times, a settlement can be negotiated before a lawsuit is filed; however, there are times when it is necessary to file a lawsuit depending on the facts and circumstances of the case.  After a lawsuit is filed, the “discovery” process begins. During the discovery process, each party will have the opportunity to obtain relevant factual information from each other in order to determine their adversary’s legal claims and defenses by sending interrogatories (written questions), requesting documents, and taking depositions of the parties and relevant witnesses in the case.

Even after a lawsuit is filed, most cases are resolved before they go to trial. The parties may reach a settlement agreement through negotiations amongst themselves or by mediation, which is overseen by a neutral third-party. However, if a settlement cannot be reached, the case will go to trial and be decided by a judge or jury.

At Dudley DeBosier, our attorneys are here to help navigate you through the lifecycle of your case and make sure you get the compensation you deserve.

Frequently Asked Questions of Personal Injury Clients

by Taylor Breland | March 29th, 2018

2 of the most popular questions: How long does this take and how much will I get in the end?

If you have ever been in a car crash, you understand how stressful it can be.  Dealing with insurance adjusters, getting your car fixed, and seeking medical attention – it can seem very daunting.  Clients seeking attorney representation often have many questions, however, there are two very common questions that are very difficult to answer.  One, how long does this process take?  Two, how much will I get in the end?  These questions are difficult to answer because there are a lot of things that can affect the timeline of a case and how much is recovered.

It is difficult to predict how long a case will take to be resolved because there are many factors outside of the control of the client and attorney, which can affect the timeline of a case.  These factors include; liability determinations, injuries, medical treatment, and insurance coverage.  For example, an intersectional crash may create a dispute as to who is at fault.  Sometimes in this instance, filing a lawsuit is necessary if the insurance company is denying a claim, which can take longer than resolving a case without filing a lawsuit.  Also, a case where somebody has sustained broken bones that require months of therapy could take longer than a case where the injuries are not as severe, simply because some injuries require longer recovery.

Similar to predicting how long a case will take, it is almost impossible to know what a client will receive in terms of settlement amount, until the very end.  Much like the timeline of a case, similar factors can impact how much a client will receive out of a settlement.  For instance, a case where there is a lot of insurance coverage may allow a client to be compensated more than a case where there is a small amount of insurance coverage.  Additionally, medical bills change as a client seeks treatment.  It is often difficult to predict what a client’s medical treatment will include at the beginning of a case, so as a client seeks treatment and incurs bills, the amount of the settlement could change as well.

Lastly, it is important for clients and prospective clients to know that a good attorney will keep their client informed of the case and provide straightforward answers to questions.   Some questions, such as the ones discussed above, may not be able to be answered.  Attorneys want to set reasonable expectations for their clients so if you have these questions in mind, please understand why it may be tough to get an answer.

How Pre-Existing Conditions Affect Your Injury Claim

by Chris Keyser | March 16th, 2018

While most degenerative spine changes in middle-aged people are not symptomatic, or painful, it is generally accepted that the presence of a degenerative spine condition makes that person more vulnerable to an “aggravation” of the condition when subjected to trauma. In other words, someone with a “pre-existing condition” of degenerative spine changes who is involved in a car crash is more likely to come away with neck or back pain than would be someone with a “healthy” spine.

In Louisiana, the law provides that a person who negligently causes a crash or a dangerous condition that results in an aggravation of a pre-existing condition in the victim of the crash is responsible for the full extent of the aggravation. In the usual case, most car wreck victims have not had any diagnostic imaging, such as an MRI, of their neck or back. It is not until after the wreck, and after neck and/or back pain develop, that MRI studies are obtained.  When the MRI reveals degenerative disc changes, the doctors usually find that the wreck aggravated the pre-existing condition and made it symptomatic.

As we age, our spines undergo a gradual but persistent process of degeneration. Merely walking in an upright position causes wear and tear on the spine. Everyday stresses on the spine trigger a healing process that results in bony growth around the joints of the vertebrae. The result of this process may be referred to as degeneration, arthrosis, or spondylosis. Typically, our body can accommodate these gradual changes so that they are not painful.

Studies have shown that more than half of adults between the age of 30 and 39 have degenerative changes in their spine, including disc bulges and loss of disc height, that is not associated with symptoms. That is, it is not painful. By age 60, the incidence of degenerative spine conditions is closer to 90%.  If pain develops relating to the degenerative disc changes, the applicable diagnosis becomes degenerative disc disease.

The mechanism that causes this injury is that the forces on the victim’s body from the collision wakes up the condition that was not painful before the wreck and makes it painful. As a result, a person who was not in need of medical attention before the wreck is forced to get treatment to get relief from pain, soreness, stiffness, and spasm caused by the aggravation.

Fortunately, the law does not relieve a negligent driver or business owner from the responsibility of hurting someone simply because there was a pre-existing spine condition that was aggravated by the negligent actor. The innocent victim is entitled to be restored back to the condition she was in before the injury. This may take the form of past medical expenses and wage losses, future medical expenses and wage losses, and pain and suffering. Unfortunately, insurance companies tend to use the pre-existing condition as an excuse to avoid taking responsibility for the damage done by the folks they insure. Dudley DeBosier works hard to ensure that none of its clients are short-changed because of pre-existing conditions.

Keeping Records After an Injury

by Ross LeBlanc | February 20th, 2018

No one wakes up expecting to be injured in a car wreck or an accident. When something like that happens, it’s natural to feel unsure about what to do. However, one thing you should do no matter what is document everything you can regarding your wreck. Having this knowledge later will help you make an informed decision should the insurance company offer you compensation for your injuries. A few ways to keep a record of your wreck are:

  1. Take pictures

Phones today come equipped with great cameras and they are useful in documenting what happened after a car crash. Remember to take photos of every vehicle involved in the crash. It is also a good idea to snap a picture of other driver’s license plate, driving license, and insurance paperwork.

If you can, take photos showing where the vehicles came to a stop after the crash. You will never have another opportunity to do this, and it may later be important for your insurance claim.

  1. Keep track of your costs

The other driver’s insurance company may be responsible for reimbursing your out-of-pocket expenses. Or, if the other party denies coverage or responsibility, your own insurance may cover your expenses. In order to be reimbursed from an insurance company, you will need records of your expenses. Examples of receipts you should keep include rental expenses, towing receipts, or money spent replacing broken personal items.

  1. Keep track of lost wages

If the wreck took away your only means of transportation, or if an injury prevents you from being able to do your job, keep track of all the hours and days missed from work. It’s also a good idea to inform a supervisor, manager or human resource director at your job about your wreck and explain the reasons you cannot make it to work. And don’t forget to keep track of your recent check stubs or W-2’s to show how much you were being paid before the wreck.

Even if you are using sick time or vacation time, it is still important to track your time missed from work. And, even if you bought a disability insurance policy that pays you partial benefits, you should track your time missed from work.  Knowing how much time you missed from work, and what it cost you to miss that time, will help prove how a wreck affected your life and will help to show what the insurance companies should compensate you for.

  1. Keep a journal

It is a great idea to write down your version of how the wreck happened, and how you felt afterward. For instance, if the wreck caused you to miss an important event, or if your injuries start to interfere with your daily activities, document what happened and how you dealt with it in a journal. When it later becomes time to tell your story, a journal will help you to remember all the important details that people normally forget over time.

Should I Hire A Lawyer?

by Chris Keyser | February 9th, 2018

If you have been injured and are considering hiring an attorney, you may find yourself wondering if you need an attorney and how they can help you with your case. An attorney may have many different roles depending on the size, type and complexity of their client’s case. But in every case, an attorney should provide sound legal guidance, advocate on behalf of their client, and always represent the best interests of that client.

Sound legal guidance

  • Open, honest and frequent communication – It is extremely important that attorneys and their clients have open, honest, and frequent communication about the posture, status and the next steps or options in their case. In order to do so, attorneys and clients establish trust with one another so that they feel comfortable sharing information and having a healthy dialogue as the case develops.
  • Setting realistic expectations – Often times clients don’t know what to expect or what should be happening during the life of their case. It is the attorney’s job to counsel the client, explain things to them, set realistic expectations, and then deliver on the things that they can control. The attorney should fully discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the case, how to utilize the strengths and overcome any weakness that may exist. These candid discussions help inform and set realistic expectations for both parties.
  • Properly evaluating the case – This can go hand in hand with setting the proper expectations for a client’s case. It is crucial that clients understand the true value of their case, what factors might influence the value of the case, and what might add or decrease the value of their case. Once armed with this knowledge, attorneys and their clients can work together to achieve the best possible outcome.

Represent the best interests of the client

  • Knowing your venue – In some cases, the attorney filing the action may have a choice of venue, or where they want the action brought. This may mean which Parish they want to file a lawsuit in or if they want to bring the action in Federal, State or City Court. Depending on the facts and other circumstances involved in the case, the attorney may recommend a certain venue as being more favorable if the attorney feels it would be most advantageous for their client to litigate in that court system. Venue should always be discussed with the client so that they understand the potential impact before this decision is made.
  • Making informed decisions together – Making informed decisions requires all the factors listed above. The Attorney should be educating and guiding the client throughout the representation process. The client should be able to trust and communicate openly and honestly with their attorney. Together, both the attorney and client should have input in the decision-making process.

Six Most Common Causes Of Wrecks

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | December 20th, 2017

We all would like to think that we are highly skilled drivers and that if the moment comes, we would be able to avoid a wreck using our skills and instinct. Unfortunately, that is not the case for many, if not most of us. However, maybe if we know the most common causes of wrecks, maybe we can avoid them in the future. Read below for the six most common causes of wrecks:

  1. Rolling right turn on red
    1. Situation: You don’t come to a complete stop at a red light to make a right turn. You look left, still accelerating—and as you make the turn you hit something or someone in the other lane.
    2. Solution: Come to a complete stop at a red light before turning right. It takes a few seconds but saves a huge headache.
  2. Falling asleep at the wheel
    1. Situation: Something we think could never happen to us, yet it happens way too often. Drowsy driving accounts for 21 percent of all crashes according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The truth of the matter is, humans can’t judge their own sleepiness and we all fall into microsleeps we don’t even notice. Microsleeps can happen to anyone at any time, even while driving.
    2. Solution: Get the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep at night, drink coffee if you know you’re tired. Don’t drive alone when you know you’re tired.
  3. Loss of control
    1. Situation: Loss of control accounts for 11 percent of all crashes. You take a sharp curve too fast or don’t account for the fresh water on the road after a light drizzle. And then the unthinkable happens, you lose control of your vehicle and slide off the road or into oncoming traffic.
    2. Solution: Adjust accordingly to the weather, the road and all external factors when driving.
  4. Into the unknown
    1. Situation: You wait to make a turn but something is blocking your view of oncoming traffic. You get impatient and make the turn anyway, then—CRASH!
    2. Solution: Never go if you can not confirm nothing is coming.
  5. Rear-ending
    1. Situation: You’re in the left lane and the person in front of you is going 55 in a 60. You ride way too close to their bumper to prove a point until they slam on their brakes and you slam into them.
    2. Solution: Maintain a safe following distance between you and car in front of you at all times. The rule of thumb is two car lengths.
  6. Distracted driving
    1. Situation: You look down at the radio, read a text, look at a billboard and suddenly you feel the vibrations of the rumble strips and you veer back into your lane. But, what happens when you run off the road or worse, into oncoming traffic? Distracted driving accounts for 33 percent of all wrecks according to the NHTSA.
    2. Solution: Always pay attention to the road and never text and drive.

Click here for the original article.

Bizarre but True: The Risks of Drowsy Driving

by Susan Shoptaugh | November 1st, 2017

Are you guilty of being a drowsy driver?

For most of us, the impact of a poor night’s sleep revolves around the loss or gain of an hours’ worth of sleep—at least that’s the only thing we think about. But research shows something else, that may surprise you.

Lack of sleep can be just as dangerous as drinking and driving,  if you’re behind the wheel. According to the National Sleep Foundation’s poll, 60 percent of us are guilty of drowsy driving.

Why does drowsy driving matter?

  • The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety estimates that drowsy driving is a factor in over 16 percent of deadly crashes, 12.5 percent of crashes resulting in hospitalization and seven percent crashes that result in towed vehicles.
  • According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration drowsy driving results in an estimated 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries and more than 100,000 accidents each year.

What can be done to reduce accidents caused by drowsy driving?

  1. Know when to stop and rest:
    • Heavy eyelids and difficulty focusing
    • Wandering and/or disconnected thoughts
    • Drifting from your lane or hitting the shoulder rumble strips
    • Trouble remembering the last couple of miles you’ve driven
  2. Get seven to eight hours of rest at night.
    • Research shows that those who sleep six to seven hours a night are twice as likely to be involved in a car crash than people who sleep eight hours a night.
  3. Don’t overlook trouble sleeping. If you’re routinely having trouble sleeping, talk to your doctor about what you’re experiencing.
  4. Drive with someone else in the car especially for long drives.
  5. Coffee can help for short bursts, but a 20-minute power nap is better.

Whether you’re adjusting to daylight savings or just not feeling well rested, make sure you are driving safely and avoiding drowsy drivers.

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Motorcycle Safety

by Taylor Breland | May 8th, 2017

Motorcycles can provide a great sense of adventure and fun for those who ride them,  however, they can also be very dangerous. May is motorcycle awareness month, and it is important to raise awareness about motorcycle safety.  Being aware of motorcycle safety, statistics and laws will aide in making the roads safer for motorcyclists and others.

The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission has resources in place that aim to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities caused by motorcycle crashes.  There are training courses for beginner and more advanced riders that focus on mental and physical skills, which are important when operating a motorcycle.  These courses are a combination of classroom instruction and practical exercises.  It is a good idea for both beginners and advanced riders to stay up to date on motorcycle safety and these resources can help.  The application for the motorcycle training courses can be found at the following website:

Motorcycle safety is crucial because each year riders are killed and seriously injured due to crashes.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 4,976 people were killed in motorcycle crashes in 2015.  This is an 8.3% increase from 2014.  Also, due to the nature of riding a motorcycle versus in a passenger vehicle, motorcyclists are 29 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a crash per vehicle mile traveled, and almost five times more likely to be injured.

In Louisiana, any person operating a motorcycle must wear a safety helmet that is secured properly with a chin strap while the vehicle is motion.  All safety helmets must consist of lining, padding, visor, and chin strap and shall meet other specifications that are established by the commissioner.

Lastly, it should go without saying, that both motorcyclists and passenger car drivers should avoid drinking and driving, and distracted driving (e.g. texting while driving). Following motorcycle laws will make the roadways safer for motorcyclist and other drivers. For a more complete set of motorcycle laws, please visit:

How Long Do I Have to Take Action in Louisiana?

by Cody Grosshart | February 15th, 2017

Under Louisiana law, a person suffering from an injury has one year from the date that the injury was sustained to file a lawsuit against the person and/or entity responsible for causing the injury. However, that does not mean that anyone should wait to take action to protect themselves and their rights. Being proactive about seeking medical treatment, establishing insurance claims, and retaining counsel will help the entire process run more smoothly. Therefore, the question should not be “how long do I have to take action,” but rather “how can I move forward today”.

Waiting to take action in a personal injury situation can cause problems in any number of ways. For example, when an insurance company or ultimately a court learns that you waited to take action, they could assume that your injuries and damages may not be as bad as they really are. Also, while waiting to take action you could be involved in another incident causing further injury which could make it more difficult to show that the original incident actually caused the injury from which you are suffering.

One of the best steps that an individual can take when handling a personal injury action is to seek legal advice as to what rights he/she has, the extent of those rights, and how to exercise those rights. Many law firms – including Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers – are more than happy to try to answer any preliminary questions that you may have pertaining to your personal situation. But do keep in mind that definite and concrete answers are very difficult if not impossible to come by early on in a personal injury situation, and that nothing you learn before agreeing to be represented by a licensed attorney should be construed as legal advice.

Texting and Driving: Let’s Choose Safer Roads

by Ross LeBlanc | February 8th, 2017

I see it every day in traffic, I see it while stopped at a red light, and I see it while driving on the interstate: lots of people around me are looking down at their phones while driving. I know you see it too, and neither of us should be surprised when this leads to a car wreck.

Wrecks happen when a driver is distracted. If a driver decides to look down and read an email or type a text message, that driver is deciding to ignore the safety of the surrounding drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. This decision happens a lot, and the results are predictable. In 2014, there were 3,179 people killed and an estimated 431,000 injured in car wrecks involving distracted drivers.

We hope everyone around us drives carefully. Driving carefully does not mean looking at a smartphone every few seconds. We may think that no one will get hurt because we are just glancing at our phones and are not really distracted, but think about this: five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When driving at 55mph, that’s enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded!

Mobile phones can be taken everywhere, and lots of us bring them into our cars and trucks. As a result, most of the drivers around you every day have a smartphone with them. Smartphones, with their touch screens, addictive Apps, and internet access, are a new and powerful distraction.

Although these devices help connect us with our family, friends, and the rest of the world, they often take us away from what’s happening right in front of us. Driving can be dangerous if we do not pay attention. That is what makes smartphone usage in cars and trucks so alarming.

Smartphones are not just for making phone calls and sending texts. They are popular, in part, because we use them to read emails, watch videos, and look at Apps like Facebook or Snapchat. These activities are more distracting than making a phone call.

According to the Pew Research Center, nearly two-thirds (64%) of Americans now own a smartphone. This is a sharp increase from the 35% of Americans who owned a smartphone in 2011. Many of us can no longer imagine our work or social lives without one. With the increase in phone ownership, there is also increased phone use while driving. In fact, at any given moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving.

If it sounds impossible to stop using smartphones while driving, that illustrates the problem. People may believe they can be cautious and continue checking their phones from time to time while driving, or that they do it more safely than others do. The truth remains that there would be far fewer wrecks if drivers did not check social media or read emails while driving. My hope is that we all recognize the danger, use common sense, and protect each other while driving. If we choose to ignore the glow of the smartphone screen while driving, we will be choosing to have safer roads for ourselves and those around us.

How Long Do I Have to Recover Compensation For My Injuries Under Louisiana Law?

by Peter Ellis | December 7th, 2016

In a personal injury claim against a tortfeasor (at-fault party) in Louisiana, you generally have one (1) year from the date of the incident to either resolve your claim or file a lawsuit to preserve your case beyond that period. However, resolving your case and filing a lawsuit can be a complicated transaction requiring a professional’s assistance in order to make sure you are fully and competently protected.

This one-year period is standard in actions against at-fault motorists, merchants, premise owners, dog or cattle owners, and many other similarly situated persons. That being said, there are alternative timeframes within which a claim may be presented for differing types of insurance coverage. For instance, a motorist injured in an automobile collision may have a period of two (2) years from the date of the incident to present a claim or file a lawsuit and recover under a policy of uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance, which is carried by the injured claimant or on the occupied vehicle. Similarly, many policies which provide for Medical Payments Coverage allow for claims to be presented and paid within timeframes exceeding the general one-year statutory period, given that the treatment or injury occurred within that one-year timeframe.

Medical Malpractice claims in Louisiana, although following the same general statutory timeframes regarding instituting the action, require very specific procedural steps be taken within differing timeframes to properly preserve and present the claim. As such, medical malpractice can be a very time sensitive area of legal specialty for which a detailed consultation with an experienced attorney should be carefully considered. Similarly, actions involving the rights of minors may have extended time limitations provided by statute depending on the nature and cause of the action.

Whenever one is injured by another’s negligence in the State of Louisiana, the potential claimant must carefully consider the facts and circumstances surrounding the occurrence, and in most cases, consult with an attorney who can help decide which claims and corresponding time limitations may apply. The attorneys at Dudley DeBosier are skilled in handling many different types of injury claims and are available for a no-cost consultation at your convenience.

Louisiana Car Seat Laws

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | November 2nd, 2016

This blog was updated in January 2021.

Car accidents are the leading cause of death among children under the age of 12.  As parents, we want to make sure we are doing everything we can to protect our families. The best way to prevent injury and death in car accidents is by placing children in the proper child seat for their age and size, and not allowing children to ride in the front seat before they are old enough that it’s safe to do so.

This can be challenging with all of the different information and options that are now available. Fortunately, Louisiana has set forth laws that provide specific safety requirement guidelines for parents. These laws were last updated in August of 2019, so if you’ve recently welcomed a new child into your family, these rules may have changed from when you last checked.

We hope the following information about child car seat laws in Louisiana will help you better understand and choose the best restraint for your child. However, please note that while this is the law, these are only the minimum safety requirements.

Car Seat Requirements by Louisiana Law

Please note: the old requirements are only listed here to highlight what changed before and after the August 2019 update to Louisiana car seat laws. Please refer only to the new requirements when determining what car seat your child needs.

  • NEW Requirements: All children under the age of 2 are required to ride in rear-facing car seats. Furthermore, infant car seats should always be placed in the rear seat, never the front seat, which places infants at risk of airbag injuries.
    • OLD Requirements: Infants age birth to at least one year OR Less than 20 pounds are required to ride in rear-facing infant or convertible car seat.
  • NEW Requirements: All children age two to four must ride in forward facing seats with an internal seat belt.
    • OLD Requirements: Children age 1 to 4 OR between 20 and 40 pounds are required to ride forward-facing in a convertible or combination seat (used with the internal harness).
  • NEW Requirements: All children age 4 to 9 must ride in booster seats.
    • OLD Requirements: Children age 4 to 6 AND between 40 and 60 pounds are required to ride in a belt-positioning booster seat (backless or high-backed). Children age 6 and up AND more than 60 pounds should sit in the backseat using the vehicle lap-shoulder belt or a belt-positioning booster seat.
  • NEW Requirements: Children age 13 and under must ride in the rear seat.
    • OLD Requirements: Children age 12 and under must ride in the rear seat.

Why Are These Laws Important?

Failure to comply with these requirements can have harsh legal consequences as well. If you’re convicted of a child safety seat offense, you have the possibility of being ticketed and fined, with your fine amounts increasing for subsequent violations.

Drivers who have been convicted of breaking a child safety seat law must provide the state with a Child Restraint Affidavit proving that they have acquired the appropriate child safety seat. Drivers have 30 days to submit the affidavit before the DPS will suspend said driver’s license until they have provided a notarized affidavit showing they obtained the appropriate child restraint.

However, it is also important to follow these laws for your child’s safety, especially the law about keeping children in the backseat until they are over the age of 13. Front passenger seat airbags are designed with adults in mind. They are positioned to deploy at chest level on an adult, but when children are seated in the front seat, the airbags can open at head level and can cause serious and even fatal injuries, including skull fractures and broken necks.

Are There Exceptions to the Car Seat Law?

Yes, there is one major exception, and that’s if you are traveling in a taxi. Taxi drivers are not required to provide car seats for their passengers, and passengers are not required to bring one. However, we always recommend bringing your own car seat or booster seat if are planning to take a trip in a taxi with a child under the age of 13 for their safety.

What Other Laws About Driving With Children in the Car Apply in Louisiana?

In Louisiana, it is illegal to leave children unattended in a vehicle, and violating this law could result in fines and even jail time. It is also illegal to smoke in a vehicle with children inside. Violating this law could result in fines and community service.

If you have any questions regarding the correct safety seat for your child or about proper installation, visit one of the Louisiana Child Passenger Fitting Stations or the NHTSA Child Car Seat Inspection Stations. And always stay up to date or sign up for notifications about car seat recalls.

For more information visit:

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It’s No Accident

by Steve DeBosier | September 15th, 2016

We’re used to hearing the term “car accident.” But most of the time, they’re no “accident” at all.

It’s time to start calling them what they really are.

Pokemon Go and Driving: Catch Em All, but Don’t Catch and Drive

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | July 20th, 2016

You may have seen them around. People of all ages walking around absent-mindedly while staring and flicking at their smartphones, conglomerating around parks, malls and downtown hotspots. Many of them are playing the new, massively popular app, Pokemon Go. The best way to describe the game is that It is a virtual scavenger hunt.  Since its release on July 6, Pokemon Go has gotten over 15 million downloads and has even surpassed Twitter in the amount of daily active users. It’s topped download charts in the US, Australia and New Zealand.

However, the game – which utilizes your phone’s GPS to catch virtual “Pokemon” – has been causing serious car wrecks. A quick Google search of “Pokemon Go car crashes” yields a wealth of Pokemon-related headlines:

Incidents have become so common that several police departments have issued Pokemon Go safety warnings. The National Safety Council even released a statement, urging gamers to understand that “no race to ‘capture’ a cartoon monster is worth a life.”

“People are putting themselves in dangerous situations,” said a police chief in Toronto. “We’re seeing people are playing while they’re driving and stopping their cars in the middle of the intersection to go get a [Pokemon] or something like that.”

While we understand the fun and excitement of the Pokemon Go app, we at Dudley DeBosier would like to remind everyone to use common sense, be aware of your surroundings, and not to drive distracted. And as an official Pokestop, we would like to encourage everyone to safely visit us, and please park your vehicles before catching any Pokemon near our office.

Baton Rouge 2nd Most Dangerous City for Drivers

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | June 15th, 2016

A recent study, unfortunately, confirmed what many Capital City drivers are already thinking: Baton Rouge is one of the most dangerous cities for drivers.

The report was developed by CRISIS (Capital Region Industry for Sustainable Infrastructure Solutions). Besides ranking Baton Rouge as the second most dangerous city for drivers (behind Detroit), it ranked the city the third worst in the nation for average annual commuter traffic delay among mid-size cities, and eleventh worst in the nation for road conditions.

“Yet another report has independently verified what Baton Rouge area drivers unfortunately already know based on experience, which is that our roads are not only the worst in the state but among the worst in the nation for traffic congestion, road conditions, and now safety for drivers,” said Scott Kirkpatrick, executive director of CRISIS.

The analysis came after ranking the nation’s cities based on five factors: the rate of fatal crashes, the likelihood of an accident relative to other cities, the number of years between accidents, the risk of auto larceny, and the risk of having a vehicle stolen.

At Dudley DeBosier, we see the aftermath of auto crashes every day, and we are passionate about helping those who have been injured and making the roads safer.  Here are four quick reminders to keep you, your family, and others safe. While these tips may seem obvious, following this simple list can go a long way to help reduce the number of automobile crashes in Louisiana.

  • Don’t drink and drive. Louisiana’s drunk driving rates have gone down, but we are still the 5th worst state for drunk driving. With services like Uber and Lyft becoming more prevalent, there is even less of an excuse to put yourself and others at risk.
  • Don’t text and drive. We hear this all the time, but it still remains equally important. No text is worth risking your life, the lives of your passengers, or the lives of others.
  • Be extra careful in bad weather. Approximately 22% of all crashes occur in bad weather. Always turn on your headlights during dangerous weather, even if it’s the middle of the day.
  • Keep your vehicle maintained. Regular brake checks and tune ups are vital to avoiding accidents and mechanical problems.

Do you have other tips that you would like to share? If so, please comment below and let us know!

Photo credit: faungg

Are You Buying The Right Car Seat?

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | May 10th, 2016

Car accidents are the leading cause of death of children under the age of twelve. Studies show that over half a million children under the age of twelve ride in cars without being properly secured in an age-appropriate car seat. When properly using car seats, the risk of death is reduced by 71% and booster seats for children who fall in the correct age and weight class reduce the risk of serious injury by 45% when combined with proper seat belt use.

Car seat safety has been a hot topic among parents this past year. Every parent wants to make sure their children are as safe as possible while traveling in an automobile, but it can be difficult being that the right actions are being taken. Here are a few tips to follow to help keep your children safe in the event of a car accident.

  1. Always buy car seats that fit your child – it is important to buy car seats according to your child’s age and size, and you should update the car seat as your child grows. A good guide based on your child’s age can be found here.
  2. Do not go for the least expensive car seat – although children often will quickly outgrow their seats, it is important to spend a little extra on seats manufactured by reputable brands that contain important safety features. The hard truth is that the more you pay, the more safety features you will get. Features such as five-point safety harness with superior adjustability, additional padding, and a side-impact protection to protect your child’s head and chest in a side-impact collision are things worth spending extra on.
  3. Keep your child in the car seat as long as possible – studies show that the longer an infant rides in a rear-facing seat, the safer they are. In fact, it is now encouraged that children ride in a rear-facing car seat until the age of two. Keep your child in each car seat for as long as he or she fits in the manufacturer’s height and weight requirements to maximize safety.
  4. Install the car seat correctly using the LATCH (Lower anchors and tethers for children) car seat tether – since 2002, it has been mandated for all cars to be manufactured with a LATCH car seat tether which anchors the car seat to the bottom of the seat instead of using a seatbelt as a tether. Make sure you read all installation instructions and take every precaution described, and have your installation checked by a professional from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  5. Do not attach toys to car seats— While attaching a mirror and toys to your child’s car seat may keep them entertained and happy during a car ride, it is a potential hazard to your child. In the event of an accident, these toys could become projectiles that could cause severe injuries.
  6. Do not buy a used car seat – while it may be tempting to buy a reputable brand’s car seat for less by buying it used, this could put your child at risk for injury. Even though it may not have obvious damage, these car seats could have been compromised in a previous accident or may not be up to current safety standards.
  7. Always keep up with recalls and new safety standards – this may be the most important tip in the list. Every now and then a car seat or booster seat will be recalled by its manufacturer. It is important to be in the know. You can always check recalls online, but it is also recommended to register your child’s car seat with the manufacturer and subscribe to email notifications in the event of a recall.

Although it may seem overwhelming finding the right car seat for your child, being proactive in your search can be invaluable to his or her safety. With the right car seat, you can drive with a peace of mind knowing that your child is secure. Here are a few free resources to help find the perfect seat:

CarseatBlog: Written by a team of child passenger safety technicians, this long-running blog offers insightful and thorough reviews of current car seats.

Safe Ride 4 Kids: Safe Ride 4 Kids is an organization founded by a former firefighter and paramedic with years of experience witnessing the damage car crashes can cause firsthand. The blog offers a wealth of helpful advice, relevant to car seats as well as driving safety for pregnant women.

The Car Seat Lady: This website offers excellent tips, buyer’s guides, and infographics to help you navigate through finding the right seat.

Are You Automatically At Fault if You Rear-End Someone?

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | February 18th, 2016

Rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of auto accidents. And while you may have heard the following car – the car who rear-ended the leading car – is always at fault, that is not always the case.

This misconception is rooted in the idea of negligence. When analyzing where the fault lies in an accident, one should consider “Who was most capable of preventing this accident from happening?” or “Whose negligence led to the accident.” In most rear-end collisions, the answer to these questions is the driver of the following car because they have the ability and responsibility to be alert and maintain a safe following distance, allowing enough time to come to a complete and sudden stop if necessary.

However, sometimes rear-end collisions are not fully caused by the negligence of the following car’s driver and instead is partially or fully due to the leading car’s negligence. Here are a few scenarios where this may be the case:

  1. If the leading car accelerates in reverse into the following car. This is more common than you may think. For example if the leading car is waiting to take a left turn and enters the intersection, but the light turns red before they are able to turn. As a result, they back up to move out of the intersection. When the light turns green allowing for the leading car to take a left turn, they accelerate forgetting they left their car in reverse and accelerate into the following car. In this scenario, the accident was not caused by the following car’s negligence.
  2. If the leading car’s brake lights are not working. Without seeing brake lights, the following car does not stop in time to avoid a rear-end collision. In this scenario, the fault in this accident would not fall fully on the following car because the leading car was negligent in not having operable and illuminated brake lights.
  3. If the leading car gets a flat tire or breaks down, but does not pull off of the road or turn on the vehicle’s hazard lights. While the following car in this scenario does have an obligation as a driver to ensure that the road ahead of them is clear and safe to drive on, they still may not realize the leading car is stopped in enough time to stop their vehicle to avoid a collision. In this circumstance the following car may not be found fully at fault because the leading car could have prevented this accident by pulling off of the road or at minimum turning on the vehicle’s hazard lights.

Proving negligence of a leading car’s driver can be tricky, and will often require the work of an attorney. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, we encourage you to call Dudley DeBosier for a free consultation 444-4444.

New Year’s Leads to Increased Risk in Drunk Driving Fatalities

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | December 30th, 2015

New Year’s Eve parties are exciting. On December 31, many people will come together to reflect on 2015 and make toasts and resolutions to a new year in 2016. However, enjoyments can often get out of hand and people can put themselves and others in danger – turning what should be a night to celebrate new beginnings to a night of recklessness.

According to MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) data, there were 234 drunk driving fatalities in Louisiana in 2014, representing 33.3% of all total traffic deaths. During the New Year and New Year’s Eve period, an even higher percentage of traffic deaths – 42% – were due to drunk driving.

Here are a few easy tips to make sure you and your loved ones get home safely:

  • If you plan on drinking, have a friend who’s a designated driver and leave your keys at home.
  • Before heading out, save a local transporation service’s number in your phone or download a rideshare app.
  • Watch out for your friends and make sure they don’t get behind the wheel after drinking.

If hosting a party, make sure to do your part to keep guests safe:

  • As friends arrive, check to make sure they have a designated driver.
  • Always offer food and water to guests.
  • Consider preparing fresh linens to turn your couch into a bed for guests who need to sleep it off.

Don’t ruin 2016 for yourself or others by getting behind the wheel after drinking. Dudley DeBosier encourages everyone to celebrate New Year’s in a fun, safe and responsible manner.

Will your case go to trial?

by Matt Terrell | October 26th, 2015

Whether due to anxiety about having to testify in front of a judge or a jury or because of concerns about how long it may take to resolve a case, people always want to know early on whether their case will go to trial.

The short answer is probably not.

Recent statistics show that about 95% of civil cases are settled before trial.

However, while most cases are resolved well before trial it remains a possibility that any particular case could, in fact, end up in litigation, and could possibly require a trial to resolve the claim.

At Dudley DeBosier one of our primary responsibilities to our clients is to ensure we obtain fair value for their claims.  If we are able to obtain fair value for a claim prior to filing a lawsuit, then the case may be resolved before a lawsuit is ever filed.  However, if fair value is not offered for the client’s claim then a lawsuit will be filed and the litigation process will begin.

Even in cases where a lawsuit must be filed, more often than not, the Louisiana attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers are able to obtain fair compensation for our clients without going through a full-blown trial.  In those rare instances where a case must go to trial because the defendant is being unreasonable and refuses to pay our clients what they deserve for their injuries, the experienced Louisiana attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, together with our outstanding trial preparation team, will work diligently to prepare for trial and put our clients in the best position possible to obtain a favorable judgement.

5 Tips For Filing A Claim After A Hit-and-Run

by Peter Ellis | September 11th, 2015

A hit-and-run collision can be a very frustrating event for anyone, especially if you do not have the right coverages on your insurance policy and the adverse driver is never identified. Here are some helpful tips to aid you in being able to file a claim:

  1. Gather any information you can on the fleeing vehicle. Any information gathered such as a license plate number, vehicle make/model/color can aid in finding the responsible driver. Make sure that you do not put yourself or others at risk by doing so.
  2. If the driver is never located, filing a claim can become more difficult. In this case, it is always safe to make sure you carry uninsured/underinsured bodily injury or property damage coverage in addition to rental reimbursement and collision coverage.
  3. In the State of Louisiana, carrying the fore mentioned first party coverages will make the process less worrisome.
  4. In the State of Louisiana, if the driver runs you off of the road and does not make any contact with your vehicle, the law requires there be an independent witness to support your claim. This could be another driver in a passing vehicle, but typically cannot be anyone in your vehicle or anyone who could present a claim from the same accident.
  5. Contact Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers to discuss specifics. Our attorneys are experienced in prosecuting claims from hit-and-run collisions, and we would love to help.

Motorcycle Safety Tips for Thunder on the River Bike Fest

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | April 29th, 2015

Spring is in the air here in Louisiana and that means it’s time to get the motorcycles back out on the road. A great opportunity to get out and enjoy your bike and others’ as well will be taking place this weekend in the city of Monroe, Louisiana.

The Thunder on the River Motorcycle Fest will take place this coming Saturday, May 2, at the RiverMarket located at 316 S. Grand Street beginning at 10 a.m. The festivities will include a number of vendors selling motorcycle accessories and apparel as well as a bike wash and poker run.

According to an article from, music will be provided by radio station Rock 106 and the Mike McKenzie Band performing live. Food, such as Cajun cooking, sausages, egg rolls, and cupcakes, will be provided by a number of vendors as well.

With so many bikes in a concentrated area, the Baton Rouge motorcycle accident attorneys with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers encourage anyone planning to attend this event to keep safety in mind at all times. This means wearing a helmet every time you ride a motorcycle. Being vigilant of other vehicles in traffic, driving defensively, and assuming motorists don’t see you or your motorcycle could also help prevent crashes from occurring.

At Dudley DeBosier, we know what a pleasure riding motorcycles can be and our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers hope these tips will help you and your loved ones have a fun and safe time during Thunder on the River Bike Fest.

Louisiana Car Accident Attorneys Discuss Distracted Driving Awareness Month Events

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | April 15th, 2015

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month in Louisiana and many different people and organizations are working together to spread the message about the importance of focusing on the road when driving.

In 2013, as many as 3,154 motorists in the United States lost their lives and approximately 424,000 others were injured in distracted driving accidents. Furthermore, it was determined that drivers who were not paying attention to the road caused 16 percent of all crashes.

The Louisiana car accident attorneys with Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers point out that there are several campaigns taking place throughout the next several weeks that will focus on reducing these numbers. First, several high schools in our area will partake in mock crash scenes that depict the outcomes of distracted driving.

Rise in DUI Accidents on St. Patrick’s Day

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | March 12th, 2015

St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner and that means the 30th Annual Wearin’ of the Green Parade will take place in downtown Baton Rouge this coming weekend. But with the celebration comes a completely preventable danger. The rates for DUI arrests, accidents, and fatalities notoriously spike around holidays like St. Patrick’s Day.

Many local businesses and restaurants will also be holding events around the parade route, many of which could include patrons partaking of alcoholic beverages. The Baton Rouge car accident lawyers at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers would like to remind those planning to attend the parade and other events about the dangers of drunk driving.

Reports indicate that in 2011, 226 motorists lost their lives as the result of driving under the influence (DUI) and more than 6,000 drivers were arrested for engaging in the behavior.

In order to keep drunk drivers off the road and to help ensure everyone gets home safely, our team at Dudley DeBosier will be offering free cab rides home to parade attendees who may have had too much to drink. To get a free Baton Rouge cab ride, just call Yellow Cab and mention that we here at Dudley DeBosier will be covering the cost of your ride.

We hope you have a safe and enjoyable time at the parade this weekend!

St. Patrick’s Day Safe Ride Home

by Dudley DeBosier | March 10th, 2015

Heading out to the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Baton Rouge this weekend? Dudley DeBosier is offering free cab rides home through the St. Patrick’s Day Safe Ride Home program. The free cab rides will be available on Saturday, March 14, 2015 from 12 P.M. to 3 A.M.

DDB created this program to reduce the amount of drinking and driving that may occur during St. Patrick’s Day weekend. The firm would like parade-goers to be able to safely enjoy the festivities that take place for St. Patrick’s Day in Baton Rouge and hopes that this program will encourage those in attendance to act responsibly.

Managing partner at Dudley DeBosier, Chad Dudley, expects that the Safe Ride Home program, in its third year now, will yield great results. He states, “Baton Rouge has a great St. Patrick’s Day celebration and we hope that encourages people to enjoy the holiday safely and responsibly.”

Dudley DeBosier’s Safe Ride Home program will only be available during the designated times on the specified date. Free rides are only available from an establishment that serves alcohol (i.e. restaurant or bar) to a place of residence within Baton Rouge. To take advantage of a free ride, please contact Yellow Cab of Baton Rouge at (225)-926-6400.

As part of the firm’s Random Acts of Kindness campaign, Dudley DeBosier employees will also be handing out cookies on Friday, March 13 from 11 A.M. to 1 P.M. to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and remind the community about the Safe Ride Home program. Everyone is welcome to stop by the office.

DDB places tremendous value in giving back to the community that has given us so much. The Random Acts of Kindness campaign has allowed employees here to get involved in the Baton Rouge area in ways they could never have imagined. A free cab ride and cookies are the perfect ways to spread kindness on St. Patrick’s Day!

Louisiana Car Accident Fatalities Decline for Second Year in a Row

by Alyssa Perot-Heltz | February 4th, 2015

Highway safety is important to each of the Louisiana car accident attorneys at Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers. That’s why we are excited to learn the number of Louisiana motor vehicle collisions and fatalities in 2013 decreased from the previous year.

Data from the 2013 Louisiana Traffic Records Report show there were a total of 651 Louisiana car accident fatalities throughout the year. That was an almost 3 percent decrease from the previous year’s total.

A significant decrease in both pedestrian and motorcycle fatalities played a crucial role in the reduction of fatality numbers. Pedestrian deaths decreased to 98 fatalities in 2013, while bicycle deaths declined by more than 45 percent.

Many officials and experts are attributing the decline in accidents and fatalities to strict traffic laws in Louisiana. Bayou Buzz reports Louisiana has been praised for adopting 9 of 15 traffic safety laws that are believed to be crucial in preventing accidents from occurring. Some of these laws include requiring all drivers and passengers to wear seat belts, requiring all motorcyclists to wear helmets, and creating stringent driving regulations for inexperienced teens.

At Dudley DeBosier, our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers would like to applaud the citizens of the state for keeping our roadways safe. We also encourage you to keep this trend going by keeping safety in mind at all times when you’re behind the wheel.