Baton Rouge Car Accident Lawyer
When you’ve been hurt in a motor vehicle collision, you deserve compensation for all of the expenses and losses you’ll suffer as a result. To find out if you have a case and what it’s worth, consult with a Baton Rouge car accident lawyer.
From head-on collisions to rear-end crashes, any auto wreck can be a terrifying and traumatic experience to live through. To make matters worse, suffering an injury in the crash can leave you dealing with a mountain of medical debt and vehicle repair bills. The majority of traffic accidents are caused by someone’s negligence, and if you weren’t the one at fault, you could be entitled to compensation for your damages.
Getting this money is rarely an easy process, however. An insurance company is all but certain to be involved, and they’re going to be more concerned with protecting their profit margins than they will be with paying you a fair settlement. Fortunately, a Baton Rouge car accident lawyer from Spencer Calahan Injury Lawyers can help you get what you are owed.
Dealing with an Auto Insurance Company After a Wreck
Many accident victims find out the hard way that the insurance company isn’t on their side after an auto collision. This is true even when it’s their own insurance company. The primary goal of any insurer is to get you to settle quickly and for the smallest amount possible.
They don’t want to pay you more than they have to because every cent they pay you decreases their earnings. And they want you to settle quickly because they don’t want to risk the possibility that you’ll get a personal injury attorney involved and find out just how much they should really be paying you.
A Baton Rouge car accident lawyer from our firm can be your greatest asset when it comes to getting comprehensive compensation from an insurance company. We’ll handle the negotiations and communications on your behalf, so you won’t have to worry about them using your statement out of context against you and pushing blame onto you.
In fact, we’re so confident in our ability to go toe-to-toe with insurance companies that we promise our clients a larger settlement than what they were initially offered—even after our fee is deducted.
How Negligence Affects Your Baton Rouge Auto Collision Claim
In Louisiana and other states, negligence is a deciding factor in whether you can recover compensation for your auto wreck.
What is negligence? Negligence as it pertains to auto accidents is basically when drivers fail to take a certain amount of care while driving, and if they cause someone else’s injuries, they are responsible for repairing the damage they caused.
The following are the elements of negligence that must be demonstrated for a Baton Rouge auto wreck injury case to be successful:
- Duty – Another party owed you a duty of care.
- Breach – The other party breached that duty by injuring you.
- Cause of Fact – If not for the other party’s breach, you wouldn’t have been injured.
- Damages – You have evidence of your injury and the fact that you suffered some kind of loss.
Almost all auto wrecks are the fault of someone, whether it’s another driver or the government agency responsible for maintaining the roadway you were traveling on, for example.
Determining what caused the accident will help identify who was responsible. There can also be more than one person responsible for an accident. Louisiana uses a system called comparative negligence to examine each party’s involvement in the wreck and resulting injuries.
If the injured person is assigned some of the responsibility for the car crash, the damages he or she can receive will be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned.
The Cause of Your Collision Will Determine Fault
The first step in any personal injury claim is identifying all of the factors that contributed to the accident and then determining who was responsible for causing those same factors. A large number of auto wrecks are actually caused by multiple parties, and naming all of them in your claim will allow you to maximize your potential compensation.
Detailed below are just a few of the potential factors your Baton Rouge car accident lawyer will help you investigate:
- Distracted Driving – From cell phone use to eating while driving to arguing with passengers, distracted driving is one of the leading causes of traffic crashes.
- Drunk Driving – When intoxication is involved, whether from drugs or alcohol, the driver will most likely be viewed as being grossly negligent.
- Speeding – Driving recklessly is a poor choice that puts others in danger, making the driver responsible for any accidents caused.
- Dangerous Roads – Many single-car collisions are actually caused by roads in disrepair, which means that the driver could collect from the government agency responsible for the road’s upkeep.
- Road Construction – Roadwork can create some chaotic driving conditions, and if either the road crew or other drivers aren’t paying attention, a wreck can easily result.
Determining Fault for Your Baton Rouge Car Crash Requires Effort
To work out the cause of your collision and who was responsible, a lot of work must go into investigation. Depending on the accident, this could take some time and great effort. There are many steps involved in gathering the evidence needed to prove your claim.
For example, if you were injured in a crash on a rainy day, was it simply the weather that was responsible? Most likely not.
If another vehicle collided with you, it could be the fault of the driver next to you who was going too fast for the weather conditions. Perhaps the roadways were poorly designed, leading to excessive rainwater buildup and causing cars to hydroplane.
In this example, your attorney will need to investigate the roadway, other involved drivers’ speeds, and much more.
A few of the investigative steps essential to proving an auto injury case in Baton Rouge are outlined below:
- Interview all witnesses.
- Gather police reports, accident reports, and other necessary documentation of the crash scene.
- Obtain photographic and video evidence, which could include going door-to-door to secure surveillance camera tapes.
- Collect medical evidence of your injuries, including the extent of your injuries.
- Keep careful documentation of the effects the accident has had in your life.
- Obtain other evidence, such as mechanic reports, therapists’ evaluations, proof of a manufacturing defect, and more.
Car Crash Injuries and Their Effects on Your Life
In addition to the cause of your collision, the injuries you sustain will be central to your personal injury lawsuit. While the cause determines who is liable for your damages, your injuries will be the most influential factor in determining the monetary value of those damages. Your Baton Rouge car accident lawyer will work with you to evaluate the full impact of your injury.
For example, a traumatic brain injury or paralyzing spinal damage can often have a permanent and drastic negative impact on your quality of life. Not only can your mental and physical capabilities be diminished, but you’ll also require expensive ongoing medical care and need special equipment and accommodations.
By contrast, a broken bone or whiplash can usually be recovered from in time, but that doesn’t mean you won’t suffer both emotionally and financially in the meantime. You’ll still need medical care, and you may very well be unable to work and experience significant emotional distress while you heal.
A Full and Fair Settlement for Your Auto Wreck
A common tactic employed by many insurance companies is to provide an initial settlement offer that only covers the victim’s most obvious and immediate accident-related expenses. These offers often look very appealing at first, but in the long run, they fall far short of covering all of the victim’s needs and expenses, leaving the victim to either pay for his or her care out of pocket or go without.
By working with a Baton Rouge car accident lawyer from our office, you can make certain that this doesn’t happen to you. We can help you perform a full assessment of the value of your accident claim, ensuring that all of your financial damages and non-economic losses are included.
Financial losses are those that have caused you to actually lose money because of your auto collision. Non-financial, or non-economic, losses are when you’ve suffered a loss that can’t be tied to a specific monetary value.
For example, if you’re paralyzed due to the accident, your life will be forever altered. Most people would agree that the loss of your mobility is a larger loss than any financial damages you could have suffered.
You will qualify for financial compensation for that great loss, although no amount of compensation could ever truly make up for what you’ve suffered.
The following should give you an idea of monetary and non-monetary damages you can request for your Baton Rouge auto crash claim, depending on your particular case:
- Current and future medical care, procedures, and surgeries
- Lost wages and income, as well as reduced future earning capacity
- Vehicle repair and replacement
- Cost of medication, mobility equipment, and medical devices
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost enjoyment of life
Baton Rouge Car Accident FAQ
When you’ve been injured in a traffic accident, you’re going to have a large number of questions and concerns that all need to be addressed. In this section, we’ve provided answers to a few of the questions that we get asked by clients on a regular basis. If you would like more information, please contact us so that you can speak with a Baton Rouge car accident lawyer.
Will I have to go to court for my Baton Rouge auto crash claim?
In many cases, no. Your attorney will attempt to negotiate a fair settlement with all involved parties. If a fair agreement can’t be reached, that’s when your attorney would take your auto crash claim to court. Attorneys with our firm aren’t afraid to fight in court to get you the compensation you deserve.
What should I tell the insurance company about my Baton Rouge wreck?
You should be careful what you tell insurers after a crash. Giving them basic information is probably fine—your name, your vehicle info, and the date and location of the collision. Don’t tell them any other details about what happened or any information about your injuries. You can let your attorney speak with the insurers for you.
How much time do I have to file an injury claim for my car accident?
Louisiana provides accident victims with a liberative prescription of just one year in which to file a claim seeking damages. In most situations, if you file after this time limit has passed, your case will be dismissed without ever being heard. This makes it imperative to act quickly after a crash.
Can I recover compensation for the damage that my car accident injuries have done to my marriage?
Yes, the strain your injuries put on your personal relationships is a non-economic loss known as loss of consortium. This can—and should—be included in your demand for compensation.
What can I do if a defective car part caused my auto wreck?
If the part failed due to a design or manufacturing flaw and an accident was the result, you can file a claim seeking damages from the part’s manufacturer. If the part failed because it was incorrectly installed, you can file a claim against the company or individual who serviced your vehicle.
Consult a Baton Rouge Auto Wreck Attorney
When someone else was responsible for the motor vehicle accident that caused your injuries or the death of a loved one, you deserve to receive a settlement that fully compensates you for everything you’ve been through. Don’t let an insurance company take advantage of you. Instead, let Spencer Calahan Injury Lawyers help you get the funds you need to pay for your recovery.
Get in touch with us today to arrange a time to discuss the details of your case with an experienced Baton Rouge car accident lawyer during a free, no-obligation consultation. To begin, simply fill out the online contact form on this page or give us a call at 225-387-2323.