The statute of limitations, known as Prescription in Louisiana, to file a personal injury claim is one year.
Has The Statute Of Limitations/Prescription For Personal Injury Claims Always Been One Year?
Although Prescription for filing a personal injury claim it is currently one year, legislation has changed that to two years beginning in January 2021.
What Damages Are Typically Available In A Personal Injury Claim In Louisiana?
There are general and special damages available in a personal injury claim. General damages are damages that do not have a specific amount assigned to them, which could include mental and physical pain and suffering, as well as consortium among others. Special damages would include medical bills, lost wages and other expenses for which a specific amount can be assigned.
What Common Defenses Do You See Insurance Companies Use To Avoid Paying Out On Personal Injury Claims?
Over the course of my 30-year career, I’ve found that one of the most common defenses used by insurance companies is that the accident didn’t occur, or that it wasn’t the fault of their insured. If they admit that there was an accident and that their insured was to blame for said accident, then they will claim that the injured party either did not sustain any real injuries or at least no serious injuries. Depending on the case, the insurance company might also argue that the injured party is suffering from preexisting injuries.
What Steps Do I Need To Take If I’ve Been Injured And Believe I Will Need To File A Personal Injury Claim In Louisiana?
If you’ve been involved in an accident, you should immediately consider talking to an attorney. We provide a free consultation. If you believe that you have been injured, your first step should be to retain an attorney. Once you have spoken with an attorney, you may want to keep a diary of notes regarding you injuries and what you are experiencing so that you do not forget these details as the case proceeds. You should preserve any evidence that may be available at the scene, take photographs of the location where the incident occurred and any injuries you have sustained, obtain the license plate numbers of others who were involved in the crash, and write down the contact information of all possible witnesses.
Regardless of whether you have sustained serious or minor injuries, you should seek medical treatment to be evaluated. You may not even understand your injuries until two or three days after the accident. I would generally suggest that you see a general practitioner or chiropractor who practices in the field of personal injury. Many general practitioners don’t treat accident cases, so I would confirm prior to going and if not, consider the ER or a walk-in clinic.
What Are Some Things That You Should Not Do If You’re Involved In A Personal Injury Claim?
You should not visit a healthcare provider who is not accustomed to handling personal injury cases. In addition, one of the biggest mistakes you could make would be to provide a recorded statement to the insurance adjuster, since these people are trained to find ways to deny or defeat your claim.
How Important Is It To Seek Immediate Medical Attention When It Comes To A Personal Injury Claim?
Despite the fact that soft tissue injuries will often be downplayed by defense attorneys, these injuries can be incredibly serious, costly, and life-altering. Minor soreness could indicate a serious injury, so it is best to speak to a medical professional right away. If you were to wait several weeks or a couple of months before seeking treatment, then the defense would likely claim that your injury was not a result of the accident.
What Factors Do You Consider In Order To Determine Whether Someone Has A Viable Personal Injury Claim?
The first aspect to consider is liability, which is kind of a term of art in Louisiana. In order to be held liable, one must have an obligation or responsibility of some sort, and the other driver must have violated that obligation or responsibility.
In addition to liability, there must be damages, either general or special (e.g. medical bills, lost wages). Property damage, such as your wrecked and/or totaled car, is considered separately from personal injury damages.
Decisions about viability are made on a case-by-case basis depending on the balance between liability and damages. Our ultimate goal is to help those who have viable cases and deserve compensation for their damages. Just as someone would never perform surgery on themselves, an injured party should never attempt to step into a legal field without the assistance of a lawyer.
For more information on Personal Injury In Louisiana, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (337) 240-6697 today.
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