Jennings Car Accident Lawyer

Home /  Jennings Car Accident Lawyer

Car accidents are very common, although many are fender benders with minor injuries. Some collisions are more severe and can result in long-term and catastrophic injuries. When you are in a car accident, you may be able to file for compensation to cover the cost of medical bills, property damage, and other losses. A Jennings car accident lawyer can help you investigate an accident and file an insurance claim to cover your damages.

When you drive, you do what you can to remain safe. Unfortunately, you can’t control all the conditions on the road or other drivers; you can only control how you react to changes. A car accident can be terrifying and traumatic. When you are not at fault for an accident, it can be even more frustrating to deal with the injuries and financial costs of the collision.

When you are not at fault, the driver or other party who is at fault is liable for your damages. An attorney can help you build a strong claim. An insurance or civil claim is more likely to be successful and earn you the most compensation possible when you have an experienced attorney guiding you through the process.

Reliable Car Accident Attorneys in Jefferson Davis Parish

A skilled attorney can determine the viability of your claim, help you file it correctly, and determine if other avenues of compensation are necessary. Car insurance and civil injury claims must be filed fairly quickly, and this can be hard to do when you are recovering from injuries, shock, and significant pain.

At the Cox Law Firm, we can handle each step of the process for you while you heal. Our team has more than 135 years of combined experience, including years of handling personal injury and car insurance claims. Our firm can help you determine which party is at fault for the accident. We understand filing requirements, how to calculate your claim’s value, and how to handle negotiations with insurance providers.

If you or a loved one was injured or killed in a car accident, our team can provide the compassionate and effective legal support you need to hold the responsible party liable. Our firm is proud to serve our community in Southwest Louisiana, and we want to bring you the compensation you need to make a strong recovery.

Fault in Car Accident Claims

In Louisiana, insurance claims are filed with the insurance provider of the driver who was at fault. In most car accidents, a driver acted negligently, and this caused the accident. A driver may act negligently by driving distracted, ignoring traffic signs, speeding, or taking other reckless and illegal actions. To be at fault, the following must be true:

  1. The driver owed the other drivers on the road a duty of care.
  2. The driver breached this duty of care through negligence.
  3. This breach of duty was the cause of the accident.
  4. You suffered damages because of the accident.

Once all these elements have been proven, then the driver is liable for all damages suffered by injured parties. Although many accidents are fully covered under a car insurance claim, even the maximum amount of coverage is sometimes not enough. In these cases, you can file for uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage with your own insurance company or a civil personal injury claim. Your attorney can help you determine which is right for your situation.

Negligence is not the only reason why a driver may be at fault. A driver may also engage in intentional misconduct and be found at fault, although you likely must file a civil claim in this case rather than an insurance claim.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in Jennings

The cause of a car accident is very important, as it can help determine who was at fault and, therefore, liable for the accident. Understanding how these accidents occur can also help you remain defensive on the road. Some of the most frequent causes of car accidents include:

Distracted Driving

There are several actions that can take a driver’s focus off the road and increase the chances of an accident, such as:

  • Texting
  • Calling
  • Dealing with a GPS system
  • Changing the radio or music
  • Eating
  • Talking with passengers in the car

If you can prove that a driver was distracted and that this caused the accident, you can recover compensation from them.

Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal, and doing so increases the likelihood of an accident occurring. Although any drug, even prescription drugs, can impair a person’s ability to drive, alcohol use is more common in severe accidents.

When drivers are under the influence, they have a harder time making rational decisions, have a slower reaction speed, and are more likely to misjudge distances. Drivers who cause an accident while under the influence may face criminal charges as well as insurance or civil claims.

Driving Fatigued

Driving while tired can be nearly as dangerous as driving under the influence. Similarly, it lowers the reaction speed of drivers and their ability to make decisions. However, it is not taken as seriously as driving under the influence. It can be difficult to prove that a driver’s fatigue was the cause of an accident, and this is why you need the help of a qualified attorney.

Speeding and Reckless Driving

Speeding is the most common form of reckless driving. Driving over the speed limit or driving too fast for the current road conditions can cause an accident and increase the level of damages caused by the collision. Reckless driving also includes actions such as:

  • Tailgating
  • Brake-checking
  • Not using turn signals
  • Merging or changing lanes recklessly
  • Not following traffic laws and signals

Hazardous Road and Weather Conditions

Dangerous roads and weather conditions frequently contribute to car accidents. While no one is liable for bad weather, drivers are responsible for reacting appropriately to inclement weather, such as slowing their speed and driving more cautiously. Failure to do this may put a driver at fault for an accident. Dangerous road conditions can also be the fault of the private or public agency that is responsible for maintaining it.

Comparative Fault in Louisiana

Even if you are partially at fault, you may still be able to recover some amount of compensation. This is because Louisiana operates under the pure comparative fault law. You can be up to 99% liable for the accident and still be legally allowed to file for damages. The final settlement, however, is reduced by the percentage that you were liable for the accident. If you suffered significant injuries, this may enable you to recover some amount of damages.

The insurance provider or the court will determine the fault percentage of each party involved in the accident. Because this determination is based on the account and presentation of the accident, it is very important to have an experienced attorney by your side during this process. They can help advocate for a lower fault percentage, which can, in turn, increase the compensation you receive.

Other Liable Parties

There are other cases where another private or public entity is liable for an accident, such as if the accident was caused by hazardous roads or by a malfunctioning vehicle component. These parties may be wholly liable for the accident or be assigned a percentage of the blame. Depending on the circumstances of your accident, other at-fault parties may include:

  • A governmental agency. State and federal governmental agencies are responsible for safe, well-maintained, and well-designed roads. Accidents may be caused by unclear signals, covered signs, badly decayed roads, broken guardrails, or improper drainage systems. When a governmental agency fails to take reasonable care to address dangers like these, it may be fully or partially liable for an accident caused by these hazards.
  • An employer. If you are in an accident with an employee who is completing job duties while driving, their employer may be vicariously liable. Instead of filing a car insurance claim, you may instead be filing against the driver’s employer’s insurance.
  • A repair or maintenance shop. If improper maintenance was done on one of the vehicles in the accident, and a resulting malfunction caused the accident, the auto shop that completed the repair could be liable for the damages.
  • A manufacturer. When the accident is caused by a malfunctioning or defective vehicle part, the manufacturer or designer of that part could be liable if the part was unreasonably dangerous when used properly. Defective car parts, such as suspension, seatbelts, airbags, brakes, wipers, accelerators, and other important car components, may cause an accident when they malfunction.

Multiple parties may be liable, depending on the situation, and this can make a car accident claim significantly more complicated. An attorney can help you manage these complex claims and liability percentages, and they can also determine how you can maximize the compensation you obtain.

Why Do I Need a Car Accident Attorney?

It is much easier to file and navigate the process of a car insurance or civil claim with an attorney. You are also more likely to receive greater levels of compensation. Your attorney can negotiate with the insurance provider on your behalf and do so with a clear understanding of the value of your claim.

Without an attorney, an insurance provider may try underhanded tactics to limit the compensation you receive, and you may accept a settlement that is much less than you deserve. An attorney can also help by completing their own investigation of the car accident, determining the cause, and finding proof of the at-fault party or parties.

An attorney makes the entire claims process easier. After an accident, you may have significant injuries, and the last thing you want to do is deal with the legal complexities of an insurance claim. Your attorney can handle all aspects of your claim from start to finish, keeping you updated on important matters and adhering to your wishes. If an insurance provider is refusing to give you the compensation that you should receive, your attorney can represent you in court.

How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Claim?

You have to act quickly to file a claim after a car accident. Car accident insurance claims depend on the unique policies of the insurance company, but it is typically within one or two months of the accident. If you do not file the claim in that time, you may be barred from receiving compensation. This is especially difficult if you have suffered painful injuries, and this is where an attorney can be very helpful.

If you are filing a civil car accident claim for personal injuries, you have one year from the date of the accident to file a claim. This statute of limitations exists to ensure that claims are made in a timely manner, keeping evidence and witness testimony fresh and preventing someone from being filed against many years after an accident.

Although this is much more time than a car insurance claim, it is important to still work quickly. The sooner you contact an attorney, the better. Your attorney needs to have time to investigate the accident before filing the claim. Although there are some cases where the statute of limitations is extended, such as if you didn’t know that you were injured, this occurs less frequently in car accident claims.

Common Injuries in a Car Accident

There are many potential injuries that can happen in car accidents. Some of the most common include:

  • Lacerations
  • Burns and road rash
  • Broken and fractured bones
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck and back injuries, including whiplash
  • Spinal cord injuries, including full or partial paralysis
  • Hearing loss
  • Eye injuries
  • Loss of limbs
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Death

It can be useful to find an attorney who has had experience with car accidents that resulted in similar injuries. That way, your attorney can better understand the likely future medical needs and potential complications of the type of injury you are suffering from.

Compensation Available in a Car Accident Claim

The value of your settlement corresponds directly with the cost and severity of your injuries and damages. An attorney can help you properly value your economic and noneconomic damages to maximize your compensation while ensuring that it reflects the harm you suffered. Depending on your damages, you may be able to recover compensation for:

  • Medical Bills: Any medical costs that were the direct result of your injuries from a car accident are compensable by an insurance or personal injury claim. This includes emergency care, transportation, medication, surgeries, doctor’s visits, and any other immediate care. It also includes all future costs concerning the injury, such as physical therapy, long-term care, mobility aids, expected complications, and other future medical needs.
  • Lost Income: The wages that you would have earned during the time you were recovering from your injury are compensable in a claim.
  • Lost Earning Capacity: If your injury has impaired or disabled you, preventing you from returning to your old work, the same field of work, or completing any form of gainful employment, the future wages you would have earned throughout your lifetime could be compensated.
  • Property Damage: Any damage to your vehicle or other items in the vehicle is compensated, including the repair or replacement costs.
  • Noneconomic Damages: Unlike economic damages, which recover tangible costs from the accident, noneconomic damages are those without set monetary values but are still recognizable by the court as compensable losses. This includes pain and suffering, mental anguish, disfigurement and disability, and loss of enjoyment of life.

If the other parties are proven to be fully at fault, you are entitled to the full amount of damages you suffered. Unfortunately, many insurance providers do not want to pay out the full amount that you are owed. In some cases, the most effective way to receive the compensation you need is to take your claim to court. Your attorney can help you make informed decisions about what is ideal for your financial situation and your claim.

Car Accidents and Wrongful Death Claims

When a car accident results in someone’s death, or they are injured and later die from their injuries, their surviving family members can file a wrongful death claim. This claim can be filed when another party is at fault for the accident, and it takes the place of a car insurance or personal injury claim that the deceased could have filed. It can recover damages such as the cost of a funeral, burial, or cremation, along with the loss of wages, benefits, and services. It can also recover noneconomic damages, like loss of companionship.

It can be impossibly difficult to know what to do after losing a loved one in a car accident. You need an attorney who is experienced in car accident claims and wrongful death claims, as they can provide you with compassion and support. A wrongful death claim can bring you and your family some financial stability and hold the party at fault liable for their negligence.

The Cox Law Firm: Protecting Your Rights After a Car Accident

At the Cox Law Firm, we have worked to represent those who were injured in car accidents, and our firm can protect the rights of you and your family. If you were in a car accident in Jennings or the surrounding communities, contact our team. We can help you determine if you have a claim.

Testimonials

Request Your
Free Consultation

Fields Marked With An “ * ” Are Required

"*" indicates required fields

I Have Read The Disclaimer*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
form-rite-img