If you or someone close to you has been hurt by the reckless, careless actions of another driver, you deserve compensation for the harm you’ve suffered. Don’t let bullying insurance companies and strong-arm tactics frighten you. Call Gauthier Amedee and let us fight for your rights every step of the way. We’re just a phone call away, and we’re ready to go to bat for you. Call us for a consultation today!
Have You Been Hurt in a Car Accident?
Let our attorneys at Gauthier Amedee Personal Injury Law go to bat for you! We'll fight for your rights to get you the compensation you deserve.
We Make it Fast and Easy
Getting help for your injury has never been easier. Just give us a call at 225-647-1700 or fill out our free online form, and we’ll take it from there!
You're Entitled to Compensation
If you’ve been hurt by someone else’s carelessness, you’re entitled to compensation. We’ll go to bat for you to get you what you deserve.
There's No Fee and No Risk
You’ve got nothing to lose by calling attorneys who will fight for you. There’s no fee unless we win your case, and there’s no risk in getting a consultation.
We Understand This Is a Difficult Time
When you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s a very difficult, trying, and stressful time. All you want to do is get well again, but there are bullying insurance adjusters who are trying to keep you from this in order to save money. That’s why you need a Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer who understands and cares. That’s where the experienced attorneys at Gauthier Amedee come in. We’re ready to listen, understand, and fight for you.
When you work with our law firm, we’ll cut through the red tape, remind everyone just who the victim is, and fight every step of the way to protect your rights. We’ll work hard to get you the compensation you deserve for your medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages, and to hold the irresponsible driver accountable.
Have You Been Hurt in an Accident? Let Us Help!
At Gauthier Amedee, we’re ready to go to bat for you.
Does Your Car Wreck Injury Sound Like This?
There are a number of common injuries you might face from a wreck, and a Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer can help.
Broken bones are among the most common injuries you can face after a car wreck. While most broken bones heal within 4-6 weeks, there can be severe lingering consequences after bad or multiple breaks that can leave you out of commission for quite some time.
Soft tissue injuries cover everything from bumps and bruises to more severe conditions like whiplash. These injuries can leave you with limited mobility and function, loss of strength, chronic pain or loss of feeling, and other conditions that can be disabling.
Traumatic Brain Injury, or TBI, can be utterly life-changing on a long-term and even permanent basis. It can occur from a hard impact or from your head whipping around violently after an impact. If you’ve suffered a concussion, you may have also suffered TBI. It can cause personality changes, depression, mood swings, crippling headaches, vision problems, and more.
Many people who suffer spinal injuries or nerve damage after a car wreck also suffer from paralysis, reduced function in extremities, or even, in the worst cases, have to have limbs amputated. Certainly, this level of injury causes permanent changes and difficulties in your life, for which you deserve compensation.
Few people talk about the invisible injuries from a car accident. You can suffer from depression, panic attacks, paranoia, or any other number of symptoms of trauma, acute stress reaction, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These can create difficulties in your ability to maintain relationships and even hold down work. They are every bit as harmful as visible injuries, and you deserve compensation for this harm as well.
The Reasons for Car Accidents
Car accidents happen for many reasons, but if you were not at fault, you may have legal options. A few common reasons car accidents occur include:
- Distracted driving and cell phone use
- Driving under the influence (DUI)
- Ignoring traffic signs and signals
- Inclement weather
- Poor road conditions
- Careless decisions
The Statute of Limitations in Louisiana
Every state has a statute of limitations for filing a legal claim. This means that there’s a specific window of time during which you must file your case in order to get compensation. In Louisiana, this statute of limitations is the same for any personal injury case, and Article 3492 of the Civil Code states that any lawsuit, whether for personal property damage or injury, must be filed within one year of the accident.
It’s important to note that this statute of limitations applies only to a lawsuit, not to a car insurance claim. Your insurance company will have its own policies regarding how long you have to inform them of an accident, and it’s usually as soon as possible.
Proving Negligence in a Car Accident Case
Just about every personal injury claim comes down to the concept of negligence. At its most basic level, it means you have to prove that the other person acted in a manner contrary to how a reasonable person would act. This is known as the “reasonable person” standard. Basically, you will need to establish three factors:
1. The other driver acted irresponsibly or violated their duty of care toward other drivers on the road.
2. Their irresponsibility led directly or indirectly to the accident.
3. You were hurt as a direct result of the accident.
It can get complex and take some time to establish these facts. That’s why it’s so important to have the right car wreck attorney in your corner. Our experienced Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer know how to prove negligence and will work to get you the compensation you deserve.
Car Accident Frequently Asked Questions
Immediately after an accident, call first responders. File a police report and get medical attention, even if you don’t feel injured. Get the contact information of any witnesses and exchange information with the other driver. Photograph the scene if you can from as many different angles as possible. Never apologize for anything. Report the incident to your insurance company. Be honest, but stick to the facts. Don’t editorialize. Then call a qualified car wreck attorney.
Legally you can represent yourself, but it’s not a good idea. The other side will have aggressive attorneys and insurance adjusters who will use any tactic to avoid payouts. You need someone to go to bat for you who knows the law and knows how to fight back. That’s what we’re here for.
Every case is unique, and no attorney should quote you a figure right out of the gate. We will sit down with you to value your case based on the level of liability the other driver holds, specific physical and emotional damages you’ve suffered, and other factors. At that point, we may be able to estimate a general value, but after negotiations, the final value may not be the same.
When you are injured in a car wreck, you can collect damages in two categories: special and general damages. Special damages are things that are easily valued, like medical bills, rehabilitation and treatment, lost wages and compensation, and the like. General damages are invisible harm like pain and suffering, emotional trauma, loss of consortium, and others. General damages are harder to value, and are usually expressed as a multiple of special damages.
Remember, the insurance adjuster for the other party is not your friend! Never sign anything they put in front of you, and do not volunteer any information. They might start off seeming sympathetic, but when you question their initial offer, they gradually may apply more bullying and strong-arm tactics. You’re always within your rights to refer them to your Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer.
After your car accident, the other party’s insurance company may make you an initial settlement offer. While it can be tempting to accept any amount of money, it’s in your best interest to have an experienced attorney review your claim and the offer before accepting. Remember, the insurance companies often lowball their initial offers to try and get away with paying as little as possible. They’re counting on you not knowing how much your case is truly worth, but having a lawyer by your side will ensure you don’t unknowingly accept less than you deserve.
There is usually no need for you to give a recorded statement to the other driver’s insurance company. If one is asked of you, it is likely an attempt to get a recorded statement that the insurance company can use against you. Instead, talk to your Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer and have them handle all conversations with the insurance company.
According to the statute of limitations in Louisiana, drivers have up to a year after the date of their accident to file a lawsuit against the other party involved. While most car accident cases are settled before the need to file a lawsuit arises, it’s always important to keep this time limit in mind in the event that you do need to file one. Contact an experienced lawyer as soon as possible after your accident to ensure you don’t miss any important deadlines and forever lose your chance of recovering any money you’re owed.
Louisiana abides by a comparative fault law, which means it is possible for you to still receive compensation even if you are found to be partially at fault. However, this law also states that any compensation you’re entitled to may be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if it is determined that you were 20% responsible for your accident and you have $100,000 in damages, your compensation will likely be reduced to $80,000.
Legally speaking, fault is ultimately determined by a judge or a jury. Most car accident claims don’t go to trial, however, and insurance companies can determine each party’s degree of fault when evaluating claims. Our lawyers at Gauthier Amedee can help you build a strong case and ensure the insurance company is treating you fairly.
If you were not wearing a seat belt at the time of your accident, you may be subject to a fine, but your ability to receive compensation for your injuries and other losses should not be affected because you failed to wear one.
While it’s known that driving without a seatbelt can cause serious injuries, the law in Louisiana states that failure to wear a safety belt cannot be used as evidence of negligence. This means that insurance companies cannot use this as evidence against you and cannot attempt to adjust your compensation amount solely because of this. However, it’s always best to speak with an attorney in these situations about your options and the best way to proceed.
Most car accident claims settle outside of court. It’s more likely that an experienced lawyer will be able to resolve your case through negotiations with the other driver’s insurance company. If your injuries are particularly extensive or your case is more complicated, however, and a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiations, you may have to go to court to ensure that you have the best chance of getting the full amount of compensation you deserve. In either scenario, you’ll want to have an experienced Baton Rouge, LA, car accident lawyer who is ready to go to bat for you in or out of the courtroom.