Lafayette Personal Injury Frequently Asked Questions | Lafayette Injury FAQs
Inevitably, there are many questions that arise when tragedy strikes. There are more questions that raise themselves over time. An injury claim has many facets. Obviously there is the compensation aspects but it also involves medical care, transportation, potential criminal liability, the harmony of the family, the fears of what can happen if the "bread winner" loses his/her ability to earn money. Rather than try to answer every question that people ask, we have tried to address just some basic questions and answers that are always present. If you wish to have additional questions answered with no obligation whatsoever, please contact the lawyers and law firms on this page and throughout this site. They are here to answer your questions even if you do not hire them, acting as your Lafayette Guide to the law.
Frequently Asked Questions about Louisiana Personal Injury Law:
- Why should I call a Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney?
- Does it make any sense for me to sue?
- Will a jury give me a lot of money?
- Are Lawyers really very expensive?
- What can I do if a relative was hurt?
- If my family member was killed, can I sue?
- How do I know that a Lafayette Injury Attorney is experienced and licensed?
- What does negligence mean?
- How long do I have to file a Louisiana Personal Injury Lawsuit?
- Does every case go to court?
How will a Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney help me?
Personal injury lawyers provide legal services to Lafayette Parish residents who have suffered a physical, emotional, or financial injury. Personal injury attorneys represent clients when an injury results from negligence, recklessness, or willful wrongdoing. Additionally, an experienced Lafayette personal injury lawyer will know how to navigate the legal system, how to get you the best possible settlement, and how to bring a lawsuit in court. Your Lafayette personal injury attorney can provide support, arrange necessary doctor visits and preserve evidence, as well as find and prepare expert witnesses while preparing for a trial. Most importantly, you will need a personal injury attorney to advocate on your behalf. While no attorney can guarantee you results, the experienced Lafayette personal injury attorneys on this page know how to get you the justice you deserve.
Is a lawsuit the right solution for me?
The law is usually quite complicated, often unclear, and sometimes even unsettled. Only an experienced Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney knows all the steps necessary to recover damages for your type of injury in the Lafayette area. It takes years of experience to understand the laws involved, but a qualified Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney can usually quickly evaluate your case and chances of recovering. A Lafayette, LA personal injury lawyer can also help you understand very difficult legal concepts. In General, Louisiana's law allows an injured party to recover from whoever hurt them. However, the specifics, exceptions, and rules to make this work fill books.
Louisiana law is complicated and it requires an experienced Lafayette personal injury lawyer to get a good result. There are specific statutes that govern:
Lafayette Car Accident Claims;
Lafayette Product Injury Claims;
Lafayette Malpractice Claims;
Lafayette Injured at Work Claims;
Lafayette Boating Accident Claims;
Lafayette Punitive Damage Claims; and so much more.
Lafayette negligence law attorneys usually offer free initial consultations during which they will discuss your case with you and offer their opinions on what you might expect in your situation.
Lafayette Area Counseling Services Can Help You in a Time of Crisis
1720 Kaliste Saloom Road
Lafayette, LA 70508
110 Travis St., Suite 204
Lafayette, LA 70503
3110 West Pinhook Road
Lafayette, LA 70508
6 Flagg Place
Lafayette, LA 70508
143 Ridgeway Drive
Lafayette, LA 70503
809 Martin Luther King Junior Drive
Lafayette, LA 70501
I have a lot of medical bills to pay. What will I get in court?
Because each case is different, there is no way to know exactly how much you can recover without discussing your case with qualified Lafayette personal injury lawyer. Obviously there are many varying types of accidents and events causing varying injuries and losses. The extent and range of possible physical injuries and economic losses means a wide spectrum of recovery exists. Occasionally, Lafayette punitive damages are allowed to help deter others from acting in extremely dangerous ways. Most of the extremely high numbers associated with lawsuits come from these cases.Because recovery is an extremely complicated issue consisting of many smaller sub-issues, an experienced attorney must completely review the unique facts of your case to maximize your recovery through a settlement or at trial. A Lafayette, Louisiana personal injury attorney will work hard to get you the justice and compensation you are entitled to under the law.
Can I afford a Lafayette Parish Personal Injury Attorney?
Yes, in most cases, anyone can afford a personal injury attorney. Personal injury lawyers often don't charge their clients anything unless they win and recover money for the client. This type of payment is called a contingency fee agreement and is very helpful to injury victims and their families, who often can't afford attorney's fees after an accident. A typical contingency fee compensates the attorney at 33% of any recovery they obtain for the client; however, in some cases, state statutes set caps on the contingency fee an attorney may charge in a particular type of case. The bottom line is that if you do not get paid, you won't owe your attorney anything. This not only minimizes out-of-pocket expenses, but it also assures that a quick and complete recovery is in your lawyer's best interest. Your Lafayette personal injury attorney will discuss payment with you during your initial consultation. There is no charge for the initial consultation.
What rights do I have if my family member was hurt?
Of course the injury victim may bring a claim for damages against the party at fault, so long as they can prove legal fault, causation, and damages. However, in Louisiana, family members and bystanders may also sometimes bring claims for damages in certain cases. For example, a claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress (NIED) or intentional infliction of emotional distress (IIED) may be available where a close family member witnesses an injury being inflicted upon their loved one. Similarly, immediate relatives can recover in a Lafayette wrongful death action if another party's negligent or reckless behavior caused their loved one to die. Similarly, a spouse may seek recovery for loss of consortium in personal injury or wrongful death cases. An experienced Lafayette Parish personal injury attorney will be able to counsel you as to who may bring a lawsuit after a family member is injured.
Can I sue if my family member was killed?
Usually, the parents, spouse, child or estate of the person who was wrongfully killed is allowed to bring an action for wrongful death. If the case involves a child bringing a Lafayette wrongful death claim for the death of his or her parents, the child may need an adult guardian to help bring the action. Speaking to a local wrongful death attorney can clarify this issue. Further, a Lafayette wrongful death lawyer will be able to explain to you which family members can recover which types of damages.
How can I choose an experienced, qualified, Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney?
Choosing the right attorney is what Dot Co law is here to help you do. While any attorney might be able to help you pursue a personal injury claim, the attorneys advertised on each of our pages specialize in a particular area of law. As a result, they will be more familiar with the procedures and complexities involved in your case.
In choosing a lawyer there are several factors for you to consider. First, you should consider whether you want an attorney that works at a large, mid-sized, or small firm. Next, you should have a consultation with a few attorneys to determine which you feel most comfortable with. After narrowing down your choices, you may wish to ask the attorneys for professional references who can tell you about the attorney's work. Finally, check the lawyer's Martindale Hubbell AV rating before reaching your decision. Choosing an attorney is an important decision, and Dot Co lawyer strives to include only the highest quality lawyers specializing in each area of the law to make your choice easy. The box on the top left of this page lists qualified attorneys in the area.
I am trying to figure out if I can sue and I keep reading about negligence. What is it?
Negligence is one of the most important concepts in personal injury law. Negligence serves as the basis for most personal injury lawsuits in the Lafayette area and is basically the failure to meet a certain standard of care. Louisiana law establishes certain duties or standards of care applicable to various different situations, and when a person acts carelessly and departs from the applicable standard of care, they are deemed negligent.
What is the time limit on filing Personal Injury claims in Louisiana?
As a general rule, almost all personal injury claims may be filed up to one (1) year from the time of injury under something called a period of prescription. However, there are several exceptions to this rule, generally where a specific law applies to the case at hand, and the period may be either shorter or longer. When a personal injury claim involves an injury that develops over period of time, such as an occupational injury, then the claim generally must be filed within one year from the time the injury victim or worker knew or reasonably should have known of the injury. Finally, the limitations period may be extended in certain other personal injury cases, such as when the victim is a child. In such case, the law may state that the period of prescription does not begin to run until the child's eighteenth birthday.
You should always contact a personal injury lawyer well in advance of any legal time bar so that you do not lose your right to sue. Courts in Louisiana take the period of prescription very seriously. In fact, filing a case in the wrong court does not even count as filing on time and removing the case to a Federal Court will not fix that (887 F.2d 615). Even if you think you know where to file your claim and what to do, you should be aware that if you miss one step, a judge will prevent you from getting the justice you deserve. Lafayette personal injury attorneys are familiar with Louisiana periods of prescription and can begin work on your case immediately.
Should I settle or bring my case to trial?
There is no general rule and no statute to help you figure out whether your case will be settled by lawyers or whether it will go to trial; however, trials are becoming less and less common. Nearly 90% of all cases are settled before having to go to trial. A settlement is often advantageous because it offers much faster relief than the long process of organizing and conducting a trial. Also, insurance companies may want to settle with you or you may receive workers' compensation benefits without having to litigate your claim in a court. However, sometimes when a settlement offer is too low or other considerations are involved, going to court can be the better option. Lafayettepersonal injury lawyers have experience settling claims and litigating in both state and federal courts and will seek to balance your interest in receiving the maximum recovery with your interest in seeing the case through quickly and with the least interruption to your life.
Only a Lafayette Personal Injury Attorney can explain how Louisiana law applies to your case.
Serving clients throughout Southern Louisiana, including Alexandria, Broussard, Cankton, Carencro, Duson, Lafayette, Larabee, Long Bridge, Maurice, Milton, Mire, Monroe, Morgan City, New Iberia, Scott, St. Martinville, Youngsville, and other communities in Lafayette Parish.