Auto accidents case may have many nuances, details, and points for which you need to make important tactical and strategic decisions. For example, you are a passenger in a vehicle that’s involved in a two-vehicle crash. You suffer injuries in the crash. Whom do you sue? These and other important choices are places where the advice and representation of an experienced Louisiana car accident attorney may make the difference between success and defeat.
One case in which the injured passenger had to deal with making such choices was one that arose from a collision in Baton Rouge in 2012. Lance was attempting to turn his 2004 BMW left out of a parking lot and onto the main road. Patrick was attempting to merge his SUV into the left turn lane on that same main road. Both men made their moves at around the same time, and Patrick’s SUV struck Lance’s BMW.
Brian, who was Lance’s passenger, was injured in the accident. Brian sought to recover damages for his injuries. Brian wisely acted to sue multiple defendants to ensure that his right of recovery was protected. He sued Patrick and Patrick’s auto insurer. He also sued Lance and Lance’s auto insurer. This helped him because, potentially, a jury could have found that Lance was 100% at fault and was liable to Brian, that Patrick was 100% at fault and liable to Brian, or that they both shared legal blame and both owed damages to Brian.
The case went to trial, where two decidedly different versions of the accident emerged. Lance claimed that he had already turned onto the road and begun traveling westbound in the left lane when Patrick crossed the double-yellow line and struck his vehicle. Patrick testified that he never crossed the double-yellow line, that he was in the turn lane at all times, and that Lance crossed into his path to cause the crash.
At the end of the trial, the jury deliberated, and, based on all of the evidence, they found Lance 100% at fault and awarded Brian $434,000 in damages. The judge then dismissed the case against Patrick and his insurer.
Lance and his insurance company appealed, but they lost. He argued that the court should not have allowed a certain diagram into evidence, and he argued that no reasonable jury could find him 100% at fault. Neither of these arguments succeeded, and the appeals court decided to uphold the verdict and damages award entered by the jury.
The crux of the appeals court case involved two defendants battling with each other over jury findings that decided to which extent each driver was legally to blame for the accident. Nevertheless, if you are an injured passenger who finds yourself in the position of being the plaintiff in a civil lawsuit, there’s still a lot you can learn from this case. It is not always obvious right after an auto accident occurs exactly who is at fault, and to which extent. Even when these kinds of details are unclear, there are still ways to protect yourself and your right to a full recovery. These ways can include steps like making sure you sue all of the people and entities that are potentially liable to you.
What do you do if you find yourself injured in a situation like this? Rely on experienced and knowledgeable injury counsel to aid you as you take on those responsible. The hardworking Louisiana car accident attorneys at the Cardone Law Firm have been helping injured people in Louisiana protect their rights and pursue the recoveries they deserve.
For your confidential consultation, contact us online or phone Cardone at 1-888-89-CARDONE (1-888-892-2736).
More Blog Posts:
Louisiana Plaintiff’s Use of Expert Opinion Evidence Was Enough to Avoid Dismissal of Her Auto Accident Case, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, Aug. 10, 2017
Injured Louisiana Passenger’s Post-Trial Motion Nets Increase from $58K to $500K in Damages Award, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, May 10, 2017