Articles Posted in Auto insurance

verdict-300x200In civil litigation, there are several processes that go on at the same time. One is the conducting of the adversarial process in accordance with the rules of court that exist in Louisiana. Civil litigation, of course, is not just a mere game; it is more than just a series of rules and a contest that determines a winner and a loser. It is also the pursuit of justice. To achieve that end, the law allows you certain latitude in the conduct of your case. Put another way, Louisiana law is clear that hyper-technical compliance with rules should never trump fundamental fairness and should not prevent a deserving person from obtaining justice through a civil judgment. To ensure you get the justice you deserve in the Louisiana courts, make sure you have a knowledgeable New Orleans injury attorney on your side.

To understand this importance of prioritizing justice over hyper-technical compliance, there’s the case of B.T. and G.B. from Monroe. The injury that spawned this lawsuit arose from an intersection collision. D.T. ran through a stop sign and hit the vehicle driven by B.T. The impact hurt both B.T. and her passenger, G.B. B.T. and G.B. sued D.T. and his insurer. In their lawsuit, the pair alleged that D.T., by failing to yield at the stop sign, was 100% to blame for the accident and for their injuries. While the lawsuit named both D.T. and the insurer as defendants, only the insurer was served initially.

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Auto accidents that cause injuries happen every day around Louisiana. With many of kinds of injury accidents, and auto accident lawsuits, there’s a common thread to them: insurance. In many accidents, getting a full and fair recovery (or, at least, a fuller and fairer recovery than you often could obtain from the defendant driver him/herself) is predicated on your ability to hold an insurance company legally responsible for paying. Insurers, of course, often seek to avoid paying claims in certain circumstances. To that end, insurers will often fight aggressively to avoid assuming responsibility for an accident and paying claims based upon it. That is one reason, among numerous others, why you need diligent and determined Louisiana injury counsel, who can fight effectively for you to get the payment you deserve.

Here’s an example from a case decision recently announced by the appeals court: B.M. and C.W. were involved in an auto accident on Feb. 27, 2016. The other driver, who was behind the wheel of a Lincoln Town Car, was at fault in the accident and the accident caused B.M. and C.W. to suffer damages, so they sued.

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I’ve been injured in an auto accident by a delivery driver driving a car belonging to another person. What is the best way to proceed with my case?

In modern slang or metaphorical language, the phrase “lots of moving parts” or “a lot of moving parts” is considered to be an alternate way of saying that something is complex or has numerous working pieces to manage. Many times, your Louisiana auto accident case can be something that has lots of moving parts. There is the identification of the proper defendants, including possibly the driver, the driver’s employer, the vehicle’s owner and one or more insurance companies. There’s the pre-trial discovery process and the collection of evidence. There’s decision-making like whether to settle or to take the case to a jury verdict. These, of course, are just to name a few.

passing_a_truck-2-300x200If you’re a tractor-trailer truck driver, and you’re involved in a serious accident caused by another driver, such as one that causes your rig to overturn, your legal case can many different aspects. Certainly, the driver of the car who lost control and hit your rig is potentially liable, so you may be able to sue the driver and his insurer for the driver’s negligence.

That may not be enough. In Louisiana, the state minimum coverage requirements for auto insurance are quite low. For example, a driver is only required to have coverage that provides “payments of $15,000 for bodily injury to one person.” That means that obtaining a full recovery main entail taking on multiple insurance companies, including the other driver’s insurer, as well as separate underinsured/uninsured motorist (UIM) coverage insurers. To be sure you’re getting everything you deserve out of your case, be sure you have an experienced Louisiana injury attorney on your side.

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You’ve probably heard the phrase “trial strategy.” Trial strategy involves making certain legal or procedural decisions in order to take maximum advantage of the facts or the law surrounding your case. But how much does trial strategy really matter – aren’t most all trials generally the same? The answer is a resounding “no.” Each trial has its own unique twists and turns. Even if most were similar, would you want to gamble the compensation you need on your case not being one of the unusual ones? Protect yourself by making sure you have a knowledgeable Louisiana injury attorney on your side to protect your rights no matter how ordinary or extraordinary your case is.

R.N. and T.H. were two people who were also personal injury plaintiffs in a case that demonstrates how important trial strategy can be. R.N. and T.H. were injured in a two-vehicle auto accident.

insurancecompanyinsurancecarrier-300x211One of the most frequent questions I get asked is: Which insurance company should I go through to handle my property damage after an accident? My own company or the insurance company for the person who hit me?

I’m a Louisiana auto injury attorney here to explain.

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Photo Credit: Suphaksorn Thongwongboot / Shutterstock.com

Each instance where someone suffers injuries as a result of an auto accident is unique, but there is one thing that is common in many if not most such accidents, and that is the need to interact with one or more insurance companies in order to get compensation for your injuries. Insurance companies, of course, do not desire to pay out any more in claims that they absolutely must, so getting the payment you deserve may involve several steps, including going to court. Whether your pursuit of payment from an auto insurance company requires going all the way to trial or not, getting the payment you deserve from an insurer is often enhanced by having representation from a knowledgeable and diligent New Orleans auto accident attorney.

Sometimes, a case may even involve multiple insurance companies. J.H. was a truck driver for a Lafayette-based transportation and logistics company and was hurt in a 2013 on-the-job auto accident. When you are injured in an auto accident that took place while you were on the clock, your case potentially can be somewhat complex, because it may involve multiple people and entities. Very likely, you will sue the other driver in the accident and perhaps that driver’s auto insurance company. (If that driver was working at the time of the accident, then the legal action may also include that driver’s employer and the employer’s insurance company.) You may additionally need to name your own insurance company in order to obtain payment under your policy’s underinsured/uninsured motorist (“UM”) coverage, and the insurance company of your employer in order to pursue payment under that policy’s UM coverage, as well.

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UNINSURED & UNDER-INSURED (“UM” & “UIM”) MOTORIST COVERAGE IN LOUISIANA

One of the most beneficial types of auto insurance coverage to have in Louisiana is uninsured motorist coverage. You can call on this coverage in your auto insurance policy when you are not at fault for the accident and have sustained damages caused by another driver who has no insurance, or whose insurance limits are insufficient to cover your damages.  You can also use your uninsured motorist coverage if you are the victim of a hit and run accident or if you are injured by a vehicle as a pedestrian. Uninsured motorist coverage and under-insured motorist coverage is the same thing in Louisiana, so if you have uninsured motorist coverage you also have under-insured motorist coverage. This type of coverage is abbreviated as “UM” or “UIM” insurance. Any claim made under this insurance is known as a nonfault claim.

Many people who are involved in auto accidents wonder how their health insurance may come into play if they need treatment, or, if they used their health insurance to pay for treatment relating to an auto accident what will happen to their medical bills. This blog entry will also discuss other avenues available under your auto insurance policy to recoup expenses paid toward medical bills relating to an auto accident. The purpose of this blog entry is to explain some of the basics relating to health insurance and auto accidents and the current state of affairs as they stand in Louisiana today.

AUTO INSURANCE – MEDICAL PAYMENTS COVERAGE

The title of this blog is misleading because I don’t believe people can get more money for their auto accident without hiring an attorney. I am a prime example of this. When I just started my legal career (less than 6 months after being licensed), I was working at an insurance defense firm and I was involved in an auto accident that was not my fault. I only had minor soft tissue injuries. Being a young attorney, I was advised not to file a lawsuit since I only had minimal injuries, and if I did file a lawsuit, I was advised it may look bad since I would be suing insurance clients our law firm did business with at the time. I opted to not file a lawsuit, or hire a private attorney and I tried to handle my own claim individually and under the radar in the claims process, since after all – I was an attorney!

I’ve learned a lot since that time and I am going to share with you my true and real experiences and my unbiased advice.

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