Articles Posted in Damages

cardonelawfirmhealthinsurance-300x200Many 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. This blog entry is written by attorney Hannah Salter at the Cardone Law Firm. 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

Before we start talking about health insurance, I would first like to discuss medical payments coverage in your auto insurance policy. Medical payments coverage in your auto insurance policy pays for medical expenses related to an auto accident even if you were at fault for the accident. In many cases, people are not aware of this important coverage benefit which they have been paying for because auto insurance companies do not bring this benefit to the insured’s attention. However, medical payments coverage is not included in every auto insurance policy. To determine whether you have medical payments coverage, you need to review the declarations page of your auto insurance policy.

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.

  • RULE 1: It’s really about luck of the draw with adjusters.

Damages-Report
One of the most frequently asked questions our New Orleans personal injury attorneys receive from car accident victims is – “How much is my personal injury case is worth?” As every individual case is different, with a variety of factors taken into consideration to evaluate the value of the suit, it can be challenging to provide a simple answer that covers every unique scenario.

Generally speaking, however, we understand which factors are taken into account when determining the value of your case, as well as the types of damages (or compensation) that you may receive from your claim. Trust in the dependable Louisiana personal injury attorneys of Cardone Law Firm to provide you with the most valuable information and stability you deserve to get your life back on track.

When it comes to understanding the value of your personal injury case and the type of damages that you may receive, consider the following information.

car accident
When you are injured in an auto accident, and you decide to pursue a personal injury case, there are several things you likely want to achieve. One of these is to make sure that the damages award you get represents everything that the law truly says you are entitled to receive. Doing so may involve several steps, including making sure that the award reflects the full extent of the suffering that you endured. An experienced Louisiana car crash attorney can help you as you seek justice for the harm you experienced.

In one case, an injured man had to take his case to the Court of Appeal to get the full recovery that he deserved. The injured man, Courtland, was traveling with another man, Leonard, through Shreveport when they were involved in a rear-end accident. Leonard came to a sudden stop due to traffic in front of him. The driver behind Leonard, Nicky, rear-ended Leonard’s vehicle. Courtland suffered neck and back injuries in the collision and, as a result of those injuries, experienced headaches after the crash.

Courtland sued Nicky and his auto insurer. In some cases, there may be certain factual issues on which both sides can agree. The two sides can record this agreement and submit it to the court in a document called a “stipulation.” Doing this can save time and money for you. In Courtland’s case, he and the defendants stipulated that the sum total of his past medical bills was $6,027. That allowed Courtland to bypass having to prove the extent of his past medical expenses damages and focus on other aspects of proving damages in his case.

cardonelawfirmmoney
When you are injured in a vehicle accident, there are certain things with which you are undoubtedly very familiar, including the factual details of your accident. However, achieving success in your injury lawsuit is about much more than putting together a strong factual presentation. It is also about understanding the law and procedure, and how to use them advantageously. The recent case of one injured man is a prime example. The man’s counsel’s post-trial motion led a trial judge to modify the outcome of the case and increase the man’s damages award from $58,500 to more than $500,000.
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accidentreconstruction1While we attorneys believe we know it all, there is a reason why we didn’t’ go to medical school. The great Albert Einstein, “if you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” Experts can play a crucial part to a client’s case. This blog post will discuss the importance of a biomechanical expert in an automobile accident.

THE SCIENCE OF THE EXPERT

Auto accidents are not always black and white, when there is a gray area, science may fill in the gaps. As trial attorneys, many lawyers are faced with the all too common qualms of getting ones argument across to a jury. Whether it be a complex medical malpractice case or a three car accident, the law and circumstances can seem so abstract to a lay person. Charts, visuals, and experts are specifically helpful in a personal injury lawsuit.

Tow truckRecently  a tow truck rammed into a mid-city parking lot killing three and injuring one.  The tow truck driver was also transported by EMS to a local hospital for injuries he sustained.

According to preliminary reports, the tow truck driver lost control and struck pedestrians waiting at a bus stop as well as four parked vehicles. While investigators are still trying to ascertain what caused the devastating accident, the ultimate question is: Who will be found liable for the damages?

In Louisiana there are two types of damages: 1) compensatory damages and 2) punitive damages. The purpose of punitive damages is to punish and deter certain types of conduct which the law finds to be particularly egregious. Punitive damages are explicitly provided for only in certain circumstances such as: intoxicated drivers, sexual crimes against children, and domestic violence. Punitive damages are the additional damages, which are received over and above compensatory damages. So if for example, the tow truck driver was found to be intoxicated and the intoxicated state was found to be the cause of the collision, the individuals who were injured could potentially recover punitive damages.

check-list-1150080Our thoughts go out to all of those affected by the recent flooding in Louisiana.  According to ABC News, over 30 inches of rain fell over the past weekend causing rivers across the state to rise to record levels. The Governor has declared a State of Emergency until September 10, 2016, unless terminated sooner. Unfortunately the flooding and rain has displaced families and taken a toll on local businesses. The most important concern is safety. But once you are safe, you are faced with a catastrophic loss that can take an emotional and economic toll on you. We have drafted this article to serve as a checklist to use when navigating the untoward waters of filing an insurance claim for flood and property damage:

  1. Find a copy of your Flood Policy, Renters Policy, or Business Policy, including the Declaration Page which is the part of the policy that tells you the type and how much you have in coverage. It includes the name and address of the insurance company, with information about the issuing agent, and it includes the contact information for the correct department when making a claim. It also states what is insured, for how much, under which circumstances, and for how long. It is a great idea to store these insurance policies and any other important legal documents in a safe deposit box in a secure facility. This will insure they cannot be stolen or damaged.
  2. Read and review your Policy. It is extremely important to understand your policy because there are certain rules that you must follow when filing a claim. Understanding these rules will make sure you are treated fairly and will not be taken advantage of. It is also important because these insurance policies may provide immediate financial assistance with food and shelter expenses.

New Orleans Carriage
The City of New Orleans is known for its eccentric, vibrant and welcoming attractions; but with fun comes human error. Tourists come to the city with one thing in mind, partying! On July 30th, tourists were partaking in an infamous tour of the city when a vehicle collided with a mule-drawn carriage in the French Quarter. News outlets reported the vehicle was going at a high speed when the driver turned the corner and exerted so much force that the carriage overturned.

Of the injured, three adults and a child were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to WWLTV. While the driver will likely be held responsible for the damages, many locals can attest that sometimes carriages do not always obey the traffic signals. According to the NOPD, the incident is considered an ongoing investigation.

Carriage rides are an attraction all over the United States. In New Orleans, horse and carriage rides date back to the 19th century. Along with the good comes the bad, as the mule-drawn rides have been the subject of countless lawsuits. In an effort to shield sponsors of farm animal activities from liability, Louisiana has enacted a special statute referred to among those in the legal community as the “farm animal immunity” statute. You can read the full text of the statute here.

headlamp-2A woman whose vehicle was sideswiped obtained a judgment and damages award for herself but not her children in a recent case decided by a District Court in Jefferson Parish. That ruling was affirmed by the Louisiana Court of Appeal. Despite testimony from the children and their chiropractor, the appeals court nevertheless determined that the trial court’s decision was not so unreasonable as to require reversal.

The crash occurred on Williams Boulevard in Jefferson Parish. A vehicle driven by Joel Hashim moved from the left lane to the center lane of the road and, in the process, struck the vehicle driven by Regina Tezeno, who was already traveling in the center lane. The total damage amounted to one lost headlight and scraped paint. Tezeno sued Hashim and his auto insurer for personal injuries on behalf of herself and her two children. At a trial without a jury, the judge heard evidence and found Hashim 100% at fault. The judge awarded Tezeno $5,535 in damages. The children recovered nothing.

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