When you are injured in an accident, there are many things that will go on in your trial. One part of your trial will center around deciding how to allocate blame for the accident among you, the defendant, and any third parties. Just because a jury may find you partly at fault doesn’t mean that you automatically recover nothing. In one recent case, the Louisiana Court of Appeal affirmed a jury’s finding that a pedestrian was largely to blame for his accident but still increased the pedestrian’s damages recovery from $54,600 to $80,600.
The plaintiff in the case was a pedestrian who’d just gotten off work in New Iberia and was walking to meet his nephew for a ride home. The defendant was a man driving his employer’s flatbed truck along the frontage road for Highway 90. The accident occurred as the pedestrian was trying to cross that frontage road. As the pedestrian stepped off the curb, the truck collided with the pedestrian’s right hand, which caused the pedestrian to spin and fall. He suffered a broken wrist and ankle.
The case went to trial, which lasted two days. According to the plaintiff’s evidence, the accident and injury caused him serious problems. In addition to having to undergo wrist surgery to address that fracture, the pedestrian’s injuries caused him to miss roughly four months of work from October 2012 to February 2013. The pedestrian continued to experience pain in his ankle from the time of the accident all the way up to the trial. For a time after the accident, he walked with the assistance of a walker.
After the trial was over, the jury found both the plaintiff and the defendant were partially at fault. The jury awarded the plaintiff $54,600 in damages. These included $8,600 for lost earnings, $36,000 for past medical expenses, and $10,000 for pain and suffering (both past and future).
Both sides appealed, and, while the appeals court upheld most of the jury’s verdict, it did find that one part of the judgment could not stand under Louisiana law. The amount of pain and suffering damages that the jury awarded to the plaintiff was impermissibly low, given that the pedestrian’s harm required a cast on his ankle and surgery on his wrist. The court pointed out that other juries had, in the past, awarded much greater amounts of pain and suffering damages for cases involving very similar injuries.
In this case, that meant that the law demanded that the appeals court increase the plaintiff’s pain and suffering award. The minimum amount of damages that the pedestrian could have received that would comply with the legal standard of reasonableness was an amount equal to his medical expenses damages, so the appeals court upped the pain and suffering award to $36,000, making the total award $80,600.
Even when you may be partially at fault for an accident in which you are injured, that doesn’t mean that you cannot still obtain compensation for the harm you’ve suffered. For advice and representation regarding your injury case, contact the Louisiana truck accident attorneys at the Cardone Law Firm. Our attorneys have spent many years helping pedestrians, motorcyclists, bicyclists, drivers, and passengers injured in vehicle accidents, and we are ready to speak to you about your case.
For your confidential consultation, contact us online or phone Cardone at 1-888-89-CARDONE (1-888-892-2736).
More Blog Posts:
Tow Truck Crashes into Innocent Pedestrians in Mid-City Shopping Center, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, Oct. 27, 2016
French Quarter Accident: When Truck and Carriage Collide, Louisiana Injury Lawyers Blog, Aug. 10, 2016