If someone injures you in an accident, it's hard to know where to turn. Whether your injuries are the result of a car accident, a fall at a business, at someone's home, or an accident at work, you may be facing mounting medical bills and unable to work. You don't have to go through this alone. At Kallio Law, we represent clients in a wide range of personal injury cases, including:
- Car accident injuries;
- Slip and fall accidents;
- Dog bite attacks;
- Nursing home injuries and accidents;
- Medical malpractice;
- Dangerous or defective products; and
- Work-related accidents or injuries.
Comparative Fault in Accidents
Louisiana is a “comparative fault” state. That means that under Louisiana law, the court assigns a percentage of fault to each party involved in an accident. For example, a court might determine that you are 20% at fault for a car accident because you were driving 38 mph in a 35 mph zone, and the other driver is 80% at fault because they ran a stop sign. The court would then reduce your damage award by 20% per your comparative fault.
For auto accidents, Louisiana is a “fault” state. That means that you have a choice of filing a claim against the other party's insurance or filing suit in court to recover damages. While the state requires drivers to carry a minimum amount of auto insurance, if the insurance coverage won't cover your injuries or damages, filing suit in court may be your best option.
Dog Bite Injuries
In many states, the “one bite rule” protects dog owners from liability the first time their dog injures someone. But in Louisiana, dog owners are strictly liable for injuries their dogs cause. See La. Civ. Code Art. 2321 (1996). Even if the dog owner that attacked you claims this has never happened before, you may be entitled to recover for your medical bills and other losses.
Often accidents involve insurance companies. Whether it's another driver's insurance company or the commercial insurer covering the grocery store where you fell, insurance companies are notoriously difficult to deal with. Often, an insurance company representative will call you immediately after an accident and attempt to get you to say their insured wasn't at fault or settle immediately for a sum that may be far less than your actual damages.
If you have an accident that causes injuries, your best chance to recover damages for your medical bills and any other losses is to discuss your options with an experienced personal injury attorney. You don't have to settle with an insurance company, and it's always a good idea to consult an attorney before making any decisions or signing any papers.