Louisiana is a beautifully diverse state made up of both French and Spanish colonial influence. African, Creole, and Acadian are the main mixes of this state’s history, which draws millions of tourists each year from around the globe. From its distinctive Cajun cuisine to its world-class universities to professional sports teams like the New Orleans Saints, Louisiana is one of the most dynamic states in the country.
Whether you like big cities or small towns, Louisiana has everything you could possibly look for. People who relish excitement will be drawn to Canal Street during Mardi Gras celebrations, while those who like the quiet life can seek out one of Louisiana’s many rural parishes where small-town life centers around church and family. If you’re just stopping by, then check out one of the state’s many festivals, including the Alligator Festival in Luling or the Bayou Country Superfest.
Unfortunately, one disadvantage of having so much activities that Louisiana’s roadways quickly become congested, making car accidents common. Whether driving through a rural parish or in the heart of Baton Rouge, nobody is ever surprised to see one or more cars pulled over to the side of the road after a serious accident.
If you have suffered injury due to a car accident, knowing what insurer to call, whether to call the police, and whether you can receive compensation for your injuries could all confuse anyone. We’re pleased to inform you that the experienced legal team of Stewart J. Guss Personal Injury Lawyers offers injured motorists a FREE consultation with one of our legal professionals—a consultation with absolutely no strings attached. We don’t require that you sign a contract or pay any money to speak with us. Reach us 24/7 at 800-898-4877, or CLICK HERE to contact us now.
With thousands of satisfied clients and two decades of experience, we’ve built our reputation as one of the premier personal injury firms in the nation. We believe in treating clients like family, so there is no reason to delay in contacting us for your free consultation.
Just the Numbers: Louisiana Car Crashes
The state’s Department of Transportation collects car accident information every year. According to their statistics, about , resulting in 76,500 injuries. These numbers are down from the previous year, which saw about 49,800 crashes that resulted in 81,500 injuries—both of which represented five-year highs.
Fatal car crashes occurred most frequently in East Baton Rouge and Orleans Parishes, which should not surprise anyone given their large populations. April was the deadliest month, registering slightly more than 10 percent of all fatal crashes, followed by March and May. July experienced the fewest fatal crashes, at 46.
Car accidents are so dangerous because of the forces that moving vehicles can generate. Some passengers will walk away unharmed from fender benders, but others will suffer life-changing injuries.
The many painful injuries that car accident victims may suffer include:
Whiplash. Any violent action that throws the head frontward, backward, or side–to–side can painfully stretch the ligaments in your neck well beyond their normal range. As a result, victims can feel debilitating pain. Ligaments in the shoulders and upper back can also stretch, pressing against nerves and leaving injured motorists with chronic pain. To treat whiplash, victims should not immobilize their necks in a foam collar, like they see on TV, but should stretch and exercise under the guidance of a physical therapist to regain their range of motion and reduce pain. Although mild whiplash can clear up in a matter of months, more serious whiplash might cause pain for years.
Fractures. The human body has hundreds of bones, any one of which could break under the force of a car accident. Depending on the impact, bones might break in one place or shatter into several pieces. With bad breaks, victims may need to undergo surgeries to permanently install pins, screws, or metal plates that hold pieces of bone together. Fractures cause tremendous pain and might immobilize motorists until the bone heals.
Traumatic brain injuries. The human brain is incredibly complex, and fortunately well protected in the skull. However, any violent action to the body or head can cause the brain to strike the inside of the skull, resulting in changes in the way it works. Brain injuries like concussions can leave victims with headaches, convulsions, vomiting, memory problems, and sleep disturbances, among many other problems. Moderate and severe brain injuries often require surgeries, time in the hospital, and rehabilitation to regain functioning and movement.
Spinal cord injuries. The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves connecting the brain to the rest of your body. Any damage to the spinal cord can impair your ability to move or feel sensations, some of which might prove permanent. Less serious spinal cord injuries can include herniated disks, where the jelly-like pads between your vertebrae rupture, causing intense pain.
Burns. After a crash, the fuel tank or system in one of the vehicles can rupture, leaking gasoline or diesel that can quickly ignite, or passengers can get splashed with antifreeze or battery acid. Serious second- and third-degree burns might require skin grafts or even the amputation of limbs.
These are a few of the painful injuries that we see after car accidents. To document the injury, keep written documentation in which you record where you feel pain and its intensity, and hold onto all prescription painkiller bottles. We have seen jurors blown away when we show them a clear trash bag with all of the orange bottles for each prescription an injured motorist has taken.
Injuries Aren’t Only Physical
Not all injuries are visible. Instead, victims frequently suffer emotional distress as a result of their physical injuries. Our clients have experienced increased sensation in some of the following feelings after a car accident:
These emotions can cause people to withdraw from their families and friends and refuse to leave their homes, which only increase depression and loneliness. Fortunately, Louisiana law recognizes physical injuries as sufficiently serious to warrant compensation—but you must act fast. Make written documentation of your emotional distress in a journal, noting how your life has changed for the worse after your car accident.
Recover Compensation for Your Losses
Every car accident is different, and some cause more significant losses than others. Meet with the team of car accident lawyers and legal professionals at Stewart J. Guss Personal Injury Lawyers to properly and fully document all of the economic and non-economic losses you have suffered, like the following.
Medical care. Many of our clients need extensive treatments for their injuries. With the rising cost of medical care, even minor injuries can cost tens of thousands of dollars—money most individuals don’t have and weren’t planning on spending for injuries sustained through no fault of your own. A successful lawsuit might recover compensation for:
- Hospital visits
- Doctor appointments
- Transportation to and from the hospital
- X-rays and other tests
- Prescription drugs
- Over-the-counter drugs
- Equipment like braces, crutches, and wheelchairs
Very serious injuries can often require continuing treatments, such as at-home attendants or physical therapy, and you might qualify for a sum of money for this future treatment.
Lost wages. Serious injuries prevent many victims from returning to work as they recuperate, and some injuries are so devastating that you cannot return to your old job, thus reducing your income permanently. Lost income is an economic loss you can receive compensation for.
Property damage. If your car, motorcycle, or bicycle was damaged in the accident, you can receive money to fix or replace it.
Non-economic losses. Unlike medical bills, lost wages, and property damage, some injuries are harder to calculate. But Louisiana law allows victims to receive compensation for certain intangible injuries, such as:
- Pain and suffering, for the physical pain that you feel as a result of your injuries.
- Mental anguish and emotional distress.
- Disfigurement if the accident leaves you permanently scarred or changed.
- Lost enjoyment of life, if your injuries keep you from pursuing your favorite hobbies like walking, sports, or playing with children or grandchildren.
Not every car accident victim qualifies for all of the above compensation, so consult with a Louisiana car accident lawyer to review the circumstances of your accident. Our team at the law offices of Stewart J. Guss Personal Injury Lawyers will perform a full case review to identify the maximum amount of compensation that you may recover—and then we will come up with a game plan for making sure you get everything you deserve.
Don’t Lose Your Legal Rights!
Injured motorists deserve compensation, but Louisiana makes you move fast to protect your right to that compensation. In particular, you only have one year from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit in court for your injuries. If you delay and miss this deadline, a judge not only can—but will—dismiss your lawsuit and prevent you from refiling. This means you will not recover compensation and you cannot hold the responsible driver legally liable for your injuries.
Get Tough With Insurance Companies
Many drivers have no other assets than their insurance policy, so if you need compensation to pay for your economic losses, you will need to make a claim with their insurer. We wish it were otherwise, but the insurance industry is not a neutral party. Insurance companies are in business for one reason—profit—so they have an incentive to deny as many claims as possible. Including yours.
At the law offices of Stewart J. Guss Personal Injury Lawyers, we’ve gone up against many of Louisiana’s most powerful insurance companies and have successfully fought to receive compensation for our clients. To make things go as smoothly as possible, we need you to follow some simple advice:
- Hire a lawyer quickly. Only a personal injury attorney is in YOUR corner and truly represents YOUR interests.
- Sign no documents without your lawyer’s advice. Insurers want you to sign away your right to compensation and only a legal expert can read and understand the fine print.
- Don’t expect the insurance agent to give you the real number for how much compensation you deserve for your injuries. The less serious your injuries, the less they need to pay. Only your lawyer can add up all of your economic and non-economic losses and come to a fair conclusion.
- Document the accident and your injuries as soon as possible. The insurance company will work quickly to get witness statements and inspect vehicles. You need to collect YOUR OWN evidence and not rely on the driver’s insurance agent. An experienced attorney can help you do this.
Negotiating with an insurance company requires discipline, detail, and determination. Through our decades of experience, we’ve mastered the art of negotiation, which has allowed us to obtain thousands of favorable settlements and jury verdicts for our injured clients. If you need compensation, do not try your hand at negotiating yourself or hire a new lawyer fresh out of law school. For the best results, go with an experienced professional.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Louisiana Car Accident Lawyer
The attorneys of Stewart J. Guss Personal Injury Lawyers are nationally recognized car accident lawyers who have protected the rights of injured victims for more than 20 years. If you or a family member was recently injured in a car accident, you need an experienced car accident lawyer to look out for your best interests.
See what past clients have to say:
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
“Mr. Guss was wonderful. He fought hard against the insurance company to get us what we deserved. I went from owing almost $5000 in medical bills to actually getting money in my pocket. Absolutely Amazing!!!!! A big thank you from me and my family!!!”