When examined through a legal lens, Louisiana is quite different from most other states when it comes to car accident rulings. The first factor which makes Louisiana so different is that it is considered a direct action state. A direct action state is basically a state which allows the individual who is litigating to name the insurance company when they are presenting their case. Most other states do not allow this.
The benefit of naming an insurance company when a person is presenting their case in court is that the judge will most likely grant a person damages if they know an insurance company is involved who can pay the bills. The judge will be a lot more critical in giving out damages if they believe there is no insurance company involved and that the driver who is at fault will be compelled to pay for everything out of their own pockets.
Other factors which make Louisiana stand out when compared to other states are:
- A one-year statute of limitations: Drivers who get into an accident generally have up to one year after they get into an accident to make a legal claim against the other driver.
- Lower insurance limits: Most states hold higher standards for insurance, but in Louisiana, drivers are only required to have around a minimum of $10,000 to cover everything. Unfortunately, in many cases, this is not enough to cover all the damages.
- Being a comparative negligent state: Louisiana is also a comparative negligent state. This means that a drivers total damages granted will vary depending on how much of the accident was their fault and how much fault can be attributed to the other driver.
What is the first thing I should do after getting into a car accident in Louisiana?
Once a person gets into an accident it can be easy to forget what steps need to be taken next. A person should first calm down and get themselves to relax. Once they feel like they are no longer panicking and their emotions are under control they should proceed with communicating with the other driver or drivers involved in the accident.
If the damages are not severe and no one was actually hurt then drivers can generally exchange contact information between each other and then proceed forward with their day, simply learning from the experience. It is important to note that no matter how small the accident seemed, it is always in a person’s best interest to take pictures of the scene of the accident and any damage which may have been done to their vehicle or the other person’s vehicle just in case something unexpected comes up after the encounter.
However, if a vehicle was badly hit or a person suffered injuries they should not take matters lightly as it will probably take a lot of money to fix the damages. A person should get in touch with a car accident attorney in New Orleans, Louisiana, in order to get educated on what steps need to be taken next in order for a person to get the maximum amount of compensation from the relevant insurance company.