Head-on collisions – accidents in which two automobiles collide with each other while traveling in opposite directions – result in many catastrophic injuries and deaths each year. These accidents may be caused by distracted driving, speeding, driving under the influence, failing to obey the rules of the road, and other factors. Regardless of the cause, people who are affected by such accidents deserve compensation for their injuries or their loved one’s wrongful death if another driver’s negligence caused the head-on collision. The knowledgeable Lafayette car accident lawyers at Broussard & David are here to help your family seek justice if you have been involved in this situation.Pursuing a Personal Injury Claim Based on a Head-on Collision
In order to recover damages from a person who caused a frontal impact crash, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant was negligent. In essence, the term “negligence” means that a person failed to act in a reasonably prudent manner, thus causing harm to another individual. There are four steps in proving that a driver who caused a head-on collision was negligent: duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. The plaintiff has the burden of proof in a negligence case. This means that they must be able to provide evidence that is sufficient to convince the jury by a preponderance of the evidence. Evidence in a head-on collision case may include not only the testimony of the parties but also physical or documentary evidence from the accident scene and the opinions of expert witnesses, such as the plaintiff’s medical providers.
The first element of negligence is duty. This requires the plaintiff to prove that the defendant owed them a legal duty of some sort. Under Louisiana law, legal duties are often established by reference to the statutory law of the state or the parish in which the accident occurred. For example, texting while driving is illegal under Louisiana Revised Statute § 32:300.5. Thus, it may be said that drivers have a legal duty to keep their eyes on the road, rather than on their smartphones. The second element of negligence, breach of duty, may be a factual question rather than a legal question. In the texting-while-driving scenario, the plaintiff might be able to use the defendant’s cellphone records to prove that they breached the duty to keep a proper lookout.
The third and fourth steps of a negligence action involve showing that the plaintiff suffered damages due to the defendant’s breach of duty. Recoverable damages in a head-on collision case often include medical expenses, compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, and loss of consortium (a claim that may be made by the plaintiff’s spouse). The plaintiff may recover these damages if they can establish a link of causation between the defendant’s actions and the harm to the plaintiff. Typically, a determination of causation requires an inquiry into both factual causation and legal causation, which involves the foreseeability of the harm that befell the plaintiff.Discuss Your Case with a Car Accident Lawyer in Lafayette
If your family is suffering because of a head-on collision caused by a negligent driver, you should talk to a motor vehicle collision attorney about seeking compensation for what you have been through. The statute of limitations controls the time that you have to file a claim against the responsible party, so it is important to seek counsel as soon as possible so that all applicable filing and notice requirements may be met. The Lafayette car accident attorneys at Broussard & David handle cases in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, New Iberia, Eunice, Lake Charles, and Alexandria, as well as elsewhere in Lafayette, Orleans, East Baton Rouge, Iberia, St. Landry, Calcasieu, and Rapides Parishes. Call us at (888) 337-2323 or contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation. In most cases, we do not charge a legal fee unless your case is settled or a judgment is entered in your favor.