Drivers in Louisiana should be aware that motor vehicle collisions result in a variety of costs that extend beyond just vehicle repairs and medical care. Victims of car accidents, especially major ones, typically have emotional and mental issues that can add to the amount the insurance companies and/or the person who caused the accident owe over a number of years.
According to the CDC, car accident deaths can result in over $1 Billion in costs in just one year in the state of Louisiana. Vehicle occupants and pedestrians are the road users most frequently involved in serious crashes.
FindLaw states that damages related to vehicle accidents fall into two categories: non-economic and economic. Economic damages are typically easier to determine. These include:
- Vehicle and property damage
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages for missed work
- Rental cars and other transportation costs
Non-economic damages relate to money owed for emotional distress, future pain management, disfigurement and disability. These amounts can be more difficult to determine, and they are not always granted by the court. The spouses of victims may also sue for loss of companionship or affection. This occurs when the victim's injuries prohibit him or her from being intimate or being able to give affection like before the accident occurred.
Car accident victims in Louisiana only have one year to file a lawsuit for damages. There is also a limit to what the victim can receive if the incident involves a governmental agency or medical malpractice. In both instances, the limit is $500,000.