If you've suffered nerve damage in a car accident caused by another driver's negligence, Louisiana law gives you one year from the date of injury to file a personal injury claim. Your settlement can include compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Compensation for Medical Expenses
Nerve damage from a car accident can be caused by whiplash, lacerations, or blunt force trauma. As a result, you may incur significant medical expenses.
- Diagnostic tests to identify the location and extent of the nerve damage
- Surgery and follow up care
- Pain medication
- Physical therapy to improve strength and mobility in the affected area
Medical expenses can be documented by keeping copies of all bills and invoices received from the hospital, as well as statements showing what benefits your insurance carrier paid on your behalf. When you settle your claim, the company will be entitled to reimbursement for any medical expenses that were determined to be the responsibility of the at-fault driver.
Compensation for Lost Wages and Loss of Future Earning Potential
Car accident victims are often forced to miss work for an extended period of time while they're recuperating from their injuries. They may also require time off to attend physical therapy or other medical appointments related to their injuries. All of the lost wages related to the car accident injury can be included in your personal injury settlement.
Depending upon the extent of your nerve damage and what occupation you held before the accident, this condition may affect your future earning potential. You might be unable to work at all, only capable of working part time, or working in a lower-paying profession.
Some of the ways in which nerve damage can affect your ability to earn a living include:
- Difficulty sitting or standing for extended periods of time
- Trouble walking long distances
- Impaired ability to bend or lift
- Touch sensitivity that makes it hard to complete tasks involving physical contact
- Trouble with fine motor skills
If you're unable to return to the job you held before your accident, you're entitled to claim a loss of future earning potential as part of your personal injury settlement. Testimony from a vocational expert can be used to establish how your nerve damage is likely to affect your earning potential, given your education, past work history, and the local job market.
Pain and Suffering Compensation
Nerve damage can cause pain in the affected area, greater sensitivity to cold or heat, and bothersome twitching or uncontrolled muscle movements.
Pain and suffering compensation reimburses you for these physical side effects, as well as the emotional challenges you may experience as the result of your nerve damage. Personal injury law recognizes that car accident injuries are often accompanied by anxiety, depression, and PTSD, especially when a victim has been left with a disabling injury that affects his or her ability to earn a living and enjoy hobbies or special interests.
Pain and suffering compensation is typically calculated by multiplying your economic damages by a number between one and five that represents the severity of your overall injuries. Keeping a journal that details how your nerve damage affects your daily life can provide valuable evidence for this portion of your claim.
How Fault Affects Your Settlement
If you were partially responsible for the accident that caused your nerve damage, you can still seek compensation in a personal injury claim. However, your settlement will be reduced by your assigned percentage of fault to reflect your financial responsibility for your injuries.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
Even though most personal injury claims are eventually settled out of court, it would be a mistake to try to negotiate a settlement without representation. Insurance companies exist to make a profit, which may mean offering you a settlement less than you need to handle your accident-related expenses.
Have You Been Injured In A Louisiana Car Accident?
If you've been hurt in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Alexandria office directly at 318.541.8188 to schedule your free consultation.