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Understanding Louisiana’s Cap On Damages

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Personal injury law protects accident victims and enables them to recover compensation for their injuries when negligence is involved. This is referred to as “damages” in a personal injury claim. But what an accident victim can recover in an accident claim can differ from state to state. 

What Damages Are Typically Available In A Personal Injury Claim?

Accidents can be physically, emotionally, and financially costly. Some victims of catastrophic injuries can be saddled with millions of dollars during a lifetime of medical treatments and other expenses.

Personal injury claims will seek damages from the at-fault party when their negligent or intentional actions have caused an accident leading to injuries. These damages can include medical costs, property damage, wage loss, future expenses, disability, and other expenses associated with the injuries. 

While damages are broadly recoverable in most personal injury claims, the state of Louisiana has imposed financial caps in particular cases.

Only Certain Types Of Accident Claims Are Capped In Louisiana

Certain-Accident-Types-are-Capped-in-LA

While Louisiana doesn’t place a cap on compensation in cases of car accidents, premises liability, dangerous products, and other claims, there are certain types of personal injury claims that are subject to damages caps.

Your financial recovery will be capped if you are considering a medical malpractice claim or a claim against a government agency. If you have been injured in one of these accidents, your best option is to get the legal assistance of a Louisiana personal injury attorney.  Your attorney will explain your rights and help you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries. 

What Is The Purpose Of Caps On Some Injury Claims?

Damage caps are limits placed on the amount of financial compensation an injured party can recover in specific personal injury claims. 

The purpose of caps was to keep business costs under control and to discourage individuals from bringing frivolous, false, or exaggerated claims hoping to recover a great deal of money. But in cases of serious injuries, these caps can significantly limit compensation for what an injured individual will need to recover and heal.

Medical Malpractice Caps

Louisiana law caps the financial recovery of victims of medical malpractice. Injured victims cannot receive more than $500,000 for general damages including pain and suffering, mental anguish and also includes lost wages. There may be a claim for additional medical expenses if the amount exceeds $500,000. Every case is different, so it is important you contact an attorney to discuss.

Most medical providers in Louisiana are enrolled in the Louisiana Patient Compensation Fund, which protects them in case of a malpractice claim. Those who have enrolled pay surcharges to the fund depending on the type of provider they are. If they are found liable in a medical malpractice claim, qualified providers will only be personally responsible for the first $100,000 of a judgment for damages. The balance of the recovery will be paid directly out of the fund. 

Caps for medical malpractice will not apply to any future necessary medical care as it may apply to your injuries, however. Those individuals who may face ongoing medical care in the future may still be entitled to compensation in excess of this cap. If you have suffered an injury due to medical malpractice, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney to understand if these caps apply to your case. 

Caps On Claims Against A Government Agency

Caps-on-Claims-Against-the-Government

Any injured party who wants to bring a claim against a state or local government will be subject to the Louisiana Government Claims Act and its rules and restrictions. 

Similar caps are placed on damages from a claim stemming from an accident on government property or against a government agency. If you have been injured in an accident caused by a government employee or on government property, your recoverable damages will be capped at $500,000.

If you have been injured on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation. While workers’ compensation is an excellent resource for injured workers, its recovery is limited. Unlike a regular personal injury claim, workers’ compensation claims will not compensate an injured worker for the pain and suffering caused by the accident.

Getting Experienced Legal Assistance

Navigating complex injury claims is not advisable alone. If you have suffered a personal injury caused by a medical provider, a government entity, or on the job, it is important to understand your rights and get experienced legal assistance. 

For nearly 40 years, the experienced personal injury attorneys at The Law Offices of Chip Forstall have provided skilled legal representation for accident victims and their families. If you have been injured due to the negligence of a government entity or medical provider, our experienced personal injury attorneys can help. Call us at (504) 483-3400 or contact us through our contact form to schedule a free consultation. 

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The Chip Forstall law offices advocate for the rights of wrongful death survivors, injured pedestrians, drivers, cyclists and more. Call us today for a free consultation.

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