My Auto Accident Injuries Were Caused by a Loved One: What Should I Do?

December 3, 2021 18-Wheeler Truck Accidents

My Auto Accident Injuries Were Caused by a Loved One: What Should I Do?

Sadly, it sometimes happens that an accident is caused by a friend or family member of the victim. When this happens, it can be very difficult. The victim does not want to accuse the friend/family member of wrongdoing. Further, making an insurance claim or filing a lawsuit might cause financial hardship for the friend or loved one. Doing either can be emotionally painful. On the other hand, the friend/family member may feel tremendous guilt about causing the accident and injuring their friend/family member and forcing the friend/family members to confront their negligence and the damage they caused can make the guilt worse leading to anxiety and emotional distress. The situation might cause the friendship to end or lead to family estrangement.

Yet, despite these emotional issues, the victim of negligence is entitled to compensation for injuries and property damage suffered and absolutely SHOULD file an insurance claim and, if necessary, file a personal injury lawsuit. Why? Because, otherwise, the person injured will continue to be victimized. They will suffer the ADDITIONAL and continuing adverse consequences of an accident caused by another because the victim will be personally responsible for all medical bills, will have to accept the results of losing wages and income and will not be compensated for their pain and suffering. Moreover, the at-fault party is suffering NO consequences of their action. This is not fair or just. No true friend or true loved one would allow such a result.

As a practical matter, we, here at Mansfield, Melancon, Cranmer & Dick LLC., recommend filing an insurance claim even if this results in higher insurance premiums (or loss of insurance) for your friend/family member. Your friend/family member has a responsibility to meet their legal and moral responsibilities and an increase in insurance premiums or loss of insurance is a small price. Further, filing an insurance claim against the policy of your friend/family member might help avoid having to file a lawsuit which could cause a greater amount of emotional damage to the relationship. Filing a successful insurance claim now can avoid future injury to the relationship.

An insurance settlement will stop the victimization, get the medical bills paid, cover damage to any vehicle or other property and will provide compensation for pain and suffering, scarring, disability and other losses. More importantly, filing against the at-fault party’s insurance is necessary to trigger any insurance that the victim may have. For example, if the injuries and damages are severe and the at-fault party’s insurance coverage is insufficient, then, depending on the insurance policies at issue, a further insurance claim might be possible with the victim’s insurance carrier.

Filing a personal injury lawsuit against a friend or family member can be painful, but it should be done, if necessary. At-fault parties are responsible for compensating victims of their negligent and wrongful behavior.

Our Attorneys Can Help

For more information, contact the Louisiana personal injury lawyers at Mansfield, Melancon, Cranmer & Dick LLC. We have a proven track record of success handling many types of Louisiana personal injury cases including car accidents, boating accidents, motorcycle accidents, premises liability accidents, and cases involving nursing care facility abuse/neglect. Contact us by calling one of our offices: New Orleans at (504) 500-1108, Baton Rouge at (225) 612-0800, or Lafayette at (337) 409-0003. You can also request a free consultation by using our “Contact Us” page.