Frequently Asked Questions We Hear From Clients in Louisiana
At Mansfield Melancon Cranmer & Dick, we want you to be as informed as possible about your legal options. That's why we're available to our clients 24/7 to assist them with any questions they may have about a personal injury case, as well as our other practice areas. Here are some of the most common questions we hear from our clients.
Q: Are your consultations free?
A: Absolutely. We only work on a contingent fee basis for personal injury cases. This means that we only charge a fee if we win your case. In other words, our getting paid is “contingent” upon our success. Plus, you work directly with our lawyers and not a paralegal or case manager. During your consultation, if we decide to pursue your case, we will constantly keep you informed about developments throughout the entire process.
Q: How do I know if I have a personal injury case?
A: Cases we take can range from small soft tissue injuries due to auto accident cases to wrongful death cases. No matter the size, though, you may likely have a case if the following is true: The "at-fault" person was under a duty to do or not do something, and the "at-fault" person then breached that duty, resulting in damages that you suffered due to the "at-fault" person's actions. Since our consultations are free, there is no risk to you to make sure your rights are protected by scheduling a consult.
Q: What is a "personal injury"?
A: A personal injury is any type of physical or mental injury to a person as a result of someone's negligence or harmful act. While auto accidents represent the most common type of personal injury, other claims could include dog bites, home accidents, boating accidents, truck accidents, defective products, and failure to provide adequate security, to name a few.
Q: Do I really need an attorney? I don't feel any pain currently.
A: If you have been injured as a result of someone's negligence, whether it be a car, motorcycle, truck, or any other type of accident, you should seek the assistance of one of our personal injury attorneys. Sometimes symptoms of injuries may not arise until days or weeks after an accident.
Q: I was involved in an automobile accident—what should I do?
A: First, it's important to get medical treatment if needed as soon as possible. After obtaining a proper diagnosis and receiving treatment for your injuries, you should open a claim with your auto insurance carrier and the other driver’s insurance carrier. If the other driver’s insurance company adjuster calls you for a statement, do not give them one. You are not obligated to do so—one of our attorneys will handle this for you.
Q: What should I do if someone from the "at-fault" driver's insurance company calls me?
A: Do not speak with the adjuster. The adjuster may seem friendly and insist that they are simply conducting a preliminary investigation. However, they will likely try to convince you to settle your claim. You can refer the adjuster to our team. Similarly, you are also not obligated to speak to the at-fault driver's attorney should he/she contact you.
Q: What is "negligence"?
A: Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care to prevent harm to others. A person is negligent if he or she does something that a reasonably careful person would not do in the same situation or fails to do something that a reasonably careful person would do in the same situation.
Q: What is "premises liability"?
A: Property owners have a responsibility to maintain a relatively safe environment so that people who come onto their property do not suffer an injury. In law, this is called premises liability. Premises liability holds property owners liable for accidents that occur on their property. These types of cases can include slip and fall cases on a public sidewalk, snow and ice accidents, inadequate maintenance of the premises, defective conditions on the premises, inadequate building security leading to injury or assault, elevator or escalator accidents, dog bites, swimming pool accidents, amusement park accidents, and fires, among others.
Q: What constitutes "wrongful death"?
A: Wrongful death occurs when someone dies due to the negligence or wrongful act of another. Generally speaking, a wrongful death action allows for the deceased person’s estate to be awarded damages for the beneficiaries of the decedent.
Q: What kind of damages can be recovered in a wrongful death case?
A: Every wrongful death case is unique, ranging from auto accidents to slip and fall incidents, so the recovered damages will be dependent upon the case. That being said, typical damages cover tangible expenses such as medical bills, burial and funeral costs, financial support that the deceased would have provided to his/her family, and the loss of benefits that would have been given to any heirs. Other damages can include intangible losses such as companionship, community, love, support, and comfort.
Q: How long will it take to settle my claim?
A: Since all cases are different, there's no set answer. The more complex the case, the longer it takes to settle. Once we have all of your accident-related records and evaluate your case, we will then file your claim with the insurance company. It could then take the adjuster a few weeks to evaluate your claim and make an offer. We will then evaluate the offer and decide whether to accept or proceed to court.
Q: What should I bring with me to my consultation?
A: You should bring all documents in your possession that are related to your injury. For example, concerning auto accidents, you should bring a copy of the police or incident report, a copy of your vehicle insurance declaration page, photographs of your vehicle, photographs of your injuries, and copies of medical records for treatment related to the accident.
Q: What types of family law assistance do you provide?
A: Mansfield Melancon’s attorneys routinely handle family law services, including divorce proceedings, premarital agreements or “prenups,” paternity issues, custody and child support matters, alimony and spousal support, protective orders, restraining orders, and community property partitions.
Contact Mansfield Melancon Today
Should you have any other questions, our attorneys are available today to schedule your free consultation. Call us at our offices in New Orleans at (504) 500-1108, Baton Rouge at (225) 612-0800, or Lafayette at (337) 409-0003. You can also schedule your appointment via email at email@example.com or book an online appointment.