When you are injured in a car accident in New Orleans,Louisiana personal injury laws give you the legal recourse necessary to recover compensation from the driver who caused the crash.  However, you must prove the driver caused the accident, and your injuries are a direct result of the accident. If the other driver disputes liability, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation.

Even though you file a lawsuit, you do not need to have a trial to settle your lawsuit. You can use an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method to settle your lawsuit.You can also use an ADR method to settle your claim before you file a personal injury lawsuit.

What is Alternative Dispute Resolution?

ADR is a method of settling disputed claims without the necessity of a trial. In most cases, ADR is less costly than a trial. ADR is also usually less expensive and quicker than proceeding to trial. Common personal injury cases that may be settled through ADR include:

  • Car Accidents
  • Commercial Vehicle Accidents
  • Large Truck Accidents
  • Bicycle Accidents
  • Motorcycle Accidents
  • Pedestrian Accidents

Two of the most common forms of ADR is mediation and arbitration.

What is Mediation?

Mediation is a non-binding form of ADR that involves using a neutral third party to facilitate settlement negotiations between the parties. The mediator does not render an opinion or a ruling in the mediation. He or she only acts as a neutral party to keep the other parties talking through settlement terms. In some cases, the parties may meet together with the mediator. However, some parties choose to have the mediator go between the parties to relay messages and discuss settlement terms. The result of mediation is not binding on either party.

What is Arbitration?

Arbitration is another form of ADR, but arbitration can be binding or non-binding. With binding arbitration, the parties are bound by the decision of the arbitrator. The arbitrator is also a neutral party like a mediator. However, the arbitrator listens to evidence presented by both parties and then issues a ruling in favor of one party or the other party. If the arbitration is binding, the parties do not have any further legal recourse.In non-binding arbitration, either party may pursue a lawsuit if they do not like the arbitrator’s decision.

Arbitration is not as formal as a trial. Even though an arbitrator should use the same laws to decide the case, the rules of evidence are different from evidentiary rules fora trial. Therefore, the parties may submit evidence during arbitration that they may not be able to use during a trial.

Contact a New Orleans Car Accident Attorney for More Information

In some cases, it can be difficult to know whether to proceed to trial or utilize a form of ADR. Our New Orleans car accident attorneys are trained negotiators and skilled trial attorneys.  We evaluate each case carefully to determine the best option to maximize the chance of receiving full compensation for all damages.

For a free consultation with a New Orleans car accident lawyer, call Attorney Fred Olinde of The Olinde Firm at (504)587-1440 or 1-800-587-1889.