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PRACTICE AREAS
ACCIDENTS
  • Personal Injury

  • Wrongful Death and Serious Personal Injury

  • Burn Injury

  • Brain Injury

  • Cancer and other Health Problems Caused by Exposure to Chemicals

  • Injuries Caused by Defective Buildings

  • Injuries Caused by Defective Products

  • Medical Malpractice

  • Family Law

  • Estate Planning and Successions

  • General Civil Litigation

  • Federal Criminal Defense

  • Business Representation

  • Commercial Litigation

  • Criminal Law

  • Notary Public

  • Nursing Home Negligence

  • Residential and Commercial Sales and Lease Disputes

AUTOMOBILE AND TRUCKING ACCIDENTS

If you have been involved in an automobile accident, let the experienced attorneys at McKenna Narcisse Law Firm get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

We know what it’s like to be faced with the unfortunate circumstances of an automobile accident. When you call McKenna Narcisse Law Firm, know that you will always be treated with the compassion and respect you deserve to help you through this difficult time. You probably may have asked yourself questions about what is going to happen next. We would like to provide you with a free initial consultation, where we can explain the need for possible medical services and any other needs that may arise.

Meanwhile, prior to meeting with a personal injury lawyer from McKenna Narcisse Law Firm, you can do a few things to help your potential car accident claim, in Louisiana or elsewhere. You may want to follow these simple steps:

1) Save all the documents you receive that relate to the accident and your injuries, including:

a. the accident report,
b. photos of the accident scene and your car,
c. names and contact information of witnesses,
d. copies of your medical records for the
accident-related injuries,
e. photos of the injuries,
f. medical bills, and
g. receipts from prescriptions, car repairs, and other related expenses

 

2) Follow your doctor’s advice about treatment.

3) Go to every scheduled doctor’s office visit so that the time it takes for you to heal are documented by your doctor, which is the proof you need to show you’ve suffered damages because of the other driver’s carelessness or negligence.

 

What happens if an insurance adjuster contacts me?

It is important for you to protect your rights in case an insurance adjuster contacts you, inquiring about your accident claim. If an insurance adjuster contacts you, keep the following in mind:

  • Do not sign a release. You could be signing away your rights, hurting your claim and consequently the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

  • Do not give a statement to the adjuster. Simply inform the adjuster that you are not comfortable with discussing the matter and would like to seek the advice of your lawyers at McKenna Narcisse Law Firm.

If you need to contact us….

We are here for you. For more than 10 years, Warren McKenna III and Halima Narcisse of McKenna Narcisse Law Firm have helped injured people like you through difficult times. Be assured that your phone calls will be returned promptly, you will be updated as your case develops.

Auto Accidents: Left Turning Motorists

A motorist should always exercise great caution when making a left turn. In Louisiana, the law sets forth specific presumptions and regulations when an automobile accident occurs with a vehicle attempting to make a left turn. Typically, the driver is required to make a proper observation that the turn could be made without endangering a passing vehicle. Depending on the jurisdiction, the left turning motorist has the responsibility to signal his or her intent to turn a certain distance before initiating the turn. However, the owner’s burden placed upon a left-turning motorist is not discharged by the mere signaling of an intention to turn. The giving of a signal is immaterial if at the time the driver of the turning vehicle did not have the opportunity to make the turn in safety.

The left turning motorist also has the duty to yield to all vehicles approaching from the opposite direction which are within the intersection or so close thereto as to constitute an immediate hazard. Some courts have gone as far to say that when the left-turning motorist observes a vehicle approaching from the rear, it is a dereliction of duty to fail to look a second time before commencing the left hand turn.

Once the evidence establishes that the turning motorist was attempting to make a left turn when the accident occurred, the burden of proof shifts to the motorist to absolve himself of liability. In other words, there is a presumption of negligence when it is proved that the driver executed a left-hand turn and crossed the center line at the time of the impact. If the left-turning motorist is faced with a green arrow left-turn signal, he must prove that he was making such a turn while the arrow was green, or that he had pre-empted the intersection.

However, the left-turning motorist’s duty to yield is inapplicable where the intersection is controlled by an inoperative traffic signal. Any motorist approaching such an intersection is required to utilize a high degree of caution.

Proof of the working condition of the traffic signal can be preserved by taking pictures of the operating traffic signals immediately following the accident. Also, in discussing the incident with the investigating police officer, it is important to point out the working condition of the traffic signals and ask him if he has recorded that fact.

Favored and Inferior Roads

The motorist on a favored street has the right to assume that any driver approaching the intersection on a less favored street will yield the right-of-way. A favored street is determined at the specific location where the accident occurred. This right-of-way driver can indulge in this assumption until he sees, or should have seen, that the other car has not yielded.


The doctrine of preemption allows a non-favored or inferior motorist who enters an intersection to prevail where there is evidence that the inferior driver attempted to cross a favored street when he had a reasonable opportunity to cross without endangering or impeding passage of vehicles on the favored street.

A motorist who is about to enter a roadway from a private driveway is required to yield the right-of-way to all approaching vehicles so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.

However, the duty of the driver on the favored street toward the intruding motorist is the much lesser ordinary care standard and that driver may generally rely on the assumption or presumption that those vehicles entering the highway from less favorable positions such as a private drive will not drive into the path of favored traffic. The presumption or assumption may not be relied upon by a motorist who is proceeding unlawfully before or after he sees the intruding vehicle.

A motorist attempting to enter the highway from the shoulder of the road is held to the same standard of care as a motorist entering the highway from a private driveway. A driver is required to keep a lookout for vehicles upon the highway and to resist from entering until it is apparent to a reasonably prudent person that such can be done in safety.

The driver of the overtaking or passing vehicle has the duty to ascertain before attempting to pass a preceding vehicle that from all the circumstances of traffic, the conditions of the highway and the lay of the land, the passing can be completed with safety. He must be alert to the actions of a motorist preceding him on the highway.

Intersectional Collision Cases

Intersectional collisions make up a large number of all motor vehicle accidents. Typically, one vehicle’s front bumper will strike the other on the side in one of three locations: the front panel and the two side panels.

The side of a car has traditionally been the least protected area. There are no bumpers to absorb the impact forces and generally there is very little occupant protection in the side area of the car. Unless your vehicle is equipped with side airbags, the front airbags are essentially useless since they are not designed to activate when the vehicle is not struck in the front bumper area. Because the impact occurs in a vulnerable area of the vehicles, these accidents can inflict serious and fatal injuries on the motorist involved.

When an accident occurs when a stop sign is involved, the law in most states requires that the motorist who is confronted with a stop sign must come to a complete stop. Once stopped, the motorist must evaluate that it is safe to proceed. Only when is safe to proceed can the motorist enter the intersection. Stopping is only half of what the law requires. To stop and then pull into oncoming traffic constitutes negligence and an offending motorists will generally be held at fault for any resulting accident. The driver on the favored street will generally have the right of way and motorist entering that roadway must not enter the roadway until it is safe to do so. The driver that fails to obey the stop sign (by coming to a complete stop and only proceeding when it is safe to do so) will be held at fault.

The problem arises in intersectional collisions when traffic signals are involved and it is not clear who had the green light. Typically each driver will claim to have had the green light. Without independent eyewitness testimony, it may be very difficult to prove who was at fault. Experienced attorneys are needed when serious injuries result from these difficult to prove accidents. Many cities have traffic signal departments (or similar departments) that may maintain records of traffic sequences for all traffic lights. By carefully questioning the drivers, an attorney experienced in these types of accidents can help determine the sequence of the traffic lights when the accident occurred. Sometimes this information is enough to tip the scales in your favor.

Unlicensed Operators

Generally, the owner of a vehicle is not liable for damages which occur when another person is operating the vehicle. However, numerous exceptions to this rule exist where (i) the driver is on a mission for the owner of the vehicle; (ii) when the driver is an agent or employee of the owner; and (iii) when the owner himself is negligent in entrusting the vehicle to an incompetent driver.

Under the negligent entrustment theory, the lender of a vehicle is not responsible for the negligence of the borrower unless he knew or should have known that the borrower was physically or mentally incompetent to drive. For instance, when an owner of an automobile knowingly entrusts the vehicle to an intoxicated, otherwise incompetent driver, the owner is responsible for the harm resulting from the incompetent operation of the vehicle.

Some courts have determined that a reasonably prudent person has the clear duty to recognize the manifest danger of making a long-term, open-ended loan of a vehicle to someone they know or should know is an habitual abuser of alcohol and is prone to drive the vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. A prudent person should recognize that under these circumstances it is highly likely that serious injuries or death will reasonably result.

Statutory law provides that unlicensed drivers are prohibited from driving and that drivers are prohibited from allowing unlicensed drivers to drive. The intent of this type of statute is to protect the public and the unlicensed driver by preventing inexperienced drivers from operating vehicles on public roads.

However, in most states, the violation of a criminal safety statute does not usually, in and of itself, create civil liability. Most states require that to constitute actionable negligence, the violation must be encompassed within the scope of the risks that the statute was designed to protect against. The violation must also be a cause of the accident. Thus, if a driver is competent and experienced, although unlicensed, then the risk of allowing him to drive may be outside the scope of the risks contemplated by the criminal safety statute which requires a driver’s license.

Violation of a criminal safety statute may provide a presumption of negligence in some cases which will require the offending driver to prove that the violation was not the cause of the accident.

 
TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY

Thousands of individuals suffer traumatic brain injuries each year.

Teen-agers and young adults (ages 15-24) suffer the highest rates of traumatic brain injuries, mostly due to motor vehicle accidents. Of this age group, males are nearly twice as likely to suffer a traumatic brain injury as females.

Primary brain injuries can be divided into two types of lesions: focal and diffuse. Focal lesion is typically associated with blows to the head that produce cerebral contusions and hematomas. Focal injuries can be life threatening. Diffuse axonal injury is caused by inertia forces commonly produced by motor vehicle accidents.These types of injuries can coexist.

Prevalent Head Injuries
The more common types of primary head injuries include: (i) skull fractures, (ii) epidural hematomas; (iii) subdural hematomas; (iv) intracerebral hematomas; (v) diffuse axonal injury. Although the primary brain injury is the result of direct mechanical damage that occurs at the time of trauma, secondary brain injury occurs after the initial trauma and is defined as the damage to the neurons due to systemic responses to the initial injury.

Severity of Head Injuries
The severity of a head injury is classified by the Glasgow Coma Scale. On that scale, a score of 13-15 is classified as a mild injury, a score of 9-12 as moderate and a score of less than or equal to 8 is considered severe. If a person is suspected to be intoxicated, a health care provider should exercise greater caution during the evaluation because such intoxication could be masking an expanding intracranial mass lesion.

The first priority in any injured patient is to stabilize the cervical spine, establish an adequate airway, ensure adequate ventilation and circulation. These steps are critical to avoid hypoxia and hypotension, the most important causes of secondary brain insults. Patients who have a Glasgow score less than or equal to 8 should be intubated early upon presentation to a healthcare professional.

A CT scan has become the ideal diagnostic procedure in evaluating acute head trauma. Generally, it is recommended that patients with a Glasgow score of 15 and a history of loss of consciousness be scanned. Once the patient is stabilized, a neurosurgical consultation is required. The critical factors in deciding whether to proceed directly with surgical evacuation of an intracranial hematoma include the patient’s neurologic status and CT findings.

Anoxic Brain Injuries
The brain requires oxygen in order to function normally. If the brain is deprived from a substantial lack of oxygen, a hypoxic event occurs. If the brain is completely deprived of oxygen, an anoxic event occurs. Oxygen is crucial to bodily functions, and the brain consumes approximately one-fifth (20%), of the body’s total oxygen.

If the brain is deprived from oxygen, a domino-effect of problems will occur. Oxygen is necessary to metabolize glucose. Glucose is used to provide energy for all living cells. Since 90% of the brain’s total energy is used to send electrochemical impulses and maintain the neuron’s ability to send these impulses, a deprivation of oxygen may produce profound thinking, movement, and emotional impairments.

The most common forms of anoxia are (i) anemic anoxia; (ii) ischemic anoxia; and (iii) anoxic anoxia. Anemic anoxia occurs when not enough blood or hemoglobin is making it to the brain. Hemoglobin is a chemical in red blood cells responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body. This may occur when someone is hemorrhaging from a gunshot wound. Ischemic anoxia occurs when there is not enough cerebral blood flow to carry blood to the brain such as when a person suffers from an ischemic stroke. Anoxic anoxia occurs when not enough oxygen is present in the air to be absorbed by the body. An example of this occurs with high altitude sickness.

The most frequent causes of Ischemic anoxia include:


a. Anesthesia accidents-32%
b. Cardiovascular disease-29%
c. Asphyxia, such as drowning -16%
d. Chest trauma-10%
e. Electrocution-6.5%
f. Severe bronchial asthma-3%
g. Barbiturate poisoning-3%

 

Symptoms of hypoxic-ischemic injury include: Cognitive deficits (thinking problems), weakness in all four extremities, abnormal movements, loss of coordination, visual disturbances, and the inability to follow a sequence of commands.


Direct treatment of anoxia is limited. The general consensus is one of maintaining the body’s general status, although some studies have suggested that the use of barbiturates may be helpful in the first 2-3 days of injury onset. Recovery may take months to years depending on the level of injury. Rehabilitation may include the need to consult professionals like a physical therapist, speech therapist and a neuropsychologist.

Brain Infection Injuries
There are many organisms, viruses, fungi and parasites which can cause infection in the brain and spinal cord. Some of the most commonly seen brain infections include:

Meningitis - is an inflammation of the membranes of the brain or spinal cord. It can be caused by a virus or by bacteria. Bacterial meningitis is a very serious disease.


Encephalitis - is an inflammation of the brain itself. It can take many forms from many causes.
 

Myelitis - means an inflammation of the spinal cord


Abscess - a collection of pus appearing in an acute or chronic localized infection and associated with tissue destruction.

In the United States, about 25,000 new cases of meningitis are diagnosed each year. About 2/3 of all cases are in children. Recent statistics show that the incidence of bacterial meningitis is estimated to be more than 400 cases per 100,000 newborns. There are three types of bacteria which most commonly cause meningitis: (i) Streptococcus pneumonia, (ii) Neisseria meningitidis, and (iii) Haemophilus influenza type b.


Other common brain infections include (i) Toxoplasmosis, caused by a parasite, and acquired by eating unwashed vegetables or undercooked meat or direct contact with cat feces, (ii ) Cerebral cysticercosis, caused by the pork tapeworm, (iii) Trichinosis, caused by the roundworm parasite found in undercooked pork, (iv) Rubella (German measles) caused by the rubella virus, (v) Mumps, caused by a virus (vi) Rabies, a viral infection transmitted through animal bites, and (vii) AIDS or HIV, caused by the human immunodeficiency virus.

Various types of brain infections can develop different symptoms. However, in general, people older than 2 years with a bacterial infection might develop high fever, severe headaches, stiff neck, nausea and vomiting, discomfort looking into a bright light, a skin rash, confusion, sleepiness. Newborns may be unusually fussy, irritable, and sleepy. Seizures could also develop in the late stages of the disease.

Early diagnosis and treatment are extremely important with brain infections. The definitive diagnosis of meningitis is usually derived from a lumbar puncture, during which spinal fluid is obtained from a spinal tap and sent to a lab for analysis. A CT scan or other standard lab work and neurological examination may also be performed.

Treatment for the bacterial infection is usually accomplished through intravenous antibiotics. Steroids may also be given to reduce brain swelling. Acutely ill patients should be given I.V. antibiotics within 30 minutes of being evaluated in the emergency room.

Stroke Brain Injuries
What is a stroke? A stroke occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery or blood vessel in the brain or when a blood vessel breaks thereby interrupting the blood flow to an area of the brain.

When a stroke occurs, it kills brain cells in the immediate area. Death of these brain cells causes the release of chemicals that can kill brain cells in a larger surrounding area of brain tissue. This can happen at a fast pace. In fact, the “window” for interventional treatment of a stroke is about six hours.

There are two types of strokes: hemorrhagic strokes and ischemic strokes. Ischemic strokes occur when a blood clot blocks or plugs a blood vessel in the brain. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel ruptures or breaks in the brain. Ischemic strokes occur in two ways:

Embolic stroke and Thrombotic Stroke. In embolic strokes, a blood clot forms in another part of the body (usually the heart), and travels through the bloodstream to the brain. When it arrives in the brain, the clot lodges in a blood vessel causing a stroke. In thrombotic strokes, blood flow is impaired because of a blockage to one or more of the arteries supplying blood to the brain.

Most stroke patients do not present until 24 hours or more after its onset. In fact, too few adults over the age of 50 cannot name a single symptom of stroke.

The five most common symptoms of stroke are (i) sudden weakness or numbness in the face or an extremity (especially on one side of the body) (ii) sudden vision trouble in one or both eyes; (iii) trouble speaking or understanding (sudden confusion); (iv) sudden severe headache of unknown origin; and (v) sudden dizziness or loss of balance or coordination.

Treatment of strokes may depend on the type of stroke. For instance, ischemic strokes are often treated with drugs called thrombolytics. This class of drugs help reestablish cerebral circulation by dissolving the clots that obstruct blood flow. Another class of drugs used to treat strokes are called neuroprotectives. These drugs work to minimize the effects caused by the release of chemicals following the death of brain cells. Another potential treatment for an acute stroke is called Oxygenated Fluorocarbon Nutrient Emulsion Therapy (OFNE). OFNE delivers oxygen and nutrients to the brain through the cerebral spinal fluid. Neuro Perfusion is an experimental treatment for strokes that involves rerouting oxygen-rich blood through the brain to prevent damage from an ischemic stroke.

Use of diagnostic imaging devices such as an MRI or CT scan can help the physician determine whether the stroke is ischemic or hemorrhagic. This is an important determination to be made before therapy is instituted.

 
FIRE AND BURN INJURY

Experiencing a Louisiana fire and burn injury can be life altering.

We are sorry you or your loved one has experienced such a devastating accident, and we understand the difficulties you or your loved one is facing. McKenna Narcisse Law Firm is ready and able to help you and others who have been in similar situations. From explaining your options to helping you complete confusing paperwork, we want to help you through this challenging time in every way we can.


We understand that a Louisiana fire or burn injury can leave permanent physical and emotional scars, and recovering from these injuries can result in mounting medical bills and time lost from work. Finding the money to pay bills can prove to be difficult when you aren’t able to go to work due to a fire or burn injury. If you suffered Louisiana fire and burn injuries due to someone else’s negligent actions, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, time lost from work, and future expenses.

What causes Louisiana fire and burn injuries?
Fires-which can cause burn injuries that are disfiguring, painful, and even deadly-have many causes including defective products and improperly maintained property. If a manufacturer creates a defective product or if a property owner’s negligence results in a fire, those parties can be held responsible for the injuries you sustained.

We Can Help
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious Louisiana fire or burn injury, contacting a Louisiana fire and burn injury lawyer may be the last thing on your mind. But we may be able to help you during this trying time.


You need a lawyer who understands the complexity of fire and burn litigation. A lawyer with McKenna Narcisse Law Firm can take certain steps such as pinpointing the cause and origin of the fire, testing the products and materials involved in the fire, and identifying the responsible parties in a timely manner-to help ensure a successful outcome in your fire and burn case.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Louisiana fire or otherwise suffered burn injuries resulting from someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.

 
 
INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENTS

Have you been involved in an industrial accident?

McKenna Narcisse Law Firm represents clients in a variety of actions that can be brought under federal and state environmental laws, such as civil enforcement, tort, trespass, breach of contract, property damage and personal injury claims.

 

McKenna Narcisse Law Firm handles toxic tort cases aggressively and effectively; pursuing the best possible outcome for our clients.

TERM, Technologically Enhanced Radioactive Material, is produced when activities such as uranium mining, or sewage sludge treatment, concentrate or expose naturally occurring radioactive materials in ores, soils, water, or other natural materials.

TENORM is defined by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences as: Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials are any naturally occurring radioactive materials not subject to regulation under the Atomic Energy Act whose radionuclide concentrations or potential for human exposure have been increased above levels encountered in the natural state by human activities.

While federal and state agencies have tried to develop ways to protect humans and the environment from harmful exposure to the radiation in these materials, TERM remains a challenging problem in the United States. This is due to the many industries and types of products that potentially contribute to excess radiation production such as mineral extractions and refining, oil and gas production, drinking water treatment processes and wastewater treatment plants.

NORM is an acronym for Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material, which includes all radioactive elements found in the environment. Long-lived radioactive elements such as uranium, thorium and potassium and any of their decay products, such as radium and radon. These elements have always been present in the earth’s crust and within tissues of all living beings.

Although the concentration of NORM in most natural substances is low, higher concentrations may arise as a result of human activities. For example radium may be precipitated out in scale that forms in a natural gas processing pipe or radon decay products may concentrate on the turbine blades of a natural gas pump.

  • This enhancement of natural radioactivity has been found in:

  • Petroleum and natural gas production

  • Mineral extraction and processing

  • Metal recycling

  • Forest products and thermal – electric production

  • Water treatment facilities

  • Tunneling and underground workings

 

If you or someone close to you have suffered personal or property damage injury due to possible exposure to TERM/NORM toxic substances, call or email us for a consultation.

MEDICAL MALPRACTICE

There are numerous and complex rules in Louisiana regarding the handling of a medical malpractice claim.

 

The following information is only a basic description of how a claim under the Medical Malpractice Act (hereinafter referred to as “The Act”) and is not intended to serve as legal advice.

The Act has defined medical malpractice as any negligent act or omission causing injury or damage to another as a result of service rendered, or which should have been rendered, by a health care provider. Typically, when a health care provider is found to have committed malpractice, they are in “breach of the Standard of Care”.

The Standard of Care

The Standard of Care that is required from every health care provider is to exercise that degree of skill ordinarily employed, under like and similar circumstances, by members of that profession, and to use reasonable care and diligence, along with their best judgment. Every health care provider must provide every patient with treatment that meets the appropriate standard of care.

If a patient believes that the treatment receives fails to meet the appropriate standard of care, then that patient must prove that the health care provider either 1) failed to use reasonable care and diligence, along with their best judgment and skill, or 2) lacked the requisite degree of knowledge or skill, and that as a direct and proximate result the patient suffered injuries.

It is important to note that if a patient’s condition fails to improve as a result of services rendered by a health care provider or if a patient’s condition meets an unexpected result, such an outcome does not necessarily give rise to a malpractice claim.

Filing a claim under the Louisiana Medical Malpractice Act

One might believe that in order to file a malpractice claim, all that is required is to file a Petition, asserting a violation under The Act. However, in most cases, a person is not allowed to file a civil suit before first bringing the claim before a “medical review panel”, which is a panel of three doctors or health care professionals who review the case and determine whether there has been a breach of the standard of care.

Such a claim must be file within one year of the date of the incident or within one year of the date the patient discovered the incident giving rise to the malpractice, but no later than three years from the date of the act of malpractice.

This three year period is called a preemptive period. If a claim is filed beyond this period, the claim will be dismissed. You will no longer have the opportunity to pursue your claim.

The Medical Review Panel

After the complaint is filed a “medical review panel” is convened. An “attorney chairman” is selected to organize a panel of doctors or other health care providers. The Attorney Chairman explains the respective duties and conducts the meeting of the panel members. The Plaintiff selects a member to serve on the panel. The Defendants selects another member to serve. These two panel members select a third member. The Attorney Chairman does not vote on the panel.

Panel Opinions

According to The Act, the panel shall, within one hundred eighty days after the selection of the last panel member, render one or more of the following expert opinions:

1. The evidence supports the conclusion that the defendant(s) failed to comply with the appropriate standard of care as charged in the complaint.

2. The evidence does not support the conclusion that the defendant(s) failed to meet the applicable standard of care as charged in the complaint.

3. That there is a material issue of fact, not requiring expert opinion, bearing on liability for consideration by the court.

4. Where the panel finds that the conduct complained of was a factor, whether the plaintiff suffered (a) any disability and the extent and duration of the disability, and (b) any permanent impairment and the percentage of the impairment.

 

Once the panel renders its opinion, the Attorney Chairman is charged with notifying the parties with the decision by Certified Mail.

After the decision…

After the panel as rendered its opinion, a party may file a civil complaint – a lawsuit for damages, even if the panel finds no malpractice on the part of the healthcare provider. A party must file a Petition in Court within 90 days of “Certified Mail” notification by the Attorney Chairman of the panel’s opinion or decision.

“The Cap”

This refers the limit of amount of recovery in a complaint under the medical malpractice act (The Act). The amount of recovery is “capped” by law to $500,000 plus future medical expenses. Regardless of whether a case has a value under or over $500,000, no award for any damages other than future medical expenses can exceed that statutory amount.

“Future Medical Expenses” can include all medical expenses from the time of the malpractice until the time of “maximum point of recovery”, even until death. The future medical expenses component can be quite sizeable.

The Patient’s Compensation Fund

The Patient’s Compensation Fund or “PCF” is a fund set aside by the insurance companies that insure doctors, nurses, hospitals and other healthcare professionals and providers to pay claims between $100,000.00 and $500,000.00. So in most cases the physician or hospital is only liable for the first $100,000.00 of any recovery that is due.

Settlement Matters

The physician or hospital may settle with the plaintiff at any time and for any amount. However, if a physician or hospital settles for the full extent of liability, or $100,000, then there is an admission that the physician or hospital is at fault. The plaintiff is no longer required to prove that the physician or hospital committed malpractice.

After reaching a settlement with the physician or hospital, the plaintiff may attempt to settle with the PCF, or take the matter to trial.

Be assured that McKenna Narcisse Law Firm is prepared to represent you in all aspects of a medical malpractice claim. If you have any questions, please call us or email us at info@mckennafirm.com

 
DRILLING RIG & OFFSHORE ACCIDENTS

When an employee is injured offshore, the Jones Act may apply.

The Jones Act provides the injured seaman a right to bring an action against his employer for damages according to 46 United States Code Section 688.

A seaman is not defined under the act, but according to case law, the definition is two-part meaning: a) employee’s duties must contribute to function of vessel or to accomplishment of its mission b) seaman must have a connection to a vessel in navigation or to an identifiable group of such vessels that is substantial in terms of both its duration and its nature. A person may be defined as a “Seaman” if 1) he is permanently assigned to 2) a vessel or fleet of vessels 3) in navigation.

For a seaman to recover under the Jones Act, he must have been acting within the course and scope of his employment at the time of his alleged injury. Robair v. Penrod Drilling Corp., 98-0222 (La. App. 4 Cir. 10/7/98); 720 So.2d 130.

Filing suit under the Jones allows the employee/seaman to sue his employer as well as any responsible third parties, all in tort. The employee may sue for all of his damages, including pain and suffering, loss of past and future wages and all medical expenses associated with the accident.

An employer has a duty to exercise care by providing a reasonably safe work environment, supervising seaman about safety in the workplace and by providing adequate equipment. Milstead v. Diamond M. Offshore, Inc. 94-1582 (La. App. 3rd cir. 9/6/95).

Many personal injuries are the result of offshore and maritime accidents or collisions. Some examples of injuries that result from offshore accidents are cervical and lumbar sprains, herniated and ruptured discs, fractures, knee injuries, brain damage, and paralysis. Victims of offshore accidents may recover for pain and suffering, medical expenses, property damage, lost wages and loss of earning capacity.

McKenna Narcisse Law Firm handles personal injury claims. We handle cases throughout Louisiana, including Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Shreveport, Lafayette, Monroe, Alexandria, Hammond, Lake Charles and surrounding areas.

The attorneys at McKenna Narcisse Law Firm represent the victims of offshore and maritime accidents, not the insurance companies. If you have been involved in an offshore or maritime accident and suffered injuries, don’t be victimized again. Contact the attorneys at McKenna Narcisse Law Firm to help you receive compensation for the injuries you sustained from an offshore accident.

 
FAMILY LAW

At McKenna Narcisse, LLC, we handle many areas of family law, including divorces (no fault and fault based), matters relating to divorce (child support, child custody, spousal support, exclusive use of the family home), community property partitions and relocation of a child’s residence.  We also draft and provide counsel as to pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements.

 
ESTATE PLANNING AND SUCCESSIONS

We provide counsel to our clients who seek to have a Last Will and Testament drafted as well as other necessary documents such as trusts, powers of attorney and living wills.  We work together with our clients to ensure that their wishes are followed and that the law is complied with to reduce the risk of their wishes being contested after their death in court.

 

We also handle successions, which is the transfer of a deceased person’s property (real property and movable property) to their heirs or legatees in accordance with either a Last Will and Testament or the law.  Furthermore, we provide representation when a party contests the validity of a Last Will and Testament or how property was disbursed during a succession.

 
LOCATION

3201 General DeGaulle Drive

Suite 201

New Orleans, LA 70114

Phone: (504) 208-4545

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