During the pendency of a claim or lawsuit, an injured party also has a duty, a duty to mitigate his or her damages. The scope of this duty varies from case to case but, generally, as set out by the Louisiana Supreme Court, a party is not required to take actions which would likely prove unduly costly or burdensome. MB Industries, LLC v. CNA Insurance Company, 2011-0303 (La. 10/25/11), 74 So.3d at 1181.
A Louisiana Court will use the “reasonably prudent man” standard in evaluating whether and what the party should have done to lessen his damages, given the facts known at the time and avoiding the temptation of viewing the case through hindsight. Brassette v. Exnicios, 2011-1439 (La.App. 1 Cir. 5/14/12).
Mitigation of damages becomes especially relevant and controversial in major bodily injury cases, where a fine line exists between reasonable and unreasonable medical costs. As a practical matter, all parties should strive to reduce their damages, both the monetary damages and physical injuries themselves, during the pendency of the suit.
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