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Updated by James C. Lawrence, Jr. on Nov 16, 2017
Headline for Common Acts of Negligence Leading to Auto Accidents
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Common Acts of Negligence Leading to Auto Accidents

If you have suffered an injury due to the negligent acts of another, you are entitled to recover damages as compensation for your injuries, pursuant to Louisiana law. How your case plays out, however, will change significantly depending on the acts of negligence in which the defendant(s) engaged.

Consider the following common acts of negligence that give rise to auto accidents.


Intoxicated Driving

Driving while intoxicated is highly reckless behavior and can expose others on the road (i.e., other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians) to a substantial risk of injury. Generally, intoxication leads to severe driving impairments that can interfere with the driver’s ability to operate their vehicle in a safe manner. Even if a driver is only slightly intoxicated, injured victims can hold the driver liable if they can prove that the intoxicated was sufficiently impaired.


Distracted Driving

In today’s world, distracted driving is one of the most common causes of auto accidents, thanks to the ubiquity of cell phone use. Distracted driving encompasses a range of disparate behaviors, each of which contributes in some way to keeping the attention of the driver away from the road. For example, using a cell phone while on the road would likely constitute distracted driving. Alternatively, if the defendant-driver was in a heated discussion with one of their passengers — and over the course of their discussion, was routinely turning around to speak to the passenger — then that might be deemed “distracted driving” behavior, and therefore negligent.



Speeding is relatively easy to prove in certain cases where the defendant-driver is traveling above the speed limit. In other situations, however, drivers may be required to lower their speeds to match the circumstances in which they find themselves. A driver navigating through moderate traffic must maintain reasonable speeds given the traffic situation, even if the speed limit for the road is much higher. As such, proving that the defendant was negligently speeding often involves an argument about the particular circumstances of the road and what would have been a reasonable speed in such circumstances.



If a driver is tired to the extent that their ability to drive safely is impaired, then they may be found negligent in the event of an accident. Exhaustion/tiredness are difficult to assess, however, which is often why drivers make negligent decisions to drive despite having minimal sleep or rest. If you have been injured by a driver who was physically exhausted (and did not avoid driving despite such exhaustion), you may be entitled to assert a legitimate auto accident claim against them.


Inadequate Maintenance

All vehicles must be inspected for defects regularly — drivers need not conduct such inspections themselves, however, and most simply bring their vehicles into an auto shop for an inspection. When a defect has been discovered, it’s important that the driver (assuming that the defect could expose others on the road to a significant risk of injury) have the defect repaired or otherwise corrected. If the driver fails to do so, then he or she could be held liable in the event of an accident caused by the defect at-issue.