Who is Liable in a Multi-Car Crash?
Who is Liable in a Multi-Car Crash? Establishing responsibility for a multi-car crash hinges on the specific details of the case. A thorough investigation is necessary to gather evidence and determine:
- The sequence of events leading to the collision.
- The number of drivers involved.
- Whether any traffic laws were violated or negligent actions occurred.
- Who is liable for the injuries and damages caused.
Typically, the driver at fault for the accident is responsible for compensating others for their damages in Louisiana. However, in some situations, liability may be shared among multiple drivers.
Negligence as a Common Cause of Multi-Car Crashes
Driver negligence is a common cause of multi-car collisions. When drivers disregard traffic laws or act carelessly and recklessly on the road, they create hazardous situations for everyone around them.
Traffic regulations are in place to prevent accidents and govern how drivers should behave. Failure to adhere to these rules, whether accidentally or intentionally, can lead to serious injuries and property damage for the driver, their passengers, and other vehicle occupants.
Examples of negligent driver actions include:
- Running traffic signals or stop signs
- Failing to yield the right of way when required
- Lane violations or swerving
- Driving against the flow of traffic on one-way streets
- Unsafe passing or lane changes without proper observation
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Distracted driving
When a driver’s violation of traffic laws causes a multi-car collision, they may be held liable for injuries and property damages. Their auto liability insurance should cover these costs.
Collecting Evidence to Prove Fault and Liability
To establish fault and pursue compensation, gathering evidence of what happened and the injuries sustained is crucial. Police crash reports often play a significant role in multi-car accidents, detailing the cause of the collision and any citations issued. In many cases, one or more drivers involved receive traffic tickets for their roles in the crash.
Other essential evidence may include:
- Eyewitness statements
- Physical evidence from the scene
- Photos or videos of the accident
- Accident reconstruction analysis
- Expert opinions
- Medical records relevant to injuries
- Documentation of financial losses
In multi-car accidents, shared responsibility is possible. More than one driver may have contributed to the collision and could be financially liable. Louisiana follows the concept of comparative fault under CC Art. 2323, allowing those partially responsible for the accident to seek compensation. However, their recovery amount diminishes based on the percentage of responsibility assigned to them during trial.
Recoverable Damages in a Louisiana Multi-Car Crash
The potential financial recovery for a multi-car crash victim depends on various factors. You have the right to sue the at-fault driver(s) and seek compensation for your losses and expenses, which may include:
- Current and future medical expenses and care needs
- Lost wages and income
- Diminished earning capacity
- Car repair costs
- Rental car expenses
- Related out-of-pocket expenses
- Pain and suffering
In Louisiana, immediate surviving family members of a car accident victim may pursue wrongful death damages under CC Art. 2315.2. These damages encompass financial costs incurred due to the loved one’s death and intangible losses experienced by the family.
SPEAK TO A CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER IN LAKE CHARLES FOR A FREE CASE EVALUATION.
For a free consultation with a car accident lawyer in Lake Charles, call Lee Hoffoss Injury Lawyers today at 377-433-2053.