Skip to main content
Car Accident

Careless Operation: What is It and why I Should Fight It

Drivers in Louisiana are ticketed for all kinds of reasons — but some of them are clearer than others.

One of the tickets that leaves many people scratching their heads is careless operation of a motor vehicle. People living in New Orleans receive this ticket very often and for many different reasons. 

From our traffic ticket attorneys at Crescent City Law, here’s a breakdown of the law — what is careless operation of a vehicle, and why did you receive this ticket?

Careless Operation in Jefferson Parish

La. R.S. 32:58 defines careless operation as “Any person operating a motor vehicle on the public roads of this state shall drive in a careful and prudent manner, so as not to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person. Failure to drive in such a manner shall constitute careless operation.”

The language of the Louisiana law for c.o.m.v. is intentionally vague because officers write this ticket for a variety of reasons.

Even though the letter of Louisiana’s careless operation law is spelled out above, most readers are still wondering what actions violate the law? All sorts of on-road actions qualify as careless operation. 

In general, people receive a ticket for one of three reasons:

  • They were driving too fast
  • They were following too close
  • They weren’t paying attention

As an example, failing to maintain control of your vehicle by failing to brake in time and to avoid an accident might be considered careless operation.  

Or, swerving in and out of traffic is another example of careless operation. 

And, police often issue a summons for careless operation when a speeder is cited for driving faster than 15 miles over the posted limit.  

But, in most cases, people receive careless operation tickets when a police officer suspects your driving caused a traffic accident.

Why You Should Fight Careless Operation Tickets

When you are issued a ticket for careless operation there are serious financial consequences.  You should always fight these tickets. 

  • The fines, fees, and court costs will cost you at least $300.00. 
  • If your insurance finds out you were operating your motor vehicle carelessly, they will fear you were involved in an accident.  Even if there wasn’t a wreck, your insurance will go up because your insurance company thinks you caused a collision. 
  • A conviction for careless operation will be reported to your driving record even if there wasn’t an accident.  More tickets on your record means higher insurance premiums and a lower credit score. The worst thing you can do is admit guilt and pay the fine.

We recently learned from a friend who got a ticket out of state that her rates in Louisiana went up $500 per year based on just one ticket! 

Instead of paying a hefty fine, the best course of action is to hire an experienced traffic ticket attorney in Jefferson Parish.  

Crescent City Law Can Help Hide this Ticket from Your Record

Our Attorneys will evaluate the details of the incident, build a legal strategy, apply years of knowledge about fighting tickets, and represent you in traffic court. In most cases, we can appear on your behalf so you don’t even have to go to court.  This way, you do not have to waste hours waiting in traffic court to get a couple minutes in front of the judge.

Let your attorney do the work for you–you just might avoid the fines, insurance hikes, and negative remarks on your driving record.

Careless Operation Tickets can be Beaten

The wording of the law that defines the careless operation of a motor vehicle is open for interpretation. Louisiana lawmakers intentionally used unclear language when writing this law in order to give police officers lots of different reasons to write a ticket for this violation.

In other words, this is more of a subjective law than an objective law. Your traffic ticket attorney will pick apart the words of this law, apply them to the context of your citation for careless operation and hopefully emerge with justice.

The best possible outcome is to have the ticket dismissed without any penalty whatsoever.  However, it is incredibly difficult for an individual to represent him or herself in a court hearing for a careless operation ticket. 

Traffic court judges are much more inclined to respect an organized legal defense delivered by an experienced traffic ticket attorney.

Contact Our Traffic Ticket Attorneys Today

More than 99% of the tickets we fight are not reported to driving records and insurance companies.  Call our lawyers as soon as possible to tell us your side of the story so we can do everything in our power to convince the traffic court judges that your on-road actions were not careless.

Skip to content