Does Texting While Driving Affect a Personal Injury Case?
This video is going to cover the new law that actually is going to go into effect in July of 2019 related to texting while driving. We come across this often in our cases involving automobile accidents in St Petersburg, FL, car accidents, motorcycle accidents. Because one of the biggest tactics that the insurance companies try to attack is that our clients were somehow negligent or caused the accident, whereas the other person didn’t. Um, and they go after and variably almost every time our client’s cell phone records, what they’re trying to determine is whether or not our clients were on the telephone or texting while driving, uh, that would go towards comparative negligence and potentially reduce the value of an automobile accident claim or a car accident claim. The new texting while driving law will go into effect in July of 2019. However, law enforcement officers are not going to be writing tickets initially.
There’s going to be a buffer window where they’re going to be issuing warnings.January, 2020 is when law enforcement is really to ramp up the enforcement efforts and actually start issuing citations. Well, what does this change in law mean? It means that if you were texting while driving is a primary offense, that a law enforcement officer can now pull you over for texting while driving. Before it was a secondary offense, which meant they couldn’t pull you over only for texting while driving. They could pull you over for speeding, for example. And if they had reason to believe that you were texting while driving also, then they could cite you for that. But with the new law implemented, they can pull you over just for texting while driving. It’s very important to know the difference between primary offense and secondary offense. Another thing to be on the lookout for the implementation of this new law is that it is not an offense to use your phone for something like the navigation, uh, device on ways or something like that.
Google maps, they’re not going to be able to give you a ticket for that. However, we see a lot of times law enforcement utilizing, uh, these primary offenses to stop vehicles, and now you’re having that additional law enforcement, uh, uh, interaction that some people might find troublesome. So this new law is going to make it a more applicable and more easy for law enforcement to come into contact with the motoring public. The idea of being though at the end of the day, is to hopefully reduce the number of automobile accidents, car accidents, motorcycle accidents that are directly related to texting while driving. I think we all can agree that texting while driving is probably not a good idea, and obviously it’s dangerous. There’s been many studies about it. So if you have any questions regarding an automobile accident, car accident in the Saint Petersburg area Tampa Bay area, please contact us at (727) 381-2300.
*The above has been transcribed by a third party service and has not been checked for accuracy
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