Cell Phone Use While Driving
Cell phones are a common source of distraction for many drivers, which can endanger the safety of other motorists and pedestrians. At Frankl & Kominsky, our car crash lawyers represent accident victims and their families throughout West Palm Beach and the surrounding communities. If you were struck by a driver who was using a cell phone at the time of the collision, we can help you pursue a personal injury claim to protect your rights.Cell Phone Use While Driving
Cell phone use has become a factor in an increasing number of distracted driving car crashes. People sometimes use their phones to talk, text, or browse the Internet while driving. This takes their attention off the road, which can lead to accidents. According to the National Safety Council, an estimated 26 percent of 2012 motor vehicle crashes were attributed to cell phone use while driving. Most of these accidents involved people talking on either handheld or hands-free devices, but texting also contributed to them.
Several states ban talking on a cell phone while driving, but Florida does not. The state does, however, ban texting behind the wheel. In 2013, the legislature enacted a statute that made this behavior grounds for a secondary traffic offense in Florida. In other words, a traffic officer can cite a driver for texting while driving if the officer first pulls the motorist over for committing a primary traffic violation, such as exceeding the speed limit.Assert Your Rights by Holding a Negligent Motorist Accountable
Cell phone use can distract an individual and take his or her focus away from the important task of safely operating a vehicle. You may be able to hold a driver legally responsible for your injuries if he or she was using a mobile device when the accident occurred. You would need to show that the driver was negligent to succeed in your claim.
A person is negligent when he or she fails to act with reasonable care to prevent needless risks of harm to others. A victim in a Florida personal injury lawsuit arising from a car crash has the burden of proving that the other driver had a duty to use care, breached the duty, and caused you to suffer injuries from which you incurred damages.
It is firmly established that all people in this state must drive with reasonable care. Although Florida does not ban drivers from using cell phones on the road, motorists are not excused from acting prudently if they are using mobile devices behind the wheel. A driver can breach the duty to drive with reasonable care if he or she is too distracted to drive safely. If the result is a car crash, he or she may be held responsible for any injuries caused by the accident.
If the driver was cited for a texting while driving violation, his or her billing records may be admitted as evidence of the use of a mobile device when the accident occurred. Texting includes not just actual texting, but any manual typing on a cell phone, including emails and instant messaging.
The defendant in your case may claim that you were responsible for the crash. Florida follows a pure comparative fault rule, which means that a victim can recover damages as long as his or her own negligence is not the sole cause of his or her injuries. If your careless actions contributed to your harm, you can only recover damages in proportion to your degree of fault.
You can seek damages from any responsible party in your car accident case. If you prevail or obtain a favorable settlement, you may be able to get compensation for your medical bills, lost income from missed days at work, property damage, pain and suffering, and more. You must file your lawsuit within four years from when the crash occurred, or you risk forfeiting your right to seek damages.West Palm Beach Lawyers Knowledgeable in Auto Accident Claims
The auto accident attorneys at Frankl & Kominsky are committed to helping victims throughout West Palm Beach pursue the compensation they deserve for their injuries. If another driver’s cell phone use caused the crash, we can provide the representation you need to seek damages from him or her. We assist individuals and families in Lake Worth, and Boca Raton, among other cities throughout Palm Beach County. For a free and confidential consultation, please call us today at (855) 800-8000. You can also contact us online. We are fluent in Spanish and Creole.