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What are your rights when injured by a driver who was texting?

| Mar 31, 2021 | Personal Injury |

Car crashes happen for all kinds of reasons, but mobile phones are major contributing factors to crashes. Drivers, some of whom are addicted to the constant sensory input from their phones, can have a hard time focusing on the road instead of on their incoming text messages.

If you get hurt in a crash caused by someone using their phone at the wheel, what rights do you have under Ohio law?

Texting while driving is usually a wrongful act

Ohio has laws limiting the use of mobile devices while in control of a vehicle. Specifically, those under the age of 18 cannot use handheld mobile technology at all while driving. Older drivers can make phone calls, but the ban on texting while driving applies to them as well.

While officers may not necessarily conduct a traffic stop over someone texting at the wheel, they can cite an individual if they have another cause for a traffic stop or if the texting leads to a crash. If someone breaks the law and then causes you injury or damages your property, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim against that person.

Texting can lead to an allocation of fault

Police officers responding to the scene of a crash will talk to the drivers and any witnesses. They will also look at the evidence in front of them to try to assign fault for the collision. Breaking the law can easily lead to someone being determined to be at fault for a crash.

Doing something negligent, which means something most people know is unsafe, can also mean someone is at fault. Texting falls in to both of these categories, so the driver on their phone when they hit you will likely be at fault for the crash.

That can mean that you have the right to file a claim against their insurance and possibly take civil action if you need compensation. An experienced attorney can help.

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