When someone chooses to text and drive, they are putting the lives and health of everyone around them at risk. When their actions cause an otherwise avoidable accident, they may be legally responsible for any harm someone else suffers as a result. Texting is one of the most distracting activities a person can engage in while driving. When a driver takes their eyes off of the road to read or answer a text message, the potential for a serious motor vehicle wreck increases exponentially.
If you were injured in a texting while driving car accident in Terre Haute, allow an experienced auto collision attorney to fight for your rights. You may be owed a substantial financial award for your losses.
Effective as of July 1, 2020, Indiana Code §9-21-8-59 requires all drivers in the state to refrain from using handheld devices while operating a motor vehicle, except to call 911. Use of hands-free technology is permitted under the law but must be used safely and responsibly.
Texting while driving and not using hands-free technology to send a text message would violate this hands-free law and could result in criminal charges. The outcome of a criminal case may impact a civil case for a texting while driving auto accident. For example, a criminal conviction or ticket may be used as evidence that the defendant in a civil claim was negligent in their conduct and is therefore liable for damages.
Accidents caused by a person texting while driving can occur with or without a hands-free device. While a criminal violation may help prove a driver’s liability, many cases will not have a citation for texting and driving. Regardless of the outcome of any criminal case, a Terre Haute attorney could gather and present evidence to demonstrate that the other driver in your case was distracted as a result of their texting conversation.
While texting with a phone in the hand is arguably more distracting than using a hands-free device, even hands-free texting can cause a driver to look away from the road or focus their attention insufficiently on their driving. Either situation may create civil liability in the event of an otherwise preventable collision.
The primary goal of a civil claim is to pursue financial compensation for the injured plaintiff. Doing so requires evidence that the defendant’s negligence was the cause of the harm suffered. Once this has been proven, the plaintiff must also prove that they suffered compensable injuries and losses.
Financial compensation may be available for the following damages:
These forms of compensation may help a plaintiff recover after an accident caused by texting while driving. Engaging in a text conversating while operating a motor vehicle is a serious form of negligence that may justify an award of punitive damages, which are meant to punish the defendant and deter others from acting similarly.
It is an unfortunate fact that people will continue to text and drive despite the dangers. When they engage in this behavior and cause an injury as a result, they should be held accountable for their negligence. You and your family should not be forced to endure this situation and the costs without legal recourse.
To understand and pursue your legal rights after a texting while driving car accident in Terre Haute, contact an experienced attorney at our firm today.
Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & NewlinN/a
The financial burden that often comes with a serious injury can be too much for many people to bear. Unexpected medical debt, damaged personal property, and the sudden loss of income can impact the budgets of most families. The good news is that a successful injury claim could help reduce that financial strain after a serious accident. Get in touch with a Terre Haute personal injury lawyer with Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin to learn more.
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