Frequently Asked Questions About Texting While Driving
What elements must be proven in a texting while driving case?
If you have been injured in an auto accident by a driver who was texting and driving, you will need to file a negligence claim to recover damages. The following elements must be proven to win your case:
The driver that hit you had a duty to use reasonable care;
The driver violated that duty by texting while driving;
The violation (i.e. – texting while driving) was a direct cause of the accident; and
The accident caused the injuries and damages.
What kind of damages can be recovered in a texting while driving auto accident case?
If the driver of the vehicle that hit you is found negligent (at-fault) as a result of distracted driving, you may be entitled to the following damages:
Property damage to your vehicle
Medical Expenses (Current and Future)
Personal Property damage
Loss of wages
Out-of-pocket expenses (i.e. – rental car costs, etc.)
Pain and suffering
How many auto accidents were caused by distracted driving last year alone?
Nearly 50,000 auto accidents were caused by distracted driving last year. This accounted to roughly 4,000 serious personal injuries and more than 200 fatalities to Florida drivers, according to Florida's Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
What is the largest age group reported as driving distracted at the time of fatal crashes?
Teens were the largest age group reported as driving distracted, resulting in fatal crashes.
What are some tips for parents with teen drivers who want to deter texting while driving?
Parents first must lead by example and not text while driving. Talk with your teen about the responsibilities that come with driving and the dangers of driving distracted. Have everyone in your family sign the pledge to commit to distraction-free driving.
What steps should I take if I believe the driver who hit me was texting and driving?
Contact the police so an accident report can be filed. It is essential to your case that you file an accident report to establish that the car accident occurred. Make sure and let the responding officer know you believe the driver who hit you was texting while driving. In the accident report, law enforcement will include the following information: insurance information, contact information, diagrams of the accident, witness testimonies and whether any accident victims were taken to the hospital. All of this information will be crucial to your case if it ends up going to court.
Document damage done to your vehicle. Take out your phone and take pictures of the damage done to your vehicle. This will be valuable evidence in your accident claim.
Speak with witnesses at the scene and get their contact information. This will be an important part of building your case, particularly if they saw the driver who hit you was on their cell phone at the time of the crash.
Seek medical attention: Many accident victims make the mistake of believing their aches and pains will go away following a car accident. In Florida, it is particularly important that you seek medical treatment immediately following your accident. Florida legislation requires accident victims to seek medical attention within 14 days of their accident to receive personal injury protection (PIP) medical benefits.
Speak with an experienced Orlando auto accident lawyer. You should seek legal counsel immediately following an auto accident, particularly if you have been injured. An experienced Orlando auto accident attorney can guide you through the compensation and accident claim process. Everything you do and say at the scene of the accident can be used later in court. Your attorney can best advise you on who to speak with, what to say, what not to say and the information you need to obtain before you leave the scene of the accident.