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Could you be liable for texting a person you know is driving?

We live in a society where individuals rely on the many capabilities of their cell phones. While this has many benefits, keeping the individual connected to friends, family and work at the touch of a button, this piece of technology comes with several negatives. One major setback is the use of cell phones while driving. It is well known that texting and driving is dangerous and distracts any driver that partakes in the activity. However, it still occurs on roadways in Arizona and other states across the nation.

While it is clear that risks are associated with a driver pulling out his or her phone to text another person, what about the risks arising from the driver just receiving texts in general? Although the safest way to prevent distracted driving from occurring from phone usage is to keep a cell phone away from reach, hearing a phone ring or the tone that a text has come through could be just as distracting.

Therefore, it is fair to ask the following: could you be liable for texting a person you know is driving if that person gets in an accident due to distracted driving? The laws and standards on this situation are not clear in any state at this time; however, some states have found it very evident that a third party played a major role in generating the distractions that led to the negligence that caused the accident.

While another person could be found negligent or partially liable for a distracted driver accident, some recent cases suggest that some of the social media apps or phone apps in general could be the culprit as well. This serves to prove that not only people but also these companies could become a third party to a suit involving a distracted driver.

While investigation is sometimes limited in texting and driving cases because drivers are not quick to admit that they were texting at the time of the accident, it is important that victims of an automobile crash consider this possibility. A negligent driver and any negligent party could be held liable for his or her actions, helping the injured victim recover compensation for their losses and damages.

Source: Vocativ.com, "Texting A Person While They're Driving Could Land You In Jail," Jennings Brown, May 3, 2016

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Law Office of Keith A. Hammond, P.C.

Keith A. Hammond, P.C. Attorney at Law
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