Car accidents happen all the time, and many of these are caused by drivers that are distracted with their cellphones. If you were recently in a car accident that was caused by a distracted driver, you may be able to seek compensation for the damages caused in the accident. Here are several things you should understand about texting and driving as you proceed with a car accident lawsuit.
It Is A Crime In Most States
A decade ago, texting while driving was not a big issue; however, it is today. Around 1.3 million accidents occurred in 2011 from the use of cellphones while driving. This number includes people that were making calls, looking up directions, texting, and doing other things on their phones. Many people complete tasks like these on their phones while driving because they think it is no big deal. The problem is that playing around with a cellphone while driving is very distracting. It causes people to take their eyes off the road, and this is what leads to many accidents each year.
States have taken this issue seriously, and most have enacted laws relating to this issue. In many states, a person can actually be charged with criminal charges if they cause an accident while using a cellphone. There are also a variety of other punishments for using cellphones while driving.
Texting That Caused An Accident Can Affect The Outcome Of Your Case
If you are certain that the driver who caused the accident was on his or her phone when the accident occurred, you might be able to seek additional damages from the person through your lawsuit. The goal your lawyer will have is proving the other party was using his or her cellphone. In some cases, this is easy to prove. After the accident, the police will talk to everyone involved and any witnesses. If the driver admits to using his or her phone during the accident, it will state this in the police report. In this situation, you will have the proof you need to file a lawsuit against the person for causing this accident to occur.
There are also times when proving this is harder to do, and these times primarily occur when drivers deny using their phones or are incapacitated and cannot remember what happened when the accident occurred.
Your lawyer may suggest completing a police investigation of the person's cellphone usage at the time of the accident. Through this, the police may be able to obtain cellphone records through the phone carrier, and these records will help prove that the party was using his or her phone at the time the accident occurred. Checking the person's cellphone might also reveal information about this too. You should be aware of the fact that there are privacy laws in place though. These laws might make it illegal for a police officer to go through a person's phone after an accident. If the police officer does this and finds information that proves your case, the other party's lawyer might fight allowing this information in court, with the defense that the evidence was collected illegally.
How To Proceed
If you have injuries and damages from your car accident, you should speak to a car accident attorney. Your attorney will review your case and the evidence involved and will determine how to proceed. If your attorney feels you have a strong case, he or she might proceed with a lawsuit and ask for a large settlement for the compensatory and punitive damages you experienced from this incident. To learn more, contact an experienced car accident attorney at a law firm like Gelman Gelman Wiskow & McCarthy LLC today.