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Is Texting While Driving Illegal in Florida?

Without question, distracted driving is at the root of many serious automobile accidents, and text messaging may be the biggest distraction of all. Texting has become a reflex for a significant percentage of people, and it can be difficult to recognize the fact that the practice has to stop when you get behind the wheel. If you are skeptical about the impact of texting while driving, you should absorb some of the statistics.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does a lot of great work educating the public. According to their research, during the 2015 calendar year, there were just under 3500 fatal motor vehicle accidents that could be attributed to distracted driving. This is an increase of almost 9 percent over the previous year. Here in the Sunshine State where we practice personal injury law, in 2015 about 16 percent of all accidents were caused, at least in part, by distracted driving.

An accident can trigger a lot of pain and a lot of suffering, and a serious accident can cost you your life. Plus, speaking of costs, there can be considerable expenses to contend with if you are ever in a motor vehicle collision, including deductibles, potential vehicle replacement, and medical bills that insurance companies will not pay. This should be incentive enough to refrain from texting while driving, but you are also breaking the law if you engage in text messaging while you are operating a motor vehicle. You can receive a citation, and multiple offenses can lead to greater penalties.

The seriousness of this situation is underscored by a piece of legislation that was introduced to the Florida legislature back in February. This measure has bipartisan support, and it was introduced by two representatives from opposite sides of the aisle: Rene Garcia and Emily Slosberg. If it is passed and signed into law, texting while driving would become a primary offense for beginning drivers who are between 15 and 17 years of age.

We Are Here to Help!

If you have been injured in an accident due to the negligence of a driver who was texting, you should certainly discuss the situation with a licensed personal injury attorney. Our law firm will always be standing by to assist you, and we can be easily reached from people who live all over Southwest Florida, from St. Petersburg to Sarasota to Fort Myers. You can take the first step if you take a moment to send us a message through the contact page on this website.

Stephen M. Fernandez developed a strong belief in justice and fairness in public policy while earning his Political Science degree prior to attending law school. Since joining the Florida Bar Association in 2004, Stephen Fernandez has combined his background in public policy, business administration and civil law to serve as a highly effective trial lawyer fighting for Florida's injured, working hard every day to make sure his clients get what they are owed.

Is Texting While Driving Illegal in Florida?

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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