Motor vehicle accidents can be devastating and completely upend your life. Suddenly, you are injured and cannot work, you accrue medical bills, and your car is damaged. Your plight is made worse if someone caused the accident because they were texting behind the wheel.
Using a cell phone or electronic device other than to make or receive phone calls has been illegal in Mississippi since 2014. Proving the person who caused your wreck was texting at the time means you probably have a claim against that driver for negligence. Let a car crash attorney at Reaves Law Firm, PLLC familiar with texting while driving car accidents in Jackson assess your situation and fight to get you compensation.
Texting while driving is distracted driving, using a handheld device that diverts a driver’s attention from driving.
The Mississippi Department of Transportation estimates that texting drivers—whether reading or writing them—disregard the road they are on for about five seconds. If the speed limit is 55 mph, the distracted driver is inattentive for the length of a football field. A lot can happen in five seconds. Mississippi has the unfortunate distinction of ranking number one in the nation for collision fatalities, and almost half of Mississippi drivers admit they have texted while driving.
Although Mississippi does not generally prohibit phone calls while driving, bus drivers and minors are not permitted to use cell phones at all. Consult with a seasoned Jackson injury attorney as soon as possible after being in a collision with a driver who you suspect was texting while driving.
Some exceptions apply for those using cell phones or electronic devices, which are otherwise prohibited. Drivers are permitted under Mississippi law to text and drive if they are:
Plaintiffs planning to use texting while driving against a defendant in a negligence lawsuit should be aware defendants will try to mitigate the damages by claiming an exception to Mississippi law. A skilled Jackson injury lawyer will rely on witness testimony and depose the defendant’s phone records to establish the types of texts sent or received while driving.
Motor vehicle drivers caught texting while driving in Jackson face a $100 fine under the state’s distracted driving laws. People driving on a learner’s permit, bus drivers, and minors face a $500 fine. If a driver is found texting while driving and an accident with injuries results, fines increase to $1,000. If texting contributes to another driver’s death, the defendant could face criminal charges in a Mississippi court.
Mississippi is an at-fault state, meaning the motorist causing an accident reimburses an injured party by their insurance carrier or a personal injury lawsuit. Texting while driving breaks Mississippi state laws and shows a driver is acting below the standards all drivers must adhere to so everyone on the road is safe.
Injured parties can be compensated for medical bills, lost wages, and physical and emotional suffering. A determined Jackson attorney could negotiate with the at-fault driver’s insurance company and file a negligence lawsuit if appropriate after a texting while driving wreck.
All vehicular accidents are unpleasant and potentially devastating. If you are involved in one, you are under tremendous stress to pay your bills and feed your family while trying to recover. If a distracted driver caused you physical pain and emotional distress, allow our team of committed attorneys at Reaves Law Firm, PLLC to help.
Distracted driving is an actionable offense in Mississippi and can be the basis for a negligence lawsuit if insurance negotiations break down. We can handle all aspects of your claim and are not afraid to litigate to get you the compensation you need. Contact a knowledgeable lawyer familiar with texting while driving car accidents in Jackson to discuss your specific case.