Did you know that in 2020 there were more than 330,000 car accidents in Georgia? More than 125,000 people were injured in these accidents and 1,730 people were killed – a trend that has continued to the present day. Richard D. Hobbs & Associates, P.C. – located in Fayetteville, GA – is an experienced law firm with great success in automotive accident cases. A common question that we get asked is – is it legal to text and drive in Georgia? No – it is illegal to text and drive – and here is a closer look at how the law works in the Peach State!
What Is the Hands-Free Georgia Law?
The Hands-Free Georgia Act was signed into law on May 2, 2018, and was put in place to help protect Georgia motorists. Two key factors that have led to an increase in automotive accidents are – speeding and distracted driving – which can be attributed to the use of your phone while behind the wheel. Here is a closer look at the specifics of the Hands-Free Georgia Law – stay in the know and stay safe on the road.
- It is illegal for a driver to have a phone in their hand or touching any part of their body while they are talking on the phone.
- It is illegal for a driver to write, read or send text messages and e-mails, post on social media or search the internet – even with hands-free technology. Voice-to-text is legal.
- It is illegal for a driver to watch videos while driving. Navigation and GPS Directions are legal.
- It is illegal for a driver to use their phone or other electronic devices to record video while driving. Dash cams are legal.
- It is legal for drivers to stream music via their smartphone – without videos. It is illegal to touch the phone while driving to activate or program any music applications.
What Is the Fine for Using a Phone and Driving in Georgia?
When you are found in violation of the Hands-Free Georgia Law, the first offense entails a $50 fine and a point on your driver’s license. A second offense carries a $100 fine and a 2-point penalty on your license and the third offense carries a $150 fine and a 3-point penalty on your driver’s license. Fines for the second and third offense are only applied when the convictions occur within 24 months of the first offense. Drivers with 15 points on their license in a 24-month period will have their license suspended.
Have you wondered – is it legal to text and drive in Georgia? Here is all the information that you need. Georgia drivers who have been in an accident where the other driver was texting and driving may have a case for a personal injury or accident lawsuit and we can help at Richard D. Hobbs & Associate, P.C.