If you get into an accident caused by a distracted driver in Michigan, hold this motorist accountable. You should not be forced to cover the costs of your crash on your own. With help from a Michigan car accident lawyer, you can explore all of the legal options available to you.
White Law PLLC has an outstanding track record in auto accident claims. Our Michigan personal injury lawyers can take a look at your case. Contact us today.
Distracted Driving Definition
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), distracted driving refers to any activity that causes a motorist to divert their attention away from the road. If a motorist is driving while distracted, they are not focused on safe travel. As such, the motorist is a liability and faces a higher risk than others of getting into an accident.
Michigan has a hands-free law that took effect on June 30, 2023. This law is designed to deter motorists from driving while distracted. It prohibits drivers from using a cell phone or any other electronic devices to perform any of the following activities:
- Making or answering a phone or video call
- Sending or reading a text message or email message
- Watching, recording, or sending a video
- Accessing, reading, or posting content on social media.
- Browsing the internet
- Entering information into GPS or navigation system
For a first violation of this law, a motorist will receive a $100 fine or 16 hours of community service. The penalties increase based on the number of times that a driver violates the regulation. If a car crash happens and the at-fault driver was holding or using a mobile device while they were behind the wheel, any civil fines they receive will be doubled.
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Examples of Driving Distractions
Eating, drinking, and fiddling with a stereo are three examples of distracted driving. Basically, any activity that causes a driver to look anywhere else besides the road is considered driving while distracted. If a driver shifts their focus away from safe travel, the consequences of their actions can be severe.
Using a cell phone while driving creates the potential for injuries and fatalities on U.S. roads, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) points out. According to the most recently available DOT data, 3,142 people were killed due to distracted driving in a given year. You cannot stop someone from driving while distracted, but you can hold this person responsible if they cause an accident.
Hiring a distracted driving accident lawyer in Michigan is a great option if you suffer an injury in this type of collision. White Law PLLC has attorneys on staff who can answer frequently asked questions and many others about driving while distracted crashes. For more information, get in touch with us.
We’re not just lawyers. We’re passionate advocates who will ensure that your voice is heard and your rights are protected.
When to File a Distracted Driving Claim
If you are unsure about whether to submit a claim for compensation, connect with a distracted driving accident attorney in Michigan. This allows you to discuss your accident, how it happened, and why it occurred. If your attorney believes you have a strong case, they can help you in several ways.
Michigan has a no-fault insurance requirement for all drivers. If a distracted motorist crashes into your vehicle and causes you to suffer an injury, you may be covered under this insurance. In instances where you have enough coverage for all of your losses, you may be able to get compensation without a lawsuit.
If you do not have enough insurance coverage for your driving while distracted crash losses, you may need to pursue damages in court. A Michigan distracted driving accident attorney can help you sue in accordance with the statute of limitations for personal injury claims. You have up to three years from the date of your collision to seek compensation from any at-fault parties — if you do not, you are fully responsible for any crash-related expenses.
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How Much Your Distracted Driving Crash Claim Is Worth
You may be able to get economic and non-economic damages in your auto accident case. Your attorney can review your case and help you calculate your losses. Examples of damages you may be able to recover include:
- Vehicle damage
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
Per Michigan Compiled Laws §691.1701, a court may award punitive damages. These are given out to deter an at-fault party from committing future acts of negligence. They may be provided in combination with economic or non-economic damages.
You will always work directly with your attorney throughout your case.
How to Prove Negligence in a Distracted Driving Accident Case
In accordance with Michigan Compiled Laws §750.159q, you are responsible for the burden of proof in your distracted driving crash case. This means you must provide a sufficient amount of evidence to compel a judge or jury to award damages. You can offer many pieces of evidence to support your request for compensation, including:
- Accident scene videos and photos
- Police reports
- Medical records
The elements of negligence must be present at the time of your crash as well. You must show that the defendant had a duty of care to act in a reasonable manner and violated this requirement. Also, you must illustrate that because this duty was breached, your accident happened, and you suffered quantifiable or subjective losses as a result.
Michigan has a modified comparative negligence statute that may impact the amount of compensation you receive, too. If you are found to be primarily responsible for your collision, you cannot receive any damages. On the other hand, if you share fault with the other driver but the defendant is determined to be more than 50% responsible, the damages you get can be reduced by your percentage of fault.
Do Not Wait to Submit a Distracted Driving Accident Claim
White Law PLLC is a Michigan personal injury law firm that wants the best for our clients. Our distracted driving crash attorney is here to help you file your claim and pursue the maximum amount of compensation. To request a free consultation, contact us today.
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