Holding Your Cellphone at a Red Light May Soon be Illegal

Using a cell phone while you drive is extremely dangerous. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), driving a vehicle while texting is six times more dangerous than intoxicated driving. Additionally, distracted driving has been the leading cause of fatal crashes in New Jersey since 2011. As a result, New Jersey lawmakers are cracking down. You have likely pulled out your cell phone at a stoplight to respond to a text. This may feel innocent, but it may soon be illegal. Currently, it is legal to use your cell phone at a stoplight, but it is discouraged by law enforcement. Read on to learn more about the potential new cell phone laws in New Jersey.

What Would the New Law Entail?

Under the new law, if you are pulled over for using your cell phone at a red light, you may face the following penalties:

First offense: a fine of $200-400

Second offense: a fine of $400-600

Third offense: a fine of $800 and license suspension for up to three months

You Can Pull Over Instead

The new bill would still allow drivers to pull over to the side of the road to check their phones. New Jersey even has signs along the road that notify you of places you can pull over if you need to check your phone, make a call, or send a text.

What are Current NJ Cell Phone Violations?

Currently, the following are considered to be cell phone violations. Engaging in any of these activities can result in hefty fines:

  • Talking on a handheld mobile phone
  • Writing, sending, reading or receiving any data over the phone. This may include text messages, emails, or the use of social media
  • Searching through the internet
  • Watching or taking any pictures or videos
  • Playing games

Using your phone at a stoplight may soon be added to the list.

What Should I do if Pulled Over?

If you are pulled over for a cell phone violation, you should contact a skilled New Jersey criminal law attorney. The heavy fees that come with cellphone violations can have a large financial impact. A criminal law attorney can attempt to reduce your fees and points on your license.

If you or a loved one has been pulled over for a cell phone violation or some other traffic violation, reach out to our firm to discuss your case.

Contact our experienced New Jersey firm

When someone is charged with a crime, they have a lot to consider. However, we understand that everyone makes mistakes, which is why we are here to help. No matter your circumstances, if you are facing criminal charges, contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Policastro today for the experienced legal counsel you deserve and need. 

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