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Will My Use of a Cellphone While Driving Affect My Personal Injury Case?

Posted on: December 26, 2016 by Edwards & Patterson Law

personal injury case

If you have filed a personal injury case in an accident where you were using your cell phone, you will want to understand the laws in your state. In the U.S., some states are what are known as no-fault, or choice no-fault, jurisdictions. In those states, drivers are covered by their insurer (no-fault) for damages to property and for personal injury, or may elect (choice no-fault) to have such coverage, regardless of which driver is at fault.

At Fault and Contributory Negligence

Oklahoma, on the other hand, is a tort liability state. That means in this state, an injured person may file suit to recover compensation from a driver who is at fault. In Oklahoma, there is also what is known as contributory negligence. This allows for a court to determine that the actions (or inaction) of each driver played a role in causing the accident.

Smartphones Usage While Driving has been shown to cause accidents. Driving and phone usage each require the attention of the operator, and it is impossible to focus on both simultaneously. When that happens, an accident is far more likely.

If you were injured in an accident while using your cell phone, it may be argued  in your personal injury case that you were distracted by your cellphone use and contributed to the accident. When a court declares a case of contributory negligence, the plaintiff is limited as to the amount of damages they can claim since they contributed to their own damages.

While you won’t necessarily be denied compensation for your injuries in your personal injury case, distracted driving may wind up costing you a lot more than the price of a phone call.

Fighting for Your Compensation

An accident involving injury, death or at least $300 in property damage requires a police report. If the police report includes that you were operating a cell phone at the time of the accident, you risk losing some portion of the compensation you would otherwise have been granted by the court.

Your chances of receiving the maximum compensation possible are greatly improved if you hire an experienced personal injury attorney who will fight for you.  You should choose a law office with a reputation for going to bat for every client for a successful result.

At Edwards & Patterson, we don’t earn a penny unless you get compensation for your injury. Call us for a consultation.

 

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