Texting while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle is illegal in Indiana—but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening every day of the week! Violators caught texting while driving face up to $500 in fines, including other penalties.
But what about victims who are injured in a texting while driving accident? Fortunately, Indiana’s car accident laws allow these people to seek compensation for their injuries, but they will need to prove the other driver was at fault. Typically, this means showing that the driver was distracted in the critical moments before the crash.
Why Texting while Driving is Dangerous
Many people claim that they can text and drive safely. However, texting impairs a motorist in three important ways:
The driver’s eyes are on their phone, not the road, so they do not see any objects up ahead, such as pedestrians or other motorists.
The driver’s mind is on the text, not driving, so they have divided attention.
At least one of the driver’s hands is holding the phone and not the steering wheel, which limits their ability to take defensive action quickly.
As the state recognizes, those who engage in text and driving are 23 times more likely to be involved in an accident. Indeed, more accidents are now caused by texting than by drunk driving—a dramatic statistic. Unfortunately, innocent victims end up paying the price with serious injuries caused in collisions.
How to Obtain Compensation for a Texting while Driving Accident
If you were struck by a motorist who was texting, then you might qualify for compensation for your injuries. However, it is up to you and your attorney to prove that the motorist was distracted while behind the wheel.
Sometimes this is easy. For example, the motorist might admit that they were texting. Or surveillance video caught them holding their phone and looking at it in the critical seconds before the crash. In other cases, you saw the driver glued to their phone, or other witnesses did. All this evidence is highly persuasive.
In other situations, however, we might need to engage in detective work. For example, we might subpoena the driver’s phone records to find out if they were on the phone during the accident. If so, we can introduce these records into evidence to make our case.
Bringing a Claim
Texting while driving is illegal, and the motorist who hit you might face criminal charges. But to receive compensation, motorists need to bring their own claims. The prosecutor will not do this for you.
Typically, we start by making a claim with the driver’s insurer for compensation for medical bills, lost income, property damage, and pain and suffering. If we are unsuccessful in that route, we might have no choice but to file a lawsuit.
Texting while driving accidents cause serious harm to the public, and our clients deserve compensation. To get started on your case, please contact Delventhal Law Office today. Avoid delay, since the state gives victims a short window of time to pursue compensation, and delay could harm your case. Call us to schedule a free consultation.