As experienced Arizona personal injury lawyers, we have seen the repeated and devastating effects of negligent driving. However, with the increased use of text messaging, there has been a nationwide increase in serious traffic accidents and people killed on our roadways as a result of others who choose to text message while they drive. Texting and driving is inherently dangerous. Now falling under the phrase “distracted driving” in many articles, this activity is not only potentially criminal, but there are also personal injury lawsuit ramifications.
The Arizona Supreme Court has already found punitive damages appropriate for those who drink and drive. However, those who make mistakes while they are driving but have no intent to cause harm – known as negligence under the law – are not responsible for punitive damages. In other words, those who drink and drive not only have to pay for the lost wages, medical bills, and other legal compensation owed to the person they have harmed, they also might be fined significant amounts of money to both punish the person who decided to drink and drive as well as to send a message to others not to do so.
Our courts have not yet decided whether or not texting and driving will fall under the drinking and driving category as a known risk that is chosen to be pursued or whether it will simply be considered negligent. Perhaps it will be decided on a case-by-case basis. However, for the person whose life has been devastated or who has suffered a serious injury as a result of somebody else texting and driving, hiring an experienced lawyer who not only is willing to take the case to trial, but if necessary will take the case through the appellate process may be a very important first step to ensuring full and fair damages are recovered.
If you or anybody you know has been a victim of an accident that was caused by somebody who was text messaging while driving, please call the Phoenix cell phone car accident attorneys at Breyer Law Offices, P.C. and we will be happy to discuss the many different options that may be available to you in pursuing your claim.