How Can the Use of a Cell Phone While Driving Affect a Car Accident Claim?
Your life can completely change after you have been involved in a car crash caused by a reckless or distracted driver. Even though you may feel hopeless under difficult circumstances, the good news is you have legal options. For instance, you can choose to pursue compensation from the negligent driver to cover all your accident-related expenses.
How texting while driving will affect your accident claim
Texting while driving is a major cause of distracted driving and is illegal in 48 states in the United States. Therefore, if you and your attorney can provide evidence showing the other driver was on their phone when the crash occurred, you will show the other driver’s negligence and strengthen your claim. You will also stand a better chance of getting full and fair monetary compensation from the liable party. However, proving that the other party was on their phone when the collision occurred isn’t easy. But an experienced attorney can help you prove the other driver was distracted in the following ways:
Reviewing the driver’s past behavior
The other driver may have a habit of using their phones while driving and this may not be the first collision their bad habit has caused. Therefore, your attorney can review the driver’s records, including any past vehicle crashes they have been involved in and any tickets they received. These records may reveal they have a habit of reckless driving which will strengthen your claim.
Getting phone records
Some drivers cannot resist the temptation to check a buzzing phone while driving. Checking the notifications on your phone may only take seconds, but a few seconds with your eyes off the road is enough to cause a very fatal crash.
Your attorney can request the other driver’s phone records from a phone company while investigating the cause of the collision. The records will show when the messages were sent and to whom they were sent to. However, they will not show the contents of the messages. If your attorney reviews the records and establishes that there was an active call or chain of messages at the time of the collision, it can be enough to prove the other driver was distracted.
Checking their social media
Making calls and sending messages isn’t the only way someone can use a phone while driving. Therefore, if the cell phone records do not show the other driver was distracted, your attorney can review their social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok to check whether they posted or did other activities at the time of the collision.
In most cases, social media pages are open for the public to see, so accessing them may not be difficult. Furthermore, drivers usually feel comfortable sharing the details of a collision on social media with friends and family. Therefore, insurance companies and attorneys like to review their social media if they are involved in a case.
Collecting witness testimonies
You and your lawyer can work with police officers to gather witness evidence. This is important if you did not get any evidence from reviewing their phone records or social media accounts. For instance, you or other eyewitnesses may have observed the other driver using their phone moments before the collision.
If you and your attorney manage to prove that the other driver was using their phone while behind the wheel, you will strengthen your case against the negligent driver, and stand a better chance of getting a full settlement for your losses. You can find evidence to show the other driver’s negligence from phone company records, reviewing their social media posts, and talking to eyewitnesses.