As most people know, life can change on a dime. At no time is this more true than when you or someone you love has been involved in a serious car accident. Today it’s becoming all too common for accidents to be attributed to distracted driving – driving while texting, eating, talking on the phone, looking up directions, or talking with passengers. If you have been involved in an accident that is the result of behaviors that are preventable and may in fact be illegal, you may have the legal right to file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for any damages, personal injuries, or other losses you have suffered. Get in touch with a Bloomington distracted driving accident lawyer for legal guidance.
What is “Distracted Driving”?
Any action that takes your attention away from driving can be considered distracted driving in Bloomington. Chatting with passengers, adjusting the radio, searching for something in a purse or glovebox, reaching for something on the floor, or eating while driving are all distractions. While these are all actions that can be considered distracted driving, they are also perfectly legal. However, in Illinois, any distracted driving actions that involve a cellphone – texting, using GPS, reading email, changing music, etc. – are considered a moving violation and are expressly prohibited. All cellphone use must be handsfree. However, it’s important to note that drivers under the age of 19 are also prohibited from handsfree cellphone use while driving.
How Does Distracted Driving Affect Liability in a Bloomington Car Crash?
Being distracted while driving and causing an accident creates liability in a car accident case. Drivers who are texting or otherwise distracted by a cellphone may fail to stop in time to avoid a crash, cause rear-end collisions, swerve into oncoming traffic, hit a pedestrian, and run stop lights or stop signs. These are all clearly the type of accidents that would be avoidable if the driver had their full attention on the road.
If both drivers in an accident can be shown to have been distracted by cellphone activity when the accident occurred, it may affect any eventual compensation you might receive should your claim go to court. A jury may well feel that the responsibility for the accident is shared by both parties and will reduce compensatory damages based on the shared liability. Consequently, it is always in your best interest to follow the law when it comes to cellphone use while driving and keep your eyes on the road.
The At-Fault Driver Was Distracted; How Will I Prove It?
If you believe the driver who caused your accident was distracted by a cellphone when the accident occurred, you may have difficulty proving that on your own. But a Bloomington personal injury lawyer with car accident experience will know the process required to obtain cellphone records as evidence in a lawsuit. It may take a subpoena court order to get the phone records needed, or the pertinent information may be included in the discovery phase of a suit. In any case, this is something to discuss with an attorney who has knowledge of the laws surrounding distracted driving.
What Kind of Recovery Can I Expect In a Distracted Driving Claim?
Like any car accident claim, you can seek compensation for property damage to your vehicle as well as for any injuries or other financial losses you may have as a result of the accident. A Bloomington car accident attorney can discuss with you the details of what kind of losses you can claim, but they might include things like your medical bills, pain and suffering, disability, loss wages, damages for scarring, or loss of a normal life. The best way to determine what damages apply to your case is a free consultation with an experienced injury lawyer.
Contact a Bloomington Attorney to Discuss Distracted Driving Accidents
Call our office today for a free consultation with a Bloomington distracted driving accident lawyer. We can discuss your case and see if we can help.