What are the Potential Penalties for a New Jersey Cell Phone Violation?

While on the road, you may have noticed that in today’s day and age, nearly everyone’s eyes are tilted downward. Rather obviously, they are looking at their phones. If staring at a screen all day was not enough of a problem in itself, now people are doing it while driving. You do not need a genius to tell you how dangerous this is. It is almost common practice for motorists to text, check directions, change songs, or even tweet and take pictures while behind the wheel of a car. Not only does this put the offender at risk, but it also endangers every single motorist around them. Due to the potentially deadly nature of distracted driving, New Jersey is harshly cracking down on those who use an electronic device without hands-free capabilities while driving. If you have been charged with a cell phone violation, here are some of the questions you may have:

What are the potential consequences of a cell phone violation?

If you are charged with a cell phone violation, you may face a wide array of penalties, depending on whether this is your first, second, third or subsequent offense. For example, if this is your first offense, you will face a fine anywhere between $200 and $400. If this is your second offense within 10 years of your first offense, you will face a fine anywhere from $400 and $600. If this is your third or subsequent offense, you face a fine of $600 to $800, as well as 3 points to your license, and a potential license suspension. Points to your license will raise your insurance premiums, which means you will be paying for your mistake for a long time afterward. If you have been charged with a cell phone violation, it is in your best interest to hire an experienced attorney who can help minimize your charges via plea bargain, or even potentially have your charges dropped altogether. 

Are there any exceptions?

There are certain exceptions to using a cellular device while behind the wheel. Generally, the rule of thumb is that if you believe your life is in danger, you can use your phone for protection. For example, you may use a non-hands-free device if you believe your life is in jeopardy due to a possible criminal act, or if you are trying to report fires, traffic crashes, road hazards, medical emergencies, or a reckless driver on the road.

Contact our experienced New Jersey firm

Our firm proudly represents clients in New Jersey who are faced with matters of family law, criminal defense, business law, real estate law, or estate planning. If you require strong and dedicated representation for any of your legal matters, contact The Law Offices of George J. Mardinly to schedule a consultation.