Impact of the Use of a Cell Phone in a McKinney Car Accident
It is extremely important for drivers to be fully focused on the road and aware of their surroundings at all times. This is why using a cell phone while driving is one of the most dangerous things a person can do. The National Safety Council reports that cell phone use while driving is responsible for 1.6 million car wreck per year. To combat the car accidents due to cell phone usage, states, like Texas, enacted a law that bans most types of cell phone usage while driving. To learn more about the impact of the use of a cell phone in a McKinney car accident, call an experienced car accident lawyer today.
Plaintiff’s Cell Phone Usage Influence on the Injury Claim
Use of a mobile device at the time of the car accident is something that can be admissible in court. If the plaintiff, is arguably partially at fault for the wreck, use of the cell phone is certainly something that the defendant will justifiably use to try to show the plaintiff’s own negligence in causing the wreck. In Texas, there is what is called modified comparative negligence standard. What that means is that if the plaintiff is at fault for a portion of their own injuries, then the amount that they are at fault is going to reduce the amount they can recover. The modified part of that means that if the injured party is more than 50 percent at fault for their own injury, the injured party cannot recover any money. The 51 percent bar rule bars any recovery if an individual is more than half at fault for their own injury.
However, if a plaintiff was on the cell phone and is stopped at a red light and is rear-ended, then the plaintiff’s use of the cell phone had nothing to do with the wreck. This means the plaintiff’s cell phone usage may not be admissible in evidence. The impact of the use of a cell phone in a McKinney car accident depends on the circumstances.
Defendant’s Cell Phone Usage Impact on Claim
If the defendant was on their cell phone at the time of the wreck, then it will have an enormous impact on the case. The use of a cell phone can help assign fault and make the injury case more valuable. This is because jurors treat aggravating factors like the use of a mobile device as a factor that enhances damages. Anything that distracts a driver should and must be avoided.
Even if the cell phone use is near the time of the wreck but the plaintiff cannot prove it happened exactly at the time of the accident, the jurors will more than likely assume the cell phone usage helped caused the crash.
Shared Fault in McKinney Car Crashes Involving Cell Phones
If both drivers were using their cell phones at the time of the accident, then there may be a shared fault where the jury will assign fault accordingly. Of course, the impact of the use of a cell phone in a McKinney car accident depends on the circumstance of the wreck when trying to assign negligence. It is important to remember that if the plaintiff is considered more than half at fault, then they cannot recover any damages. To find out more information, contact a knowledgeable lawyer.