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Cell Phone Violations

Law enforcement agencies throughout California are cracking down on what they consider "distracted driving."  The most common "distraction" cited is for using a cell phone while driving.  This includes both talking on the phone and texting/reading the phone while driving.

Talking on the Phone

It is a violation of California Vehicle Code Section 23123 to use a cell phone while driving "unless that telephone is specifically designed and configured to allow hands-free listening and talking, and is used in that manner while driving."  The fine for a violation of this section is $20 + penalty assessments for a first offense.  However, for second and subsequent offenses the fine increases to $50 + penalty assessments.  The total amounts will vary by court, but the fines will range from $150 up to $350 after the penalty assessments are imposed.  

Texting and Driving

It is also against the law to text or read a cell phone while holding the phone in your hand.  Vehicle Code Section 23123.5(a) states: "A person shall not drive a motor vehicle while holding and operating a handheld wireless telephone or an electronic wireless communications device unless the wireless telephone or electronic wireless communications device is specifically designed and configured to allow voice-operated and hands-free operation, and it is used in that manner while driving." 

This section makes is illegal to hold a cell phone and write, send, or read a communication while driving a vehicle.  It is not a violation of this section if the phone is mounted on the "vehicle's dashboard or center console in a manner that does not hinder the driver's view of the road."  Similar to talking on a cell phone, the fine for a violation of this section is $20 + penalty assessments for a first offense and $50 + penalty assessments for repeat offenders.    

Repeat Offenders Get a Point

A conviction for a cell phone violation, including both talking on the phone or texting/reading, does not carry a point on your driving record if it is a first offense.  However, if you receive a second violation within 36 months (3 years) of the first violation you will be assessed one point.  This can result in an increase in your insurance rates.

Los Angeles Traffic Ticket Lawyer

Berglund Law Office, P.C. regularly handles all types of traffic violations.  Call us at (877) 667-1205 or submit our CONTACT form today and let us go to work for you.  

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There is no charge for the phone consultation. Our office specializes in representing individuals facing traffic violations. Attorney Robert D. Berglund will personally speak with you about your case and provide you with an honest analysis. Contact us today.