When you get behind the wheel of a car, you enter a silent agreement with every other driver on the road. This agreement, known as your duty of care, dictates that drivers must provide all of their peers with an ordinary amount of care to keep them from harm while driving. Failure to uphold that duty of care can result in accidents and significant costs for the at-fault parties.
Drivers who text, eat, or otherwise find themselves distracted while driving violate the duty of care that they owe others. As such, distracted drivers can be held liable for your losses in an accident, to the point where you can file a civil case for a settlement. You can get help filing for compensation with help from an Albuquerque distracted driving accident lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC.
For a free case consultation after a car accident involving a distracted driver, call (800) 598-7557.
New Mexico Legislation and Distracted Driving
Since the advent and rise of the cell phone, many states have implemented hand-held device driving bans designed to keep drivers safer while they are on the road. New Mexico is no exception. Drivers in New Mexico are not allowed to use hand-held devices, such as a cell phone, while they are behind the wheel of a vehicle. This means no texting and no calling, either.
There are some exceptions in place to make this rule a little more reasonable. For example, drivers are allowed to use hand-held GPS devices if they are having trouble getting from one place to another. Similarly, drivers are allowed to use their cellphones if they need to make emergency calls. Using a voice-operated device is also an exception.
For a free legal consultation with a distracted driving accidents lawyer serving Albuquerque, call (800) 598-7557
Recognizing Distracted Driving After an Accident
The term distracted driving does not just apply to the use of a cell phone or hand-held device while behind the wheel of a car. Distracted driving also includes:
- Eating behind the wheel
- Drinking non-alcoholic beverages behind the wheel
- Driving while intoxicated
- Driving while changing the radio
- Looking away from the road
- Talking with passengers while behind the wheel
Of course, there is no way to avoid all of these behaviors. However, drivers who engage in these behaviors can be held liable for your losses should you get into a car accident. Contact the team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC to learn more.
Viable evidence in a distracted driving car accident includes:
- A driver’s phone records
- Eyewitness testimony
- Video footage of the accident as it took place
- Police reports from the scene
Albuquerque Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer Near Me (800) 598-7557
What You Should Do After a Distracted Driving Accident
The first few minutes after a distracted driving accident can be a disorienting mess. The few days and weeks after are not always better. Even so, there are some steps you can take to ease your way into recovery while also making life easier for yourself, should you eventually wish to pursue a civil case.
Check in with Medical Professionals
If you or a loved one is injured in a distracted driving accident, do not worry at all about what legal paths may be available to you. Instead, get to an attending medical professional as quickly and safely as possible. It does not matter how insignificant an injury may seem. The longer you let these types of injuries go, the more likely it is that you may find yourself contending with serious damage later down the line.
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Take Pictures of the Scene
As mentioned, it is never a bad idea to get pictures of the scene of your accident. This way, you can present your footage as evidence of liability later down the line. You will want to try and get these pictures as quickly as possible, too, as roadway crews can often clear away the damage from an accident with relative haste.
Consider an Offer from an Insurance Provider
New Mexico laws require every driver to carry insurance for personal injury, so the at-fault driver’s insurer may make you an offer. If you feel, however, the offer is insufficient or that the at-fault driver should pay in addition to the offer, an Albuquerque distracted driving accident lawyer can advise you on your options. The team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC works on a contingency basis, which means you pay nothing unless you are awarded a settlement. Furthermore, we are not afraid to take on hard cases.
You Can Reach Out to a Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer
Once you have taken care of yourself after a distracted driving accident, you can determine for yourself how you want to seek out compensation for your losses. If the other driver involved in the accident has not made a settlement offer to you, you can instead issue a demand letter if you would prefer to stay out of court. If that letter is not well-received, however, an attorney can help you to file a complaint with your local court, instead. An Albuquerque distracted driving accident lawyer can help gather the information you need to file a complaint, which in New Mexico must be done within three years of the accident under NM Stat § 37-1-8.
You are not alone after a distracted driving accident. Reach out to our firm, and you will receive the legal guidance you need free of charge.
You can call the team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC at (800) 598-7557 for your first consultation.