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What are the penalties for phone use while driving in New York?

Under New York state law, drivers are generally prohibited from using cellphones while driving, unless they are using a hands-free system. This law has primary enforcement in the state. This means police can pull over and ticket a driver solely for using a cellphone behind the wheel, they don’t need to pair it with some other traffic offense.

What can a person face if ticketed for cellphone use while driving in the state?

First off, there are monetary penalties connected to this traffic violation.

This includes fines. The minimum fine is $50. The maximum fine that can be given depends on whether a person has had any prior offenses in the past 18 months. If he or she had none, it is $200. If he or she had one prior offense, it is $250. If he or she had two or more prior offenses, it is $450.

Also, a surcharge of up to $93 can be given for a cellphone use while driving offense.

A conviction on this traffic offense also put points on a person’s driving record. Specifically, it adds five points. A person could face a license suspension if he or she gets 11 or more points over an 18-month period.

So, here in New York, drivers can face impactful penalties if accused of using their cellphone at the wheel. Now, like other traffic tickets, tickets for cellphone violations can be fought. Getting guidance on what options they might have for fighting their ticket given their specifics circumstance can be important for drivers accused of this traffic violation here in New York.

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