What is the Hands-Free Law in Atlanta, Georgia?- What You Need to Know

While you are going home or driving for your work related purposes  , it is important for drivers that they  should be well aware of all the traffic rules and regulations. It is not only in their best interest but also keeps other drivers safe on the road. Not abiding by the law can result in horrific consequences including death.

Hands free law Georgia was introduced a few years back to control the car accident while working happening in the state. This law comes with fines and different penalties for driving with a cell phone or any other electronic gadget. Violating it can affect your driving record and can prove to be heavy on your pockets.

The laws often change and it is the driver’s responsibility to stay updated. If you are a driver looking to understand what is hands free ga law is, here’s a detailed blog about all you need to know.

What is Hands-Free Law in Georgia?

The hands free law Georgia was imposed on July 1, 2018. According to this law, you are not allowed to drive with a mobile phone in your hand or any other technological device touching your body. This means that you cannot keep your phone in the lap or tuck it under your shoulder when you drive.

This law comes with certain prohibitions which are as follows:

  • Texting, writing, or sending messages
  • Reading something on your phone
  • Watching videos or any other content on your phone
  • Using the internet and posting on social media
  • Recording any kind of video through your phone or any other device

However, you can listen to music anytime only if it does not require operating the phone while driving. If your device allows hands-free listening or programming, then you are good to go. Still, you cannot switch songs or use your phone to listen to something else.

Exceptions to the Hands-Free Law in Georgia

While hands free ga law is made for the safety of drivers and everyone on the road, there are some exceptions to it as well.

If you are driving and see a crime being committed or come across a car crash, you are allowed to use your phone and record it.

This applies to all kinds of emergency situations including medical cases that require urgent attention.

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What are the rules for commercial vehicle operators or school bus drivers?

A typical driver can stay away from using a mobile phone or any other device while driving for work and can prove that they are abiding by the law. However, hands free law Georgia is not clear-cut for commercial vehicle operators or school bus drivers. Here is how hands free ga law addresses them.

Commercial Truck Drivers

Commercial truck drivers need to communicate with others while on their job. Due to this unique situation, hands free ga law addresses commercial vehicle operators as well. 

According to it, they can use voice conversations but their device should have an option to be turned on or off with a single button. However, they are also not allowed to use wireless telecommunication devices if they have to get out of their seat, change their position, or adjust their seat belt to get it.

School Bus Drivers

School bus drivers also need to communicate with school officials, parents, or public safety officials. Hence, they cannot fully abide by hands free ga law. The law states that they cannot use any two-way radio or any telecommunication device while picking up or dropping off the passengers. They also cannot use these devices when bus is on the road and also in motion.

Penalties for Breaking the Hands-Free Law in Atlanta, Georgia 

To contest the penalties for breaking the hands free law Georgia, you need to have a skilled attorney on your side. 

If you happen to violate the rule, there’s a high chance you will be given a ticket. However, if this is your first time committing such a traffic offense, you have the right to challenge this accusation by appearing in the traffic court. In the event, if you are found guilty of a first-time offense then one point will be added to your license and you will be fined $50. 

A second offense means that you will receive two points on your license and you may face a fine of up to $100. Similarly, a third offense will cause three points against your license and a fine of about $150. 

Remember that the increased fines for the second or third offense will only be applicable if they occur within 24 months of the original conviction date. 

It’s worth noting that if you are a first-time offender, you can get your traffic offense dropped by showing up to the court and proving that you now possess a hands-free device.

Conclusion

Hands free ga law has been imposed for the safety of drivers in Atlanta, Georgia. It is crucial to be aware of your responsibility as a driver and stay updated on traffic laws. If you think your case is complicated, you can always turn to a skilled attorney in Atlanta or reach out to us for assistance.

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