Knoxville Texting While Driving Accidents
Car Crash Lawyers Serving Knoxville and the Surrounding Areas
Texting while driving seems innocent enough. It will only take a few seconds to send a short text, and what could happen during such a short amount of time, right? Unfortunately, many accidents occur in just seconds, so when a driver takes his eyes off the road to read or send a text, he is placing not only himself at risk, but also all vehicles traveling alongside him. If you have been involved in a texting while driving accident, you should consult with an attorney who will fight to protect your legal rights. The Knoxville car accident attorneys at Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz have recovered more than $1.5 billion on behalf of people hurt by the negligence of others.
Tennessee Texting While Driving Laws
Tennessee has enacted laws to address the rising number of texting while driving accidents. Simply put, it is illegal for Tennessee drivers to use a cell phone or personal digital assistant to text while operating the vehicle. Violators can be assessed fines and/or court costs. In addition, certain offenders may be required to attend and complete a driver education course.
Typically, texting while driving is proof of negligence, or a failure to act reasonably under the circumstances. In Tennessee, the plaintiff bears the burden of proof, not the defendant. If you suspect that the defendant was texting at the time of the wreck, you can mention this to the responding police officer at the scene. If an eyewitness saw the defendant engaging in such conduct, you should obtain that person’s contact information, as he or she may be called to testify later on. If the defendant refuses to admit to texting while driving, cell phone records may be obtained through the discovery process.
Statute of Limitation for Car Accident Cases in Tennessee
A Knoxville accident victim must pursue a bodily injury claim in a timely manner. Statutes of limitations exist to set a reasonable deadline for bringing claims in order to avoid stale or fraudulent claims many years after the fact. Statutes of limitations are also an attempt to keep evidence fresh and relevant, as physical evidence may be lost or damaged, or an eyewitness’ or police officer’s memory of accident details may fade over time. Statutes of limitations are generally strict deadlines with very rare exceptions, and the court will most likely dismiss the claim if the lawsuit is filed after the relevant period of time has expired.
In Tennessee, an adult injured in a car crash must either agree to settle his or her bodily injury claim or file a lawsuit within one year of the date of the incident. Otherwise, the claim is time-barred, and the injured party’s right to sue for his or her injuries can be lost forever. The clock starts running on the date of the accident, even if the victim is not immediately aware of his or her legal rights. Different rules, however, can apply if the claimant was a minor at the time of the wreck. A car accident lawyer in Knoxville can take steps to protect your rights immediately following the crash.
Using your cell phone in your car may be just as dangerous as getting behind the wheel after too many drinks, according to many studies. Roads in the Knoxville area are particularly lethal compared to the Tennessee average, and this trend is showing little sign of abating. Several fatal accidents each year happen on I-40, I-140, I-640, and other interstates. In 2014, four of these accidents involved three or more vehicles, including a six-vehicle collision on I-40 on May 30. US-11 and US-441 are two other roads where devastating accidents are especially common. September was the most lethal month in 2014 with six fatal accidents, including three in a single four-day span.
Discuss Your Car Accident with a Knoxville Lawyer Today
If you have been injured in a texting while driving accident, call our office today so that one of our attorneys can discuss your case. With a strict statute of limitation, you should act immediately so that your legal rights are not adversely affected. Our motor vehicle collision lawyers have been handling these cases for more than 30 years, and we have a skillful team of more than 30 lawyers and over 100 staff members to assist you when you call. Call us toll-free at 800-LAW-4004 or complete our online form to set up a free consultation.