USING A CELL PHONE ILLEGALLY WHILE DRIVING COULD COST YOU MORE SOON

A bill sponsored to address the epidemic of hands-free violations by drivers engaging in dangerous, and potentially lethal, distractions while behind the wheel was unanimously approved by the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee.

The bill would put in place a graduated penalty structure for repeat offenders who violate the State’s hands-free cell phone law more than once in a ten-year period – a motor vehicle violation that, under current law, carries a $100 fine for first and subsequent offenses. Under the bill as amended, first-time offenders would have to pay a fine of $200. Drivers convicted of a second offense within 10 years of the first would have to pay a fine of $400, and drivers convicted of a third and subsequent offenses within 10 years of the first would have to pay a fine of $600 and face driver’s license suspension of up to 90 days.

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