Texting and driving: you may be liable

7 Canadian provinces and nineteen U.S. states with Washington, D.C., have laws banning texting while driving.  But did you know that regardless of the legislation, individuals and businesses may be legally liable for texting and driving?

Distracted driving may be interpreted as negligence in civil law.  A motorist could face legal actions for texting while driving, but so can an employer for the negligent act of his employee

Reading an email on your company-owned smart phone while driving?  .If you get involved in an accident, your employer may be found liable for damages.  Same goes for texting while driving your company-owned vehicle.

Business owners should have written policies banning texting while driving.  Not just to limit their liability, but for the sake of their employees and others.  While productivity is one thing, so are encouraging safe driving practices.  Employers should promote hands free solution if staying connected is a necessity. When you think about it, is losing an employee really worth an email or text message?

Source: Central Penn Business Journal, Address liability of workers texting while driving, November 30 2009

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