Texting and Driving: How It Affects Insurance and How to Resist

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In this day and age, there are so many things that distract people. Television and video games are some clear examples of distractions. One of the most distracting and most dangerous distractions, though, is using your phone while driving. 

The question of the day is this: Do cell phone tickets affect insurance? The answer is a resounding yes. It’s very tempting to text and drive, but the consequences of doing so can be dangerous or even fatal. There are so many cases of people causing accidents because they were busy texting and not paying attention to the road.

When you get caught texting and driving, it can seriously affect your insurance. So let’s look at some ways that texting and driving can affect your monthly payments and, ultimately, your life. We’ll also look at ways to stop this distracting behavior.

The Effects of Texting While Driving on Your Insurance

Depending on the state you live in, you can get up to four points on your license if you get caught texting and driving. Accumulating points on your license shows on your driving record. Having a poor driving record affects your monthly insurance payments.  

Insurance can increase up to 30% when you text and drive. That is a big jump when you consider paying long-term for insurance. Therefore, it would be beneficial for you and your finances to refrain from texting on the road.

If you get into a car accident resulting from texting and driving, you will likely be found at fault. You could hire a lawyer to defend yourself, but you likely won’t get very far. Your driving record will be tainted, and your insurance will surely increase if found at fault for the accident.

It might seem like a little thing to text and drive, but the repercussions it has on your insurance, especially long-term, are pretty substantial. 

The Effects of Texting and Driving on Your Life

This crime can affect your life monetarily. Some states are more lenient than others, but those that are not will charge up to $500 in fines. Hopefully, this fine will deter you from texting and driving again, but there is another severe consequence for this act if it doesn’t. 

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You could also go to jail. If you’ve caused an accident because you were distracted by texting and caused injuries to the other party in the process, you could serve a lengthy sentence.

Texting while driving is a severe offense and is considered a moving violation. This isn’t just some petty crime. This act can negatively change your life and the lives of others if you get into an accident. 

How to Resist Texting While Driving

We’ve now established how texting and driving can affect your insurance rates and your life. But how do you go about resisting this urge to text and drive? Using your phone while driving is a tempting thing to do. Below are some suggestions on how to resist texting while driving. 

Don’t Have Your Phone on Your Lap

There are smartphone car mounts that you can purchase for your devices to make things easier and safer to drive. They are perfect for when you need to use your GPS or make a phone call. 

The car mounts allow you to keep your eyes on the road and use your phone for navigation. Having your phone on your lap causes you to look away from the road and increases the risk of getting into an accident. The support also makes it difficult to text, which is a plus. You can find smartphone car mounts online or in stores. 

Mute Text Messages While You Drive

It’s very distracting when you’re driving and hear your phone go off because someone is texting you. The best way to stay focused on the road is to mute your phone’s text messages. 

If you have an Android, the best way to go about this is to select the messages that you anticipate getting from certain people and select the mute icon at the bottom of the screen. 

If you have an iPhone, all you have to do is swipe left on the message you’d like to mute and select the mute icon. You can also have your phone automatically turn on the Do Not Disturb setting whenever it senses you’re in the car driving. That way all calls and messages will be silenced.

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Don’t Argue on the Phone While You Drive

Phone calls are fine as long as you are hands-free, but make sure you are not distracted by the phone call. If the conversation becomes too distressing, pull over, take some time to calm down, and collect yourself before continuing your journey. Call them back when you’re calmer.

Emotions are hard to control when you’re arguing with someone. As a result, it will make you have a more challenging time driving. 

Put Your Phone Away

This suggestion is the last resort. If you’ve tried all the options above and still find it difficult to not text and drive, then the best thing to do is put your phone away altogether. You can place it in the backseat of your car or the trunk. You could even place it in the glove compartment box. 

Just make sure it’s out of sight. 

To review:

  • Insurance can increase by 30% when you are caught texting and driving.
  • You could pay up to $500 in fines and serve time in jail if you are convicted of this act and have caused bodily harm to someone else due to your negligence.
  • Resisting the temptation to text and drive can be difficult but not impossible.
  • Don’t have your phone on your lap.
  • Mute text messages.
  • Don’t argue on the phone while driving.
  • As a last resort, put your phone away altogether.

For your safety and the safety of others, please refrain from texting while driving. It’s against the law for a good reason. Too many have died because of being distracted by their phones. Exhibit some self-control and wait to answer that text when you get home. It can wait if it means that no one dies. Drive safely. Drive responsibly.

Sara Routhier is a Managing Editor at the insurance comparison site, CarInsuranceComparison.com. She’s passionate about warning her readers about deadly driving scenarios and how to avoid them.