New York State Passes Tougher Distracted Driving Laws

distracted driving

78% of all teens say they have read a text message while driving, according to And 71% of all teens admit to having sent a text message while driving.

The new laws put in place on November 1, which bring a stiffer penalty for those caught talking on a hand-held device or  texting while driving, should send a much-needed wake-up call to motorists, especially teens, who do not realize the danger of this potentially fatal behavior.

The tougher penalties were approved by the state Legislation. Drivers under the age of 21 who are convicted of texting while driving will now receive a mandatory 120-day license or permit suspension. Any additional convictions within six months of a license restoration will lead to a one-year-driver license or permit revocation. Maximum fines a first-time offense of talking or texting will increase from $150 to $200. The fine for a second offense will increase from $200 to $250. A third offense will result in a fine of $450, up from $400.

These new fines along with the June 2013 law that adds 5 points to the offenders license, make New York’s distracted driving laws some of the toughest in the county.

Think before you make the decision to text and drive.

Source: Poughkeepsie Journal

Dear friends and clients,

In furtherance of our firms culture of commitment to always act with compassion, concern and commitment to our clients, community and colleagues, we have been taking precautions to ensure that we are still fulfilling our ethical and moral obligations while prioritizing health, wellness and safety of all we can. 

As you know, the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced changes to many lives and businesses in our communities, and around the world. We, much like our neighbors and friends, have been taking precautions to ensure that we are still fulfilling our ethical and moral obligation to our clients, while also prioritizing the health, wellness and safety of our employees.

Until further notice, our offices will be closed to the public to encourage social distancing and to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our team is still hard at work, many from home, and you may still call, email, live chat or video conference us if you or a loved one is seeking legal assistance. As the first law firm to offer our clients secure online access to their case file more than a decade ago, we have always been believers in using technology to make life easier and information more accessible. In these present times it has been a smooth transition for us to continue to offer our clients the same seamless and thorough service that you deserve and are accustomed to.

This pandemic is unlike anything any of us have faced in our lifetimes, and while we can continue to emotionally support one another through it all, staying home and keeping your distance is vital to the health and wellness of our communities. It does not feel good to break routines, cancel events and retreat from our normal, day-to-day socializing, but let us remember that, in times of strife, prior generations were asked to go to war and we are simply being asked to stay home. Your isolation equals more lives saved, and more time for medical providers to prepare for the treatment of patients battling COVID-19.

When the dust settles, we will join together with a greater appreciation for our lives, local businesses, loved ones and health. Until then, we will continue to offer guidance from a safe distance.

Very truly yours,

Andrew G. Finkelstein and the staff of Jacoby & Meyers, LLP