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We previously reported that UK drivers would soon be facing new mobile phone laws, although the exact details had yet to be revealed. Now, we have seen the amended legislation and can tell you everything you need to know.
New mobile phone laws 2022
If you have been caught driving while using a mobile hand-held device, contact us at Ashmans Solicitors. We provide expert legal advice to clients across England and Wales.
It is illegal to drive a vehicle while using a hand-held device. The law has now been amended to extend the definition of a ‘device’ and also what it means to ‘use’ one.
As of 25th March 2022, a hand-held device is defined as a device, other than a two-way radio, which is capable of transmitting and receiving data, whether or not those capabilities are enabled. The underlined text marks a major amendment to the previous regulations.
Also as of 25th March 2022, a device will be treated as hand-held if it is, or must be, held while being used. Again, the underlined text marks a major amendment to the previous regulations.
In practical terms, this means it is illegal to hold your device while driving in order to:
- Illuminate the screen
- Check the time
- Check notifications
- Unlock the device
- Make, receive or reject a telephone or internet-based call
- Send, receive or upload oral or written contact
- Send, receive or upload a photo or video
- Use the camera, video or sound recording functions
- Draft a text
- Access any stored data such as documents, books, audio files, photos, videos, films, playlists, notes or messages
- Access an application
- Access the internet
Are you ever allowed to use a mobile phone while driving?
The regulations allow a driver to use a mobile phone while driving if they are calling the emergency services/responding to a genuine emergency and it is unsafe or impracticable to pull over. A device can also be used to perform a remote-controlled parking function in particular circumstances.
You are also allowed to use your device to make a contactless payment at a contactless payment terminal, such as at a drive-thru coffee shop.
When is the law changing?
The new regulations come into force on 25th March 2022 and are called the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) (No.2) Regulations 2022.
What’s the penalty?
Using a mobile hand-held device while driving carries six penalty points with a maximum fine of £1,000. This increases to £2,500 for heavy goods vehicles and vehicles adapted to carry more than eight passengers.
Mobile phone and driving
Have you been caught using your mobile phone while driving? Contact us at Ashmans Solicitors to discuss your defence.