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Georgia Considers Higher Fines for Distracted Driving Citations

February 21, 2020

GEORGIA- Citizens in Georgia have faced thousands of citations for distracted driving since 2018 when the state enacted the hands-free law.  Still, many motorists continue to use their phones while driving in the state. Legislators are now considering altering the law to deter this dangerous behavior further. One possible change would be to raise the fine to two times as high as the current penalty.*

Under the proposed bill, a first-time offender would face a fine of $100 rather than the current $50 ticket. For repeat offenders, a second offense would cost $200, and a third would go up to $300. Fines will also be doubled for any driver caught using a phone while in a school zone or construction zone. According to safety advocates, the deterrent is needed because of the continuing rise in traffic fatalities in the state and across the nation. 

Critics say the fines are too high as they stand and that over time, the laws will be more effective. Safety advocates respond to the concerns regarding the financial burden with a simple solution: drivers should put down their phones and follow the law.  Some believe that lower-income drivers are disproportionately burdened by the penalties.  While phones have become the focus of the problem, distracted driving is nothing new.  Historically, drivers have been distracted in the car for other reasons, such as eating while driving, changing radio stations, putting on makeup or talking to passengers in the vehicle.  Of course, phones have undoubtedly made the issue much more severe. 

It is well documented that most accidents can be prevented with a little extra care and safety education.  Since 1984, Montlick & Associates has been dedicated to keeping children and families safe on the roadway.  Our commitment runs deep through our extensive, award-winning public service programs that provide people the information they need to avoid injuries.  To learn about our Don't Drink and Drive Campaign, Child Passenger Safety Programs, Booster Seat Campaign and much more, visit and click on “community service,” or simply click here. You can also learn more about one of our newest driver and passenger safety programs by visiting

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Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.