FIGHT YOUR TRAFFIC TICKET?
Distracted Driving Rules
Distracted Driving Rules
If you drive in this province, there’s a good chance your road habits have been influenced by the strict legislation surrounding distracted driving, and the costly penalties that can come from it.
But a recent ruling by a B.C. Supreme Court judge overturning a conviction for one local driver could be a game changer, after arguing having a phone in plain sight doesn’t count as distracted driving.
Legal experts say the decision, which was handed down March 1, could open up a flood of appeals that may take advantage of differing views of the law.
There’s always lack of clarity in the law, and there will always be circumstances that are somewhat in between. And the courts have to grapple with it, the driver’s lawyer Paul Doroshenko of Acumen Law explained.
The driver, identified as Philip Partridge in court documents, was charged with using an electronic device in Vancouver in the summer of 2018 after an officer spotted a cellphone wedged in the cushion of his passenger seat technically within sight, and technically unsecured.
Partridge was given a ticket, and was initially convicted in traffic court.
Crown and defence ultimately agreed, however, that the mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough to secure a conviction.
The judges decision noted, The appellant emphasizes that since the officer never saw [Partridge] touch the device in any way, there was no further accompanying act, and so [Partridge] cannot be found to have been using his cell phone.
The ruling could set a precedent as the province prepares to increase its already stiff fines for the infraction by 20 percent by November.
Doroshenko estimates there are hundreds of drivers in British Columbia that could now have a good chance at appealing their distracted driving convictions on similar grounds, under legislation that’s already relatively new and subjective.
At issue is what exactly constitutes the ?use? of an electronic device behind the wheel.
There’s always the question of whether or not you are actually using [the electronic device], Doroshenko explained.
I can say that we are aware of the ruling, Sgt. Jason Robillard confirmed, and it’s set some very clear guidelines and interpretations of the Motor Vehicle Act.
Doroshenko’s colleague at Acumen Law Kyla Lee said even police officers can be unsure of what the rules are.
There’s a lot of uncertainty in the law created by conflicting decisions at traffic court that said that was not distracted driving, but on the other hand said it was, she said, adding she gets calls every day from people who are ticketed for loose phones seen in their vehicles.
Even so, expect to see officers out in full force in their quest to crack down on distracted drivers this month which is dedicated to Distracted Driving Awareness.
Already, more than 1,100 distracted driving tickets have been issued to motorists Vancouver in the past three weeks.
More than 218,000 tickets for using electronic devices behind the wheel have been issued in B.C. since 2013.
Text Your Ticket
Take a clear image of the traffic ticket and your driver's licence. Text it to (905) 903-0260
A POINTTS™ Traffic Ticket Paralegal will review your ticket(s) and/or summons.
"I shopped around with a few known Traffic Ticket Paralegals and chose POINTTS™ Traffic Tickets because they listened to me and gave me clear options. There were no false promises and nor did they give me any hopes. I want to thank them for getting my charges dismissed and saving my demerits. I will recommend POINTTS™ to anyone who has received a Traffic Ticket and wants to fight it."
"I have given five stars as the service I received from POINTTS™ was excellent. I was professionally and expertly guided and nothing was too much trouble in answering my questions. My contact was very kind and my traffic charge severely reduced. Thank you POINTTS™. I appreciate the service POINTTS™ provided and am very relieved with the outcome. You can be sure that I will recommend your services to others."
WHY HIRE POINTTS™
POINTTS™ provides affordable access to justice.
For over 36 groundbreaking years, POINTTS™ has been committed to providing quality legal representation to over a million satisfied clients.
In 2007 Shelina Lalji joined POINTTS™ and in 2015, Shelina founded Shelina Lalji Professional Corporation (SLPC) and became the Master Franchisee of POINTTS™, both in Ontario and Manitoba.
POINTTS™ has locations in Ontario & Manitoba.
- CARELESS DRIVING
- CARELESS DRIVING VS DANGEROUS DRIVING
- CVOR OFFENCES
- DANGEROUS DRIVING
- DISTRACTED DRIVING
- DISOBEY SIGN
- DRIVING UNDER SUSPENSION
- FOLLOW TOO CLOSE
- FAILING TO MOVE
- FAILING TO REMAIN
- FAILING TO REPORT
- FAIL TO STOP/YIELD
- FAIL TO STOP FOR SCHOOL BUS
- HANDHELD DEVICE
- HOV LANE TICKET
- IMPROPER DRIVING
- MOVING ONTARIANS SAFELY ACT (MOMS ACT - BILL 282)
- NO INSURANCE
- NO LICENCE
- RACING A MOTOR VEHICLE
- STUNT DRIVING
- RECKLESS DRIVING