Menu

Distracted Driving Laws

One Distraction
Can Steal Your Reaction

Do your part to help end distracted driving:

Take the Pledge

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents leading to injury and even death.

To combat the epidemic, states across the country have implemented laws targeting distracted driving habits.

It is important to remember that even if states do not have laws directly related to distracted driving, the act of driving distracted leads to driving behavior that is illegal, such as reckless driving and other traffic violations.

Commercial Drivers—Hand-Held Ban

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) prohibits ALL commercial drivers from using hand-held mobile devices.

States A-I

Alabama

  • Reading or writing text messages, e-mails, and instant messages is illegal in Alabama.
  • Drivers up to 17 years old who have had their driver's license for less than 6 months CANNOT use a handheld device while driving.

Alaska

It is illegal to text and drive in Alaska.

Arizona

School bus drivers are banned from using cell phones while driving a school bus.

Arkansas

  • Texting and driving is not permitted in Arkansas.
  • Drivers with either a learner's license OR intermediate license are NOT allowed to use a cell phone while driving for any reason other than an emergency.
  • A Class D licensed driver who is between 18 and 21 years old can:
    • Use hands-free devices while driving.
    • ONLY use a hand-held device for emergencies.
  • School bus drivers are PROHIBITED from using cell phones while driving.

California

  • The use of hand-held devices while driving (including texting and driving) is against the law in California.
  • Drivers 18 years old and older may use hands-free devices while driving.
  • Drivers under 18 years old AND school bus drivers are prohibited from using any type of mobile device while driving.

Colorado

  • Colorado bans all drivers from texting and driving.
  • Except for emergencies, drivers under 18 years old MAY NOT use any mobile device while driving.

Connecticut

  • Use of any hand-held device while driving, including texting, is illegal in Connecticut.
  • Drivers who are 17 years old and younger CANNOT use a cell phone or other mobile device for any reason other than an emergency.

Delaware

  • In Delaware, drivers are not allowed to use a handheld mobile device in any way (including texting and driving).
  • Drivers with a Graduated Driver's License, as well as school bus drivers, are completely PROHIBITED from using mobile devices while driving.

Florida

Texting and driving is banned in Florida.

Georgia

  • All drivers are prohibited from texting and driving.
  • Drivers under 18 years old AND school bus drivers CANNOT use cell phones or other wireless devices while driving.

Hawaii

  • It is illegal to use mobile devices while driving in Hawaii.
  • For drivers under 18 years old, this ban also includes hands-free devices.

Idaho

It is illegal to text and drive in Idaho.

Illinois

  • Driving while using a hand-held device is against the law in Illinois.
  • Drivers who are 19 years old and older CAN use hands-free devices while driving.

Indiana

  • You are not allowed to text and drive in Indiana.
  • Anyone with a probationary license (issued to drivers who are under 21 years old), CANNOT use any sort of wireless device while driving.

Iowa

  • Texting while driving is illegal in Iowa.
  • Any driver who is younger than 18 years old CANNOT use a phone or other type of mobile device while driving.
Advertisement

States K-N

Kansas

Kentucky

  • All drivers are prohibited from texting and driving.
  • Drivers who are under 18 years old CANNOT use mobile devices while driving.

Louisiana

  • Texting while driving is illegal in Louisiana.
  • Drivers with a learner's permit OR an intermediate license may use hands-free devices; HOWEVER, anyone under 17 years old MAY NOT use any type of mobile device while driving.

Maine

  • It is illegal for anyone to text and drive in Maine.
  • If you are under 18 years old, you are prohibited from using a cell phone while driving.

Maryland

  • The use of handheld devices while driving is against the law in Maryland.
  • Drivers under 18 years old MAY NOT use any type of mobile device while driving.

Massachusetts

  • It is illegal to text and drive in Massachusetts.
  • The state also PROHIBITS anyone under 18 years old from using any type of mobile device while driving.

Michigan

  • It is against the law to text and drive in Michigan.
  • Young drivers with either a Level 1 OR Level 2 Graduated Driver License, are NOT permitted to use mobile devices while driving.

Minnesota

  • Texting and driving is illegal in Minnesota.
  • School bus drivers AND any driver under 18 years old MAY NOT use any type of mobile device while driving.

Mississippi

  • In Mississippi, it's against the law for novice drivers (intermediate license, temporary driving permit/license) to text and drive.
  • School bus drivers CANNOT use cell phones in any way while on the road.

Missouri

Texting while driving is illegal for anyone 21 years old or younger in Missouri.

Montana

Texting while driving is illegal in certain MT cities, but not state-wide.

Nebraska

  • It's against the law to text and drive in Nebraska.
  • All drivers with a graduated driver's license are PROHIBITED from driving and using a hand-held mobile device in any way.

Nevada

In Nevada, it's illegal to use a hand-held phone (for texting OR calling) while driving.

New Hampshire

  • Any use of a hand-held mobile device while driving is illegal in New Hampshire.
  • Drivers younger than 18 years old CANNOT use cell phones while driving (including hands-free devices).

New Jersey

  • New Jersey prohibits any use (texting OR talking) of a hand-held mobile device while driving.
  • Additionally, drivers with any version of a graduated driver's license MAY NOT use a cellular device in any way (including hands-free interactions).

New Mexico

  • In New Mexico, texting while driving is illegal.
  • Anyone under 18 years old is PROHIBITED from using a cell phone (in any way) while driving.

New York

It's against the law to use a hand-held mobile device (texting AND talking) while driving in New York.

North Carolina

  • North Carolina law prohibits texting and driving.
  • Drivers under 18 years old MAY NOT use a cell phone while driving, unless there's an emergency OR they're talking to a parent or spouse.

North Dakota

  • In North Dakota, it's illegal to text and drive.
  • Drivers who are younger than 18 years old are NOT allowed to use cell phones for any reason except in emergencies.

States O-W

Ohio

  • It's against the law to text and drive in Ohio.
  • It is also illegal to use a cell phone in any way within the first 12 months of earning your OH driver's license. Additionally, drivers younger than 18 years old MAY NOT use a cell phone in any way, even after holding a driver's license for 12 months.

Oklahoma

Oregon

  • In Oregon, it's illegal to use a hand-held mobile device in any way (texting OR talking) while driving.
  • Only drivers who are 18 years old and over can use hands-free devices while driving.

Pennsylvania

Texting while driving is against the law in Pennsylvania.

Rhode Island

  • It's illegal to text and drive in Rhode Island.
  • Additionally, anyone under 18 years old is NOT allowed to use a cell phone (in any way) while driving, unless there's an emergency.

South Carolina

South Carolina law prohibits texting while driving.

South Dakota

Tennessee

Texas

  • Texting while driving is banned statewide in Texas
  • State laws mandate that drivers with TX learner's permits are NOT allowed to use hand-held mobile devices while driving.
  • Additionally, drivers who are younger than 18 years old AND school bus drivers in the presence of children CANNOT operate a cell phone in any way while driving.

Utah

  • In Utah, texting while driving is against the law.
  • Drivers less than 18 years of age are PROHIBITED from using a cell phone while driving, unless faced with an emergency.

Vermont

  • It's against the law to text and drive in Vermont.
  • Drivers who are younger than 18 years old CANNOT use a cell phone at all while driving.

Virginia

  • Texting and driving is illegal in Virginia.
  • Drivers who are age 18 years and younger CANNOT use a cell phone in any way while driving.

Washington

  • In Washington, it is against the law to use a hand-held communication device (for texting OR talking) while driving.
  • Drivers with an intermediate driver's license OR a learner's permit are PROHIBITED from using cell phones (including hands-free devices) while driving.

Washington, D.C.

  • In Washington D.C., it's illegal to use a hand-held mobile device while driving.
  • Additionally, school bus drivers AND learner's permit holders are NOT allowed to use a cell phone in any way while operating a vehicle.

West Virginia

  • All drivers in West Virginia are prohibited from using hand-held mobile devices (for texting AND talking) while driving.
  • People younger than 18 years old MAY NOT use a cell phone in any way while driving a motor vehicle.

Wisconsin

  • In Wisconsin, texting and driving is illegal.
  • Probationary license AND instruction permit holders are PROHIBITED from using a cell phone (in any capacity) while driving.
  • Finally, it's against the law to use a hand-held mobile communication device when driving through a work zone.

Wyoming

Texting while driving is against the law in Wyoming.

Related Content

Provide Feedback