There are two different types of offenses that you can be charged with while driving, which are primary and secondary offenses. The way that the police can enforce these is much different. For a secondary offense, the police can only add this to your charges if they have already stopped the vehicle. It is a violation, but it does not warrant a traffic stop on its own. For a primary offense, however, a police officer that sees you engaging in this activity can pull your car over. Two examples would be impaired driving or running a red light.
But what about texting and driving? You may know that it is illegal, but can the police just charge you if you cause an accident, run a stop sign or give them some other reason to stop your car, and then they find out you were texting? Or can they pull you over simply because they saw that you were on your phone?
The laws have been growing stricter
When texting and driving laws first began to come on the books, they were often secondary offenses, but most states have started to change this and make them more strict. There are now numerous states in which texting and driving is a primary offense, and Florida has been one of them for the last four years. The law was updated in the summer of 2019 so that officers could stop people who are suspected of distracted driving as a primary offense.
If you have gotten this type of citation, it is important to understand how it works and all of the legal options that you have.