New California Traffic Laws That Might Affect You​

Everyone... get ready. There are a number of new laws that went into effect on January 1, 2021 for California drivers.

License points for distracted driving (AB 47):  Using a cell phone in a handheld manner while driving is currently punishable by a fine.  Beginning July 1, 2021, violating the hands-free law for a second time within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense will result in a point being added to a driver’s record.  This applies to the violations of talking or texting while driving (except for hands-free use) and to any use of these devices while driving by a person under 18 years of age.

“Move Over, Slow Down” amendments (AB 2285):  Extends the provisions of the “Move Over, Slow Down” law currently in place on freeways to also apply to local streets and roads so drivers approaching a stationary emergency vehicle displaying emergency lights, including tow trucks and Caltrans vehicles, must now move to another lane when possible, or slow to a reasonable speed on all highways, not just freeways.  The law is effective January 1, 2021.

Unattended children in motor vehicles (AB 2717):  Exempts a person from civil or criminal liability for trespassing or damaging a vehicle when rescuing a child who is 6 years old or younger and who is in immediate danger from heat, cold, lack of ventilation, or other dangerous circumstances.  The law takes effect January 1, 2021

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