Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation creating stiffer penalties for those being found guilty of texting-while-driving. This new legislation is being aimed at younger drivers and new drivers:
- The fine for a first offense will be $150
- The fine for a second offense will be $200 if you've committed a second offense within 18-months;
- A fine for a third offense (if it occurs within 18-months) will be $400
- As of June 1, there will be a five-point penalty on a person's driving record
And stricter legislation applies to drivers who hold probationary or junior licenses. If a driver is found to be guilty of texting-while-driving and using a hand-held device, the penalties would be the same as if they were found to be driving recklessly or speeding: a 60-day suspension after being found guilty of a first offense. And effective immediately: a license revocation of 60 days (for junior licenses) or six months (for probationary licenses) for being found guilty of the same offense within six months of the time the driver's privileges are restored after having been suspended.