Woman with phone on her shoulder while driving

Can I Use My Phone While in the Car?

For decades, drivers have counted on having a cell phone to take in their vehicles. Even when cell phones were cumbersome and couldn’t fit in a pocket, the comfort of knowing you could contact someone while you were on the road was and continues to be a relief to many.

However, many drivers are distracted by their cell phones. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration noted that 3,142 people died because of distracted driving in 2019. While not all those deaths were related to people being on their phones, many fatalities were attributed to cell phone usage. That’s why Georgia and Tennessee are two of 23 states that ban drivers from holding cell phones while driving.


The Peach State adopted the Hands-Free Georgia Act in July 2018. The law states that drivers are not allowed to have a cell phone or similar device in their hands or any part of their body while driving. This means that a cell phone can not be placed in a driver’s lap or nestled between their ear and shoulder while traveling.

Not only are drivers not allowed to use their hands to place a phone call while driving, but they are not allowed to do actions such as text, post on social media, or record videos while behind the wheel. The legislation states that any technology or communication via a cell phone or other device must be done hands-free.


The Volunteer State has mostly replica rules to Georgia when it comes to cell phone usage while driving. The main difference is that Tennessee’s law became effective in May 2019.

With both states, there are only a few exceptions to the laws. If you see a crash happen while driving, you are allowed to use your hands to call 911 or take pictures of the incident. This also applies to any other emergency situation that a driver may witness.

Distracted Driving and Accidents

Even with these laws in place, many drivers still choose to use their cell phones while driving physically. This has led to countless crashes and injuries — which can occasionally be fatal.

If you were involved in an accident caused by a distracted driver, the team at The Roth Firm, LLC wants to help you. Our attorneys have helped recover billions of dollars for drivers who were hurt at no fault of their own. Reach out to our team, 24/7, either online or by phone. (404) 777-4899