Mobile phone driving law changes in 2021

The Government will be closing a loophole for people who drive for business, in a bid to make roads safer, which is good news for tradespeople and van drivers who are regularly out on the road.

As you know, it’s illegal to use your phone to send a message or to make a call. But the Government will be looking to close a loophole in a bid to make roads safer, which is good news for regular road users such as tradespeople and van drivers.

Currently, you can technically do the following things whilst driving:

  • Answer a call
  • Search for music or take photos whilst off-line
  • Use an appwhilst off-line
  • Dictate a message on your phone whilst driving.  

Interestingly, the RAC found that 13% of drivers aged 25 to 44 admitted they either make or receive video calls whilst driving, with 9% play games whilst at the wheel!

The proposed changes will tighten up on the above scenarios and means that it will be illegal to use ‘standalone mode functions as well as interactive communication functions’ (basically the use of apps and video calls) whilst driving.

The consultation looks to automatically issue six penalty points and a £200 fine if anyone is found using these.

However, they are also looking to introduce an exemption to the rules that allows drivers to use their mobile to make contactless payments at drive-throughs. So better news for regular drivers that like to stop off at Starbucks or McDonalds whilst out on the road.

These proposed changes could come in to effect within a few months, but we’ll keep you posted when these changes do happen.

Did you know?

  • It’s illegal to use a handheld phone as a sat nav whilst driving. So make sure your phone is in a hands-free device and doesn’t block your view of the road
  • You could get 3 points on your licence if you don’t have full view of the road or traffic ahead.