Massachusetts law prohibits operators of motor vehicles and bicycles from using any electronic device, including mobile telephones, unless the device is used in hands-free mode.

The “hands-free” law is effective as of February 23, 2020.

Penalty for violating the hands-free law:

*1st offense – $100 fine.

*2nd offense – $250 fine, plus mandatory completion of a distracted driving educational program.

*3rd and subsequent offenses – $500 fine, plus insurance surcharge and mandatory completion of distracted driving educational program.

Drivers who are 18 and over:

*Can only use electronic devices and mobile phones in hands-free mode and are only permitted to touch devices to activate hands-free mode.

*Not permitted to hold or support any electronic device/phone.
Cannot touch phone except to activate the hands-free mode and can only enable when the device is installed or properly mounted to the windshield, dashboard, or center console in a manner that does not impede the operation of the motor vehicle.

*Not allowed to touch device for texting, emailing, apps, video, or internet use.

*Activation of GPS navigation is permitted when the device is installed or properly mounted.

*Handheld use is allowed only if the vehicle is both stationary and not located in a public travel lane, but is not allowed at red lights or stop signs.

*Voice to text and communication to electronic devices is legal only when device is properly mounted; use of headphone (one ear) is permitted.

Drivers who are under 18:

*Are not allowed to use any electronic devices. All phone use while driving is illegal, including use in hands-free mode.

*Operators may use a cell phone to call 911 to report an emergency. If possible, safely pull over and stop before calling 911.

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