New hands-Free phone law carries employer risk — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

New hands-Free phone law carries employer risk

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California’s hands-free cell phone legislation went into effect on July 1. Employers that don’t yet have a policy addressing driving while using a cell phone should create one now.

Here’s why: If an employee is involved in an accident while breaking the law—by driving and using a cell phone without a hands-free device—the employer may be liable for any damages.

Advise employees that they must not use cell phones while driving company cars or while driving their own cars on company business.

Better yet, tell them no calls in the car at all. While using a hands-free device is safer than wielding a cell phone and shifting, it is still better to pull over to make or take calls. Few people can pay full attention to driving, especially in California’s infamous traffic. Save the multitasking for the office. 

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