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Don't try to skirt the hands-free driving laws

In Arizona, lawmakers have enacted hands-free driving laws to make sure that people do not get distracted behind the wheel. Under these laws, only hands-free systems can be used for phone conversations. Texting and driving is illegal, but so is holding your phone to make a call.

Some people look for ways to get around the law. Maybe your car does not have Bluetooth or doesn't support hands-free devices. You still want to talk on the phone. You decide that you'll just perch the device on your shoulder, tipping your head to the side to pin it in place. This way, you can keep both hands on the wheel. Is that all right?

It's not. The government specifically says you can't put the device on your shoulder, and you can't do anything to "hold or support a device with your body."

The government also notes that this doesn't just mean you can't use your phone. Any portable device counts. Maybe you have an e-reader, a tablet or a laptop. Using any such device in the car is illegal, even when it's not technically a smartphone.

The goal of these laws is to keep people focused on the road with their hands on the wheel. This can reduce the odds of an accident.

The unfortunate reality, though, is that even doing this doesn't mean you will not get in an accident. Other drivers still break these laws, they still cause crashes and they can still seriously injure you. If that happens, despite your best efforts to avoid an accident, you may need to seek financial compensation.

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