Use of hand-held devices while driving: Law change explained

There were a number of changes to the Highway Code published earlier this year.

We highlighted these changes in this recent article and visual guide.

These updates have been closely followed by a change to the law in March 2022 regarding the use of a mobile device while driving.

It was already illegal to use a device to call or text whilst behind the wheel, but the change went further to address potential loopholes, seeking to strengthen the existing law and to make it easier for the police to prosecute drivers1.

Drivers are now also banned from using their phones in almost any scenario as the Transport Secretary takes a ‘zero tolerance approach’ in a bid to make the roads a safer place2. This includes scrolling through music, playing games and taking photos or videos.

There are some exceptions to the rule, for example if you need to dial emergency services or if you’re using your device to park your car remotely. You can also use the device for sat nav purposes as long as it’s secured using a mount or holder.

Our latest infographic helps explain when you can and can’t use your phone and outlines some of the penalties which drivers could now face if found guilty.

Download our infographic

This may be particularly useful for commercial motor clients – it’s vital these updates are communicated to drivers so they’re aware of what is and isn’t legal.

1 Using a phone, sat-nav or other device while driving,, March 2022

2 Transport Secretary declares zero tolerance for phone use behind the wheel as law changes today,, March 2022