Because of a new law passed in Washington State, holding phones in your hand at all while driving will soon be illegal. Right now it is legal to hold your phone away from your ear and drive but that will change on July 23rd according to news reports. The new law was originally set to take affect in 2019 but the Governor vetoed that part of the law making it active on the 23rd.

With the new law a "the minimal use of a finger" can be used to innitiate a device but then must be hand free while driving. The law includes while stopped at a traffic light or in traffic.