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What To Do About Your Traffic Ticket

What To Do About Your Traffic Ticket

I do not handle matters in Traffic Court. I have found myself there a number of times representing myself and, from time to time, representing clients in unique situations.

There are two levels of what we commonly refer to as Traffic Tickets. The first are called ‘infractions’ and these are common offenses like speeding; careless driving; failure to maintain a single lane; failure to stop at a signal or sign…etc. Infractions are not crimes. They can put points on your license and can result in fines and court costs but not jail or probation. They do not carry mandatory court dates as it is left to the driver to address the citation within thirty days by either paying the ticket in full (and taking any points involved) or, if you are eligible, choosing to go to traffic school which can be done online. Finally, you can indicate you wish to have a “trial” or final hearing where a Magistrate Judge will hear testimony and determine your guilt and, if necessary, decide your punishment. Failure to make an election within thirty (30) days will result in a license suspension and it will cost extra money to resolve the matter.

I have no trouble saying that my advice is to utilize the services of a “ticket clinic” type legal practice. Their prices are usually reasonable and some guarantee no points or refund fees. When I have seen them in court, they are quite expert, by experience, in finding loopholes and guaranteeing your case is effectively presented.

I do handle “Traffic Crimes”. These are case which have a mandatory court date on them such as Reckless Driving; Driving Under Suspension With Knowledge; Expired Drivers License or No Drivers License or Drivers License Not Carried. DUI is also a Traffic Crime.

A couple of things to remember:

– If you are in an accident, the issue of who, if anyone, gets a ticket is not as important as many people seem to feel and certainly not worth the stress and anguish I occasionally see people putting themselves through when they feel they were unfairly ticketed or where they wanted the other party to get a ticket.

– SIGN THE CITATION. All it does is give the system some proof that you received it. It is NOT an admission of guilt. It is a CRIME to refuse to sign the citation.

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