Find Traffic Ticket Lawyer

Find Traffic Ticket Lawyer

Traffic Ticket

It’s a normal day. Perhaps a commute to work or a quick trip to the grocery store. Thoughts are of making dinner, budgeting for an upcoming birthday, or just on the license plate number of the car in front. Suddenly lights in the rearview arrest attention and a sinking pit forms in the stomach. Every day thousands of traffic tickets are written across the country. For some, they are a financial inconvenience, an embarrassment, or even a threat to their livelihood. While receiving a ticket can feel devastating, it can be dismissed with the right legal action.

The Improper Use of a Vehicle

Fundamentally, a traffic ticket alleges that an individual has misused the vehicle that they were permitted to drive. This misuse may result in a simple monetary fine or more intense penalties. A traffic violation can result in “points” accruing on a person’s license. If they accrue too many points, an individual may have their license suspended or even revoked. This is more of a concern for people with more advanced licenses such as commercial drivers who may have their livelihood destroyed by the loss of their commercial driver's license. Some common traffic court violations include failure to appear, failure to pay, driving without insurance, and speeding.

Failure to Appear or Pay

Failure to appear and failure to pay are two of the more administrative violations that traffic courts deal with. Instead of committing these violations by driving improperly, failure to appear and failure to appear refer to violations in the procedure of traffic court.

Failure to appear is the allegation that a defendant failed to attend their traffic court hearing. In addition to being a violation, failing to appear surrenders the defendant's opportunity to defend themselves from the allegations and may result in a default judgment being granted against them. Defendants should make all possible efforts to appear on time for their hearing in order to avoid both the failure to appear violation and the default judgment.

Failure to pay is a more serious violation. This charge alleges that the defendant was tasked with paying some amount and failed to do so by the stated date. Failure to pay may result in more fines being piled on or in the jailing of the defendant. If the defendant cannot pay the fines that they owe they should petition the court with the help of a traffic ticket attorney.

Driving Without Insurance

Cars are inherently dangerous tools. They are multi-ton vehicles moving at dozens of miles an hour. In order to limit the amount of permanent injury and disability suffered by the victim of a car accident most states require that all drivers have active auto insurance. These insurance policies are designed to provide compensation for the victim of a car accident.

Since most states require that drivers have insurance, failure to produce proof of valid insurance is a traffic violation. This violation can carry a variety of penalties depending on the context in which it occurs. For example, if the driver is discovered to have no insurance during a routine traffic stop, the penalty may be less severe than if the driver is discovered to have no insurance after causing a multi-car accident. As with many traffic violations, the presence of injury or property damage can intensify the penalties.

Speeding

The most common type of traffic violation, speeding is broadly defined as driving a car over the speed limit. States and municipalities have varying laws regarding speeding laws. Some states have “absolute” speeding laws which declare that exceeding the speed limit by even 1 mph is a violation. Meanwhile, other states can take a more relaxed, relative approach to speeding laws. This relaxed approach allows drivers to exceed the speed limit in certain contexts such as to pass another driver legally or to keep up with the flow of traffic.

There are three main factors that impact the penalties for speeding: level of excess, driver condition, and external damages. How far over the speed limit a driver is going plays a big role in determining the size of the speeding fine faced. Many states employ a progressive fine system where the further over the speed limit a driver is, the more they pay. Another major factor in determining the severity of a speeding ticket is the state of mind of the driver. For example, in addition to being violations in their own rights, being under the influence of drugs or alcohol while speeding can escalate the penalties of the speeding ticket. Finally, a speeding ticket can be enhanced if the speeding caused external damage in the form of either injury or property damage.

Fighting to Protect Your Rights

Traffic tickets can be a harsh disruption to your life and, if unchallenged, a black spot on your driving record. However, with the help of a traffic ticket attorney, you can fight and even prevail against the allegations against you. Traffic ticket attorneys can scour the laws of your area and either reduce the penalties you face or have them dismissed outright.

In order to achieve this best outcome, however, you will need an attorney who has the expertise and resources to take your case all the way. That’s why you should contact Attorney at Law. By partnering with AAL, you will be able to avoid slogging through the quagmire of unscrupulous lawyers looking to exploit your case.

At AAL we only partner with the best firms in your area, helping you find the best attorney for your case. Don’t wait, contact AAL today for a free no-obligation consultation and begin your journey to justice.

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Traffic Ticket Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is a traffic ticket a misdemeanor?

In most cases, a traffic ticket for a violation such as speeding is not a misdemeanor. However, in certain circumstances, a traffic violation can be elevated to the level of a misdemeanor or worse. Most often, a traffic violation will be elevated when there is either the threat or the presence of personal injury or property damage.

2. How long do traffic tickets stay on your record?

Traffic tickets can remain on your record for a number of years. Depending on the severity of the ticket and the state in which it was issues, the infraction may fade in as few as three years or remain for as long as 75 years. 

Often the nature of the infraction determines how long the ticket remains on your record. A charge of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol may remain on your record for decades as required by law. By contrast, a simple speeding violation may only stay on your record for a few years and may even be able to be stricken or sealed before it fades.

3. what happens if you miss court for a traffic ticket?

Under no circumstances should you miss your traffic ticket hearing. The first reason is because you will likely be found in default. That means that because you didn’t show up, the court automatically declared that you are guilty and the ticket must be paid. This means you will have missed your only opportunity to appeal the ticket before the judge.

The second reason you shouldn’t miss your court date is because it can actually increase the amount of trouble you are in. In some states failure to appear in court is a crime with its own set of penalties and in some cases you may be charged with the criminal infraction of contempt of court. You should make every possible effort to appear for your traffic ticket hearing on time and with a traffic ticket attorney by your side.

4. How do lawyers dismiss traffic tickets?

How an attorney dismisses a ticket varies widely depending on the traffic infraction alleged and the state laws that were allegedly broken. For example, if you received a speeding ticked but your state has “presumed” speeding laws that loosely define the speed limit then your traffic ticket attorney may argue that you exceeded the speed limit in order to maintain safe speed with the rest of traffic or to overtake another driver. 

Another example would be if your traffic infraction included allegations of driving under the influence. In that case, the attorney would likely scrutinize the testing process, arresting officer's testimony, or other parts of the process that may have incorrectly led to your being charged.

5. How much does a traffic ticket cost?

How much a traffic ticket costs varies depending on the infraction. Speeding tickets can cost tens or hundreds of dollars depending on many factors including where the speeding occurred, how far over the speed limit the driver was, and the conditions of the road while the speeding was occurring. Some traffic violations may have other penalties in addition to monetary fines.

The most common secondary penalty of traffic violations are “points” on your license. Someone who acquires a certain number of points on their driver’s license may have it suspended. If the defendant also has a commercial driver’s license, that too may be suspended. Another penalty can be time in jail or prison. This is often a possibility if the traffic violation led to some injury or property damage such as an auto accident.

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