DON’T PLEAD GUILTY TO A TRAFFIC TICKET UNTIL YOU READ THIS!
By New York Traffic Attorney Eli Moore
One of the biggest mistakes people make when receiving a traffic ticket is to automatically plead guilty and pay the fine. Instead, follow these five steps and there's a strong possibility you'll either reduce the number of points added to your driving record, eliminate points altogether, lower your fine, and and keep your car insurance low. Here's what to do:
1. REMEDY THE PROBLEM ASAP.
If you receive a summons for an equipment violation, such as having tinted car windows, a broken headlight, or a missing license plate, or if your ticket was given because your inspection or registration had expired, you should remedy the problem ASAP and submit proof to the court. Some courts may dismiss the ticket altogether and most courts will reduce the fine amount, by as much as 50%.
2. KNOW HOW MANY POINTS YOU ARE FACING.
Moving violations, which may be for speeding, cell phone use, ignoring a red light, and making illegal turns—just to name a few possibilities, come with a specific number of points set by the Department of Motor Vehicles. If you get 11 points in an 18-month period in New York State, your driver's license may be suspended for a minimum of 30 days in addition to costly penalties. In New York State, you can get anywhere from 3 points to 11 points for a speeding ticket, depending on the speed at which you were driving. (This is true for both New York State and out-of-state drivers.) And if you get 6 points or more in an 18-month period, you'll be charged a $300 DMV penalty on top of any fines. Be sure to check your driving record online at www.dmv.ny.gov to see what your current driving record is. Having a clean driving record is one of the ways an experienced traffic lawyer can help minimize the points and fines you get when facing a moving violation. For more on why to review your DMV record, see: http://bit.ly/2EEl5te.
3. ALWAYS PLEAD NOT GUILTY TO MOVING VIOLATIONS WITH POINTS.
There is no down side to pleading not guilty if you are charged with a violation that has points attached to it. Outside New York City, a traffic attorney has an excellent chance to negotiate a favorable plea bargain (to a no point violation) with the Town Attorney or local Police Department. Within New York City, an experienced traffic attorney can appear on your behalf at a hearing and effectively question the police officer as well as present evidence in your favor. (Learn more about traffic ticket penalties at: http://bit.ly/2DSgzGF)
4. DO NOT IGNORE THE TICKET AND HOPE THAT IT WILL GO AWAY!
The New York State Traffic Violations Bureau is quite efficient for a state bureaucracy. If you do not respond to the ticket within a reasonable time, there will be a default conviction against you. And if you do not pay your fines within the allowed time period, your license or driving privileges will be suspended indefinitely. Going on to the next level, if you are caught driving with a suspended license, you are facing criminal charges. Be sure to check out my blog post about what to do if you've lost a ticket (http://bit.ly/2CrLTQ5) and why you should never ignore a ticket that was issued out of your home state (http://bit.ly/2erH2nd).
5. KNOW WHEN TO PLEAD GUILTY
The only time you should plead guilty and not fight a ticket is when there are NO points involved, you have no legal defense, and there is no remedy possible – such as a ticket for Driving without a Seatbelt. No points, minimal fine, and no way to correct – YOU MIGHT AS WELL PLEAD GUILTY AND PAY!
Wondering what else you need to know to stay out of trouble with traffic court? Go to: http://bit.ly/2Cr7YhI
Traffic Attorney Eli Moore specializes in handling moving violations tickets throughout New York City and Westchester. Contact him for a free consultation at EliMooreLaw@gmail.com or call (914) 725-0028,
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