Do's & Don'ts When Getting a Traffic Violation
1. Do fix an equipment violation as soon as you get a ticket regarding such a violation. And immediately get your car inspected or renew your registration if your violation is in regard to an expired inspection or registration. Whether the problem is broken headlights, a missing license plate, tinted windows, or some other equipment problem, address the issue ASAP. If you submit proof to the traffic court that the problem was quickly resolved some courts may completely dismiss the ticket. Most courts will reduce the fine, sometimes by as much as 50%.
2. Do consult an experienced traffic attorney before pleading guilty to a traffic violation. Outside of New York City, a traffic lawyer can negotiate on your behalf with the Town Attorney or local Police Department for a favorable plea bargain—which often results in a no-point violation. Within New York City, a traffic lawyer can represent you at a hearing and question the police officer and present evidence in your favor. The likely result of eliminating or reducing points on your license is well worth the lawyer’s fee. It will help keep your driving record clean, which is important for future employment opportunities, credit ratings, college acceptances, and maintaining a low car insurance premium.
1. DON'T IGNORE AN OUT-OF-STATE TICKET. If you fail to answer a moving violation ticket that you received in almost any state outside of New York, your license will be suspended until you answer the ticket. The consequences are even worse if you are a driver under 21 years of age and you commit an alcohol- or drug-related conviction outside of New York. In that case, your New York State driver’s license will be revoked for at least a year (http://on.ny.gov/2fJYaUP). The bottom line: Don’t assume that a traffic ticket received out of New York State won’t affect your driving record. Treat it the same way you would any ticket that you received in New York. If distance is an issue, hire a traffic attorney from the local area to plead not guilty for you. Or just plead guilty and pay the ticket. Don't ignore it!
2. DON'T EXPRESS OUTRAGE AT THE POLICE OFFICER ISSUING THE TICKET. Be calm and polite. Anger will only exacerbate the situation and may even add to the charges leveled at you.
Eli Moore is an experienced traffic and criminal defense attorney practicing in the Bronx and Westchester. For a free consultation, email EliMooreLaw@gmail.com. Follow Eli Moore on Twitter and Facebook and learn more about his legal practice, how he can help you, and how to sign up for his newsletter at EliMooreTrafficAttorney.com