Whether you have been ticketed or just want to learn about what to do in the event you receive a traffic ticket, it’s crucial to be informed. Below are 10 FAQs About Traffic Tickets
1. What Is A Traffic Ticket?
A traffic ticket is a citation given to a motorist by a law enforcement officer when they have violated one or more of the laws governing traffic and road use.
2. What Are Common Reasons For A Traffic Ticket?
- Driving Above The Posted Speed Limit
- Failure To Use Signals
- Failing to Stop for School Buses
- Not Stopping for Emergency Vehicles
- Passing in a No-Passing Zone
- Running a Stop Sign
- Running a Red Light
- Illegal Turns or U-Turns
- Careless or Reckless Driving
- operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Driving without a Valid License
- Driving on a Suspended License
3. Should I Contest A Traffic Ticket?
Paying a ticket may seem the easiest option, but you should know that it will remain on your driving record. Drivers should be aware that paying the ticket is admitting guilt and carefully consider their option of fighting the traffic ticket. Even simple traffic tickets can lead to points on your driver’s license and may result in higher insurance rates. Contesting a traffic ticket, no matter the violation, is the best course of action. Hiring an experienced traffic attorney helps you resolve the issue without pleading guilty and with the least amount of consequences on your driving record.
4. What Happens When I Contest A Traffic Ticket?
When you contest a ticket, the court will listen to your defense and then decide if you are guilty or not. To support your argument, it is beneficial to have evidence such as witness statements and photos of the scene, which can help prove your innocence. Additionally, gathering evidence from law enforcement may also be necessary, such as footage from traffic cameras, the officer’s record and training related to the violation at hand. It is important to understand that you have the right to represent yourself in court, however it is in your best interest to seek expert legal assistance in order to give yourself the best chance of success.
5. Does Getting A Traffic Ticket Take Points Off My License?
Depending on the offense, multiple points are added to your driver’s license. If the number of points exceeds a certain limit, there will be consequences such as suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. Hiring a traffic attorney can be beneficial in limiting the effects a traffic ticket has on your driving record and privileges.
6. Can I Get A Ticket Dropped To A Lesser Charge?
In some cases, it may be possible to plea bargain a traffic ticket down to a lesser charge, which could reduce the penalties associated with the violation. For example, you may be able to avoid expensive fines or points on your license by attending traffic school instead. However, this option is only available in certain jurisdictions and is subject to approval by a court. Having an attorney fight for you increases your chances of having the charges dropped to less serious offenses.
7. Does A Traffic Ticket Raise My Auto Insurance?
A traffic ticket can have devastating effects on insurance coverage and rates. Insurance companies often review an applicant’s driving record and will factor in any ticket conviction when calculating the premium for renewal. Insurance companies may even terminate coverage for some drivers.
8. What Effects Does A Traffic Ticket Have On My Driving License And DMV Record?
The consequences of a traffic ticket can seriously impact your driving license and DMV record. Having a traffic conviction or even multiple convictions can in some cases lead to having your driver’s license suspended or revoked. There are also fees involved to have your driver’s license reinstated following a suspension or revocation.
9. What Are Common Financial Penalties Of A Traffic Ticket?
The financial penalties associated with traffic tickets depend heavily on the type of violation, the state in which the ticket was issued, and any previous recorded offenses. In most states, monetary fines are accompanied by other associated fees. For example, your total payment for a ticket often includes court costs and criminal administration fees. Furthermore, some courts may issue other types of financial penalties such as probation costs or driver program payments if applicable. These fees are meant to deter reckless driving and other careless behaviors while providing revenue to offset court costs.
10. Should I Hire An Attorney?
You aren’t required to hire an attorney, but attempting to fight a traffic ticket alone can be difficult. You may defend yourself, but no one except an attorney can represent you in court. An experienced traffic attorney may argue for leniency in terms of fines and sentencing or even attempt to dismiss the violation entirely by arguing the facts of the case. An attorney will also be familiar with any relevant precedents and procedural issues that may be in your favor.
Contact St. Louis Traffic Fix
If you receive a ticket for a serious traffic violation, you must hire an attorney as soon as possible. A reputable, experienced traffic attorney can help fight your case and protect your rights. When you need help with a speeding ticket, DUI/DWI, accident, or another traffic issue, call the experts at St. Louis Traffic Fix.
We proudly represent clients in St. Charles, Lincoln, Warren, and St. Louis Counties. We help clients resolve traffic issues in a timely and beneficial manner. Call us at 636-791-6195 to schedule a consultation.