- Different Types of Car Insurance
- What Is Cyptojacking?
- What Is Email Security?
- What Is the Deep Web and What Can Be Found There?
- What Happens When You Declare Bankruptcy
- How Divorce Settlements are Calculated
- What are Common Methods of Social Engineering
- What is the Difference Between a General Lien and a Specific Lien?
- How to Detect Odometer Rollback
- Different Types of Probation
- Finding forgotten life insurance policies
- What is Bearer Bond and Why the US Banned it
- Everything you need to know about small claims court
- Moral Turpitude: Definition, Examples, and Much More!
- Misdemeanor vs Felony
- How To Read VIN Number
- How to Find Out Who Hacked Your Cell Phone
- How Long Does a Misdemeanor Stay On Your Criminal Record?
- The Paypal Phishing Scam You Should Care to Avoid
- License Plates Types: USA Guide
- Effects of Cyberbullying: Complete Guide for Parents
- What is the DPPA?
- Petty Theft: Definition and Consequences
- What is a Life Sentence?
- How to Find Out if Someone Has a Warrant?
- Marriage License vs Certificate: Everything You Need to Know
- The Ten Most Popular Celebrity Mugshots
- How to Find Out if Someone is Married?
- How to Stop Phone Spoofing?
- How To Avoid Probate
- Dealing with abandoned vehicles in your neighborhood
- How to Find Someone's Cell Phone Number by Their Name
- Who Are the Worst Drivers in America?
- How To Find Unclaimed Money From Deceased Relatives
- What is a Digital License Plate?
- How to Find out if Someone Died?
- Murder vs Manslaughter: The Differences and Definitions
- How to Hire a Private Investigator?
- What Is a Number Neighbor?
- How to Find Out if Someone was Arrested
- How to Find Someone's Birthday?
- What is a Car Title
- How to Obtain a Police Report and Court Records?
- Filing a false police report
- Prison Valley: Look inside Prison Town
- How to Get Custody of a Child Without Going to Court?
- How to Find Someone’s Social Media Profiles?
- What to Do if Your Phone Is Tapped?
- What Is a Deed in Real Estate?
- Where Was The First US Federal Penitentiary Established?
- How to Find Someone's Location Using Their Cell Phone Number?
- What Is a Restricted Call?
- Who is the Most Dangerous Prisoner in the World?
- Poshmark Scams: How to Prevent and Report Them
- How to Find a Missing Person?
- How to Send Money to a Federal Inmate?
- DUI vs DWI: What're The Differences
- How Long After Buying a Car Do You Need to Register it?
- How to Find out Where Someone Lives?
- What Happens If You Get Caught Driving a Car Without Interlock
- Situational Crime Prevention: Theory, Techniques and Examples
- How Can I Find Out Who Called Me for Free?
- Gun Free Zone Statistics and Facts
- Online Threats and Digital Security: Trends, Types and Most Common Examples
- Cold Cases: Best Practices For Police Officers and Investigators
- Court Order: Definition, Types and Examples
- What Does a Fingerprint Background Report Show?
- How to Check Your Criminal Record?
- What is Tort Law?
- How to Calculate Child Support
- Property Rights: Definition, and Characteristics
- 12 Common Reasons for Public Records Request
- What is Antitrust Law?
- Virginia Gun Confiscation Law
- How Do You Find Out Who Own a Property?
- Neighborhood Watch Program
- How to Perform a Mugshot Search?
- Crime Mapping
- Safest Colleges in Florida
- Veterans Guide to Cars and Driving
- U.S. Correctional System: Structure, Incarceration and Facts
- License Plate Laws in the US
- How to Locate Inmates and Access Jail Records?
- Email Hacking: Laws, Penalties and Protection
- Romeo and Juliet Laws
- Holiday Safety for Home and Family
- Differences between Criminal and Arrest Records
- Public Records and Property History: What is Public Information and What Isn’t
- How to Look up Immigration Inmates?
- Famous Prisons in the USA
- How to Find Out Who Owns a Vehicle Using Reverse Lookup Tools
- How to Search for Your Family Tree?
- The Federal Judicial Center
- Mass Incarceration in the USA
- What is COPPA (Children's Online Privacy Protection Act)?
- Data Safety After The Capital One Breach
- Scholarships Guide for Students
- Complete Guide to Student Safety
- What Is a Vehicle Identification Number?
- Determining Divorce: 5 Types of Divorce You Must Know
- Sex Offenders: Complete Guide to be Protected
- New Privacy Laws and Public Records
- Motor Vehicle Registration in the US
- Digital Token Age: Security Laws and Regulations
- Copyright Law and Facial Recognition Technology
- What Shows up in a Background Report
- Car Repossession Laws: Dealing with Car Dealers and Auto Fraud
- How to Protect Yourself from Phone Scams
- Human Rights in the Prison
- Business Competition: Laws and Policies
- Hate Crimes: Reasons, Stats and Facts
- Starting a Business and Business Licenses
- General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Guidance
- Criminal Justice Reform
- Tax Reform Impact and Changes To Know
- Self-Driving Cars: Laws and Regulations
- White-Collar Crime: Statistics and Facts
- Have You Been Arrested? Cases You'll Need a Lawyer
- Getting a driver's license in the US: What to Know
- Car Theft in the US: Prevention and Facts
- Identity Theft Passport Program
- Changing your Name after Marriage: What You Need to Know
- Finding the Perfect Roommate: Dos and Donts
- What if You Get Into a Car Accident? A Complete Checklist
- Property Crimes: How to Burglar Proof Your Home
- Consumer Laws in the US: What Do They Mean for a Customer and a Business Owner
- Child Trafficking: The Scope, Understanding, and Prevention
- Business Assets: A Guide to the Financial Health of your Business
- Guide To The College Application: How, When and Where to Apply
- Which States Have “Stand Your Ground” Laws?
- Adolescent Depression Symptoms and Causes
- Things to Know About the U.S. State Department Travel Advisory System
- Inheritance in the US: With & Without a Will
- Online Dating Safety Guide for Men and Women
- Sexual Abuse in the U.S.: Laws and Statistics
- Supporting Children After Divorce: Child Custody Options
- Halloween Horrors Come to Life: Holidays Crimes in the U.S.
- Charity Scams in the U.S.: Be Aware and Protected
- Webcam Hacking & Spying in the US
- Sex Offender Search
- Freedom of Religion in the U.S.
- Senior Financial Scams: How are the Elderly Targeted and How to Avoid It
- Catcalling: Is it illegal? How to Deal With It
- A Complete Guide To Insurance Fraud: Common Types and Prevention
- Sextortion: What to Do if You Became a Victim of Blackmailing
- Concealed Carry: How to Protect Yourself on Campus
- Debt Collection Laws | Fair Debt Collection Act: What You Need To Know
- How Much Is My House Worth? Ultimate Guide to Home Buying and Selling
- What are the Traits of a Sociopath?
- Do You Know Who Your Neighbors Are?
- Learn How to Find Your Birth Parents
- The Importance of Public Records in Law
- Do You Know What's the Difference Between Jail and Prison?
- Homeowner’s Insurance, Is it a Public Record?
- The Disturbing Facts of Gun Violence in America
- How to Use Public Records in Marketing
- Best & Worst Cities for Driving
- LGBT Bullying
- What You Need to Know When Buying or Selling a Used Car?
- School Safety and Security Standards
- Making Your DMV Experience Fast And Easy
- How to Prepare For an Active Shooter Incident
- How to Report a Crime?
- How to Protect Yourself Against Cyber Attacks
- 50 Things to Know When Filing for Divorce
- What to Do When You Are Stopped By the Police
- Tips for Back-to-School Safety and Security
- Guide to Filing for Bankruptcy
- How to Appeal the Court's Decision
- A User's Guide to Warrants
- How to Fight a Traffic Ticket?
- Keeping Your Neighborhood Safe For Your Family
- A Parent's Guide to Keeping Your Child Drug-Free
How to Fight a Traffic Ticket in the US?
If you drive, then you have most likely at some point in your life received a traffic ticket for any number of violations. If you haven’t yet, there is a good chance you will in the future. In most cases, you will know whether or not the citation was justified and it was without good cause, you can fight it.
Although it can be frustrating and sometimes a hassle to deal with, there are things you can do to fight the ticket, and often the driver prevails. Here is the best plan for fighting a traffic ticket.
Types of Tickets
There are a variety of reasons drivers get pulled over and ticketed. Speeding is probably the most common, along with broken taillights, erratic driving (swerving in and out of lanes), expired registration or inspection, failing to stop at an intersection, suspicion of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol or parking in an unauthorized area.
Depending on the severity of your offense the penalties and fines can vary significantly per state.
First, you must weigh the option of fighting the ticket versus just paying the fine and accepting the penalties. In some cases it might be cheaper and less trouble to pay the fine, otherwise, if you think you have the legal proof to fight the ticket that may be the way to go. Things to consider:
- Will my insurance go up if I pay the fine?
- If I have to attend driving school, how will that affect my time/life?
- Will I lose my license because this is a repeat offense?
- Can I afford a lawyer to fight for me in court?
- Can I take time off to appear in court?
- Is jail time involved (DUI/DWI)?
- Ways to Fight a Ticket
There are a few strategies to keep in mind when fighting your ticket. The best thing you can do is be thoroughly prepared and come to court armed with as much hard evidence as possible.
First, you will need to send the ticket back designating that you are pleading "not guilty" and agree to appear in court. The court date should be on the ticket, if it is not, they will send you a confirmation and a court date at a later time.
Challenge The Officer’s Subjective Opinion or Observation
People are human and make mistakes and the officer who pulled you over, cited you and wrote up the ticket is no exception. Just because they wear a badge and demand respect as an authority figure of the highways does not mean they can’t and don’t make mistakes.
If for example you get pulled over for not stopping at a stop sign, and you know you did. You can fight it in court especially if you have eyewitness accounts, photographs or an easy-to-read diagram, which shows the positioning of all cars and how it may have "appeared" that you did not come to a complete stop. If you make your case professionally with substantial evidence, you may get it overturned.
Prove "Mistake of Fact"
In some cases, you can win by challenging a ticket through the process of "mistake of fact." This term means circumstances beyond your control were a factor, and the judge may rule to dismiss your case.
An example of this is that you weren’t able to read a sign due to storm conditions or something blocking it and so you broke a road rule, which you were unaware of due to "mistake of fact."
Convince the Judge You Were "Legally Justified"
There are cases where it makes sense not to deny your actions but support them with a justified cause. If pulling over or driving too fast or slow was in the best interest of you and other drivers, the judge may dismiss the charges. It is best in these situations to research the law or hire an attorney who is well versed in traffic law and can cite other precedent cases where your seemingly illegal actions were allowed for good cause.
Prove That Your Actions Were Necessary to Avoid Harm
If you suddenly swerved to avoid hitting an animal, pedestrian or another car and you received a ticket for the offense, you can fight it due to having a good reason. You were trying to avoid harming yourself or someone else. These cases can be challenging to prove, but if you present them professionally with as much evidence as possible, you have a chance of winning. This example is another good case for using a traffic ticket lawyer who specializes in these types of situations.
Find a Traffic Ticket Lawyer
Unless you have reliable eyewitnesses and a substantial stock of evidence, it might make sense to hire a professional to help you fight your traffic ticket. There are dozens of excellent attorneys, which specialize in this type of law. Hiring a lawyer also helps your credibility showing you take this offense seriously and are choosing to fight it legally.
To find a lawyer in your area, you might want to visit the courthouse website local to your jurisdiction. They will have lists available to help find an attorney that can help you fight your case. If they do not have them listed online, you can also call them to get a referral.
Other 3rd party websites like FindLaw.com have distribution lists by the state for all types of traffic ticket violations.
In all cases, you will need to appear in court if you are fighting the ticket. Printed on your ticket will be information about how to pay the fine, or if you choose, how to fight it.
You can quickly locate the courthouse near you by visiting our courthouse locator tool.
You should have to visit the courthouse only once, but if you plan on using an attorney, you may need to file more paperwork, motions and meet with them on occasion to discuss your case.