When my husband I decided to start a business, we didn't think about the legal aspects of doing so. We didn't realize that purchasing business insurance, getting building permits and making investments all required some type of legal advice. But after speaking to a close friend, who also happens to own a small business, we contacted a business attorney. Now, we have the legal smarts to make the best decisions for our business, as well as the legal representation in case something happens to our company. I hope that you find my blog helpful and informative for your own business. It's a great resource for finding the legal advice, resources and guidance you need to get your company up and running.
Getting a traffic ticket can cause your insurance rates to go up and lead to the loss of your driving privileges, depending on the circumstances. Therefore, it is understandable that you would search online for ways to avoid being convicted. However, there is a lot of misleading advice about traffic tickets out there that may make things worse if you were to actually follow it. Here is what you need to know about two traffic ticket myths you may have heard.
Myth #1 – Police No-Show Equals Case Dismissal
Possibly the most prevalent myth about traffic tickets people still believe and rely on is the myth that if the police officer who issued the citation fails to show up for court, the judge will dismiss the case. In some small jurisdictions, this may be true. However, the majority of states have written their traffic laws so police don't have to show up to the hearing at all. In Massachusetts, for instance, the cop doesn't need to appear. Instead a person who represents the police department uses a report written by the officer to defend the citation. The only time the officer must appear in person in court is if you appeal the decision.
Even in areas where police must appear in person for citation hearings, it is unlikely that your case will be dismissed if the cop fails to show. Typically, the court will simply reschedule the hearing for another date. Therefore, it's not a good idea to rely on this myth as a way of getting out of your ticket. You're better off meeting with an attorney to develop a viable strategy for defeating the ticket in other ways.
Myth #2 – You Can Ignore Traffic Violations in Other States
Many people operate under the belief that traffic violations committed in other states have no effect on their driving privileges in their home states. This was true before the era of shared databases. The only time you would have to face the consequences of driving violations was if you revisited the state and were pulled over by police again.
These days, however, most states are part of the Driver License Compact, where they agree to share information about people's vehicular infractions with each other. Depending on the laws in your state, violations in other states could have a negative impact on your license or result in you being hit with worse consequences.
This is primarily seen with drunk-driving violations. For instance, California will factor in DUIs committed in other states as long as the criteria for getting a DUI in that state is the same as the criteria in California (e.g. same max BAC levels). If officials in California look at the database and see you have a previous DUI in another state, you will be hit with the escalated consequences associated with multiple DUI convictions.
The DMV is not above using the database when assessing what punishment you should face when you receive traffic violations in your state. Points and fines you receive in one state will follow you everywhere you go nowadays unless you move to one of the few states that don't participate in the Driver License Compact. Therefore, you need to take care of all tickets you get regardless of where you receive them to avoid compounding your legal problems.
Tickets for traffic violations can be defeated, but you need the right information and help to do it. If you were recently pulled over and cited for a driving infraction or would like more information about these and other traffic ticket myths, contact an attorney at a law firm such as Thomas & Associates, PC for assistance.