Here’s what you can do to deal with a speeding ticket.
Speeding is one of the most needlessly reckless driving behaviors out there. Not only does it put yourself, your passengers, and other innocent motorists in danger, but it also increases your chances of getting pulled over. If you have been stopped and issued a speeding ticket, you have some options to proceed. The easiest thing to do is to pay the ticket and accept that your auto insurance rates will increase as a result of your bad driving behavior. However, if you feel that the ticket is unjustified, you can choose to fight it in court or negotiate the penalty.
Going to Court
If you decide to take the ticket to court, a prosecutor will have to prove that you were indeed speeding. While you might think that the ticket was unjustified, it is notably difficult to fight speeding violations. If the officer does not attend the hearing, you may be off the hook. However, don’t bank on this. You may still have to stand before a judge and undergo questioning. Here are some of the steps you should take to prepare.
- Gather evidence: The best way to have the ticket dismissed is by providing physical proof that you weren’t speeding. Footage from a dashcam or photographic evidence that a speed limit sign was obscured are both valid forms of evidence.
- Research the speed equipment: You should also look up the method that the officer used to determine your speed. Specifically focus on the weaknesses of this method so you can present them to the judge.
- Arrange witnesses: You can also call in witnesses to testify on your behalf.
- Organize questions: You may also have the chance to question the officer, so plan which questions you will ask. You can use your questions to illustrate faulty memory or lack of training with speed-clocking equipment. Stick to questions with short answers and avoid questions that lead to elaboration.
If all of this sounds like a lot to handle, you can always hire a lawyer to act on your behalf.
Negotiating the Penalty
“Mitigation” is the practice of making a deal with the court. This allows you to avoid a hearing while negotiating a lower penalty. You may be able to request mitigation before or during your hearing, but whether or not the court agrees is up to them. During mitigation, you must admit your guilt and offer information that would inspire leniency. If you are successful, you may have the opportunity to:
- Pay the ticket without it affecting your driving record.
- Take a driving course instead of paying the ticket.
- Have the ticket fine reduced.
- Pay off the ticket over a longer period of time.
These are some of the steps you can take following a speeding ticket. Remember, speeding is never permissible. To keep yourself and other drivers safe, avoid speeding and make sure you have the right auto insurance protections in place. For assistance with your car coverage needs, contact the experts at Scautub Agency in Scotia, New York today.