New York City is a challenging place to drive a vehicle, even if you are a resident and know the city streets well. It can seem hard to avoid getting a traffic ticket sometimes, but the consequences of being charged make it worthwhile hiring a traffic lawyer. There are at least three good reasons why a traffic violation lawyer can help you fight a charge.
Traffic Violations will Cost You a Fine
Every traffic violation will cost you money. The most obvious cost is the fine. The amount of money you have to pay will depend on the violation and how many times you have been charged for this violation before. For instance, the fine for being caught going over the speed limit by 9 mph is less than it is for 19 mph over. If you have had a speeding ticket before, then the fine goes up.
Points will be Added to Your License
As you are probably well aware, New York State’s Motor Vehicle Department (MVD) operates a points system which acts as a penalty and can be used to suspend your license. You get a number of points for each different violation and they are accumulative. The minimum number of points is 3 and the maximum for any one violation is 11.
What is more important than any one individual addition of points is how many total points you will have accumulated in the last 18 month period. If you have a clean slate, then you can accumulate 10 points before you approach the danger zone. Getting 11 points in the last 18 months means your license will be suspended. You can get 11 points in 1 hit by doing 30 mph over the speed limit.
The number of points, like the fine, depends on what sort of violation you have been alleged to have committed. Points for speeding go up with the number of mph over the speed limit.
One other thing to remember about points is that they are never wiped off your record completely. They stay on your record and information about them can be passed form New York State to other states although your points don’t automatically transfer over if you have an out of state license. You can get them expunged, but it’s not easy to do this by yourself.
Insurance Costs Go Up After a Traffic Violation
Your insurance premium is likely to go up if you get a traffic violation. How much it goes up depends on the violation. You can check with your insurance company before you send your plea in to the MVD. You might not have any more to pay if you only have a speeding ticket for less than 10 mph over, for instance.
Just these three things alone may make hiring an experienced New York traffic violation lawyer worthwhile. You just have to do the sums. If you are in danger of losing your driver license and depend on it for getting to work or because it is part of your work requirement, then this makes the need to fight your charge even more important.
Remember, if you send a check back in the mail, then you are admitting guilt. If you send a not guilty plea in, the prosecution has to prove you are guilty. Your traffic lawyer can probably either get your penalties reduced through a plea bargain or get them dismissed altogether. A good New York traffic violation lawyer knows the system well and can use your individual circumstances to your best advantage.