The Figueroa Law Firm, P.A.
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Traffic Tickets -- Why You Shouldn't Just Pay Them

It's always so astonishing to me when I get a client who has had a driver's license for over 50 years and until just recently, had never gotten a ticket in all of that time.  More often than not, people unfortunately do have run-ins with the police when it comes to the most common violations of our traffic laws: speeding, red light violations, and improper turns.  What's interesting is the officer always tells you that you have 3 options (and you do)...1) Just pay the ticket.  2) Elect to take the traffic school online and pay the ticket (at a slightly reduced rate) or 3) "if you're not guilty and want to fight it, you can go to Court".  (Well, that's how one officer explained it to me).

The thing is most people will automatically think, well obviously I am guilty (though in some cases not), if you knew you were speeding, so you think this option shouldn't apply to you.  Well that's simply not the case.  The fact is, option 1, to simply pay the ticket, means you basically admit guilt and you will get points on your license.  No one should choose this option.

Next is the traffic school option.  This is a much better option than the first because you will NOT get points on your license, however you will have to pay for the school, pay the reduced fine (but a fine nonetheless), and you can only choose this option once a year and a total of five times EVER.  Hopefully, this isn't a problem for most drivers.  But for some it could be, especially if you drive for a living or if you were not aware of this.

The best option (depending on certain factors which we would be happy to discuss with you personally) is to elect a hearing.  This isn't always just to fight it and say you were not guilty, but many times we go to court on a client's behalf in order to avoid them getting the points and NOT having to take the driving school.  If the Judge orders a school, it's like a freebie, because it does not count against the max number of times you can elect a school option.  If you have been cited with a civil traffic infraction, feel free to contact us to discuss your options and our reasonable fees for handling these matters for you.  This can make a big difference on your driving record as well as your insurance rates, so it is critical to do all that you can to keep the points off, but at the most minimal expense possible.

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