If you are pulled over and ticketed for a moving violation, you may be tempted to just pay the associated fine instead of challenging it, in order to avoid the hassle of a court appearance. However, even a single traffic conviction could have a negative impact on your car insurance premiums, and multiple convictions in succession may lead to the suspension of your license.
If you want to contest your ticket in court, you should strongly consider retaining a Fort Oglethorpe traffic lawyer to help you through this process. Courts tend to side with law enforcement officers unless there is significant evidence that a ticket was based on invalid grounds, so it may be beneficial to have a seasoned defense attorney by your side in these circumstances.
While choosing to pay the fine associated with a traffic ticket allows the ticketed driver to quickly move on with their life, it also constitutes an admission of guilt. Once someone accepts their ticket, they waive their right to challenge their fine or any other consequence that may come from their conviction, including a potential license suspension.
In order to contest a traffic citation in Fort Oglethorpe, the driver must indicate on their ticket or a court-issued notice that they wish to request an arraignment hearing. They would then be required to appear in court on the date listed on their ticket and present their request to the judge. At this point, the judge will set a later date for an arraignment meeting, during which the defendant may argue why they should not have to pay this particular ticket.
It is generally best to retain a Fort Oglethorpe attorney before requesting an arraignment hearing, and it could be essential to hire one well in advance of the hearing date for a traffic offense. In addition to contributing legal experience and expertise to a defense strategy, a seasoned attorney could also request a discovery period to make the collection of exculpatory evidence easier, as well as negotiate for a reduction in sanctions if the case still ends with a guilty finding.
Aside from nullifying expensive fines and insurance hikes, fighting back against traffic tickets can be important to avoid the accumulation of points on a driver’s license. As noted in Official Code of Georgia §40-5-57, various traffic offenses defined under state law, with the exception of tickets for driving less than 15 miles per hour over the posted limit or driving “too Fast for Conditions,” have point values assigned to them. Minor offenses are worth one point and the most serious offenses are worth up to six points.
Any driver that accumulates 15 or more points on their license within a 24-month period will automatically have their license suspended for one to three years, depending on how many times they have reached that point total within a five-year period. However, pursuant to O.C.G.A. §40-5-86, drivers can have their point totals reduced by seven points every five years upon completion of a state-approved defensive driving course, an option which a traffic lawyer in Fort Oglethorpe could go over in more detail if applicable.
Even one traffic offense could have a significant impact on your life, and multiple convictions can add up over time and impose serious consequences. If you want to minimize the negative effects of a traffic ticket, it may be worth the time and effort to request a hearing and formally fight your ticket in court.
To contest traffic offenses successfully, you will likely need help from someone who has taken on many similar cases successfully. Call today to speak with a Fort Oglethorpe traffic lawyer about the possibilities in your situation.