Four Strategies For Traffic Ticket Defense

Posted on: November 24, 2018

Cars are a way of life: we drive them to work, home, school, and out to restaurants and entertainment.  It is inevitable that one day you may receive a traffic ticket.  Whether you are driving or someone else is driving your car, you are open to liability.  Having a great traffic ticket defense is important to ensure that the fines or negative results of violating a traffic law are minimized.

Some examples of common traffic violations besides the most common, speeding, are failing to have insurance, driving without a license or driving on a suspended license, and using a cell phone while driving, also called distracted driving.

Appearing in court for your traffic offense with a good traffic ticket defense or a traffic ticket defense attorney can be costly.  You could be subject to expensive fees, license suspension or cancellation of insurance, which can negatively affect your employment.  If you are in a car accident, liability is key. You will want a traffic ticket defense attorney to assist you with your case.

Take control of the outcome of your fate and learn how to prepare for a traffic ticket defense.  Below are four strategies that help to defend against a traffic ticket that you and your attorney will discuss at length during the first meeting.

Question Arresting Officer

In order to arrest you, the officer would have had to make some subjective conclusions about the situation and the environment.  The police report is based on the police officer’s point of view as to how things happened.  

One technique that helps with your traffic ticket defense is to write down facts for your attorney that show the police officer was not parked or placed in a position where the officer could actually see well enough to conclude a violation took place.

Question Officers Specific Observations

For many traffic violations, the officer must show that the offender acted or failed to act in a safe manner which led to a violation.  For example, the officer must make a judgment that an offender "failed to stop" or that you took an "unsafe left turn." These are subjective beliefs.  

Since your case is based on your statement versus the officer's statement, you will want to have evidence to back up your story and traffic ticket defense.  In order to doubt the officer's ability to perceive accurately you may need one or all of the following:

  • Witness Statements
  • Diagrams
  • Photographs
  • Anything showing that the view was obstructed

This helps convince the judge that the officer's perception was inaccurate and your traffic ticket defense attorney may be able to have your case dismissed.

Honest and Reasonable Error

There comes a time when you violated a traffic law, but a violation is what a reasonable person would have done.  If this is the case the judge is likely to dismiss the case or reduce the charges.  

So examples of reasonable error include:

  • A crosswalk's lines are faded and old 
  • A stop sign was hidden or obstructed from view
  • Anything outside your control, for example, construction that requires you to drive on the wrong side of the road
  • Brand new stop sign at an area that never previously had a stop sign, this will only be reasonable for a short amount of time 

Avoid Potential Harm

If there is a situation that arises which requires you to violate traffic laws in order to avoid possible harm to you or anyone in your vehicle, then the law typically allows this as a proper traffic ticket defense.  Some examples of this type of situation include:

  • Speeding to avoid an out of control truck
  • Speeding up to avoid being rear-ended
  • Swerve over a double yellow line to avoid a pedestrian

This defense is allowed if it was necessary in order to avoid any harm, but it cannot be used as an excuse to break the law.

Knowing these strategies before you commit a traffic violation is helpful, however regardless if you have already committed an offense, knowing these defenses helps you to bring up relevant information to your traffic ticket defense attorney.  You and your attorney can focus on aspects of the case, such as the time of day and the weather, in order to add more to your traffic ticket defense and highlight the important facts of your case to the judge.  Use these defenses and your traffic ticket defense attorney to help you win your case.

NOTE: This Blog is for Informational Purposes Only and Does Not Constitute Legal Advice