Have you recently received a traffic ticket? You need legal help sooner rather than later. Don’t blow off your ticket. Don’t pay your ticket without getting advice first. The consequences may haunt you for years.
When you’re pulled over by the police or when you have received a traffic ticket, it’s tempting to simply pay off the ticket and move on with your life. This can be a big mistake. Retaining an Atlanta traffic ticket lawyer is strongly recommended. If you’ve recently received a traffic ticket in Fulton County or Atlanta or elsewhere in Georgia, get help immediately.
A traffic ticket can have serious implications for your future. Most people are under the impression that a traffic ticket is something that should simply be paid off and put behind you. Consulting with a traffic ticket lawyer, however, can help you understand all of the benefits of dealing with this issue promptly and effectively.
My office works to help people who are facing minor or more serious traffic offenses. There’s too much on the line to leave your future to chance. Advice from an attorney could help following a traffic ticket.
Pleading Nolo Contendere for a Georgia Traffic Violation
Does it make sense to plead “no contest” or “nolo contendere” to your traffic offense? You can only do this is you have not entered any other no contest plea for a traffic offense in the past few years. The judge also may decide not to accept this plea.
The Georgia Department of Driver Services considers your no contest plea the same as a guilty plea if you have another nolo on your record. The biggest difference between a regular nolo plea and a guilty plea is that nolo charges (when used only once every five years) do not lead to points on your license.
Your insurance company also may raise your rates even with a nolo plea depending on the violations nature.
Know Where Your Driving Record Stands Before You Take Action
Your initial reaction may be to pay the ticket, admit your guilt, and move on. Do you know the current status of your driving record, though? You may have already accumulated enough points on your driving record. If you’re close to fifteen points, pleading “nolo” on a new charge that pushes you over the limit could lead to a suspended license shortly after your court date.
In addition, your insurance company is not so much concerned with the points on your record as the actual driving offenses. Your insurance company will also treat your “nolo” pleas the same as a guilty plea, meaning they may hike your rates for even just a few points on your driving record.
This is why you need to know what’s currently on your record. Knowing where you stand can help you make an informed decision if you’re facing new traffic violations.
Most Common Traffic Ticket Violations in Georgia
There are many different traffic ticket violations that can have significant consequences for your future. Handling these issues immediately is strongly recommended if you receive a traffic ticket.
Paying the fine and calling the number on the back of the ticket may be your gut reaction if you received a speeding ticket in Georgia. A guilty plea, however, which comes with paying your speeding ticket could lead to points on your driver’s license. Additionally, a guilty plea could lead to higher insurance costs.
Did you know that these increased insurance rates can last for up to 5 years? If you accumulate 15 points across 24 months, you will have a suspended license. What follows are some of the points that you will receive for each speeding ticket conviction in Georgia. These include:
· 15-18mph over: 2 points
· 19-23mph over: 3 points
· 24-33mph over: 4 points
· 34mph over: 6 points
If you are going 85 mph or more on any highway or road in Georgia or going 75mph or more on a two-lane road you will get a super speeder fine in the state of Georgia. This costs $200 per offense. Super speeder fines can have a significant impact on your future and your license.
Driving with a Suspended License
You may be under the impression that it’s okay to skirt around the rules of your suspended license conviction. If you need to drive to work or go to the doctor’s office, a law enforcement officer can still come after you for driving with a suspended license.
If your license has been suspended, make sure to comply with all the rules and regulations of this suspension.
- Driving with a suspended license could lead to further consequences.
- Understand the rules of your suspended license in full to prevent violations
Reckless driving is classified in Georgia as any individual driving a vehicle with reckless disregard for the safety of others. It can also include reckless disregard for property. Any individual convicted of reckless driving is facing misdemeanor fines and potential imprisonment. There may be many defenses to handling a reckless driving charge.
Failing to Stop at a Stop Sign
If you are rolling through a stop sign, an officer can stop you. You could be facing charges for failing to stop at a stop sign even if you believe that you were going slow enough. Your vehicle is responsible for coming to a total stop at a stop sign. This means that your wheels must stop rolling.
Running Through a Red Light
If you try to speed through a yellow light, you could be facing a traffic ticket for running a red light. It can be difficult to dispute any situation in Fulton County or Atlanta in which you are accused of running a red light with a red light camera.
Failing to Signal a Traffic Lane Change or Signal a Turn Change
It’s your responsibility to notify other drivers of your impending moves on the road. Failing to do so could lead to a traffic ticket. This might initially seem like a minor issue but it is not something that should be ignored.
Open Container While Driving
It is important that anytime you are behind the wheel you avoid having an open container. Even the suspicion of an open container could lead to problems with police officers. If you’re pulled over for something else, an officer may suspect you for DUI if he or she spots an open container. If you are convicted of open container you could be looking at 2 points on your license.
- It does not matter whether the open container was being consumed by you or not
- Never allow any open alcohol containers in your vehicle
Improper Passing on a Curve or a Hill
Make sure that you always have proper clearance and notify your intention to move around a vehicle. If you improperly pass on a curve or hill, however, you could be looking at 4 points on your license.
- Don’t risk trying to pass on hills or curves. You could get into an accident or face an offense.
Don’t minimize the impacts of aggressive driving. If convicted of aggressive driving in Atlanta or Fulton County, up to 6 points could be added to your license.
Should I just Pay My Atlanta Traffic Ticket and Avoid the Trouble?
Paying a traffic ticket or speeding ticket in Georgia means that you plead guilty to the offense. You’ll be facing any consequences associated with that conviction. It might seem like a minor inconvenience but there are long term consequences of just paying your traffic ticket. Some of these potential problems include:
· Court costs and fines
· Ticket staying on your record
· Revocation or suspension of your license
· Points on your record
· Information showing up on background checks done by employers
If I Still Have to Pay My Fine, Why Do I Need to Hire an Attorney?
There are many legal issues associated with a traffic ticket. Your attorney may help you identify these. The citation might have a mistake on it and simply paying it could cost you in the long run.
An Atlanta traffic ticket attorney might also be able to handle your court appearances in your absence. This could save you valuable time. Even just getting your questions answered by a lawyer can help you figure out your next steps.
Your insurance premium increase associated with simply paying the ticket might be much higher than your legal fee. A lawyer can help you fight every aspect of your violation and investigate your case to determine any problems.
Most people make the mistake of not bringing the right material to court. Your Georgia traffic ticket lawyer can help you get ready for the big day. For some offenses, proof that you’ve fixed something that previously led to a violation could lead to dropped or reduced penalties. Knowing what to expect is important. A lawyer helps protect your rights and prepares you for what will happen.
What If I Fail to Appear in Court for a Traffic Charge?
If you have been called to court for a traffic offense, you should not ignore this. Not showing up could lead to further consequences.
If you avoid appearing in court in the city of Atlanta, your license may be suspended. This means that the Department of Motor Vehicles is eligible to suspend your driver’s license if you do not respond to the citation or fail to appear in court. This is just one reason why it makes sense to hire an Atlanta traffic lawyer.
If your license has already been suspended, you will probably have to pay a fee in order to have it reinstated.
A Fulton County traffic ticket lawyer can help you understand your rights.
What Drivers Under 21 Should Know About Traffic Court in Georgia
If you have to go to traffic court in Atlanta or elsewhere in Georgia, you should know a few things about how these courts work. You should know that in traffic court in Georgia, those under age 21 may be facing serious consequences. This is true even for minor speeding tickets. For example, those under age 21 are more likely to have their license suspended.
An automatic license suspension can impact a person under 21 when the charges include:
- 4 or more points accumulated on your record in a 12 month period (for those under 18)
- Hit and run
- Reckless driving
- Any offense leading to 4 or more points
- Using a motor vehicle to elude or flee from an officer
- Racing on streets or highways
Does it Ever Make Sense to Transfer Cases to Higher Court?
Most people facing a traffic violation simply want to deal with it and move on. Some may not even realize they have the option of bumping their case to a higher court. As a driver you have the right to move your case to the higher county court in your area of Georgia.
Some municipal courts can be tougher on accused violators than the higher court. It’s important to have a Georgia traffic ticket lawyer who knows your court. The reputation of your municipal court may lead you to move your case elsewhere.
To make a good decision about your case, identify an Atlanta traffic ticket attorney you can trust.
What You Should Know About Habitual Violator Allegations and Felony Charges
Traffic violations are the most common crime in the state of Georgia and this is why many people ignore them and simply pay the ticket or avoid appearing in court. Whether it’s a parking ticket, reckless driving, or speeding, it is important to get insight from an experienced attorney. You should also recognize that some traffic charges in Georgia are felonies. These include traffic violations that you commit after you have been deemed a habitual offender in Georgia. If you’re named a habitual violator, future infractions while driving a vehicle could lead to five years in prison.
Any individual charged with such a crime could be facing prosecution for felony charges. This is regardless of what traffic violation has been convicted. Felony charges may also follow any aggravated circumstances. There is a 4-year statute of limitations is the state of Georgia for felony charges so you should not assume that just because you have not been charged yet that you are safe.
An experienced traffic ticket attorney can help you understand all the implications of a traffic violation in Georgia.
You Can’t Afford to Just Pay It
Have you been accused of a traffic offense in Georgia? Don’t wait to let the penalties rack up. Contact an Atlanta traffic ticket attorney today to learn more about your rights and the next steps you should take to protect yourself.
The consequences of pleading guilty or nolo to a traffic offense can follow you for years. Get the help you need.
Georgia Traffic Ticket Attorney:
A lawyer can make a big difference in your case. Make sure you have someone advocating for you.
Our traffic ticket lawyers help clients all around the Atlanta Metro area. We also have an excellent record of positive outcomes for clients with traffic tickets at the Gwinnett Recorder’s Court! Call to get help today!!