Let’s face it: no one wants to be given a speeding ticket. But a lot of us are inclined to travel above the speed limit or take other risks when we’re behind the wheel. At some point, you might be pulled over as part of a traffic stop. In fact, that’s the number one reason for having contact with law enforcement. If and when that happens, it’s important to understand what you might be facing. As such, we’re clearing up some common misconceptions surrounding traffic tickets in today’s post. Here are just a few myths you shouldn’t believe.
MYTH: Clerical Errors and Police No-Shows Will Get Your Ticket Dismissed
Many motorists keep their fingers crossed that officers who issue speeding tickets will make a small mistake that will get the ticket thrown out in court. But it’s pretty rare that a clerical error will result in a dismissal. Larger mistakes — like incorrect driver identity, vehicle description, or location — could help your speeding lawyer or traffic attorney build a stronger case in your defense. However, spelling errors or other menial mistakes won’t work in your favor.
You might also have heard that if the police officer fails to show up in court, your ticket will immediately be dismissed. Dismissals can happen for this reason, but there’s no guarantee. Some states don’t even require law enforcement to be in attendance. While it’s possible that a judge may throw out the speeding ticket if the officer fails to show up, you shouldn’t count on it. It’s a good idea to talk to your lawyer about what you can expect beforehand and whether there might be a possibility of dismissal.
MYTH: You Can Blame Your Speeding Ticket on a Malfunctioning Radar
Some motorists think they can outsmart the police in court by blaming their speeding ticket on a faulty radar or incorrect operation. Proving such a case can be costly, require expert testimony, and offers no guarantees. Proving that an officer’s radar equipment was malfunctioning at the time your ticket was issued is challenging. It’s possible that failure to calibrate and/or maintain such equipment could result in suppression of such evidence, but this will require some heavy digging. Additionally, in New Jersey, for instance, officers are trained to identify the speeds of moving vehicles visually.
MYTH: You’re More Likely To Get a Speeding Ticket At the Month’s End
A lot of people believe police officers are eager to make their quota at the end of the month, resulting in a slew of new traffic tickets being issued. If you’ve ever received a ticket at the end of the month, it could be a coincidence — or it could be close to a holiday, when police presence tends to be higher. The truth is that most police departments don’t have quotas for traffic tickets. The time of the month itself isn’t what motivates law enforcement to issue tickets, so you should follow the rules of the road every day to prevent the need for hiring a speeding or careless driving attorney.
MYTH: You Don’t Need to Hire a Motor Vehicle Attorney
NJ Drivers charged with reckless or careless driving, or speeding, may believe that they can defend themselves in court when facing a traffic ticket. While hiring a lawyer isn’t legally required to fight a traffic ticket, there may be a number of situations in which having legal representation may be a good idea. A large number of moving violations also include the risk of license suspensions and fines, and can cause insurance premiums to rise. If, for instance, you’re trying to argue that the ticket contains major errors or misrepresentations, it might be best to work with an experienced attorney. A lawyer’s presence may not be required in all situations — and there’s no promise that a lawyer will be able to get your ticket dismissed — but many people find having help from a legal professional to be beneficial.
If you’re facing a traffic ticket it’s important to familiarize yourself with the truth behind these misconceptions. For more information on how we can help careless or speeding NJ drivers in court, please contact us today.