How to contest a ticket according to a traffic court attorney
August 17, 2023at4:00 PM
If you've recently received a traffic ticket in Texas, you may be feeling frustrated and concerned about its impact on your driving record and insurance rates.
However, before you give in and pay the fine, you should understand that you have the right to contest the ticket. Contesting a ticket allows you to challenge the validity of the citation and the evidence presented against you. In some cases, it can help you negotiate for a reduced charge or dismissal.
This is where the expertise of our traffic court attorney at Monks Law Firm can be invaluable. We can guide you through the process of contesting your ticket and increase your chances of a favorable outcome.
Know your grounds for contesting
The first step in contesting a traffic ticket is to understand the grounds on which you can challenge it. Some common reasons for contesting a ticket in Texas include:
Inaccurate information: If any information on the ticket is incorrect, it can be a strong basis for contesting the ticket.
Faulty equipment: You may be able to challenge the ticket if the equipment used to measure your speed or record the violation was not calibrated or maintained properly.
Mistaken identity: If you believe the ticket was issued to the wrong person, you have the right to contest it.
Defective signs or signals: If the traffic signs or signals were unclear, obstructed, or malfunctioning, leading to the violation, the ticket may be contestable.
Consider the consequences
Before proceeding, it’s important to carefully consider the potential consequences. While successfully challenging the ticket can result in its dismissal, there is also a chance that your efforts may not be fruitful.
In some cases, contesting a ticket can lead to additional court fees or an increase in the fine if found guilty. Weigh the pros and cons and consult with a traffic court attorney to make an informed decision.
Review the ticket
Upon receiving a traffic ticket, carefully review the information provided on the citation. Take note of the specific violation cited, the date, time, and location of the alleged offense. Pay attention to any notes made by the officer issuing the ticket and examine the evidence, such as photographs or videos, if available.
Prepare your defense
This step involves gathering as much evidence as possible to support your case. These may include photographs or videos, witness statements, and maintenance records. Compelling evidence prepares the ground for a successful contest.
Consult a traffic court attorney
Enlisting the expertise of a traffic court attorney can significantly improve your chances of a successful outcome. A skilled attorney can assess the details of your case, identify potential weaknesses in the prosecution's argument, and develop a comprehensive defense strategy.
Plead “Not Guilty” and request a hearing
To contest a traffic ticket, you will need to plead "not guilty" to the alleged violation. This can typically be done by mail or in person. If you choose to contest the ticket in person, you may have the opportunity to negotiate with the prosecutor before the trial.
Follow the instructions provided on the ticket to request a hearing. It's essential to meet any deadlines associated with this process, as failing to do so may result in a default judgment against you.
Prepare for trial
If your case proceeds to trial, you’ll need to thoroughly prepare. Your tr