How to Fight a Traffic Ticket in Florida
How to Fight Your Traffic Ticket
If you do not feel that you have violated a Florida Traffic Law, you have the right to fight your traffic ticket, but that means doing this in a court of law. There are instructions on your ticket you can follow. You can also contact the local county court where the ticket was issued from. If you don’t want to stress over fighting a ticket, you can choose to pay the ticket and attend traffic school to keep the points from the violation off of your record.
What does it mean to "fight a traffic ticket"?
You will be pleading “not guilty” because you want to fight the charge. Keep in mind that pursuing this option with the Florida County Court may waive your right of:
- Dismissing your Ticket
- Reducing your charge
- Attending at a Basic Driver Education Course (4 hr BDI Driver Improvement Course) to avoid points on your driving record or avoid Insurance rate increases
Pleading "Not Guilty"
If you want to fight your traffic ticket you will need to plead “not guilty” to a traffic ticket and you’ll need to appear in court for a hearing. You may want to consider hiring an attorney to represent you in a court of law.
Hiring an Attorney to Represent You
You have the right to hire an attorney to represent you in your case. Take the time and interview them carefully and see if you have a valid case.
Did you know? Your first hearing is a “pre-trial hearing” or (pre-trial conference), and it takes place before the trial. If you do not see the police officer at this hearing, don’t get too excited. They are not always required to attend.
Guilty as Charged
If your luck runs out and the court finds you guilty, you may be given the option to complete a driver improvement course. Although it depends on the judge’s ruling, it’s possible that you will still be able to use this option to dismiss the points from your traffic ticket and remove any points on your driving record. This also means that your insurance rates will not increase.
Fighting a Traffic Ticket as a CDL License Holder
Drivers that hold a CDL license (Commercial Driver License) have challenging issues when it comes to traffic ticket violations that are issued to them. Civil citations issued to CDL license holders affect their employment as well as their insurance premiums. CDL drivers have limited options when it comes to receiving a traffic violation. You may not take a driving school to keep the points off your license. Unfortunately, this leaves just one option and that is to set your ticket for a hearing. Due to being on the road all the time as a commercial driver, you will more than likely need to hire an attorney to represent you in court.
Florida Law Regarding Commercial Drivers Licenses
Section 322.61 of the Florida Statutes specifically addresses situations when the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles can disqualify a driver from operating a commercial motor vehicle, which also means the driver loses employment as a commercial driver. As of January 2014, if a person holding a Commercial Driver’s License received a traffic violation and was found guilty, the Department of Motor Vehicles will no longer accept a “withold of adjudication”. In lamens terms, this means the points will always be assessed and be put on the driver’s CDL license for all violations they were found guilty of regardless of whether the infraction occurred in a commercial vehicle or their personal vehicle. That’s pretty tough!