As a driver, the last thing you want to see is police lights in your rearview mirror. If this happens, you know you're in trouble. As you pull to the side of the road, your legs will turn to jelly as your hands begin to sweat.
When discussing what went wrong with the officer, don't hesitate to answer their questions and provide any requested information (such as license, insurance and registration).
If you're having a lucky day, the officer may let you off with just a warning. In that case, you can carefully leave the scene and do your best to avoid the same type of trouble in the future.
Conversely, if you receive a traffic ticket for your violation, you should immediately learn more about your legal rights. Although you have the right to pay the ticket and move on, doing so could be a mistake. Not only is it costly to pay a ticket, but it could also result in an insurance premium hike in the near future.
There are many ways to fight a traffic ticket, with these strategies among the most common:
- Dispute the facts: This entails providing evidence to the court that the facts presented by the officer are untrue. For example, you could do this by showing that there is no way the officer could have witnessed you breaking the law. Diagrams, witness statements and photos of the scene can back up your claim.
- Question the opinion of the officer: Many traffic tickets are issued based on subjective criteria, such as what the officer thought you were doing. You can question the officer about what they saw, why they thought you did something wrong and any other details that could prove that they don't know exactly what happened.
- Argue that you had no choice: You can agree with the assessment that you broke the law, but argue that it was out of necessity. An example of this would be an emergency with your vehicle, such as a tire blowout that caused you to hurry to the side of the road.
You don't have to fight a traffic ticket, but you have the power to do so. When you understand the best defense strategies and your legal rights, it's easier to feel confident in your ability to come out on top in court.