Let’s face it: Getting a traffic ticket is no fun.
After all, traffic tickets often bring:
- Potential driving record points, depending on the state.
- Possible license suspension, depending on the violation or point accumulation.
- Increased car insurance rates.
Could it get any worse?
Well, maybe, because getting a traffic ticket becomes even less fun when you get the violation traveling through another state.
You’re not really familiar with that state’s traffic laws, after all, and if you sincerely believe you don’t deserve the speeding ticket or other traffic violation, that makes fighting the ticket even more difficult.
Fortunately, we’ve got a few tips to help you contest your out-of-state traffic ticket.
Contest the Traffic Violation On Time
It’s important to notify the court of your decision to contest the traffic ticket within the allotted amount of time (usually, this is printed on the ticket).
Lucky for you, many courts allow drivers to contest tickets via snail mail, and some allow drivers to call the court. This means you don’t have to drive all the way back to the scene of the incident just to let the judge know you want to fight the charges.
Understand that this doesn’t mean you’ll actually fight the ticket over the phone or through the mail; instead, you’re simply telling the court, “Hey, I didn’t do this (or, “I did do this but I had a seriously good reason”) and I want to fight the ticket.”
Once you notify the court you want to contest the traffic ticket, you cut out the risk of being found guilty by default (it happens when you don’t respond to a traffic ticket on time) and can focus on making your case.
Hire a Traffic Ticket Attorney
Hiring a traffic ticket attorney is a great way to fight an out-of-state violation.
Sure, hiring an attorney can cost you some coin, but the cost of the ticket and your hike in insurance will always be more expensive.
Keep in mind that the hired attorney must practice in the state where you got the ticket. He or she will also be well versed in that state’s traffic laws and regulations, which will also be to your advantage.
Also, remember to notify the court if you want to state your case before a jury. If you miss your court date or forget to respond to the court appearance, you could see further penalties or license suspension.
Provide Evidence that You Aren’t at Fault for the Traffic Violation
A traffic ticket lawyer can help you with the state’s traffic laws, but you can also check out the state’s:
Understanding the state’s traffic laws can help you determine whether you actually committed the traffic violation.
Other ways you can help prove your innocence include:
- Taking photos of the area or intersection where you were ticket or are accused of committing the violation.
- Asking witnesses to testify on your behalf.
- Requesting the officer’s notes and looking for any discrepancies or details that actually show you’re innocent.
Have you ever received a traffic ticket while in another state? How did you handle it?