Fight Traffic Ticket in MainePage Overview
In Maine you have three plea options: guilty, not guilty and no contest (nolo contendre). Regardless of how you plead, you must notify Maine's Violations Bureau within 20 days of receiving the citation. If you have misplaced your ticket, learn what steps to take in our Lost Traffic Ticket page.
(Plead Guilty or No Contest)
- Pay the fine
- Option to plea bargain penalties
- Incur demerit points on your driving record (could lead to license suspension/revocation)
- Possibly incur increase on auto insurance rates
- Option to take driver safety course to reduce points on driving record
Learn more about
Paying your Traffic Ticket »
(Plead Not Guilty)
- Contest traffic ticket before judge
- Possibly hire a traffic ticket attorney for legal guidance
- Possibly lose option to plea bargain for lesser penalties
- No penalties if found not guilty, but must pay court/attorney fees
- Pay fine, court and attorney fees if found guilty
Learn more below.
Challenging your Maine traffic ticket means:
- Possibly reaching a plea agreement before your hearing. Otherwise, you will probably lose any plea bargain options when you appear before the judge.
- Look into hiring a traffic ticket attorney to help you navigate the Maine traffic court system.
- Judge finds you not guilty. You still must pay court and, if applicable, legal fees.
- Judge finds you guilty. You must pay ticket fine, court and, if applicable, legal fees, plus incur resulting penalties.
Pleading Guilty or No Contest
Pleading guilty or no contest (nolo contendre), means you are waiving your right to a trial by judge. Submitting your payment to Maine's Violations Bureau constitutes a guilty plea. For more information on this, including your Maine traffic ticket options, read more on our Paying Your Traffic Ticket page.
Avoid a Suspended Driver's License
Failing to respond to your ME citation it will result in a license suspension. In addition, upon reinstatement, you will also be levied with a late fee and be required to pay a reinstatement fee.
Maine's Violations Bureau handles all traffic ticket pleas and payments. Follow the directions on the back of your citation for how to submit your not guilty notification. If you've misplaced your ME traffic ticket, call the Violations Bureau at (207) 783-5422.
Before submitting the completed citation indicating your not guilty plea, be sure to include your current mailing address. Otherwise the Violations Bureau will mail your hearing date and time to your old address. Your violation hearing will take place in the presiding District Court in which your infraction occurred.
Consulting with legal counsel could help increase your chances for a favorable outcome. Through a traffic attorney's assistance, you may get the traffic ticket charges reduced or even dismissed, sparing you of demerit points being added to your driving record, which could save you from a suspended driver's license and/or increased auto insurance premiums.
The Violations Bureau will mail you your hearing information, which will include date, time and location. Before your hearing date, you will need to prepare your defense. A traffic lawyer can provide expert counsel on how to proceed. If you choose to represent yourself you'll need to gather evidence, review your driving record and contact and perhaps even subpoena witnesses.
Prior to your hearing before a judge, you will most likely have the chance to speak with the District Attorney about your case. If no plea bargain agreement can be reached, you will proceed to the courtroom for your hearing.
The State will present its case first, which more than likely will include testimony from the citing officer. After the State finishes, you will then present your case by presenting witnesses and, if you so choose, testifying yourself. Once you finish, the judge will issue a verdict. If you disagree with the decision, you can issue an appeal.
Regardless of the court's verdict, be sure to follow up by checking your driving record for accuracy, paying close attention to demerit points. An accumulation of demerit points could cause your Maine driver's license to be suspended or even revoked, resulting in a jump in your auto insurance rates.
Insurance companies are notified of all moving traffic violations. Depending on the severity of the infraction and your insurance company's policies, you may see an increase in your car insurance rates following a traffic ticket. Should this occur, keep in mind that you always have the option to shop online for and compare car insurance rates to ensure you're getting the best deal.Other Topics in This Section