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  • Fight Traffic Ticket in West Virginia

    SUMMARY: How to Fight a West Virginia Traffic Ticket

    If you choose to plead “ not guilty" and fight your WV traffic ticket, you'll need to appear in court on your arraignment date. Check your WV traffic ticket or contact the relevant court to find out how to request a court hearing.

    Read this page to learn how to fight your traffic ticket in West Virginia.

    Fighting Your WV Traffic Ticket

    When you receive a traffic ticket in West Virginia, you have several plea options:

    • Guilty.
    • No contest.
    • Not guilty.

    Regardless of plea, it must be entered before or on the court date posted on your traffic ticket.

    NOTE: If you've lost your WV ticket, learn what steps to take in our Lost Traffic Ticket page.

    Pay Ticket
    (Plead Guilty or No Contest)

    • Pay the fine.
    • Option to plea bargain penalties.
    • Incur points on your WV driving record (could lead to license suspension/revocation).
    • Possibly incur increase on auto insurance rates.
    • Possibly have points reduced by attending a Defensive Driving Course.

    Learn more about
    Paying Your Traffic Ticket.

    Fight Ticket
    (Plead Not Guilty)

    • Contest traffic ticket via trial.
    • Choose to represent yourself or hire an attorney.
    • Possibly lose option to plea bargain for lesser penalties.
    • No penalties if found not guilty, but must pay court/attorney fees.

    Learn more by reading below.

    What It Means to Fight Your Traffic Ticket

    Contesting your WV traffic ticket in court means:

    • You are using your right to a court trial with the purpose of having the charges reduced or dismissed.
    • You may represent yourself, or hire legal counsel.
    • No fines or penalties if the court rules in your favor, but you still must pay court fees and, if applicable, legal fees.
    • If you're found "guilty," you must pay fines and all associated fees. The WV Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will assign points to your driving record, possibly causing the loss of your WV driver's license and increased auto insurance rates.

    Pleading Guilty or No Contest

    Either plea requires paying the traffic ticket fine amount to the court listed on your citation. Unless you need to arrange for a payment plan, a court appearance is not needed. Check out our Pay Traffic Ticket page for full details.

    Avoid Late Penalties

    Failing to respond to your traffic ticket is not recommended. Repercussions may include the suspension of your West Virginia driver's license and a bench warrant for your arrest.

    Notify the West Virginia Court

    In Person

    Check your traffic citation for the court location and the arraignment date and time. If you meet with the prosecuting attorney and cannot reach an agreement, the court will issue a trial date.

    Phone

    This option depends on the WV traffic court. If offered, you must enter a " not guilty" plea prior to the hearing date listed on your traffic citation.

    Hire a WV Traffic Ticket Attorney

    Hiring a traffic ticket lawyer will better your chances for reduced charges or ticket dismissal. Depending on your driving history, this could mean saving your West Virginia driver's license from suspension or revocation.

    Prepare Your Case

    If you decide to hire legal help, a WV traffic ticket lawyer will prepare and present your case. If, however, you decide to represent yourself, the pressure will be on you to prepare and present a solid defense.

    Plead Your Case Before a Judge or Jury

    After hearing both sides, the presiding judge will issue a decision. If found " guilty," the court will explain how to go about settling your fines.

    Check Your WV Driving Record

    Regardless of verdict, check your driving record after the trial for accuracy. If you notice any errors, immediately contact the West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

    Shop for Better Auto Insurance Rates

    Once you verify the accuracy of your WV driving record after a " guilty" verdict, you always have the option to shop for lower car insurance rates. Comparing the rates of different auto insurance providers online is a great way to find a plan that best meets your coverage needs.


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