Speeding Tickets

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FIVE MYTHS ABOUT TRAFFIC TICKETS

As a traffic ticket lawyer St. Peters, I work with clients to resolve their traffic tickets in the best way possible.  Over the years, as both a prosecutor and a defense attorney, I have noticed several myths about traffic tickets.

Here are five:

  1. “IF THE COP WRITES THE DATE WRONG ON THE TICKET OR MISSPELLS MY NAME, THE TICKET IS INVALID.”

This is a common myth that the officer giving you the speeding ticket O’Fallon must write all the information perfectly or it’s not valid.  This is untrue.  Here is why:  no one is perfect and if there was ever a trial over the prosecutor can call the officer as a witness and have him clarify the incorrect information.  In other words, you don’t get a traffic ticket thrown out for ticky tack errors by the officer.

  1. “THE OFFICER SAID HE CAUGHT ME SPEEDING USING RADAR BUT HE REFUSED TO SHOW ME THE READ OUT SO THE TICKET IS INVALID.”

A couple of times a year we get people calling claiming they want the ticket thrown out because they were never shown the radar readout when they requested it at the time they were pulled over.  An officer does not have to show your speed on the radar device for the ticket to be valid.

Now, if there was a trial, the prosecutor will have to question the officer on the stand about calibration and training on the device.  However, that doesn’t usually result in a non-conviction for a traffic ticket St. Peters.

  1. ”THE OFFICER FOLLOWED ME INTO ANOTHER TOWN RIGHT BEFORE I PULLED OVER…SINCE THEY DON’T HAVE JURISDICTION WHERE I WAS ACTUALLY PULLED OVER, THE SPEEDING TICKET SHOULD BE THROWN OUT.”

If only this were true.  Missouri, similar to most states, have statutes that allow officers to complete a traffic stop for an event that happened in one town, even if the actual place that the car was pulled over is in another town.

Now, that doesn’t mean a traffic ticket can be given by a St. Peters officer in say O’Fallon if the site of the violation was in O’Fallon.  Officers in one town don’t have original jurisdiction in towns other than the town for which they serve.

  1. “I GOT A SPEEDING TICKET IN ALABAMA ON MY WAY TO FLORIDA. I’M NOT GOING TO PAY IT SINCE I LIVE IN MISSOURI.”

Missouri participates in what is known as the Interstate Compact, which is an agreement between almost all of the states to share DMV information.  So if you get a ticket in Alabama but ignore it, you could up with a Missouri suspended license until you resolve the ticket in Alabama.

Worse, if you ignore it but the following year get pulled over in Alabama on your way to Florida, you’ll probably be arrested and forced to post bond.  Not a good way to start a vacation.

One other quick point on this issue:  I often get calls from people that live near out traffic ticket office in St. Peters who want me to resolve out of state tickets.  I can’t do it because I am not admitted to practice law in those states.  Best thing to do is contact an attorney in the county or city where you were pulled over and see if they can help.

  1. “I WASN’T SPEEDING AND WANT TO TAKE THE MATTER TO TRIAL.”

So it’s not a myth that you can contest a speeding ticket O’Fallon and have a trial.  Practically speaking, however, there are two problems:  First, many lawyers will not take a speeding ticket case to trial.  Second, that’s because it’s generally not financially feasible for clients.  The fine for some tickets is under $150.00.  You can usually have an attorney get your speeding ticket near reduced to a no point violation (i.e. muffler violation, etc.) by a traffic lawyer St. Peters for under $150.

Trials are expensive and even if you win, you’re going to spend probably double or triple the amount of the ticket.

CONCLUSION

Like death and taxes, traffic tickets are a part of life.  The municipal court system in and around St. Louis is unique in that citizens can get their tickets amended to no point violations and doing so is highly competitive for lawyers so it’s extremely affordable.

 

Traffic Ticket Center is located at 4215 S. Old Highway 94 in St. Charles, Missouri.  We are right next to the DMV in Harvester.  We assist clients with traffic tickets of all kinds, including speeding, careless driving, commercial driving violations, suspended licenses, marijuana charges and DWI / DUI.   Call us today for a free consultation.  (636) 486-2669.

 

 

 

 

 

 

FCC Speeding Tickets in Missouri…

FCC Speeding Tickets in Missouri…

FCC Speeding Tickets in Missouri

If you receive a speeding ticket in Missouri from a Missouri Highway patrol officer, the ticket will state that it is an FCC ticket.  FCC means “Fine Collection” Center, and it is located in Jefferson City.  On an FCC ticket, instead of a court date to resolve the speeding ticket, the ticket will state “due in 30 days”.

Even though there is no court date listed, you can still resolve the ticket with a St. Charles traffic lawyer in the circuit court of the county where the ticket was received.  The process works much the same as any speeding ticket received in a Missouri municipal court.  You can hire our firm to represent you and seek a no-points amendment to avoid paying higher insurance premiums and getting points on your license.

As with regular speeding tickets, pleading guilty will result in having those points on your license.  If you receive too many points, your license can be suspended.  And when you plead guilty, your insurance premiums are likely to go up because the insurance company will see the guilty plea and decide you are more expensive to insure.

Keep in mind that not all county prosecutors will amend FCC tickets to non-moving violations (no point tickets).  In St. Charles County and surrounding counties, prosecutors will amend these tickets.   However, in some rural counties, they will not.  You can call our office and we can advise you on your particular ticket at no charge.

If you hire Traffic Ticket Center, we can work with the prosecutor to amend your FCC speeding ticket so you can avoid paying more for insurance and risk losing your ability to drive.

Call us today at (636) 486-2669 for assistance.  We can quote you the cost for the ticket and give you more information on how we can help you.

Traffic Tickets 101:  Municipal Court versus Circuit Court…

Traffic Tickets 101: Municipal Court versus Circuit Court…

TRAFFIC TICKETS 101:  MUNICIPAL COURT V. CIRCUIT COURT

                If you are pulled over in Missouri for a traffic ticket, your case could be heard either in a Missouri municipal court or a Missouri circuit court.

What’s the difference?  A municipal court is the court where a town or city enforces their own municipal ordinances.  A circuit court is where the state of Missouri enforces its own statutes.

At the bottom of every ticket where the officer can state select whether the violation is of a local ordinance or state law.

When a person speeds say in O’Fallon, Missouri, that speeding ticket is both a violation of a local O’Fallon ordinance prohibiting speeding and of Missouri state law.  However, revenue from fines and court costs goes to O’Fallon if it is charged as an ordinance violation and to the state of Missouri if charged as a state law violation.

If you are caught speeding on the highway by a Missouri State Highway Patrol officer or in an unincorporated part of a county by a sheriff’s deputy, both of those tickets are codes as state law violations to be heard at the circuit court in the county where the violation occurred.

If you have a prior offense like a DWI, it likely will be heard in circuit court because of the level of seriousness.  That is another factor in determining which court will hear your case.

Generally speaking, it is better to be in municipal court than state circuit court.  Municipal prosecutors are much more likely to amend a ticket in exchange for a fine.  That can happen at the circuit court too, but often prosecutors are much more reluctant to amend charges or to not attach some period of probation if the charge is serious enough.

Traffic Ticket Center is your traffic ticket lawyer for violations in St. Peters, O’Fallon, Wentzville, Cottleville and St. Charles.  We can help you understand how your particular circumstances might differ if you are charged in state circuit court versus a local municipal court.

Remember, you should always hire a traffic ticket lawyer to help you avoid rising insurance premiums and points on your license.  Pleading guilty to moving violations can lead to both and affect your ability to drive and to drive affordably.

Can I Remove Points From My Record After Pleading Guilty to a Speeding Ticket in Missouri?

Can I Remove Points From My Record After Pleading Guilty to a Speeding Ticket in Missouri?

Can I Remove Points From My Record After Pleading Guilty to a Speeding Ticket in Missouri?

 That depends.

In some counties in Missouri, particularly the rural ones, prosecutors will often not reduce a speeding ticket to a non-moving violation.  If you plead guilty in that case, you might be able to take a class called the Driver Improvement Program (DIP) in Missouri.  If you are eligible, taking the class will remove the points from your record.  The judge has to approve your taking the class and it must be completed within 60 days after a guilty plea.

Now here’s the catch.  Even if you take the class, the points will be taken off your record but the conviction for speeding can and will show up on your driving record.  That means your insurance company will probably still increase your rates.

Remember, in Missouri if you get eight points on your Missouri driving record within 18 months your license is suspended for 30 days.  Your license will be revoked for a year if you get 12 points within 12 months.

That is why DIP could be really important for you if you already have several points on your driver’s record.

Here is a link for more information about the Driver Improvement Program in Missouri:  https://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=1940