Law Offices of Ellis and Bryant, P.A.

Traffic Tickets

Know how Paying the Citation Will Affect Your Record

When you receive a traffic ticket or citation, you may believe that paying the citation is your only option or that it is the quickest and easiest way to deal with the head ache and hassle of a ticket. However, there are some very important consequences to just paying a citation.

  • Paying the citation is the same as entering a guilty plea. If you pay the citation you are admitting guilt and will most likely be adjudicated guilty. A plea of guilty can in some cases be used against you in a civil law suit so if there was a car accident in connection with the ticket it is especially important that you speak to an attorney before paying the ticket.
  • Paying the ticket will likely result in points on your license and be permanently recorded on your motor vehicle driving record. If you pay the ticket you will likely be adjudicated guilty of the traffic violation or offense. When you are adjudicated guilty, points are assessed against your license. If you get too many points your driving privilege or license may be suspended or revoked. Just paying the citation may in some cases result in the loss of your ability to legally drive and the suspension of your license.
  • Paying the ticket may cause your insurance rates or premiums to go up. If you receive points on your license and your motor vehicle record indicates a guilty plea to a traffic citation, your insurance carrier may raise your premiums or your rates and your monthly bill might go up. Over time even a small increase can have significant financial repercussions.
You Have Options Other Than Just Paying the Citation

Traffic Ticket You do not have to just pay the citation. You may have a defense or there may be a legal reason to dismiss or fight the citation. Even if there is not though you still have other options. The right attorney can appear at a hearing on your behalf and try to get you a withhold of adjudication. What that may mean for you, is that you may not have to plea guilty, you may not receive points on your license, your insurance may not go up and you may not open your self to civil suit in cases of traffic accidents. In other words, an attorney may be able to help you avoid most or all of the consequences to paying the citation listed above.

How the Right Attorney can Help You
  • Helping you work with the DMV to obtain a hardship license
  • Challenging the suspension of your license at a DMV hearing
  • Negotiating with the hearing officer for a withhold of adjudication
  • Possibly help you avoid having to take a traffic safety course
  • Keep you from having to take a day off of work to appear at a court hearing by appearing on your behalf
  • Interviewing witnesses and taking formal statements
  • Advising you of the status of your case
  • Appearing on your behalf at court hearings
  • Challenging the officer and any witnesses at a hearing and possibly getting your case dismissed in some circumstances
  • Making proper and timely objections
  • Attempting to get a reduced fine in your case
  • Conducting Legal Research
  • Preparing your witnesses for trial testimony and cross examination by the prosecutor
  • Cross examining police officers and other adverse witnesses at hearings and trial
  • Potentially keeping your insurance rates from going up
  • Advising you of potential civil liability or law suit claims you may have in the event of a traffic crash or accident
  • Gathering mitigation to present to the Court