Have you ever found yourself with a traffic ticket even though you felt you did nothing wrong? What about when you may have violated the law, but had good reason to? As it turns out, around 95% of drivers who receive a ticket simply admit guilt and pay the fine according to LawFirms.com.
However, 5% of drivers do end up contesting a traffic ticket they have received. If you are one of those people, you may be wondering are traffic lawyers worth it? Can they help you win your case? What about payment, fees, and other aspects that go into fighting a ticket? The truth is, it depends. Like all things that pertain to law, context should matter before hiring a lawyer.
Note: This article is for educational purposes only and not to be taken as professional legal advice. Please consult with your attorney for more information.
Are traffic lawyers worth it for you? Here are 3 items to consider”
- The seriousness of the crime
- How you benefit from hiring a traffic lawyer
- The downsides to hiring a traffic lawyer
The seriousness of the crime
Determining if a traffic lawyer is worth it for you will depend heavily on the violation. If it is small in nature, such as running a red light, failing to stop at a stop sign, or speeding, there is a possibility you could beat the ticket. However, you’ll need irrefutable proof that you did not do these things. Don’t make common mistakes, as John McCurley, Attorney, explains in an article on Nolo.com:
“For non-lawyers, it’s easy to get off track. For example, people representing themselves often present explanations for why they committed a traffic violation (like “I didn’t see the stop sign” or “I didn’t realize how fast I was going”) that aren’t considered legal defenses. The end result is typically a bad defense and a conviction.”
Unless you are absolutely sure you can defeat the ticket and have proof, it may be best to hire a lawyer. Additionally, most states offer some programs (such as defensive driving) that can wipe away your ticket, saving you time and money.
Nevertheless, it does become increasingly important to hire an attorney when the violations are more severe such as:
- Driving on a suspended license
- Road rage
- Hit and Run
- Car Crash
- And more
Also, to reiterate, even if it is a lesser violation, without evidence you can still be slapped with the full fine.
How you benefit from hiring a traffic lawyer
A traffic lawyer comes with their own unique set of skills and knowledge. They can help you mount a legal defense and contest your ticket. More importantly, they can help you when facing a major violation. A traffic lawyer can help you with things like:
- Representing you in front of a court. You don’t have to miss work to appear at the court summons.
- Knowing the legal system in your area so you can understand your odds of getting a ticket dismissed.
- Reducing your payment or violation to that of lesser stature.
- Keeping your record clean. You want a clean driving record that will not affect your insurance. If left unchecked, a speeding ticket can make your insurance go up.
- Helping you gather evidence.
In general, a traffic lawyer will always give you a leg up instead of contesting alone. They have intimate knowledge of traffic laws and may help you in reducing your sentencing. If you want to know, are traffic lawyers worth it? Shortly put, minor offenses may not require their services, but a severe traffic violation does.
The downsides to hiring a traffic lawyer
Costs. Above all, hiring a lawyer of any kind is going to cost you. It could cost you more than just paying the ticket outright. However, consider the fact that if you are successful in reducing a sentence you receive other benefits. For instance, you may not have to pay the ticket, but you also won’t experience your insurance going up, which adds up over time. You’ll need to weigh those benefits against the cost of paying a traffic lawyer. Keep in mind, there is always the possibility that you might lose your case. In turn, you’ll have to pay not only the fine but your lawyer as well.
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