Traffic Tickets are an expensive inconvenience that if neglected can have serious consequences. Most traffic violations are Class C Misdemeanors, but there are exceptions.
The consequences for a traffic citation go beyond just paying the fine. Your insurance costs, as well as your eligibility for a Texas Driver’s License, can be negatively impacted by quickly or carelessly resolving your ticket.
Many people receive a traffic ticket and forget about it or ignore it. This results in warrants and higher fines.
Additionally, you can’t renew your driver’s license if you have outstanding citations and warrants.
In most situations, I will be able to get your ticket dismissed. Sometimes this will be an outright dismissal for technical reasons. More often than not, this will be through negotiating a simple driving probation period where you pay a fine and agree to avoid additional citations in exchange for a dismissal.
No matter what, don’t plead guilty. Many courts will allow you to pay online without appearing. While this is convenient, it almost always results in a conviction. Texas assigns points to drivers’ licenses based on convictions. The more convictions you have, the more points you get.
The accumulation of a certain number of points can have negative consequences on your driving privileges and eligibility. If your Texas Driver’s License is suspended or revoked, you may be eligible for an Occupational Driver’s License (ODL). You can learn more about ODLs here.
The following can all negatively impact your driver’s license:
- Running a red light
- Running or rolling a stop sign
- Failure to yield
- Illegal lane change
- Traveling the wrong way on a one-way street
- Negligent accidents with other vehicles or property
- Distracted driving
- Failure to maintain financial responsibility (insurance)
- Expired Registration
- Reckless driving
If you are holding a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) and you’ve received a traffic ticket, even if it was while driving your personal vehicle, you need to contact me immediately. CDL drivers are held to a higher standard in Texas. In most cases, probation is not available, and you can’t get out of it by taking a driving class.
Your CDL is tied directly to your livelihood. Don’t put everything in jeopardy because of one mistake.
Texting while driving is incredibly dangerous. While it has been banned in various jurisdictions throughout Texas, the ban has only recently become a Statewide law.
Go here and take the pledge against texting and driving. It could save a life.
Distracted Driving is now punishable by a fine up to $99 for first-time offenders. The fine for repeat offenders is up to $200. If an accident is caused by texting and driving, it could be charged as a Class A Misdemeanor with serious consequences of up to 1 year in jail, and a fine of up to $4,000.
Driving without insurance can have serious consequences. In addition to other moving violations, failure to carry auto insurance in Texas can result in a maximum fine of $317 as well as surcharges of $250 a year for three years on insurance once you obtain it. If found guilty, it becomes a permanent part of your driving record.
It is imperative to avoid these consequences at all costs.
Driving While License Invalid or Driving While License Suspended is considered a Class B misdemeanor in Texas. If convicted, you up to 180 days in jail, plus a fine of up to $2000.
If you have a prior DWLS/DWLI conviction, then the DWLS/DWLI charge will be enhanced to a class A misdemeanor. This means the possible jail sentence and fine double.
Many people think that fighting their speeding ticket is futile because they were actually speeding. While it is often the case that an individual was speeding, it is important that you Do not Plead Guilty. Even if you are guilty of the offense, you can avoid a final conviction. This is important because it saves you time and money down the road.