Why Hire a Traffic Lawyer?
Some of you may ask yourselves why hire a traffic lawyer to deal with your ticket, rather than just appearing yourself in court? It’s a good question and here I talk about the top 4 reasons you should never go it alone.
Here are the top 4 reasons to hire an attorney to represent you on a traffic ticket:
1.) You don’t realize that your license can be suspended by pleading guilty to certain speeding tickets and moving violations.
Although you may not realize this, there are approximately 100 different ways the Department of Motor Vehicles can suspend your licenses because of traffic or criminal charges. The following are a few examples of tickets that can result in a DMV license suspension, even if you have an otherwise clean driving record!
- Speeding 76 mph in a 65 mph zone
- Speeding 81 mph in a 70 mph zone.
- Speeding 66 mph in 50 mph zone.
- Driving while license revoked
- Conviction of 2 (two) 64 mph or more in a 55 mph zone tickets within a 1 year period.
- Conviction of a 64 mph or more in a 55 mph zone and a conviction for Reckless driving within a 1 year period.
2.) You are unaware of insurance point values for different violations
Driver’s license points and Insurance points are entirely different and the values of each differ from ticket to ticket. People often call me confused because they worry about driver’s license points when they should be concerned about insurance points. So long as a driver does not accumulate 12 license points in a 3 year period, driver’s license points are not as much of a concern as insurance points. Each insurance point will raise your monthly insurance premium by roughly 25% for 3 years! By hiring an attorney who knows how many insurance points are assigned to each moving violation, you can be sure that the attorney will have your financial interest in mind. The following are common insurance point values for different moving violations:
- Stop sign violation: 1 point
- Unsafe movement: 1 point
- Speeding 64 mph in a 55 mph zone: 2 points ( 0 if no other moving violations within past 3 years)
- Passing a stopped school bus: 4 points
- Reckless driving: 4 points
- Driving while license revoked: 8 points
- Driving while impaired: 12 points
3.) You don’t know if you need a Prayer for Judgment Continued(PJC)
A Prayer for Judgment Continued (PJC) allows a driver to avoid insurance and driver’s license points when convicted of certain moving violations. In other words, the NC DMV will not assess license points or issue a suspension for a moving violation that is PJC’ed. To avoid license points, a driver is allowed to use 2 PJC’s in a 5 year period. To avoid insurance points, a driver is allowed to use 1 PJC every 3 years per insurance policy. A misused PJC on a ticket where insurance points would not normally be assessed can be crucial because a driver only gets 1 PJC every 3 years. By hiring an attorney who is experienced in knowing when to ask for a PJC and for which moving violations a judge will grant a PJC is incredibly important. You do not want to burn a PJC when a conviction would not result in any insurance points anyway. Also, a PJC is entirely up to the Judge presiding in court today. Familiarity with the different judges presiding in court is crucial in knowing when to request a PJC or when to request a continuance.
4.) You do not want to go to court
Court can be an intimidating and scary place. You may have to sit in court all morning, missing time at school or work. You may not know where to go, who to talk to, or what to ask for. By hiring an experienced traffic attorney you can avoid the anxiety and frustration that comes along with appearing in your local courthouse. I can often represent clients through what’s called a Waiver of Appearance form. If you decide to hire me, I will inform you whether or not I can represent you by using this document and then I can email or fax it to you to sign. Let a knowledgeable attorney take the stress out of your day.