In this article, you will discover:
- How to avoid turning yourself in for an arrest warrant.
- How hiring a traffic ticket attorney can save you money over time.
- How paying a traffic ticket affects your driving record.
I Learned There’s A Warrant Out For My Arrest Due To A Past Traffic Violation. What Do I Do?
If you find you have a warrant out for your arrest, you can turn yourself in, which I don’t recommend, or you can call me. I will find the citation that caused you a bench warrant and write a motion to strike the warrant. Often the warrant is for failure to appear (FTA). If that’s the case, I might ask the court to strike the warrant and give you a new trial date. Usually, that works, and the warrant gets lifted without you going to jail or turning yourself in.
Then we have a new trial date. I request discovery to help you fight the underlying old charge, and we get that disposed of as best we can. Often this leads to a dismissal, especially if it’s an old case.
Should I Just Pay My Traffic Ticket And Be Done With It?
If you have a traffic ticket that has no points, you might just pay it and be done. Or, if you don’t care about getting points or paying more for insurance, you might just pay the fine. But, if you do care about points, you don’t want to do that. If you pay, you get a conviction. Then your insurance company finds out, causing your insurance rates to likely go up.
Typically, an attorney’s legal fees for a ticket are an investment. You’re going to pay less for an attorney than you will to insurance companies over the next two years, or more, because of the higher points. It’s usually worth it to hire an attorney.
How Serious Does A Traffic Citation Need To Be Before Getting An Attorney Involved?
It is up to you how serious a traffic citation has to be before calling an attorney. Generally, an attorney has more ways to get a citation dismissed than a defendant would by themselves. I would definitely consider getting an attorney if you
- drive for a living and have any kind of charge,
- were found driving more than 20 mph over the speed limit,
- are unaware if the ticket carries any points, or
- if you’re out of state.
In these cases, you really should hire somebody to handle it properly at that point.
What Are The Top Misconceptions People Have About Traffic Violations?
The biggest misconception people have about traffic violations is if you pay, you won’t get points. People don’t realize that paying a ticket means you’re pleading guilty—you’ll be given a conviction on your record. People sometimes think that by paying, that’s a way to get a trial date. No, if you pay, that closes out the case.
What Would Escalate A Misdemeanor Traffic Violation To A Felony?
Something involving a criminal charge could escalate a misdemeanor traffic violation to a felony, such as a violation related to killing someone, drug trafficking, or driving in connection with committing a felony.
How Is Reckless Driving Defined In Maryland?
Reckless driving in Maryland is driving with a disregard for the life and property of someone else.
What Scenarios Most Commonly Lead Someone To Drive With A Suspended License?
The most common reasons someone would drive on a suspended license include not knowing of the suspension or having to go to work, and not being able to afford missing work.
What Are The Possible Charges And Consequences For Driving On A Suspended License?
There are a few charges related to driving on a suspended license that come with different penalties. Knowledge is a factor—whether or not you knew or should have known you were suspended.
Nowadays, if you are charged with driving while suspended because of missing a court date or not paying a fine, that is no longer jailable. Maximum penalties for these are fines and points.
Driving on suspension after more serious charges are more elevated, like driving on a suspended license related to DUI or unpaid child support. The consequences could be more jail time and eight to twelve points on your license. The most serious penalties, related to DUI statute, warrant up to a year in jail and $1,000 in fines. These are rare but possible.
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