Traffic violations happen to the best of us. Perhaps you’re late for work, driving the same route you always do, but you’ve waited at three red lights. As you approach the next one, you speed up as yellow turns to red, and a cop notices and pulls you over and gives you a ticket—delaying your already late arrival to your shift.
But you insist the light was yellow when you entered the intersection. You may have been late for work, but you had your coffee this morning. You were awake and alert as any defensive driver should be.
Any driver can be charged a number of traffic violations that negatively impact their license. But what if you got an unfair ticket? Or maybe you want to lower the points on your license? With the help of a criminal defense attorney in Lafayette, Indiana like Coulter Law, you maximize your chances of successfully fighting the charges.
In the meantime, here are 4 ways your traffic violations affect you and your license.
#1 Pay Expensive Fines
You were hoping the officer would let you off easy, but this time you weren’t so lucky. The time has come for you to pay a fine. But what if the fine on the ticket is a good percentage of your weekly paycheck? As if that wasn’t enough, the consequences become even worse if you get any more points on your license.
Should you decide to pay the ticket, you accept the charge as it appears on your record, as it will remain for two years in the state of Indiana. It may be worth disputing the ticket if you believe the officer was mistaken.
Sure, one or two minor offenses may not look so bad, especially spread out over a long period of time. However, should you rack up a couple of violations in the same year, you run the risk of paying up even more.
#2 Your Insurance Premiums Could Go Up
Depending on your car insurance policy, you may run the risk of higher premiums as a direct result of your traffic violations. Add this to any fines you need to pay and you could lose a lot of money—either right away, or slowly over time as it throws off your carefully planned budget.
But not all policies are the same.
If your insurance premiums are your biggest concern, contact your insurance provider for their policies regarding raising premiums for traffic violations. You may find you’ve been in a legal battle to expunge a ticket to save money without realizing your premium didn’t change at all.
Should you make the call, be sure to choose your words carefully. There’s no need to reveal you have a ticket. Instead, reach out as an anonymous inquirer who is considering a switch to a new provider.
#3 You May Lose Your License
Not only does a ticket incur a fine, but also a few points to your record. Worse yet, serious or repeated violations may result in the temporary or permanent suspension of your driver’s license.
Needless to say, you want to avoid accumulating enough points for this to happen. But not all of us are so fortunate!
With the help of a criminal defense attorney in Lafayette, Indiana like Coulter Law, you have a better chance of keeping your license yet.
#4 You Might End Up in Traffic School
Depending on factors such as age and number of traffic violations in the space of a year, you may be required to enroll in traffic school. While the fees for said course will be coming out of your pocket, they’re worth it if they erase your most recent ticket or apply a point credit to your license.
Indeed, you may have the option to finish a driver safety program instead of a ticket that will appear on your record. While it might not seem ideal, it may be the key to keeping your license. A state-certified program will award any Indiana driver a credit of four points for completion.
Before enrolling, make sure the traffic school of your choice is approved by the state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles. If you’ve been required to complete the course, you must do so within 90 days to avoid losing your license.
What’s the Next Step to Clearing Your Traffic Violation?
If you’re seeking legal advice on your traffic violations or other criminal offenses, contact Coulter Law. Brian Coulter has years of experience as a criminal defense attorney in Lafayette, Indiana.