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When Is It Worth Fighting a Traffic Ticket?

Traffic Ticket Trouble in Tulare?

Knowing when to fight a traffic ticket has more variables than just the fine. Many people ask themselves if it is worth fighting a traffic ticket when the fine is around $234 for 1-15 mph over the limit. If you consider only the fine, you are a bit shortsighted. The fine is the easy part, you pay it one time, and it is done. Even though it may be difficult to part with the $234, you rationalize that hiring a lawyer or taking a day off from work would cost more. That’s not necessarily true.

However, there is more involved than just a fine. If this were your first ticket, you would want to go to traffic school to keep the Negligent Operator Treatment System (NOTS) points from showing up on your motor vehicle driving record (MVR), which your insurance company will see when you come up for renewal. The right to go to traffic school will cost you another $60-65 in Tulare County, and then you will have to pay the tuition, bringing your total up over $300.

Not Eligible for Traffic School?

Now, let’s say you already had a traffic ticket within the last 18 months and you used traffic school to mask that ticket from your insurance company. You will not be able to use it again for this ticket, and your insurance company will first cancel your “good driver’s discount” because you cannot have more than one NOTS point on your MVR and keep your discount. Once that happens, it is gone for at least three years, and then they will raise your insurance premium due to the increased risk.

So, now let’s look at how much that $234 speeding ticket you received out there on 65, 198, or 99 will cost if you pay just $125 per month for auto insurance. The average Californian pays $163.50 per month; you may pay more or less depending on several risks factors used by the insurance company. There are many variables, such as where you live, the make, model, and year or your vehicle, how far you drive to school or work, your marital status, age, and gender. Fighting a traffic ticket for speeding 1-15 mph over the limit could save you as much as $1179. Do you think you might be able to hire an attorney?

So far, we have just discussed how much speeding 1-15 mph will cost, when you just pay the fine. What if you received a ticket for 16-25 mph over the speed limit? You could save approximately $1485 by fighting a traffic ticket for 16-25 mph over, which carries an estimated $360 fine. The fine for 26 mph and above, up to 100 mph will cost almost $500, and the same for a red-light ticket. You could save $1750 by fighting those tickets.

Fighting a Traffic Ticket for Speeding Over 100 MPH Is a No-Brainer

Over 100 mph will cost you $900-$2600 if convicted in the Porterville or Visalia Traffic Court. The Kings County judge adds $100 for every mile an hour over 100, so it could be much more. When you think about it, you really don’t have a choice about fighting a traffic ticket for speeding over 100 mph. You or an attorney must appear in court, and the fines and penalties are too extreme.

If convicted, you will be assessed two NOTS points by the DMV, which will stay on your MVR for seven years, your insurance will likely double or triple, and your driver’s license could be suspended by the judge for 30 days. Furthermore, you are now half-way to the maximum of four NOTS points allowed for the year before a six-month suspension and one-year probation. Contact a traffic ticket attorney.

Consult a Tulare County Traffic Ticket Attorney

Although Bigger & Harman’s main office is in Bakersfield, they represent clients in many traffic courts in Central Valley and when needed, in SLO, LA, and Riverside counties. If you are questioning whether it is worth fighting a traffic ticket, call for an initial phone consultation at (661) 349-9300, or send them an email: attorney@markbigger.com.

You can even request an appointment by sending them a private message on their Facebook page, where they post traffic advice tidbits and news updates.

If your still in doubt, read some of the feedback and comments their clients have left on Avvo, Nolo, or Yelp. Nolo and Avvo are two prominent national websites for legal professionals.

Se habla Español 661.349.9755.