The CDL holder who pays the fine for a traffic ticket without the advice of a traffic attorney just to get it over with, could be buying into a lot more trouble than they realize.
Hire a Traffic Attorney to Assist with a DMV NOTS Hearing
There are many ways a traffic attorney can assist a truck or bus driver in and out of court. The driver who gets an “Order of Suspension and Probation” from the DMV might not realize they have the option to request a DMV NOTS Hearing to ask for a consideration of increased risk based on the number of miles driven.
According to CA Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 12810.5, Issue and Renewal of Licenses, the DMV is authorized to “give due consideration to the amount of use or mileage traveled in the operation of a motor vehicle.” However, this may not apply when a driver holds a certain endorsement, discuss the specifics with an attorney.
If only a portion of your negligent operator treatment system (NOTS) points are from driving your private vehicle, the DMV is permitted to consider miles driven to give a commercial driver leeway to six, eight, or ten NOTS points. However, when the majority of points are in a non-CMV, you might not be eligible. Always consult a traffic attorney to determine what’s possible.
What’s more, Bigger & Harman offer CDL holders a free initial consultation. You can get the ball rolling by calling or sending an email with a few specifics. Then, make sure you request a NOTS Hearing because you only have ten days from the date the DMV mailed the notice.
It is not required by the DMV or by law to have a traffic attorney represent you, but think about it. Traffic attorneys spend most of their working hours in traffic court, listening to the judge rule on cases and tickets, much like those you are trying to remove from your motor vehicle driving (MVR).
Plus, if there is questionable fault-finding with an accident, even from another state, the DMV panel will listen to your side and remove that NOTS point. There are also special considerations and points a traffic attorney can raise that you might not consider relevant.
Keep in mind; a suspended license will likely lead to unemployment, and even after your license is restored after six months, what trucking firm is going to hire you? They are now required by law to consider your Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) record before hiring. Even a local firm will look at your CA MVR.
Challenge Tickets, Roadside Inspection Violations, and At-Fault Accident Determinations
Many at-fault states will allow the investigating officer to assign fault for an accident by percentage. Many experienced long-haul drivers remember when it didn’t matter if you were at fault or not, if you were involved in an accident, it went on your driving record.
It can still happen, particularly when the investigator misses something or isn’t thorough. Even when you are 10% responsible for an accident, you will get assessed one NOTS point in a private vehicle and 1.5 in a CMV. This finding is not always fair and might require an attorney to do an independent investigation and petition the court or the DMV to remove the points.
Likewise, a traffic attorney can always challenge your ticket in court without your attendance. This non-attendance is helpful for a truck or bus driver as they usually do not have the time to sit in court and wait to dispute their ticket.
An appealed conviction that you won requires the removal of the record. A reduced charge requires the Compliance, Safety, & Accountability (CSA) severity points to be reduced to one. Although a driver can request a review of a roadside violation, a win on appeal, or a reversal of an at-fault finding on DataQs, it might require a lot of legwork to get the paperwork from courts and the DMV when necessary.
Hiring a California Traffic Attorney
If you are issued a speeding ticket as a truck driver for violating the CA Vehicle Code CVC Section 22406,Other Speed Laws, your best option is to hire a traffic attorney to resolve it.
Moving violations such as speeding tickets can have many consequences, including losing your job. Speeding tickets also come with a high fine and may cause your auto insurance rate to skyrocket, particularly in your private vehicle.
A traffic attorney can assist you with finding flaws with the LEO’s account of the ticket and/or in the various speed measurement tools that the LEO might use to clock your speed. All that’s needed is a “reasonable doubt” to get the ticket dismissed.
A traffic attorney can bargain with the court for a lower charge. These lower charges often require the driver to plead guilty to a non-moving violation in exchange for a no-point conviction. These often require the driver to pay a fine only. Some drivers might disagree with this method, but at least it will only cost them short-term. They will keep their driving record clean and keep their insurance premium level.
Many experienced drivers consider this and would likely tell you if you ask, “If I were caught speeding in my truck, I would contact a lawyer to avoid having a moving violation on my record.” You will get the attorney’s fee back over time. You might not even realize it because you will not be unemployed, and the benefit of a clean record will only be visible to the high-paying firm that hires you down the road.
Traffic Attorneys Who Handle Issues in Truckee, CA
Call Bigger & Harman, (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.
We handle traffic issues for CDL holders using a fixed rate. Regardless of the time spent on your Request for Review, DMV NOTS Hearing, or traffic court appearance, our fee will not increase.
The 2019 CA Commercial Driver Handbook.pdf
The FMCSA DataQs