Protect Your Driving Privileges Fight Your Ticket With Bigger & Harman Today

undefinedGetting a traffic ticket is a frustrating experience that can result in more than just a fine. A traffic ticket can result in points on your license and increased auto insurance premiums.

Contesting your traffic ticket may seem daunting, but you can reduce or eliminate the consequences with the right approach. This blog post will provide the ultimate guide to contesting traffic tickets in CA.

Consult a Traffic Ticket Defense Attorney

Before deciding to pay your traffic ticket or contest it on your own, consult a traffic ticket defense attorney.

An experienced attorney can provide you with a better understanding of the potential consequences of your ticket and the best approach to contest it. A traffic attorney can also explain the potential defenses available to you, including any procedural errors or factual disputes.

Likewise, a traffic attorney might suggest you plead guilty and attend a traffic violator’s school (TVS). Not all drivers with traffic tickets are eligible for TVS, so it is crucial to discuss this option with an experienced traffic attorney before you waste time and money.

Attend the Arraignment

After receiving a traffic ticket, you must attend an arraignment. You should receive a court reminder that tells you where and when to attend.

This arraignment is your opportunity to enter a plea, either guilty with explanation, not guilty, or no contest. If you decide to contest your ticket, you should plead not guilty. 

Of course, you’ll need to take a day off or two from work or school to attend, or you could hire a traffic attorney.

At the arraignment, your attorney will plead not guilty for you and request a trial date.

Your traffic ticket defense attorney can help you understand what to expect at the arraignment and your options. They will also submit all required documents to the court to request discovery or enter a request for reduced charges instead of trial if the State’s case against you is strong, or you admitted guilt when stopped.

The Facts about Appealing Traffic Ticket Decisions

If you are found guilty at trial, you may be able to appeal the decision. However, appealing a traffic ticket decision in CA can be difficult. Appeals are only granted if the trial court made a legal error or if there is insufficient evidence to support the conviction. In most cases, an appeal is not an option, so presenting the best possible defense at trial with a knowledgeable and experienced traffic attorney is essential.

We cannot emphasize the difference enough. Traffic court is so much different than other courts. The sheer volume of cases makes it necessary for the judge to move things along quickly. If you get stage fright or are unprepared, you could hear, “Guilty, pay the court clerk on your way out.”

Using a CA Traffic Attorney to Assist in Resolving Traffic Tickets

You won't need to attend arraignment or trial when you hire a traffic attorney to resolve your traffic ticket. Therefore, you won’t need to remember if you admitted guilt to the law enforcement officer (LEO) when they asked, “Do you know why I pulled you over today?”  

Your attorney can request the LEO’s notes, so they can develop a defense based on those notes, or negotiate a plea deal, perhaps for a no-point conviction. Most drivers forget they have a constitutional right against self-incrimination. Most believe it doesn’t apply to traffic stops for some reason. It’s in your best interest to politely exercise your “right to remain silent.”

A traffic attorney can help you resolve your traffic ticket in several ways. Sometimes that involves requesting a trial by declaration. Other times it can involve a negotiated deal for a lesser charge. 

Another way a traffic attorney can help you is by representing you at trial. Your attorney can present a strong defense, cross-examine the State’s witnesses (usually only the officer who issued the ticket), and challenge the evidence against you. An experienced traffic attorney can identify weaknesses in the State's case and present compelling arguments to the judge to try to put a “reasonable doubt” in his or her mind. That would lead to a “not guilty” verdict. 

An experienced attorney can provide valuable advice, represent you in court, and advocate for reduced charges or penalties. One of the best things a traffic attorney can do for you is getting a no-point conviction. It’s basically like a parking ticket where you pay the fine, but there is no negligent operator treatment system (NOTS) points that would stay on your driving record for three years and negate your 20% “good driver’s discount,” and additional risk will raise your premium. That increase costs the average CA driver $692 more annually in premiums. Don't let a traffic ticket impact your life negatively. Contact a traffic ticket defense attorney today to protect your rights and driving record.

Consult with Bigger & Harman When You Have a Traffic Ticket & Discover How Convenient It Can Be

Contesting a traffic ticket in CA can be a complicated process. Hiring the Bigger & Harman traffic ticket defense team is an excellent method to ensure you receive the best possible outcome in Fresno County Traffic Court.

Call Bigger & Harman in Bakersfield at (661) 349-9300, use their straightforward contact form or email

Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.


The CA Driver Handbook English y Español.

The CA Courts Self-Help Guide.

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