A Traffic violation is an act of breaking a rule or law governing vehicle movement and control (including equipment and parking). They may be civil infractions or crimes.
Most non-criminal moving traffic violations in New York City and Rochester are handled by the Department of Motor Vehicles’ Traffic Violations Bureau. All other violations are adjudicated in local criminal courts.
A traffic violation can affect a driver’s record and employment. For commercial drivers who rely on their license to make a living, an unfavorable finding for even civil motor vehicle infractions can be devastating. To avoid these consequences, motorists should enter a plea of not guilty during their first court appearance and consider appealing the conviction.
The fines associated with traffic violations vary by state. However, all fines must be paid in full within 30 days of the decision by the Traffic Violations Bureau. The fines are based on the New York traffic law sections that were violated, as well as state surcharges and driver responsibility assessments, if applicable.
The fines may be further broken down into two further groups – moving and nonmoving violations. Typically, moving violations carry higher penalties. The traffic infractions are also classified as civil or criminal, depending on their severity. Criminal offenses typically have more serious consequences than civil infractions.
Some states have a point system that can lead to substantial fines, surcharges and even a license suspension. Gannes & Musico can help you fight your traffic ticket to keep your points low and your driver’s license intact.
Generally speaking, a traffic violation can have up to three or more points associated with it depending on the severity of the offense. Some of the most serious offenses like speeding can result in up to 6 or more points. On the other hand, a less severe offense such as tailgating can attract up to 4 points.
Once convicted of a traffic violation, the points that are added to your driving record will remain on it for up to 18 months. During that time, the DMV will look at your driving history from before and after the date of your conviction to determine your total number of points. In most cases, if you get 11 or more points within an 18 month period, your license will be automatically suspended.
Many states have a point system where accumulating too many points on your record could lead to license suspension. In addition, if you get several serious violations within a certain period of time, your license may be suspended permanently.
Debt-based driver’s license suspension is a cruel and counterproductive practice that traps people in a cycle of poverty and punishment. It also disproportionately affects Black and Latinx people, who are more likely to be stopped, ticketed and convicted of traffic offenses.
It is important to remember that even if a judge or other legal authority decides against you, you still have the right to appeal that decision. By appealing, you ask a higher court to review the previous decision and potentially change it. Appeals can be made in a variety of ways, including through an administrative hearing or by submitting a request to the New York Court of Appeals. A lawyer can help you navigate the process.
A traffic violation can cause your insurance rates to go up, though the exact amount will vary depending on your state and insurer. Each company determines its own criteria for determining how much a violation will impact a driver’s rate, and these guidelines can change over time. If you have multiple tickets or other factors that lead to a higher premium, it may be worth it to shop around for a better rate with another provider. You can do this for free by entering your ZIP code at the top of this page.
If you receive a ticket in Massachusetts or anywhere else, it can have serious repercussions on your driving record and your insurance rates. Luckily, many violations will not result in an increase in insurance rates, including parking tickets and other non-moving violations. However, the severity of the offense and how many points it accrues can affect your rates differently. A skilled traffic attorney can help you fight your ticket and avoid higher insurance rates.