No one enjoys getting a traffic ticket in North Carolina or anywhere else. Apart from the fine you will have to pay if you plead or are adjudicated guilty, getting a traffic ticket is inconvenient. Initially, being pulled over delays, and often humiliates you. Later, the ticket may cost you time away from work that is more expensive than the fine itself. What many people are not aware of is that a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney can often fight your ticket without your having to be present, thus relieving you of the expense and inconvenience a court appearance typically requires. If you are in Carteret or one of its adjacent counties, Hancock Law Firm can smooth the way for you when it comes to dealing with a traffic violation.
The Major Misconception About Traffic Violations
A large percentage of the population regards traffic tickets as similar to parking tickets — annoying and often underserved, but best paid and dispensed with as quickly as possible. This is unfortunate because moving traffic violations can have serious consequences. Most people take the position that “you can’t fight City Hall,” so you might as well pay the fine and get on with your life. Remember, though, that paying the fine is equivalent to being found guilty.
Even minor traffic violations that are “waivable,” meaning you have the option to relinquish your right to appear in court to contest your ticket, should be dealt with by a qualified traffic attorney like Joel Hancock. Following are a number of reasons not to simply plead guilty and pay the fine:
- The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (NC DMV) can assess points on your license. Such points can mount up quickly and result in license suspension, a consequence that will be expensive and extremely inconvenient, especially if you use your car to commute to work, run errands, go to medical appointments and/or transport relatives.
- Your guilty plea will likely affect your automobile insurance premium going forward, adding to the expense of the fine.
- Since your conviction will appear on your license, if you are stopped in the future, the police officer who stops you will see you as a previous offender which may (whether it should or not) affect the outcome of the incident.
In case you are thinking that you can avoid all of these problems by ignoring the summons, think again. If you don’t pay the fine and also do not show up at the hearing (known as Failure to Appear or FTA) you will be in serious trouble. In addition to increased fines, your license will be suspended, and a warrant may be issued for your arrest.
How Do You Get a Traffic Ticket Dismissed in NC?
In NC, dismissing a traffic ticket depends on the violation and circumstances. Some minor infractions like expired tags can be fixed and dismissed online. Otherwise, consider contesting: plead not guilty at court, gather evidence like dashcam footage, and prepare defenses like procedural errors or extenuating circumstances. Consulting a local lawyer familiar with your county’s specific policies is always recommended.
Why You Should Call Hancock as Soon as Possible
Joel Hancock, a sharp and well-informed traffic attorney, will be able to help you in many ways. For some violations, he may be able to take the entire burden off your shoulders, appear in court on your behalf, and negotiate with the agility that comes from extensive experience. Depending on circumstances, he may be able to get your case dismissed, to win you a not guilty ruling in court, or successfully plea bargain to a less severe offense. Even if you have missed a court date he may be able to reschedule your appearance and prevent you from having to pay the $200 penalty for FTA.
Traffic Violations Hancock Handles Routinely
Once you understand that an accomplished traffic attorney like Joel Hancock can take over your case, you’ll be relieved to know that a professional will be at the helm. Joel deals with traffic court on a regular basis and understands all the ins and outs of the legal system. You can rest assured that he will know precisely which steps to take and when to take them. Perhaps the biggest advantage is that you will be free to continue your life without serious interruption while he is providing you with highly competent legal service.
Call Hancock when you are ticketed for any of the following violations:
- Seatbelt violations
- Failure to reduce speed — e.g. rear-ending another car or not slowing for a work zone
- Failing to stop for a stop sign or stop light
- Reckless driving — e.g. tailgating, rapid lane changing, passing on a curve
- Driving with a suspended or revoked license
- Driving with an expired registration or inspection
- Texting while driving
You should be aware that, although texting while driving is illegal in North Carolina, state law permits drivers to use cellphones while driving (handheld or hands-free) unless they are minors.
What is a Prayer for Judgment Continued?
A prayer for judgment continued (PJC) means the court does not enter a final judgment or conviction in the case even though you may have pleaded or been found guilty. In other words, though you will have to take financial responsibility for having violated the law by paying fines and court costs, you may be spared the license points and the resulting increase in your insurance premiums. There are restrictions to how frequently PJCs can be used, however. The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles allows two PJCs every 5 years and insurance companies allow only one PJC per insurance policy every 3 years.
Contact Carteret County Traffic Ticket Lawyer
Joel Hancock is dedicated to providing you with the best possible legal representation. He is a well-informed, keen negotiator and has been through the process of fighting traffic tickets many times. Moreover, he has an excellent track record. He knows which defenses are likely to work best in your particular case and is adept at fighting charges by questioning the charges against you in terms of:
- The police officer’s view of your vehicle being obstructed or obscured
- Law enforcement speed detection equipment (e.g. a radar gun) being defective
- The necessity of your action — e.g. speeding or making an illegal turn to avert an accident
- The sudden appearance of an object or animal in the road
- A mechanical problem with your vehicle
- A medical event that you could not control
- An unposted speed limit
Don’t try to deal with your traffic ticket alone. As with most areas of your life from plumbing to medical care having a professional in charge is safer, more efficient, and more cost-effective. Don’t waste your money or your valuable time. Call Hancock Law Firm and let us handle the problem. Contact us today for a FREE consultation!