When you get a speeding ticket in Los Angeles it can mean more than just a small fine. Some speeding tickets come with a bill for hundreds of dollars or more, and sorting it out can consume hours of your time. And, since speeding tickets cost you “points,” one ticket can even mean losing your license. Don’t make the mistake of trying to deal with your ticket alone. A Los Angeles speeding ticket lawyer can help you.
The Simmrin Law Group knows how to handle speeding cases. We have the experience and knowledge to take on the traffic court system and win. Whether it means downgrading the offense, saving you money, or fighting so that you keep your drivers license, we can help. Let us give you a free consultation. Fill out the form to the right or call us at 310-997-4688 and get your free consultation today.
Why should I get a speeding ticket lawyer? Can’t I fight the ticket on my own?
Yes, you can represent yourself in traffic court and many people do this. If your only intention is to plead guilty and pay your fine, or to throw yourself on the mercy of the court and hope for the best, you can do that without a lawyer. And, if the amount of the ticket is fairly small and you don’t have anything else to lose, that could be the best choice.
However, if there is more at stake for you than just a small fine, professional legal help makes a big difference. Lawyers can help in three main circumstances:
When your time is valuable. Fighting a ticket can work, but it generally means spending hours—even an entire day—just for a minute or two of the judge’s time at traffic court. Legally, you are allowed to have a lawyer represent you there, and you do not have to be present yourself. That means that your lawyer can take care of the entire thing without you wasting your time.
When the amount of the ticket is high. Many tickets are “only” $100-200. However, some speeding tickets can be excessively high, because of double fines in construction zones, multiple traffic offenses or more. If the amount on your ticket is high, a lawyer helps improve your chances of getting the amount reduced and saving money.
When your drivers license is at stake. Sometimes the dollar cost of the ticket isn’t the biggest problem. Most speeding tickets cost 1 point on your license, and if you already have points from previous violations, you could have your license suspended—but not if you win in traffic court. This is where a speeding ticket lawyer truly makes a difference.
Our staff spends a lot of time in traffic court, and we’ve seen many citizens who decided to fight their tickets themselves. Many come prepared with strong arguments, sympathetic stories or facts that they believe count as evidence. Unfortunately, they are not trained in the legal system. Many of them spend hours preparing, only to have the judge end their cases in a matter of seconds. Many of them have lost their only chance to keep their license. Don’t make this kind of mistake—it pays to have a lawyer when you need one.
Do speeding tickets carry criminal penalties in Los Angeles?
Not usually. If you were simply given a citation for speeding, it’s likely an infraction—a ticket with a fine attacked to it, but not a criminal charge. Speeding, on its own, does not carry jail time or other criminal penalties.
However, there are cases where speeding can become a criminal offense. Examples include:
Excessive speeding. If you were speeding far in excess of the limit, it could be charged as criminal offense such as exhibition of speed, speed contest and/or reckless driving.
Speeding plus other offenses. While speeding on its own is not normally a criminal matter, speeding plus other dangerous acts can be. For example, speeding and swerving across lanes could count as reckless driving. And many traffic stops that start because of speeding become an arrest for driving on a suspended license, drug possession or other offenses.
Failure to appear/warrants out. Once an officer has pulled you over they will ask for your ID and run you through their system. One of the things they’re looking for is any outstanding warrants, and if you have any they will arrest you. Similarly, if you miss your court date for your speeding ticket (and haven’t paid it by then), you can be issued a failure to appear which can become a criminal issue.
All of these offenses are at least misdemeanors, which carry potential jail time. Many of them can also be charged as felonies, which may carry prison time and will affect you for the rest of your life.
How does a speeding ticket affect my drivers license?
California’s “point” system adds points to your license every time you have some kind of traffic violation. A simple speeding ticket costs you 1 point. If you caused an accident, that is also 1 point (on top of the point for speeding). And, if you have any more serious violations like reckless driving, that costs 2 points.
If you have too many points in too short a period of time, you will have your license suspended. The thresholds are:
4 or more points in 1 year
6 or more points in 2 years
8 or more points in 3 years
If you already have points on your license from past offenses, that means that even a simple speeding ticket for going 5 mph over the limit can become an automatic license suspension. It’s possible to use traffic school to get rid or some points, but it’s costly and time-consuming. The best approach is to fight the ticket and win from the start. This is why it’s so important to consult with a lawyer as soon as you get your ticket.
Talk to a Los Angeles Speeding Ticket Lawyer for Free
Winning in traffic court is harder than it sounds. Don’t try it alone. Let the legal team at the Simmrin Law Group give you a FREE consultation to discuss your ticket, the possible consequences, and the best approach to fighting it. You deserve to have a professional on your side. Fill out the form to the right or call us at 310-997-4688 and get your free consultation today.