Anyone who drives in New York should have an understanding of the area’s methods for processing traffic ticket cases. Drivers with New York drivers’ licenses as well as licenses from other states can receive traffic summonses in New York and both are handled in the same manner. Proper responses are important to help minimize or reduce fines, points or other associated penalties of traffic violations.
Non-criminal traffic violations in New York City, such as a speeding ticket or a citation for failing to yield the right of way, are managed by what is referred to as the New York Department of Motor Vehicles Traffic Violations Bureau instead of through the standard local courts. This helps to reduce case backlogs in the criminal courts and allow non-criminal cases to be handled in a more timely fashion. For each case, the state will appoint an Administrative Law Judge to review it and make the final determination about the driver’s guilt or innocence. If a driver is found guilty, the ALJ has the authority to outline the penalties which can include fines as well as loss of driving privileges.
For any case heard in the TVB, the defendant can be represented by an attorney and is also allowed to present evidence as well as witnesses. The TVB manages traffic cases not only in New York City but also in several Suffolk County towns, Buffalo and Rochester. For some people a traffic summons can be a criminal case and even involve a felony charge. In these situations, the criminal court is the entity that would be involved instead of the TVB. DUI cases as well as summonses for driving with a suspended or revoked license are among the cases considered in criminal court.
At Martin A. Kron & Associates, we have worked with many people facing criminal and non-criminal traffic violations. It can be helpful to get legal advice during these times.