Getting a traffic ticket in New York is a serious matter. You can incur harsh penalties if you are convicted of the violation. Possible punishments include fines, mandatory suspension or revocation of driving privileges, and additional surcharges. In the most severe cases, jail or prison time can result. Although you face the potential for an array of sanctions, you are not guaranteed to suffer them. If you can demonstrate that you did not commit the alleged traffic offense, you may be able to avoid serious consequences. Fighting a ticket isn’t always easy, as the processes, laws, and regulations associated with resolving the matter can be complex. Fortunately, you can have a lawyer help at each stage of your case.
Assessment of Fines
A fine is one of the most apparent penalties associated with a traffic ticket. This is a monetary penalty imposed after a finding or plea of guilt.
The severity of traffic offenses varies. Thus, the amount of your fine will depend on what law you have been accused of violating. That said, the cost of a traffic ticket can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars.
Accumulation of Points
People who commit multiple traffic violations are considered high-risk drivers in New York. The point system helps identify these individuals. It also allows the Department of Motor Vehicles to take action against them to keep roads safe.
If you get 11 or more points on your license in 18 months, the DMV will suspend or revoke your driving privileges. When under suspension or revocation, you are not lawfully allowed to drive.
Points can only be assessed if you are convicted of or plead guilty to the alleged offense. Still, the date appearing on your driving record for accumulation calculations is the date you committed the violation, not the date you were convicted.
Driver Responsibility Assessment
The loss of driving privileges is not the only consequence you can face for accumulating points. You may also be charged a Driver Responsibility Assessment fee.
The assessment is imposed if you get 6 or more points on your license within 18 months. The cost is $100 a year, and you must pay it for 3 years, totaling $300. If you have more than 6 points on your license, you are charged an additional $25 for each. For example, if you have 8 points, your yearly assessment will be $150 ($100 for the original 6 points + $25 for the 7th point + $25 for the 8th point).
Failing to pay the Driver Responsibility Assessment will result in your driver’s license suspension.
Increased Insurance Premiums
Many insurance companies have their own point systems concerning traffic violations. Their policies may state that, if a customer is convicted of an offense, the carrier can raise rates.
Because the policies differ between companies, check with yours to learn how a moving violation could affect you.
Mandatory Driver’s License Suspension or Revocation
Accumulating points isn’t the only way you could lose your driving privileges in New York. Some traffic violations require suspending or revoking someone’s license if convicted of an offense. Generally, this can happen in cases involving serious or multiple violations.
A Term of Confinement
Criminal traffic offenses charged as misdemeanors or felonies carry incarceration as a possible punishment.
These crimes include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Driving while intoxicated,
- Leaving the scene of an accident resulting in injury, and
- Fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle.
The length of jail or prison time depends on the level of charge and seriousness of the offense.
Reach Out to an Attorney for Help with Your Case
If you have been accused of a traffic violation, the consequences of a conviction are too severe to leave your case up to chance. Instead of immediately paying the fine or trying to handle the matter yourself, discuss your situation with a lawyer to learn about your options. By fighting your citation, you could minimize or avoid penalties.
Get in contact with our New York attorney at Martin A. Kron & Associates, P.C. by calling us at (212) 235-1525 or submitting an online form today.