Getting a traffic ticket can be a hassle, and one of the most common questions is whether you must appear in court. In New York, the answer depends on several factors, including whether you have a lawyer, the type of violation, and the court's resources. In this blog, we will discuss these factors and provide information on how you can attend a virtual hearing with the TVB office.
Alternatives to Attending Court in Person
You have several alternatives to appearing in person at court. You can have a traffic ticket attorney appear on your behalf, attend court virtually, or even write a statement presenting your case. These options can save you time, effort, and unnecessary hassles. Let's explore them further.
Having a Lawyer Appear on Your Behalf
Hiring a traffic ticket attorney is wise if you want to save time and avoid the stress of going to court. Your lawyer can represent you and attend court appearances on your behalf, so you can focus on your daily activities. A lawyer can also seek a favorable outcome, like getting charges reduced or the case dismissed.
In addition, an attorney can assist in navigating the complex legal system and protect your rights. They can also explain the process, advise you on your options, and help you make informed decisions.
Attending a TVB Hearing Virtually
The Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB) decides citations issued in New York City. If you get a traffic ticket, you will receive a notice with your hearing date.
On the day of your hearing, you can go to the TVB's virtual hearings page and enter your ticket number to access the virtual courtroom. Your attorney and witnesses can also attend the virtual hearing using your ticket number.
You will need a computer or mobile device with a stable internet connection, a webcam, and a microphone to attend a virtual hearing.
Once you enter the virtual hearing, you can see the judge, the prosecutor, and the other parties involved. You can present evidence in support of your defense.
If you are found guilty, the judge will inform you of the consequences of your plea, including fines, points, and other penalties.
Attending a virtual hearing can be convenient for people who cannot take time off work or have mobility issues. However, it is still important to prepare for the hearing, including reviewing the facts of your case, preparing evidence, and practicing your presentation.
Submitting a Written Statement
If you do not have a traffic ticket lawyer and do not want to attend a virtual hearing, you can still avoid appearing in court by submitting a written statement. You can use the Statement in Place of Personal Appearance Form to explain your situation and defend yourself.
The form must be completed and returned to the court at least two weeks before the hearing. In your statement, you'll explain why you believe you are not guilty of the charges and provide evidence supporting your defense.
However, submitting a written statement is less effective than having a lawyer or appearing in person. The prosecutor may not consider your defense seriously, and you may end up with a conviction and penalties.
Appearing in Person for a Misdemeanor Traffic Violation
A misdemeanor traffic violation is a criminal offense with a potential jail sentence of up to one year. You must appear in person if you have been charged with a misdemeanor traffic offense. The judge will inform you of your rights, the charges against you, and the potential penalties.
You can present your defense, call witnesses, and cross-examine the prosecution's witnesses. If you are found guilty, the judge will impose a sentence, including fines, community service, probation, or imprisonment.
Reach Out Today
Appearing in court for a traffic ticket depends on several factors, including whether you have a lawyer, the type of violation, and the court's requirements. In most cases, you can attend a virtual hearing or submit a written statement to avoid appearing in person. However, if you have been charged with a misdemeanor, you must go to court.
Contact Martin A. Kron & Associates, P.C. at (212) 235-1525 if you are looking for legal representation for your traffic ticket case in New York.