Why Hire a Traffic Ticket Lawyer?

Cesar Montalvo Criminal Law

This area of law generally involves Class C misdemeanors that fall within the Transportation Code. Convictions of these sorts can have adverse and prejudicial effects on your ability to keep your license. We aim to keep our clients driving and to set you up for a better outcome in case you get stopped again.

Why Not Just Pay Your Traffic Ticket and Move on With Your Life?

It is a common misconception that when you receive a traffic ticket, the responsible thing to do is to pay the fine. The answer is yes and no.
In Texas, we have a DMV point system called the Driver Responsibility Program (DRP). Any time you receive a traffic ticket conviction, it may be reported to the Department of Public Safety and result in points assessed on your driving record. Accumulating too many points within a specified amount of time can result in suspension of your driver’s license and additional surcharges.

If you pay the ticket, you are buying a conviction.

Points (within 12 months): 2 points
Offense: Moving violations
Ancillary Effects: Affects auto insurance rates

Points (within 12 months): 3 points
Offense: Collisions
Ancillary Effects: Affects auto insurance rates

Points (within 12 months): 6 points
Offense: Any combination of above
Ancillary Effects: Automatic surcharges for 3 years

Points (within 12 months): 8 points
Offense: Any combination of above
Ancillary Effects: Suspension of driver’s license

I got Cited. What are my Options?

The same standard of probable cause that is used in a felony allegation continues to apply for a class C misdemeanor (speeding ticket). Remember that the citation is not proof of guilt or innocence, rather it is an accusation by the government. You are entitled to your constitutional due process by forcing the government to prove every element of their case against you beyond a reasonable doubt.

Option A: Set for Trial
Since a citation is merely an accusation, you have the right to request the evidence that will be used against you in a trial. This request is known as discovery. Once you have looked at the evidence and have made all necessary motions to the court, you will proceed to pick your jury in the process known as voir dire. Once you have picked your jurors, the Prosecution will put on their case‐in‐chief where they will have to convince all jurors that you violated the law beyond a reasonable doubt.

Option B: Request Community Supervision (Deferred Disposition) or Driver’s Safety Course (DSC)
The defendant should be mindful that not everyone qualifies for Deferred Disposition or Driver’s Safety Course. Deferred disposition is discretionary and either the prosecutor or judge may decide to allow it. The DSC can only be taken once a year and must be taken if the defendant is under the age of 25. The silver‐lining of these options, if granted, is the dismissal of your case and no conviction on your record. The downside is that if you fail to complete any aspect of the Deferred Disposition you will take a conviction and pay the fines in full.

Option C: Pay and Take the Conviction
This is the least advisable option. Unfortunately, some clients do not have the time to spend a day in court fighting their case because they have more pressing obligations or they simply did not qualify for deferred disposition. If you feel like your only option is to pay for your ticket we urge you to speak to an attorney first.

If I Have a Warrant Will I go to Jail if I go to Court?

Yes, and no. In some municipalities or counties, the local rules may dictate their warrant policy. For example, The City of San Antonio Municipal Court generally does not enforce warrants when the defendant goes to resolve their matter.

The Law Offices of Cesar A. Montalvo are experienced traffic ticket lawyers with systems in place in to find the best resolution for your case. Contact us to get started.