I am often asked this question by clients. Typically, this is the first question a potential client asks me when they first call me on the phone about their traffic matter. The answer is yes. Many motorists think they can simply mail their ticket into the Court, plead guilty and pay whatever fine the Court imposes. Others believe they can show up to Court, get an automatic reduction from the Assistant District Attorney and be on their way.
Consider the example of a client of mine who pled guilty through the mail to a speeding violation under Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1180. He simply did not want to waste time going to Court and ended up having his license suspended because he miscalculated the amount of points on his license.
Also consider the case of a client who received a traffic ticket in Orange County, New York. She was upset and wanted to fight the ticket. She drove from Syracuse to Orange County and appeared on the date printed on her ticket only to find out there was no prosecutor present on that date. She appeared on the next date given to her by the Court but still didn’t get a chance to present her defense. The second date was a “pre-trial conference” date where the ticketing police officer did not have to come to Court. She was finally given a trial date. She appeared in Court a third time and was found guilty after a five minute trial. She missed three days of work and had to wait two and a half hours for her case to be called.
Both of these clients could have avoided their problems if they simply paid a few hundred dollars to hire a lawyer to handle their traffic matters. By hiring a lawyer, many motorists don’t even have to appear in Court. A lawyer can fight for you, possibly get tickets dismissed or negotiate reductions for you. You will not have to miss time from work, travel great distances to Court or run the risk of having your license suspended. A few hundred dollars to hire a lawyer for a traffic ticket may seem like a lot but it is often a wise investment.
Lorenzo Napolitano, Esq.