North Carolina Traffic Tickets
A recent research study conducted by the CBA/26th Judicial Partnership Project analyzed the public’s participation in the Mecklenburg County courts. In part, it was determined: having an attorney has a substantial impact on the outcome of cases. In North Carolina traffic-ticket cases, the presence of an attorney was the most significant influence on the outcome.
The study also brought to light another rather shocking statistic: Many defendants do not understand how the court system works or what happened to them in court. The Perception Survey found that 32.7 percent of those charged did not understand what occurred in the courtroom.
Don’t be among those who don’t know what’s happening to them in court. Contact Powers McCartan to discuss your North Carolina traffic-ticket case and learn your options.
At Powers McCartan, we defend clients in traffic violation cases North Carolina. Bill Powers is a board-certified criminal law specialist by the National Board of Trial Advocacy has been listed in North Carolina Super Lawyers magazine in criminal law, and has been listed in Business North Carolina magazine – Legal Elite (2012).
Legal Counsel When You Get a North Carolina Traffic Ticket
As you likely can determine in reading these questions, the legal process can quickly get complicated. Insurance “points” are somewhat different from DMV or motor vehicle points. For example, in certain circumstances a reduction of speed can result in insurance points … even if the driver has no history of prior moving violations. A simple North Carolina traffic ticket can be very complicated, depending upon a series of competing factors.
The “9 over” reduction, although a very powerful tool, must also take into account the accident histories of household and family members. That is true regardless of whether the police officer issued a citation. In some instances, an accident may be referenced in a driving record … although fault is commonly NOT listed on such history. There are certain circumstances where an accident would not show up on the record; yet, the insurance carrier may still attribute “fault” to the policy owner, whether a formal determination was ever made by the courts.
Driving School as a Means of Reducing NC Traffic Ticket Penalties
Over the years, we have found clients sometime misunderstand the implications of driving school. Driving school and “reductions” can be valuable tools in limiting exposure to increased premiums and DMV suspensions. Driving school, at least in North Carolina, normally does NOT result in a “dismissal” of the speeding ticket. The conviction stands on the record check… but rather than showing DMV points, a simple “PJC” is listed. (You may have heard the term PJC, which stands for “Prayer for Judgment Continued”.)
Furthermore, the use of a PJC can be limited both for the individual driver AND for people who live within the household or who may be listed on an insurance policy. Driving school and the associated PJC may not be the most appropriate options. Again, one must consider the respective driving records of anyone who may be deemed “insured” by the carrier.
When you contact us, we will begin with an extensive evaluation of your situation, asking questions such as:
A. Have you had any moving violations in the past three (3) years?
- Were you convicted of any of those citations?
- Did you know a Prayer for Judgment Continued (“PJC”) does NOT result in a dismissal?
- Have you had any PJCs in a five (5) year period?
- Have you had any accidents in the last three (3) years?
- Were you issued a citation for the accident?
- Did your insurance company pay for ANY damages, whether it was for the car or for injuries sustained in the collision?
- Do you know who was deemed at fault, regardless of who may or may not have received a citation?
B. Who else resides in your household?
- Are they of driving age?
- Are they licensed?
- Do they drive any of your vehicles at any time?
- Are they insured on the policy?
- Has anyone in your household had a moving violation in the last three (3) years?
- Were they convicted of any of those traffic tickets?
- Did they have a PJC or go to driving school in the past five (5) years?
- Have they had any accidents in the last three (3) years?
- Were they issued a ticket for the accident?
- Did your insurance company pay for ANY of those damages?
- Was there any determination of fault?
C. Is there anyone else on your policy, like a college student, who doesn’t necessarily live in the household full-time, yet may still be on the insurance policy?
- Do you have a former spouse who may still be on the insurance policy?
- Do they drive a family car?
- Whose name is on the title?
- Do they carry their own insurance policy?
D. Do you or anyone in your household carry “umbrella” coverage?
- Do you carry homeowners insurance, which may also cover cars and other vehicles?
Contact a Lawyer
If you have pending traffic charges or what you might consider a “simple speeding ticket,” we encourage you to contact Powers McCartan. In addition to explaining important legal rights, we can provide helpful information about sometimes complicated insurance and motor vehicle point issues.
We believe experience and preparation benefit clients. We do our homework, reviewing relevant background information, such as previous traffic citations, accidents and DMV histories. In providing a zealous defense, we consider the implications of driving records of family members and household residents, whether or not they are actually listed on the insurance policy. To learn more, see our article entitled Adventures in Fantasyland.
At Powers McCartan, we guarantee our rates and put them in writing for you. You won’t be surprised with hidden costs. Legal fees may be reimbursed by AAA membership, with certain restrictions.
Drivers who have been issued a speeding ticket in North Carolina may be confused about the state traffic laws. With the help of the lawyers at Powers McCartan, drivers may learn about what it takes to have their tickets dismissed, amended or have their punishments lessened. They can also come away with a better understanding of traffic laws regarding speeding and other violations of traffic statutes. The following advice and procedures can be extremely helpful to any individual who is issued a speeding ticket in North Carolina.
North Carolina speeding tickets have the potential to put points on a license. These points can add up and possibly lead to a suspended license. Points being added to a driver’s license also have the potential of causing an individual’s car insurance rates to increase. If an individual receives 12 points on his or her license within three years, it may be suspended, depending on the circumstances. If his or her license is reinstated, an individual can possibly lose it again by accumulating as few as 8 points within the next three years. The punishments for speeding tickets in North Carolina vary depending on the circumstances in which the citation was received. Those received in construction zones or school zones, for example, may have harsher punishments. Excessive speeding in a residential area, usually marked by lower speed limits, may also result in harsher punishments.
After receiving a speeding ticket, violators have several options. These include paying the tickets or reporting to their assigned court dates. Some may attempt to write a letter to the court explaining their position; in some courts, however, a letter may not be a worthwhile attempt without knowledge of the traffic law system. By not paying for a ticket before the court date, individuals may be subject to a court fee and may be required to stand in court. Any court fees have the potential to add more costs to citations received for violating traffic laws. Any individual hoping to defend himself or herself in their case may want to reconsider and hire a professional traffic attorney. The amount of knowledge and experience, which may be necessary to lessen a punishment, is much more than most possess. A professional traffic attorney may be able to help get court fees waived, and may be able to argue certain portions of the assigned punishment.
After violating North Carolina speeding laws, individuals have several choices available to them. For instance, they plead guilty with reason or guilty with explanation at the court date. This way, the individual can explain his or her specific situation face-to-face to the judge. A judge may or may not choose to be more lenient about certain citations after hearing from the violator. An individual may choose to go this route, but with the assistance of legal counsel. The confusion and intimidation caused by a judge and court proceedings can be calmed by the presence of a lawyer. A professional’s experience and knowledge can be invaluable in this and similar situations.
The experienced professionals at Powers McCartan can provide valuable advice to individuals who have received a North Carolina traffic ticket. With a lawyer from Powers McCartan, a driver who has been cited for speeding in North Carolina can have the opportunity to be represented by an experienced and compassionate team of professionals. Call for a free consultation: .