When to hire an attorney to fight a traffic ticket

You were pulled over for speeding. It’s a big pain, but it seems to only make sense to just pay the fine and get on with your life. It’s not worth fighting, is it?

You may be surprised how much one ticket can affect your insurance rates, especially for young drivers. This is especially true if you’ve already had a ticket and are in danger of accumulating enough points to have your license suspended. It may well be worth it to hire an attorney to fight that ticket.

The Pennsylvania point system

In general, the effect on your insurance rates goes with the number of points that come with each ticket. Smaller offenses, such as driving less than 16 miles over the limit, are worth three points or less.

If you reach six points, your license can be suspended. That happens automatically for any driver under 18. A suspension lasts for 90 days, but the effects are longer lasting. It will make insurance very expensive for years to come if it comes to that.

Higher points come with more serious infractions. Speeding more than 15 miles per hour over the limit comes with four points, for example, and more than 25 miles per hour over is worth five points. Failing to stop for a school bus is also worth five points.

When to fight

Certainly, anyone under 18 has a lot of incentive in terms of potential suspension and insurance to fight every ticket. For adults old than this it is a bit more negotiable.

When you already have a ticket in hand, or have been written up for a speed more than 25 miles per hour over the limit, it is probably very much in your interest to contest the ticket. An attorney experienced in fighting traffic tickets can tell you when it makes the most sense and be there on your side.

In many cases, simply reducing the violation to 15 miles per hour over the limit or less can make a very large difference in terms of points and insurance costs.

It may seem convenient to simply pay the fine and go on with your life. But that may be very expensive, and it may make things much more complicated later on. If you have recently been cited it may make sense to talk to an attorney, especially if it was for a major infraction worth more than three points.

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