Paying vs. Disputing Tickets in California

California traffic tickets may be issued to drivers when they break laws while operating vehicles. For example, law enforcement officers issue traffic citations to drivers who travel above the posted speed limit on roads or when they disobey stop signs or other traffic signals. CA traffic violations may result in a law enforcement officer simply warning the driver to restrict his or her behavior or may end in a ticket, penalties, suspensions or fines. In addition to traffic fines, drivers who receive violations may also receive violation points on their driving records or other consequences with the law, such as suspended licenses or registrations. Drivers who feel they were wrongly accused of breaking a law may look into traffic ticket defense and how they can dispute the tickets issued, including the penalties or fees associated. Before attempting to fight traffic ticket penalties, a driver should be sure he or she has evidence and an explanation that concludes no law was broken and the ticket should be dismissed. Fighting traffic ticket in CA can be time consuming and may require the driver to attend a court case, so action should only be pursued if the driver feels confident in proving he or she did not break the law. For more information on how to fight traffic ticket in California and what to do after receiving a traffic ticket, review the following sections.

What to Do After Receiving Traffic Tickets in California

In most cases, drivers can pay speeding ticket online with the DMV to ensure the citation does not remain outstanding on their records. When a driver decides to pay speeding ticket, whether online, by mail or in person at a DMV location, he or she has admitted fault and is pleading guilty to the charge issued on the ticket. If a driver refuses to pay the CA traffic fine associated with a ticket, he or she may have a driver’s license suspended or face other consequences. However, the driver can decide to attend the court case scheduled in association with the California traffic ticket and plead not guilty if he or she feels it was unjustly issued. To avoid further legal or financial consequences, a driver should not avoid a traffic ticket or fail to keep the promise to appear in court.

Drivers who do not want to challenge the validity of the charge can follow the steps for how to pay a speeding ticket, which are outlined on the paperwork given to them by the law enforcement officer. Drivers may also have the opportunity to pay traffic ticket online after receiving it. The steps for completing the payment online should also be covered on the ticket paperwork provided upon issuance. Paying traffic tickets online is often the popular choice for drivers who have received violations. When paying traffic fines online in California, a driver does not have to mail a payment or visit a local DMV office.

Traffic Fines in California and Other Penalties

Traffic ticket fines in California are the most common penalties that drivers must handle after a violation. In addition to traffic ticket penalty fines, there are other consequences for receiving traffic violations in California. The traffic ticket that is issued to a driver is placed on his or her driving record, resulting in the addition of penalty points to the driver’s license. CA traffic ticket points can add up to cause additional legal consequences, such as an increase in auto insurance or a suspended license.

If multiple speeding tickets or other traffic tickets are issued, a driver may also face a license suspension or may be asked to complete traffic school before being allowed on the road again. A driver who does not pay a California traffic citation fine and does not appear in court on the scheduled date may face a license suspension and points will be placed on his or her license.

To learn about the requirements and responsibility of drivers in California, download our comprehensive guide.

When to Fight a California Traffic Ticket

Drivers may consider fighting CA traffic tickets if they feel the citations were wrongfully issued to them. A driver who appears in court on the assigned court date with an explanation and evidence that he or she did not break a law may have a traffic ticket dismissed by a judge. If the driver can fight traffic ticket in court successfully, he or she will not be responsible for paying the fines and the ticket will not appear on his or her driving record. Additionally, no penalty points will be added on his or her driver’s license because of the dismissed traffic ticket. However, if traffic citations were issued to a driver due to an accident and he or she is successful at having the traffic ticket dismissed in court, the accident will still appear on the driver’s record, but the violation will not.

When researching how to fight traffic ticket in California, a driver may feel he or she needs legal representation to prove a wrongful issuance of the ticket. A lawyer is not necessary when fighting traffic violations in CA, but the help of a legal representative may lead to a more successful outcome for the driver. Serious traffic violations like evading a police officer or careless driving may have a more in-depth court case. The assistance of legal help may be necessary for drivers who are disputing traffic violations that are more severe. When fighting traffic tickets, drivers should know that they cannot receive compensation for legal representation, no matter the outcome of the case.