Top Whitefish, MT Traffic Violation Lawyers Near You
Whitefish Traffic Violation Information
Lead Counsel independently verifies Traffic Violation attorneys in Whitefish and checks their standing with Montana bar associations.Our Verification Process and Criteria
- Ample Experience Attorneys must meet stringent qualifications and prove they practice in the area of law they’re verified in.
- Good Standing Be in good standing with their bar associations and maintain a clean disciplinary record.
- Annual Review Submit to an annual review to retain their Lead Counsel Verified status.
- Client Commitment Pledge to follow the highest quality client service and ethical standards.
Traffic ViolationsTraffic violations range from parking tickets to speeding tickets and reckless driving. Failing to pay a traffic ticket can result in additional fines, a suspended license, and potential arrest for failing to show up to court. Drivers who have many violations are at risk of increased fines, higher insurance rates, and loss of their driving privileges.
Common Traffic Violations to FightSome traffic violations are civil violations which include points on your driving record and a fine. Traffic violations include moving violations (related to driving) and non-moving violations (related to the vehicle or where the vehicle is parked). Moving violations include speeding, running a red light, running a stop sign, or failing to signal a lane change. More serious traffic violations can be charged as a misdemeanor. Driving violations that can be criminal charges include drunk driving, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident, or driving without a license.
Do I Have to Go to Court for a Traffic Ticket?When you get pulled over by the police and given a ticket, the ticket will usually indicate your court date and where in Whitefish the courthouse is located. Drivers generally have the option of pleading guilty and paying the fine without showing up the court. However, if drivers want to fight the ticket, they usually have to show up in person. If you can’t make your court date, you have to contact the court to reschedule the appearance before the date on your ticket. If you fail to show up for your court appearance, the judge can find you guilty and may even issue a bench warrant for your arrest.
How Do I Fight a Traffic Ticket?Fighting a traffic ticket involves showing the judge that you did not violate the traffic laws based on state or local traffic codes. If you really want to fight a traffic ticket you have to do some work, including gathering any evidence in support of your case and research. If you show up with only your statement that you didn’t break the law, the judge may not be very moved.
How Long Does a Traffic Violation Stay on Your Record In Montana?The time a traffic violation stays on your record is generally determined by the state. Montana has its own traffic laws and licensing requirements. Some less serious offenses may only stay on your record for a limited time, such as two to five years. However, more serious offenses or repeated traffic violations can be permanent marks on your Montana driving record or criminal record.
How Much Will a Traffic Ticket Cost?The fines associated with a traffic ticket generally depend on the type of offense and the driver’s record. A minor non-moving violation like overstaying a parking meter may be less than $100. A more serious moving violation like drunk driving (DUI/DWI) can cost up to $1,000, and even include jail time. In some cases, the cost of the traffic violation will be shown on the traffic ticket. Some traffic tickets have greater charges (and penalties) depending on the degree of the violation. For example, driving 5 miles over the speed limit is generally a lesser ticket compared to driving 20 miles or more over the speed limit. For some drivers, the traffic court will offer traffic school and a fine as a way to keep the points off your record. In that situation, you’d have to pay the fine and pay for traffic school. Traffic school is a class you attend where there is a presentation on traffic safety, traffic accident dangers, and Montana traffic laws.
How Long Do You Have To Pay a Traffic Violation in Montana?The amount of time you have to pay a traffic violation depends on a few factors. Generally, Montana law provides the time limit for paying a traffic ticket. Some citations indicate the due date on the ticket itself. You may also need to factor in how the payment is made. Online payments may be more immediate than sending a check in the mail or trying to pay the fine in person at the courthouse. If you need more time to pay a ticket, contact the court to see if you can get an extension so you don’t get hit with additional fines or end up with a warrant for your arrest.
Can a Traffic Ticket Lawyer Fight the Violation?In most cases, a traffic ticket attorney can represent you in municipal court to fight the charges. Legal representation can be a lot of help because the defense lawyer understands local traffic codes and Montana traffic law. With legal advice from a defense attorney, you may be able to get the violation dismissed, keep points off your record, keep your driver’s license, and keep your insurance premiums down.
Are There Any Traffic Violations Lawyers Near Me In Whitefish, MT?
It may seem like a small matter, but a traffic violation can really affect your life if you don’t get the counsel you deserve to make it right. Finding an attorney experienced in traffic violations may seem like a challenge but many attorneys are ready to help clients who need the advice and advocacy of an experienced lawyer. Ask hard questions and find an attorney who has experience in cases just like yours. The LawInfo directory can help you find verified traffic violation attorneys in Whitefish.
What Happens if You Miss a Court Date for a Traffic Violation?
Missing a court date, referred to as failing to appear, can be a more serious offense than your original traffic violation. Some courts consider being late to your court date as a failure to appear as well. Each state provides its own additional penalties for failing to appear, but most jurisdictions consider this a separate criminal misdemeanor offense with its own penalties and fines. As a result, a judge may decide to suspend your license, hold you in contempt of court, or issue a warrant for your arrest which may lead to spending time in jail. Failing to appear or being found in contempt of court may stay on your criminal record as well. This makes it critical to appear on time to your court date or work with your attorney to request a new date to appear.
What Happens When You Go To Court for a Traffic Violation?
Going to court for a traffic violation can be straightforward but may be a bit more complex for serious violations, those with a negative driving record, or criminal history. You may elect to go to plead your case to the judge by proving your innocence or showing evidence of any mitigating circumstances. For serious offenses or habitual offenders, you may decide to go into court with an attorney to advocate on your behalf.
Best Time to Seek Legal Help
No matter what your legal issue may be, it is always best to seek legal help early in the process. An attorney can help secure what is likely to be the best possible outcome for your situation and avoid both unnecessary complications or errors.
What to Expect from an Initial Consultation
- Seek to determine whether the attorney can represent you. There is no one-size-fits-all legal solution and it may turn out your needs are better served by an attorney in a different specialization.
- It’s important to find a legal ally who is both competent in the law and someone you can trust to protect your interests.
- Discuss how the practice’s billing works and discuss possible additional charges or fees that may arise during or after the resolution of your case.
An attorney consultation should provide you with enough information so that you can make an informed decision on whether to proceed with legal help.
Tips on Hiring an Experienced Lawyer with Traffic Violation Cases
The more experienced a lawyer is in legal practice, the more likely he/she will be able to bring about a successful resolution to your issue. Since experience matters, lawyers who’ve been practicing law for many years (with a successful track record) tend to be in high demand. You should look for information about a lawyer’s experience and ask questions during the initial meeting. It’s a very good idea to ask the lawyer how many years he/she has been practicing law and the expected outcome of your case.
Common legal terms explained
Plaintiff – a person or party who brings a lawsuit against another person(s) or party/parties in a court of law. Private persons or parties can only file suit in civil court.
Judgment – A decision of the court. Also known as a decree or order. Judgments handed down by the court are usually binding on the parties before the court.