It’s just a speeding ticket, right? Don’t I have the right to drive; why are they doing this to me?
In Georgia, the ability to drive is a privilege, not a right according to the Georgia Department of Driver Services. Many drivers don’t realize how speeding tickets (citations) in Georgia can seriously affect driving privileges. In many states, the thought of a speeding citation means a simple fine or even take a class and move on with your life (it might even get dismissed if you follow those state rules). In Georgia, however, the difference is that traffic citations (and speeding tickets too) are criminal acts (misdemeanors). Moving violations in Georgia can carry both a high fine and jail time or both as a misdemeanor act.
I really wasn’t going that fast and in addition to giving me a citation, the officer said I was super speeder (link to old post here?)? What does that mean? The Georgia Legislature passed a provision in 2010 that created the super speeder violation. These provisions make driving in a two-lane road at a speed greater than 75MPH or a four-lane at speeds greater than 85MPH a super speeder. Additionally, super speeder tickets go on your driving history as a super speeder and have a drastic effect on drivers insurance rates/premiums.
Let’s do this then, let’s fight the speeding citation, that’s possible, right? Unfortunately, the universal answer on this is maybe. Similar to most parts of the law, the ability to fight a traffic tickets is going to depend on the facts supporting your case. There are some things that can be done to fight a speeding citation. Things such as: was the device being used recently calibrated? Under the law, if you request that the officer show you that the device was calibrated, he has to do so. This is to show that the laser (in this example) was properly calibrated and didn’t register your vehicle going faster than it was. Additionally, you could look into where the officer used the speed detection device in relation to your vehicle and surrounding topography and warning signs.
It may be easier to simply negotiate your way out of the seriousness of your citation. Every court is required to have an attorney acting as a solicitor (prosecutor) acting on the state’s behalf to prosecute cases. In turn, these attorneys have the option to negotiate the terms of your charges to either lessor offenses (or in some cases change it to a more serious offense).
He’s giving me a citation AND the officer wants my autograph . . . tough luck. If you thought that was ok the Georgia legislature (the rule makers for Georgia) are a step ahead of you. Be prepared to go to jail and make a bond on your speeding citation. If you don’t sign the citation the officer will take you to jail because it tells the court that you also won’t show up for court
Forget it, “what’s the worst that can happen if I don’t go to court,” or I don’t pay the ticket fine or even “its another state anyway.” In Georgia, if you do not appear for court, the judge will issue an FTA Notice to the Department of Driver Services and can issue a bench warrant for your arrest. In turn, the DDS will suspend your privileges to drive in Georgia. If you are from another state, the DDS will then send a notice to your state DDS that you are suspended in Georgia and the state you live in will also suspend your driving privileges until you take care of the suspension in Georgia. Also, consider that just paying the super speeder citation may have a drastic effect on your license if you are an out of state driver. Many states in the U.S. do not have a super speeder violation so in turn, they will transfer the violation to your DDS as a different charge, which could mean that instead of super speeder you end up with a more serious charge like reckless driving on your background.
Ok, so how do I find out where I will go to court or who will be my prosecutor? At the bottom of your citation is a grouping of paragraphs that will tell you where you will go to court along with the time that you will need to appear for that ticket violation. You can look up your court and prosecutor information as well by clicking here.
If you have received a speeding ticket or traffic violation give our office a call as we can help you navigate these issues and help you to come out of your situation with as little of a headache as possible. Our attorneys are well trained in the court system and can help you through your traffic violation issues.