If you have been issued a traffic violation in Santa Barbara, it may be in your best interest to fight it in court, whether you disagree with the charge or want it removed from your record. When you pay a traffic ticket, you are pleading guilty to the traffic offense you have been accused of, which usually results in the addition of points to your license.
With the help of a skilled Santa Barbara traffic ticket lawyer, it may be possible to beat your traffic ticket in court and avoid accumulating points on your driving record.
Common Traffic Violations in Santa Barbara
Traffic violations cover a broad scope of offenses. A traffic offense can range from a minor violation—such as speeding within 10 miles of the speed limit—to more serious offenses, such as reckless driving. Some of the most common traffic violations in Santa Barbara include:
- Improper or excessive lane changing
- Trucks that exceed specific speed limits
- Reckless driving
- Stop sign violations
- Driving with a suspended license
- Driving at an unreasonable speed in certain conditions
These are some of the common traffic violations that routinely occur in Santa Barbara. The penalties you might face for any of these traffic violations may vary depending on the severity of the offense. For example, the penalties associated with a minor speeding ticket may be less significant than those for reckless driving. Additionally, if you have a history of traffic violations, you may face more severe penalties.
Potential Penalties for a Traffic Ticket Conviction
Since traffic violations cover a wide range of offenses, the penalties you might face from a traffic violation vary drastically depending on the kind of violation for which you were cited. Some of the potential penalties from a traffic ticket conviction include:
- A license suspension
- Increased insurance premiums
- A jail or prison sentence, in severe cases
When issuing traffic violations, police officers may make instant judgment calls. They are aware that some ticketed drivers might choose to contest their citations to dispute the charges. While many traffic violations are minor, it may be in your best interest to dispute the violation and preserve a clean driving record. A skilled traffic ticket lawyer may help you develop a strong defense and potentially remove the charge from your record.
How Can I Challenge a Traffic Violation in Santa Barbara?
Many police officers may issue tickets without a strong reason for doing so. If this is the case in your traffic violation, your lawyer may try to raise reasonable doubt about your guilt in the situation. If you choose to take your traffic ticket to court, there are a few defense approaches a traffic ticket lawyer may use to challenge the citation.
In California, speeding violations are the most prominent traffic violations—one of every three traffic tickets in California is for a speeding violation. Some of the most common defense strategies to a speeding violation include:
- Demonstrating that your speed was safe. In California, when you are issued a speeding ticket, the implication is that you were driving at a speed that was unsafe for the prevailing conditions. Your lawyer may challenge this by asserting that your speed was reasonable in accordance with the road conditions at the time.
- Questioning the accuracy of the radar. Your lawyer may try to raise doubts about the training of the officer using the radar, asserting that their reading of your speed may have been a mistake.
- Questioning whether your vehicle was the one in question. It is fairly common for police officers to inaccurately identify a vehicle to which they are issuing a traffic violation. This is a strong defense in many traffic ticket cases.
- Identifying whether you were the victim of an illegal speed trap. In California, police officers are only legally allowed to use their radar on roads that have had an engineering and traffic survey completed on them within the last five to seven years. If the results show there had not been a survey on the road where your violation occurred, your lawyer may argue that you were the victim of an illegal speed trap.
Consult a Skilled Santa Barbara Traffic Ticket Lawyer
There is significant room for error in traffic ticket violations, meaning that your attorney may have several avenues for providing a solid defense to your violation and potentially dismissing the charges and any potential points that might otherwise accrue on your license. If you have been issued with a traffic violation you believe is unfair, contact a quality traffic ticket lawyer in Santa Barbara.
At the Aron Law Firm, our attorneys have a proven track record of minimizing the penalties associated with traffic violations. To schedule an appointment with one of our experienced criminal defense lawyers, call today at (805) 618-1768 or fill out our online contact form.