We all know that traffic in Miami is maddening. Between the volume of people who live here, and the number of tourists that visit here, it seems like there is not enough maneuverability for all of the drivers in the area. It’s easy to see why people get frustrated and can slip into a habit of speeding so they can just get through traffic and get on with their day. Let’s face it though, no one wants nor expects a speeding ticket. Doesn’t that only happen to “the other guy?” Unfortunately the answer to that question is, “No.”
There are darned few people who get speeding tickets who don’t feel that they either don’t have the time, the money, or both to deal with this unexpected expense which cops in South Florida seem so happy to provide. To add insult to injury, most of the time when someone gets a speeding ticket, he or she feels like they don’t deserve it – they were running late for work, or they were just trying to get around traffic, etc. It’s therefore not surprising that those who receive a speeding ticket feel that retaining a traffic ticket attorney in Miami is just an added expense to one that they were not anticipating. The problem is, of course, that the added costs associated with just paying a speeding ticket far outweigh what you will pay for a good traffic ticket attorney, and a traffic ticket attorney may be able to help you out of a jam in ways that you may not have the experience to consider.
One such example is a client who came into our Hollywood office. He had gotten pulled over for speeding, so he took off his seatbelt once he was stopped to reach for his insurance card and registration. Well, this cop was ready; it was as if he was looking for reasons to write traffic citations for our client. Not only was our client incensed that the police officer did this, but he was also curious as to whether or not this kind of thing happens frequently in South Florida. Sadly, it has been my experience as a traffic ticket attorney that it happens a lot more than it should, but we have a lot of experience in dealing with this kind of unfair behavior. Speeding is one of the most frequent reasons that drivers are being pulled over, and it is not uncommon to see these drivers get additional traffic citations.
Speeding tickets in South Florida fall into four categories, based upon how much the driver exceeded the speed limit and the penalties vary based on that excess. At a minimum, you will get a fine and three points assessed against your license if you are traveling at 15 miles per hour or less over the speed limit. Granted these points will only be on your license for three years, but it’s a LONG three years when you are paying more for automobile and life insurance. Let’s face it – a speeding ticket indicates you are posing a greater risk for the insurance company.
With this type of ticket, you have the choice to either pay it which is considered an admission of guilt, you can go traffic school which will keep points off of your license but will still appear as a guilty conviction on your driving record, or you can go to court to fight it. Now, it is possible to go to court to dispute a speeding ticket on your own, but the chance of having a greater success rate is greatly increased by hiring a good traffic ticket attorney.
The next level of speeding ticket is if you get pulled over for going 16 to 29 miles per hour over the speed limit. For this infraction, you will get a fine and four points assessed against your license. Yes, the points do matter. As with the previous infraction, the points will be on your license for three years, but the fact that you got this traffic citation will remain on your license for good. As with the previous violation, you are not required to go to court, but you are better off having a traffic ticket attorney go for you to represent you and try to get the charge dismissed or reduced.
The next level of speeding ticket is quite a bit more serious in Miami. If you are stopped for going 30 to 49 miles per hour above the speed limit, you get the same penalties as the previous traffic citation, and there is the possibility of having your driver’s license suspended. This infraction does require that you appear in court unless you hire a traffic ticket attorney to represent you on your court date. Unlike the other speeding violations, the fine for 30 – 49 mph or more is assessed by the judge when you appear in court. The points will stay on your driver’s license for three years, and the ticket then becomes part of your permanent record if you are found guilty. Since the court date is mandatory, the outcome for failure to appear could be a suspended driver’s license.
Let’s face it – no one NEEDS to go 50 mph over the speed limit because even in the most moderate of speed zones, that poses a tremendous threat to the well-being of others. This is why in South Florida, at 50 or more miles per hour over the posted speed limit, you are looking at a serious fine of $1,000 for a first offense. For a second offense, you can expect a fine of two and a half times that amount, and a third offense is a third degree felony with the possibility of a $5,000 fine and a 10-year driver’s license revocation.
Regardless of how serious your speeding offense may be, you are almost always better off being represented by a traffic ticket attorney. In spite of the fines and other penalties associated with getting a speeding ticket in Miami, insurance companies historically raise your rates well beyond what you will pay to a good traffic ticket attorney. So, let us help you. Give us a call at the Traffic Ticket Team at 954-967-9888 for a free consultation regarding your speeding ticket.Jason Diamond, Esq. is the Founding Lawyer Partner of the Traffic Ticket Team. His Attorneys have over 50 years of combined experience and have handled over 1,000,000 Florida traffic tickets. As Traffic Ticket Lawyers we have given traffic ticket legal clinic seminars throughout Florida. To find Attorney locations, click HERE. Our traffic tickets are defended in Miami-Dade, Broward & Palm Beach counties and we also fight traffic tickets statewide.