It does not matter what the legal situation is, if you ever have legal trouble of any kind, many people you know will want to give you legal advice. Everyone seems to know someone else who once had the same problem as you and they know exactly what you should do to fix your situation. This advice is almost universally bad. Similar legal situations do not always call for similar solutions and what your friends think is a similar situation might not actually be one. This has led many attorneys to dread having a client tell them, “My friend said.” Attorneys know that rarely leads to a fun conversation. If you get a traffic ticket in Miami, you will run into the same phenomenon. Your friends will all be willing to offer advice. Unfortunately, many of them will tell you that it is just a traffic ticket so the best thing you can do is to pay it and forget it. It is terrible advice. You should never just pay a ticket and forget it, not without speaking to an attorney first. When you pay a traffic ticket in Miami, the costs that you incur are not just what is written on the ticket. Traffic tickets have several hidden costs.
Insurance companies decide how much they are going to charge you, in part, by looking at your past driving record. They do not just look at your accident record. They look at all available data, including traffic tickets. If you get a traffic ticket in Miami and you pay the ticket, you are telling insurance companies that you did whatever the violation was. Your current insurer will raise your rates when it finds out. When you go to look for a different insurance company, the rates you are quoted will be higher than they would otherwise be. This is a direct financial cost to you that can be a lot more than what was actually written on the ticket.
Every time that you commit a traffic violation of any kind, you risk getting points on your license. The exact number depends on what specific violation you committed and how many times you have committed it. The points are cumulative. In Florida, if you get 12 points on your license in any 12 month period, your driver’s license is suspended. Yes, this causes your insurance to be even higher because it is yet another incident in your record for insurers to count against you.
For some traffic tickets in Miami, you can elect to go driving school so that you do not get points on your license. This means that you get to pay someone to teach you that speeding is not allowed. You already knew that. If you did not, then you learned it when you paid the ticket. You also have to pay this person to certify to the government that you attended the class. If that is not done, then your license is automatically suspended. The people who teach driving school routinely forget to send the certifications in. That means you can be driving around on a suspended license without knowing about it. If you get stopped again for any reason, you will have a difficult situation to handle with the police officer who stops you.
It should now be obvious to you that you do not want to take a friend’s advice to just pay a ticket. You need to talk to an attorney who focuses on traffic tickets in Miami. If the attorney tells you to go ahead and pay the ticket, you can be certain it is in your best interest to do so. However, the attorney is rarely going to tell you to do that. Instead, the attorney will try to help you get out of the situation without increased insurance costs, license points or driving school.
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.