By signing your speeding ticket, you are not admitting to guilt; you're only making a promise to appear in court. In most jurisdictions, you can avoid a court appearance by paying a fine for speeding. Often this can be done by mail or online. But be aware that there can be some negative ramifications when you do this. The following are a few ways that a speeding ticket attorney can help you.
An attorney can help you avoid an increase in your insurance premiums
It only takes a single ticket to make your insurance rates go up. Of course, you may not see it right away, but when you go to renew your policy, your rates are likely to be higher. Keep in mind that it may not be necessary to win your case. In some states, they allow for a first time offender to take a course in traffic safety (sometimes called traffic school). When you complete the course, the ticket will not appear on your record. Some states have an online class that can be taken at your convenience. But be aware that not everyone will be eligible for traffic school. If you're not sure whether you qualify for traffic school, an attorney may be able to help.
An attorney may get the ticket dismissed
It is not uncommon for a judge to dismiss a ticket. If you represent yourself, the chances of this happening are slim. An attorney that has handled a large number of traffic ticket cases knows all the ways a ticket can be dismissed. One common reason is that there are errors on the ticket. The first thing a lawyer will do is examine the ticket and look for any mistakes or inconsistencies. If one is found, the attorney can bring this to the attention of a traffic court judge.
An attorney may be able to deal down the offense
Even if the speeding ticket cannot be dismissed, it may be possible to negotiate the ticket down to a lesser offense. In certain circumstances, this may simply mean paying a lower fine. But sometimes negotiating down to a lesser offense can be the difference between keeping or losing your driver's license. In some jurisdictions, you may have been ticketed for a serious infraction because of the high speed you were traveling, even if it is your first offense. In situations like these, an attorney may be able to negotiate the ticket to a lesser offense. Your ticket will still be on your record, but it will cost you less and possibly save your license.
It is easy enough to pay a fine for your speeding ticket and not go through the hassle of a court appearance. But before you decide to pay the ticket, you should at least have a traffic attorney look at the ticket so you will know the possible outcomes.