Robert R. Hart, Jr., Attorney at Law
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Fighting a traffic ticket in court

Many Ohio drivers will be issued a ticket at some point during their lives. Most drivers will choose to simply pay the ticket without contesting it. Others may wonder if it would be worth fighting the charge in court, especially if the ticket will affect their insurance premiums.

For anyone considering fighting a ticket, a good first step is to read the state law. A prosecutor must show that every element of the violation is met to prove a person guilty of the offense charged. If a person challenging a ticket can show one or more elements does was not met according to the state law, he or she may be found not guilty.

Paying the ticket is usually considered an admission of guilt. There may be other options available for a person who wants to keep traffic violations off of their driving record, such as taking a driving class.

Asking for a trial instead of simply paying for the ticket may result in a dismissal if the police officer fails to show up for court. In some cases, prosecutors may fail to produce video for trial required to demonstrate that the person is guilty of the crime alleged. The charge may also be dismissed for other reasons, such as a speedy trial violation or error on the ticket.

Consulting an attorney may be able to help a person decide what legal options are available in their case. Even minor traffic violations like speeding tickets may cause a person's insurance premiums to increase. Avoiding these costs might make hiring an attorney and taking the time to fight the ticket worth it for some people, especially for drivers who have a commercial driver's license. An attorney may be able to challenge a speeding ticket by demonstrating that the equipment used in a speeding ticket case was faulty or not checked for calibration within the time frame required by law.

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