A speeding ticket is a common occurrence for many drivers. However, too many people who get tickets behind the wheel assume they should just pay the fee. Traffic violations can be disputed, but it could be a lengthy procedure. People often pay the ticket to avoid the hassle.
Speeding tickets can tarnish a clean driving record. North Carolina has adopted a driving point system. Drivers receive points for each conviction of a moving violation. Accumulation of these points can have severe repercussions including the loss of the privilege to drive on the streets of North Carolina. . An experienced criminal defense attorney can help drivers protect their rights and keep their driving records free of points.
Raleigh Speeding Ticket Attorney
If you have received a speeding ticket in Wake County, contact a skilled Raleigh speeding defense attorney at Coolidge Law Firm. The attorneys at Coolidge Law Firm will fight to protect your right to drive in North Carolina. The team will examine all of the evidence regarding your traffic stop and work to get your charges reduced or even dropped.
Call (919) 239-8448 to schedule a free consultation. Coolidge Law Firm represents clients throughout Wake County, including Raleigh, Apex, Cary, Morrisville, Rolesville, Zebulon, Garner, Wake Forest, Fuquay-Varina and Knightdale.
Information on Speeding Tickets
- Speeding Fines and Court Appearances in Wake County
- North Carolina Driver’s License Points
- Losing Driving Privileges After Speeding in North Carolina
- Reducing a Speeding Citation to Improper Equipment
Speeding offenses in North Carolina carry a variety of penalties, including steep fines. The fines for speeding tickets vary depending on the offense. In some instances, the location in which the offense occurred could increase the fees, such as speeding in a school zone or a construction area with workers.
Most speeding citations do not require a court appearance. These “waivable” offenses include:
- Speeding over the applicable limit and over 55 mph but not over 80 mph
- Speeding over the applicable limit 55 mph and less
- Speeding in a school zone or on school property
- Driving too slowly
- Speeding in a work zone
- Failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident
However, drivers still have the option of having their case heard before a district court judge. Choosing to simply pay the ticket results in a guilty judgement and all the same consequences as if being found guilty after a trial.
Drivers can lose their privilege to get behind the wheel in North Carolina in some situations, including out-of-state drivers. An appearance in court could result in a reduction of your citation, which may save you a substantial amount in insurance premiums. It also could help to keep your driving record clean.
Some traffic citations, however, cannot be waived and require a court appearance. A citation for driving more than 15 mph over the posted speed limit while driving more than 55 mph likely would require an appearance in court. If you fail to appear on your court date as required, your driver’s license may be revoked and you may be arrested.
After being convicted of certain motor vehicle violations in North Carolina, including speeding offenses, driver license points are placed against the person’s driving record. Points vary based on the type of offense. For a single offense, they can range from one point to five points.
North Carolina driving law stipulates that points are given for the following speeding offenses:
- Speeding more than 55 mph – 3
- Speeding through a school zone – 3
- Speeding through safety zone – 3
- Other speeding violations – 2
If you accumulate seven points, you may be assigned to a driver improvement clinic. The clinic fee is $50. Upon satisfactory completion of the clinic, three points would be deducted from your driving record. Drivers are eligible to attend driving improvement clinics once every five years to reduce driver license points.
Drivers can lose their privilege to operate a motor vehicle in North Carolina after certain traffic violations, including speeding citations. Although the citations seem minor, they can have long lasting effects.
If a driver accumulates as many as 12 points within a three-year period, his license may be suspended. The accumulation of eight points within three years following the reinstatement of his license can result in a second suspension.
Suspensions for point accumulation result in varying suspension lengths:
- 60 days for the first suspension
- 6 months for the second suspension
- 12 months for the third suspension
Driving privileges can be suspended for other reasons as well. If you were convicted of speeding more than 15 miles per hour above the posted limit, you could lose your license for a minimum of 30 days.
The North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles also can suspend a person’s driver’s license for two or more convictions in a year of speeding while going more than 55 miles per hour. Even if a driver was traveling only one mile over the speed limit, there could be repercussions.
Recently, the Wake County District Attorney’s Office began allowing, under certain conditions, a speeding citation to be reduced to a nonmoving violation called “Improper Equipment.” The Improper Equipment charge means the accused failed to maintain a speedometer working in good order in violation of N.C.G.S. § 20-132.2.
An Improper Equipment conviction comes with a surcharge and a possible fine. However, this reduction prevents the assessment of DMV points and insurance points.
The prosecutor has the discretion over whether to agree to the reduction. Your best opportunity at obtaining the reduction to improper equipment is to hire a skilled attorney to assess your case and negotiate with the prosecutor.
Finding the Best Speeding Defense Lawyer in Wake County
Traffic violations should be taken seriously in North Carolina, including speeding citations. If you have been charged with speeding in Wake County, contact a skilled Raleigh speeding defense attorney at Coolidge Law Firm. The attorneys will work to get the best possible outcome in your case. Call (919) 239-8448 for a free consultation.