Failure to Reduce Speed
If you have been involved in an accident, you may have received a citation for failure to reduce speed. This ticket is commonly given when there has been a car crash. Even if a person was driving relatively safely, he or she could still receive a ticket for this offense. For example, if a car stops quickly in front of you, and you are unable to stop, you can get this ticket. Most of the time, it is given even when the damage to the other car is minimal.
There are two reasons that a law enforcement officer may give this ticket. The first is to make sure that the accident is properly documented. The officer wants to make a note of who he or she determined was at fault in the accident. The second is so that the Assistant District Attorney has a charge to use as leverage to make sure that the innocent driver is compensated for his or her loss. While it may seem like just a hassle, it is definitely something you want to have cleared up.
If your insurance company pays the other person’s claim, and you can get a letter from your insurance company demonstrating this, the Assistant District Attorney may be much more willing to negotiate on your case. Unfortunately, sometimes insurance companies can be slow to process claims, and the other person has not been compensated when your court date comes up. When this occurs, you need a continuance until the insurance company has settled the claim. If a new court date comes and the insurance company is still trying to settle the case, then another continuance is required. If you do not have an attorney, you will have to go to court each time and request a continuance. If you do this on your own, you may have to take time off of work to go to court. If you hire an attorney, he or she will be able to go to court for you and keep you from having to take time off of work, drive uptown, find parking, and wait in line at court.
This is not a charge that will simply go away on its own. If you fail to respond to the charge, things will only get worse. If you are late, an additional $200 late fee may be assessed against you. In addition to the late fee, your license can be suspended by the Division of Motor Vehicles if you do nothing on your case within 60 days of when it is marked “Failure to Appear.” You can read more about this on our “Consequences of Waiting to Deal with a Ticket” page. Needless to say, taking care of a ticket on time is much better than dragging out the process by failing to appear on the charge. It can raise stakes for a person, because it raises the costs of the ticket, and creates a hassle by suspending your license. This can have more effects on you, because if you are caught driving without a license, you will have to deal with another charge. Keep it simple, and either appear in court, or hire a traffic ticket lawyer to appear in court for you!
Many times, after an accident, people have multiple things to worry about like insurance, getting their car fixed, and healing. A traffic ticket is another stressor that they should not have to worry about. A lawyer can resolve the ticket for you while you focus on getting your insurance issues dealt with, your car fixed, and your body healed.