Is It Possible to Fight a Speeding Ticket and Win?
A Skilled Traffic Ticket Defender Knows Which Facts Are Important and How to Poke Holes In the Case of the Prosecution By Creating Reasonable Doubt.
Similar Questions About Fighting a Speeding Ticket Include:
- Can a Speeding Ticket Be Fought and Won?
- How Do You Fight a Speeding Ticket?
- Is It Possible to Fight a Speeding Ticket?
- How Can I Beat a Speeding Ticket?
- Can a Speeding Ticket Be Beat In Court?
A Helpful Guide On How to Determine and Understand the Best Strategies Available When Fighting a Speeding Ticket
While there is no sure fire guaranteed way to beat a speeding ticket, there are various strategies that can put a very strong fight in an effort to get the ticket dismissed entirely. There are also strategies for reducing fines, minimizing insurance affects, and saving demerit points. Determining which strategy is best requires a review of the specific circumstances involved. Legal Eagle will know which strategy is right for your situation.
A speeding ticket is plainly and obviously understood; however, for those wanting to review the formal legalese, the law relating to the offence of speeding is found at section 128 of the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8.
Various Strategy Options
Each and every client has a unique case circumstance and personal situation; and accordingly, the strategy selected to defend each client will vary depending on the individual needs and wants of each client. For you and every client, Legal Eagle will review your needs and wants, and only after your key concerns are fully understood, will explain the available defence strategies that are available to help you achieve your needs and wants. Generally, clients seek strategies that may achieve:
- The full dismissal of the charge (best possible result);
- The reduction of the charge to a lesser charge with lower fine;
- The avoiding or delaying of insurance consequences;
- The avoiding, or reduced number, of demerit points;
- The avoiding of a licence suspension;
- The avoiding or reduction of a fine;
Even if you did it, the prosecution must still prove it!
Your needs and wants will always be the goal of Legal Eagle
Pursuing Case Dismissal
The best result will always be a complete dismissal of the charge against you. Remember, the prosecution must prove the case 'beyond a reasonable doubt'. Legal Eagle works hard to review the alleged facts, the available evidence, and to find all the ways to poke holes in the case of the prosecution.
The complete dismissal strategy begins by reviewing the your side of the story. Next, the evidence disclosure, when received from the prosecution, is carefully reviewed to determine what evidence is available to help the prosecutor prove the allegations against you. If it looks like some evidence is missing, and evidence that should be available to the prosecution, a request for additional disclosure is made. If the additional disclosure remains outstanding, a Motion to Produce may be brought on your behalf in an effort to obtain an Order from the court to compel the prosecution to provide the additional disclosure.
When full disclosure is received and everything necessary is in hand, a thorough review is performed and you will be advised of the Trial strategy for attacking the allegation. You will also be provided with insight on the likelihood of success as well as the possible outcome and plea options that may be available to you. With your instructions to go forward, a full fledged fight against the charge will be taken to Trial.
Questioning of Witnesses
At a speeding Trial, usually, a police officer will be the first, and only, witness to testify. The police officer will first be questioned by a Prosecutor. The questions will be framed to elicit details about what vehicle you were driving as well as the date and time, how fast you were driving, where you were speeding, what the speed limit is where you were driving and therefore how fast over the limit you were traveling, how you were identified as the driver, and perhaps other things.
After the Prosecutor finishes questing the police officer, the defence effort begins with questioning of the police officer in ways that challenge the earlier testimony and evidence. During this questioning the strategy is to weaken the case of the prosecution by showing that:
- There is a possibility that the police officer was mistaken;
- There is a possibility that the radar gun was defective or out of calibration; and
- There are other facts that prove the allegations are untrue.
During the process of defence questioning it is important to know what questions to ask and how to ask the questions. Additionally, it is important to know what questions to avoid. Most significantly, it is important to remember that the defence is without need to prove the allegations as untrue. The defence only needs to shake the evidence of the prosecution enough to create a reasonable doubt. As always, you are innocent until proven guilty and the prosecution must prove your guilt; you are without a need to prove your innocence.
Minimizing Insurance Difficulties
It is commonly known that speeding is often a major, and perhaps the major, factor in the cause of an automobile accident. It is also obvious that the greater the speed involved in an accident, the greater the damage and the greater likelihood of serious injuries. Accordingly, convictions for speeding may have significant affects upon insurance rates. For insurance purposes, speeding convictions are reviewed as either a minor (1 km/h to 29 km/h over the limit), major (30 km/h to 49 km/h over the limit), or serious (50 km/h and up over the limit).
Automobile insurance companies In Ontario are governed by the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario ("FSRAO"). Among other things, FSRAO reviews, approves, and regulates, the rates and rules of each automobile insurance company whereas insurers are required to provide full details of the rate tables and rule guides used. Insurers are also governed in what questions are allowable. Among other types of traffic tickets, insurers are only allowed to ask for and use, or obtain from the Ministry of Transportation (Ontario) and use, information about traffic ticket convictions during the three years prior to the date the insurer is reviewing your file.
As only convictions during the three years prior to the date of review are usable by an insurance company, sometimes it is in the best interests of a person charged with speeding, or other traffic ticket, to delay the possible conviction for the charge until after the insurance is reviewed and renewed for another year. Delaying a conviction may be in your best interest if, for example:
- You were charged for speeding on June 15th;
- You carry insurance that renews on August 10th;
- You therefore know that the insurance review will happen before August 10th;
- You already have a conviction, or convictions, that will 'fall off' the three year record by next year;
- You want to need to ensure that this latest charge is uninvolved in the review of the insurance renewal for this year as the combination of your existing convictions and a conviction for this latest charge would adversely affect your insurance rates; and
- You know that by the time next year comes, with an existing conviction, or convictions, that will 'fall off' the record, a conviction for this latest charge will, by itself, be of little affect to your insurance rates.
To delay a conviction from showing up on your driving record until after an insurance company completes the renewal review, choosing to fight the ticket may push a Trial date the period when your insurance company is reviewing your file and determining your rates, among other things, for the upcoming year. Once your renewal insurance policy is received, you can then re-evaluate the approach to fighting the speeding ticket.
Delaying a conviction is especially important if you are on the cusp of becoming uninsurable with your current insurance company whereas most insurance companies have rules about how many, and what type, of convictions a driver may have before the insurance company will decline to offer a renewal policy. Delaying a conviction until after the renewal is received, especially if an existing conviction, or convictions, will fall off the record before the renewal review next year, can be very helpful in guiding your overall strategy for fighting a speeding ticket, among other types of traffic tickets.
Avoiding Driving Record Troubles
Depending on the rate of speed over the limit that you are charged with there may be demerit points that will be applied to your driver record if convicted for speeding (among other charges). The number of demerit points applied are:
- A total of zero (0) points when convicted for a speeding charge for driving one (1) km per hour to fifteen (15) km per hour over the limit;
- A total of three (3) points when convicted for a speeding charge for driving sixteen (16) km per hour to twenty-nine (29) km per hour over the limit;
- A total of four (4) points when convicted for a speeding charge for driving thirty (30) km per hour to forty-nine (49) km per hour over the limit;
- A total of six (6) points when convicted for a speeding charge for driving fifty (50) km per hour or more over the limit;
As above, a speeding ticket, among others, may result in an accumulation of demerit points. If you are a fully licenced driver and you accumulate nine (9) points to fourteen (14) points, you will be required to attend an interview and will be required to give reasons why your licence should remain without suspension. If you accumulate fifteen (15) or more points, a suspension is mandatory. If you are a novice driver and you accumulate six (6) points to eight (8) points, you will be required to attend an interview to explain why your licence should remain without suspension. If you accumulate nine (9) or more points, a suspension is mandatory.
How aggressively a person wishes to defend a speeding ticket will depend greatly on individual circumstances. A person with a minor speeding charge who has a relatively clear driving record, and is therefore facing minimal consequences, may forgo fighting the charge altogether. A person with two or more prior convictions, especially if for a major or serious charge, may need to fight tooth-and-nail to avoid drastic insurance affects or even licence suspension.
To determine how aggressively you should fight your speeding ticket, or any traffic ticket, contact Legal Eagle to review your situation and what can be done to help you.