I know, I write a blog on the internet where I give traffic ticket advice and I’m writing an article basically telling you not to trust what you read online as it relates to traffic ticket defense.
Here’s the deal, almost everything I read online (this includes what I watch on YouTube), is something that will get you laughed out of court in Florida. Now I’m not saying everyone is lying to you, but it’s important to note that not only is every state different, but, believe it or not, traffic ticket court varies from county to county.
In Florida, that means there’s 67 different sets of rules. Obviously, when you expand out from Florida to include the rest of the country, things get complicated.
Most people assume because some “trick” works in one place, it will work in another. Or, because someone got a ticket dismissed somewhere, at some point, that defense will apply across the board to every ticket ever written everywhere.
Sadly, that is not the case.
Things change daily in traffic court in Florida (and I assume everywhere else). It is not uncommon for me to argue a legal motion that I have been using for years to get cases dismissed, only to be told by the judge or magistrate that “We don’t grant that anymore.”
If I’m feeling particularly snarky, I sometimes reply, “Was there a change in the Constitution that I was not aware of?” But I know what really happened was that the almighty dollar caused a back door meeting wherein it was decided that too much money was being lost and Voila, my legal motion is no longer considered valid. Oh well, time to find another one. You can’t fight city hall. Crazy, but it happens all the time in Florida.
The reason I keep qualifying my statements by limiting myself to Florida is that I’m an attorney who is only licensed to practice law in Florida and other than anecdotal evidence, have no personal knowledge of other states. But I have cultivated plenty of traffic attorney friends in my 20 years of fighting tickets, and we all talk. We are all trying to help each other out, in attempts to get cases dismissed for our clients.
So, when I read (or watch) these “experts” who are not attorneys, but who claim to have the magic formula, I cringe. I’ve seen what happens to many of these people in court, when they stand up and try to explain to the judge how they are “Mennonites” who can’t be found guilty under the Constitution because it’s a violation of their rights dating back centuries before America existed, or when they challenge the judge’s right to preside over their case because of some arcane law, or that red light cameras are unconstitutional because they do not get to confront their accusers, again, I cringe, because I know what’s coming.
Which is followed by points on the driver's license, which is always followed by foul language and then something about how the system stinks and how they will appeal (but as a side note, if you don’t record the proceedings, there cannot be an appeal).
The other “brilliant” defense I see is what I call the procedural defenses. Things like repeatedly asking for a continuance in the hopes that the ticket will just get lost in the system, or paying the ticket, but under or overpaying slightly in the hopes that the clerk will somehow be confused and your ticket will wind up in a pile that resembles the final scene in Raiders of the Lost Arc and you won’t have to deal with it.
A very quick glance online and you will come across many of these “too good to be true” loopholes that may have worked at one point, but have long been closed.
Think about it. The courts rely on traffic tickets for revenue. Across the country, they generate billions of dollars. They are essentially a tax, but since it is sold as a tax on bad drivers, you (and everyone else) look the other way when the legislature raises the fines every year. . . until YOU get pulled over.
There’s nothing like staring at a $500 ticket that makes you want to find a loophole fast. Which is why people go online, which is when they discover these wacky defenses which don’t work, which then lead people to my office begging me for help, but in many cases it’s too late. You generally don’t get two bites at the same apple.
Which is why I try and educate people on my blog and through my videos. My law firm is in the trenches every day fighting to help people with traffic tickets the same way we’ve always done it for over 20 years. If there was a miracle cure, I’d share it with you.
Fighting each ticket on its merits one at a time, through proper legal defense is the only way. Boring but true. Considering our fees start at only $49.95, I’d say it’s a pretty good deal, unless of course you’re a Mennonite, in which case, you may not need an attorney. For the rest of you, our number is 866-374-8355 and we always offer a free consultation.