The State of California depends on a points-based system for driver’s license infractions. A moving violation or traffic infraction typically results in one or two points for that violation. Accumulating a certain number of points may result in the suspension of your license. If you want to protect your driving privileges after receiving a traffic violation, you need to understand your options for contesting the ticket.
There are a few things to consider when formulating your defense.
Is there a chance of mistaken identity?
In some cases, the officer might misconstrue the radar gun reading and identify the wrong vehicle. This may happen in cases when traffic is heavy or several vehicles pass in the same area. If there is a chance of mistaken identity, you can contest the ticket.
Were there extenuating circumstances?
In some cases, the courts may dismiss a traffic violation if extenuating circumstances led to the incident. For example, a medical emergency could lead to a traffic stop for speeding. Depending on the nature of the emergency, you might have grounds to contest the ticket.
Do the conditions in the area preclude the ticketed speed?
If you receive a speeding ticket in an area with sharp corners, hills or other obstructions that prevent excessive speed, photographic evidence of the area can support your case. The same applies to a ticket issued in an area with prevalent rush-hour backups. Document the area over a consistent period to support your case.
These are a few common ways to fight a traffic violation in California and protect your license from those extra points.