Getting a Red Light Ticket Dismissed
Most Maryland drivers have, at some point, received a citation for violating traffic laws. While some tickets may be warranted, it is not uncommon for traffic citations to result in costly and unexpected fines. Police officers and judges especially have little tolerance for red light offenses, as they endanger other drivers crossing intersections. A red light ticket can have a lasting effect if the driver fails to handle it correctly.
When considering ways to challenge your ticket, remember to work with a knowledgeable Baltimore traffic ticket lawyer who serves Baltimore and surrounding areas. An attorney can put up the ultimate fight to protect your driving record and seek the dismissal or reduction of pesky fines.
OPTIONS FOR FIGHTING A RED LIGHT TICKET
After receiving a citation for a Maryland traffic violation, your best chance of keeping a clean record and avoiding court fees is to work with an attorney. Together, you and your attorney may be able to take the following steps to challenge your red light traffic ticket.
- Find out whether you have a clean driving record. Drivers with prior moving violations, parking tickets, or accidents will not be able to fight a red light ticket unless they work with an attorney to resolve previous violations. Contact the Maryland Motor Vehicle Association to obtain a copy of your driving record.
- Understand the law. In Maryland, a vehicle that is in the intersection at the time the light changes to red is not violating the red light law. It is possible that the police officer witnessed the action from an angle that prevented him from making the right call. It may be possible to dispute the officer’s judgment in court.
- Attend the court date or hire an attorney to do so. A clean driving record shows that you are a responsible driver. Still, even good drivers make mistakes. You are more likely to receive leniency when you can prove that you have consistently maintained a clean record. Your attorney may be able to speak with the prosecuting attorney to seek a dismissal of the charges against you. Likewise, your ticket may be dismissed if the officer who issued it does not appear in court.
- Request a trial. You may not receive the outcome you would like on the date that you appear in court to fight the traffic ticket. In this case, request a trial and work with an experienced traffic ticket lawyer to represent you.
- Provide details of the incident. Is it possible that you had a good reason to run the red light for which the officer cited you? A judge who understands the specifics of the case may be doubtful about whether or not you deserved the citation. Some defenses may include:
FIGHTING YOUR TICKET IN COURT
- Challenging the officer’s position. It’s possible that, from where the officer positioned himself, he could not correctly view the traffic signal.
- Crossing the intersection after the light changed for safety reasons. A driver who may be threatened by slick roads or a tailgater may state these facts to the judge. Your lawyer may support this defense with a photograph of the scene or witness testimony.
- Having an obstructed view. Large vehicles in front of the driver’s car may block the driver’s view of the traffic signal. It’s possible that the driver could not see the light until he had already moved past the traffic light.
TAKE THE FIRST STEP TOWARD PROTECTING YOUR LICENSE
A red light traffic ticket is a moving violation that may leave points on your license if you fail to take appropriate measures. The first of those measures should be hiring a reliable attorney who has experience challenging citations for traffic violations. Attorney Hillel Traub of The Law Office of Hillel Traub has dedicated a significant portion of his career to helping residents of the Baltimore metro area protect their driving privilege.
Having served as a former Assistant Attorney General for the Motor Vehicle Association of Maryland, Hillel Traub has produced many successful results over his 25-year career. Find out how he can help you preserve your license by calling (410) 580-1100 or completing our contact form for a free consultation.