What Are the “Must Appear” Offenses in Maryland Traffic Laws
Traffic offenses in Maryland vary in severity, and there are different ways to resolve each one. Some traffic offenses carry severe penalties that may include jail time, while others warrant a small fine. A payable traffic offense, for example, would be handled much differently than a must appear offense.
Because circumstances vary for each case, it’s critical that any person facing a traffic offense consults with a Maryland traffic attorney as soon as possible to understand the full extent of penalties associated and the steps necessary to resolve the case.
What Types of Traffic Violations Are There in Maryland?
There are two types of traffic charges drivers can face in Maryland that include:
● Minor traffic violations
● Serious traffic violations
Minor Traffic Violations
Minor traffic violations are the least severe type of charge. They are cited to drivers who violate any law recorded in the Maryland Transportation Article that lists traffic laws that are enforced across the state. Drivers won’t face jail time when charged with a minor traffic violation. An example of a typical traffic infraction is a speeding ticket. Minor traffic violations in Maryland are sometimes considered misdemeanors, and the penalties may include up to $500 in fines.
Serious Traffic Violations
There are traffic charges outlined in the Maryland Transportation Article that are considered serious. Examples of serious traffic violations include automobile manslaughter, DUI, DWI, and driving while license suspended. The key difference between a minor and a serious traffic charge relates to the penalties associated. Any person charged with a serious traffic violation faces a jail sentence.
What Types of Traffic Offenses Are There in Maryland?
Drivers can face two different types of traffic offenses in Maryland that’s either a payable offense or a must-appear offense. Payable offenses are slight and can usually be resolved in a short time. On the other hand, must-appear traffic offenses are much more severe, and any person facing one should counsel with an experienced Maryland traffic attorney.
Payable Traffic Offenses
Payable traffic offenses in Maryland do not include jail time as a penalty. Anyone charged with a payable offense may plead guilty if they choose to do so, pay the fine, and not worry about appearing before a judge.
Examples of a payable traffic offense include:
● Improper turning
● Running a stoplight
Anyone charged with a payable offense in Maryland has three choices on how they wish to resolve the case:
● Plead guilty and pay the fine
● Plead guilty with an explanation and request a waiver hearing
● Plead not guilty and request a trial
If they do not pay the fine for the offense, they must request a waiver hearing or a trial that they must attend. If you’ve been charged with a payable traffic offense in Maryland, you have 30 days before the Maryland Vehicle Administration is informed. Failing to act may result in a license suspension.
Must-Appear Traffic Offenses
Must-appear violations are serious matters according to Maryland laws that hold heavy penalties that may involve incarceration. Any person facing a must-appear traffic offense can significantly benefit from a knowledgeable traffic attorney to resolve the case and have their best chance of a lighter penalty.
Examples of must-appear traffic offenses include:
● Leaving the scene of an accident
● Driving with a suspended license
● Fleeing and evading the police
Unlike a payable traffic offense, must-appear offenses cannot be resolved simply by paying fines. Rather they are legally required to appear in court on a specific time and date that they’re notified through the mail.
Contact Experienced Baltimore Traffic Attorney for a Free Consultation
If you’ve been charged with a traffic offense in Maryland, it’s essential to speak with a knowledgeable attorney with experience handling traffic cases. Attorney Hillel Traub of The Law Office of Hillel Traub is dedicated to fighting minor and serious charges on behalf of his clients in the Baltimore community. As a former Assistant Attorney General for the MVA, Attorney Traub leverages his knowledge and successful defense experience to advocate for your rights, driving privileges, and freedom.
To schedule a free consultation with Attorney Hillel Traub to discuss your traffic matter, complete a contact form, or call today at (410) 580-1100.