This page is to help you beat your Texas speeding ticket,locate a Texas traffic school or a Texas traffic ticket attorney.
Ahh, the wide open Texas spaces. Looks just like the commercial on TV so you try to see if your car does everything they said it would. Not a problem except for the Texas county mountie behind the next billboard and welcome to your Texas speeding ticket.
Actually Texas is not as tough on speeders as most states. Reckless driving tickets are not commonly issued for just speeding and the Texas traffic ticket fine schedule is one of the lowest in the nation. You also have the option in most cases of a deferment or Texas Online Traffic School and the ticket not be posted on your record. This is a big savings in insurance premiums. Normally we suggest Texas Traffic School for a minor speeding ticket in order to save your deferment in case of a more serious offense.
Do not argue your case on the side of the road, save that for court. Also you must sign the ticket or you will receive a free taxi ride to the local jail. Signing is not an admission of guilt, just a promise to appear in court. You do not have the right to see the radar readout and it does not matter anyway.
A speeding ticket is considered a criminal offense and your case will be in the municipal court or the justice of the peace. Your court date on the ticket is an arraignment where you can enter a plea or negotiate for a lesser fine and points. You do have the option of requesting a jury trial but if you lose there will be court costs and possibly a higher fine.
When you receive your Texas speeding ticket the officer will tell if if it is a mandatory court appearance or if you can pay your fine by mail with a money order. Generally it is best to contest any traffic ticket but that is your decision and depends on your record and if the speeding ticket will increase your insurance premiums.
If you decide to contest your Texas ticket start by researching the exact statute of the violation. The statute number is on the ticket. If it is a state statute you can find it at Texas speeding ticket laws. If it is a county or city ordinance contact the court or local library. You may need to obtain a copy of your driving record from the DMV. Judges will sometimes be lenient if you produce a clean record. Contact your insurance agent if you need to know how much this ticket is likely to effect your insurance premiums. If you drive a company car or have insurance coverage with certain carriers a speeding ticket of 20+ over the limit can be a serious matter.
Texas Traffic Ticket Attorney
What can a Texas traffic ticket attorney accomplish that you cannot. A local attorney knows the court, the judge and the law. That is how he makes his living and if he could not be effective he would not be in practice. In many cases he can contact the court and arrange for a satisfactory reduction and save you money in the long run. Most people do not have the time to spend in a Texas traffic court and regard the attorney fee as money well spent. In all cases where there is the possibility of jail time or a license suspension you should retain a Texas traffic ticket attorney.
Texas CDL Truck Driver
If you hold a Texas CDL license you are no longer eligible for Texas traffic school or a deferment. In addition there are new laws that make certain offense a serious CDL violation and your license can be suspended.
It is very important that you contest any speeding ticket even if it is received in your personal vehicle. Do not just pay your Texas speeding ticket until you know the consequences. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is now keeping records on truck drivers just as they do on the trucking companies. New rules are coming out so be sure that you stay informed. Here is the FMSCA website with all the truck driver rules.
Speeding tickets are also posted to your DAC report and this can impact your ability to fine a job. If you are having problems finding a job, you may have incorrect information on your DAC report. Click on the link below for information on how to obtain your DAC report and possibly correct any misinformation.
If you receive a Texas speeding ticket, you may be eligible to take Texas Online Driving School and the Texas speeding ticket will not show on your record. This can save you a substantial amount in auto insurance premiums. Check with the clerk of court to see if you are eligible and then you can sign up for online traffic school by clicking on the banner below.
Defensive driving or Texas traffic school applies to offenses under subtitle C-Rules of the Road-of the Transportation Code. Section 543.103 requires that the court shall defer proceedings and allow a person up to 90 days to complete a Defensive Driving Course if the defendant:
* enters a plea of guilty or nolo contendre on or before the answer date;
* has a valid Texas driver's license or permit;
* DPS driving record does not show successful completion of a driving safety course within one year of the date of the offense;
* files an affidavit with the court stating that no defensive driving course has been taken within one year that is not shown on the driving record;
* is charged with an offense under Subsection C other than a Texas speeding ticket 25 miles per hour over the posted speed limit; and
* has proof of financial responsibility.
If the individual is not eligible for Texas online traffic school or defensive driving, inquiries should be made regarding the court's policy toward discretionary defensive driving. Most courts have a written policy regarding this issue. Generally, the court clerk is a good source of information regarding the court's policy. A motion for discretionary defensive driving may be made at any time before the final disposition of the case.
In the last legislature, the Code was amended to permit the submission of a defensive driving certificate within 30 days after the expiration of the 90 day period allowed to take the course. This is to permit the defendant a 30 day grace period from the date of completion for the processing of the certificate. Also, since the last legislature, motorcycle defensive driving courses are now available for offenses committed while driving a motorcycle. A CDL driver cannot take online traffic school.
Keep Texas Ticket Off Record
In some circumstances, you may request Texas deferred adjudication from the Court. If you have a good driving record, and you are not currently on deferred disposition, you may make a request of the Court. Deferred disposition means you will be placed on probation for a period of up to one year. If you successfully complete the probationary period without receiving a moving violation anywhere in the State of Texas, the original charge will be dismissed. As part of deferred disposition, you are required by law to take a defensive driving course unless you can present proof to the Court that you have had a defensive driving class in the twelve months preceding the date you were given your ticket. You must also provide the Court with proof of insurance. For this reason we recommend that you take the online traffic school and save your Texas speeding ticket deferment.
Deferred disposition is not an option if your ticket was for speeding 25 miles per hour or more over the limit, your ticket resulted from a traffic accident, or you have a Texas CDL license.
Texas Driver License Points
The Texas Driver Responsibility law establishes a system that assigns points to moving violations classified as Class C misdemeanors and applies surcharges to offenders, based on the type of offense and the time period in which the Texas traffic ticket was received. For each conviction, DPS will assign points to a person’s license as follows:
Two points for a moving violation conviction in Texas or that of another state. Points will not be assigned for speeding less than 10% over the posted limit or seat belt convictions. Three points for a moving violation conviction in Texas or another state that resulted in a vehicle crash. Points remain on the driver record for a period of three years.
A person who receives 4 or more moving violations in a period of 12 months, or 7 or more moving violations in a period of 24 months, is subject to having their license suspended.
A Texas surcharge is an administrative fee charged to a driver based on the Texas speeding ticket convictions reported to the driving record. There are two criteria that determine if a surcharge will be assessed. Those two criteria are: Point System and Conviction Based surcharges.
Surcharges are in addition to all other reinstatement fees required for other administrative actions and do not replace any administrative suspension, revocation, disqualification or cancellation action that results from these same convictions.
A surcharge will be assessed when the driver accumulates a total of six (6) points or more on the driver record. The driver is required to pay a $100 surcharge for the first six (6) points and $25 for each additional point. The driver record will be reviewed annually and if it continues to reflect six (6) or more points, the surcharge will be assessed. Drivers may be required to pay for one or more years. Point surcharges may vary with each annual assessment if convictions are added or removed from the driver record. In addition there are specific conviction based surcharges for violations such as DUI and no Texas auto insurance.
Almost every state now has a law aimed at protecting emergency personnel who are on the side of the roadway. Many jurisdictions are operating "sting" operations to catch motorists who do not obey this law. Fines are usually higher than a normal speeding ticket so this may be the new revenue enhancer for many small towns.
The Texas Move Over Law states a driver must either vacate the lane closest to the stopped emergency vehicle if the road has multiple lanes traveling in the same direction or slow down 20 miles per hour below the speed limit. (If the speed limit is below 25 mph the driver must slow down to 5 mph.)
Emergency vehicles include police, emergency medical service and fire vehicles.
A violation is punishable by a maximum fine of $200. If the violation results in property damage, the maximum fine increases to $500. If the violation results in bodily injury, the offense is enhanced to a Class B misdemeanor.
Texas Teen Drivers
Teenage drivers in Texas are now subject to the graduated drivers license program. Now before you can obtain your license you have to complete a Texas Driver Education Program.
Then there is a graduated process before you are allowed a regular drivers license at the age of eighteen. For full details Texas Teen Driver Program
If cited for two or more moving violations within 12 months, a teen is subject to a license suspension of 90 days to one year.
Click on the banner below to sign up for your Texas Teen Driving Course
Texas Speeding Ticket Cost
The fine for a Texas speeding ticket starts at $120.00 for 5mph over and there is a graduated scale up to $185.00 for 25mph over. Above 25mph you have to contact the court. Some courts may also be allowed to add surcharges so the only way to know exactly is to contact the clerk of court. Most Texas traffic courts will not accept a check so you will need to pay by money order or, if in person, they will also be very happy with cash.
Some Courts offer a pay by credit card over the internet option. This is not usually in your best interest so be sure of the consequences if you just pay but here are the links:
This is a standard Texas Speeding Ticket form that you can use to contest your ticket or pay your Texas speeding ticket fine by mail. You would need to change the form to the correct city or county. If you are paying, be sure to pay by money order made out to the court. Do not send cash or a personal check and be sure to keep a copy. Usually it is a good idea to send by certified mail so that you have proof of delivery.
PREVENT FUTURE TEXAS SPEEDING TICKETS
Purchasing a quality radar detector and laser detector and learning how to use it can help prevent future traffic tickets. Click HERE to see our radar and laser detector recommendations.
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