Five Ways To Avoid Getting A Ticket When Pulled Over For Speeding
Everyone speeds now and then. Maybe you're rushing to work and hoping to cut a few minutes off your commute, or perhaps you're just not thinking, and your foot sinks lower on the pedal than it should. In any event, getting pulled over for speeding can be frustrating since you see the cost of a ticket looming in your future. But the thing is, not everyone who gets pulled over for speeding actually gets a ticket. Police do let some people off with just a warning. Below, you will find some strategies you can try to decrease your chances of actually being given a ticket after being pulled over.
1. Don't confess immediately
When pulled over, you may be tempted to apologize immediately. But saying something like "I'm sorry I was speeding" is admitting that you were doing something wrong. What if the police officer had just pulled you over for a tail light that's not working or because you resembled someone they are looking for? Now, they are alerted to the fact that you were speeding, too. Let the police tell you what you did wrong; don't tell them.
2. Ask how they are
When the police officer comes to your window, say "How are you today, officer?" This immediately shows that you are kind and noncombative, which may put the police officer at ease. Unfortunately, just going up to a car window can be dangerous for police officers sometimes, so by being kind and greeting them, you are letting them know this is not one of those times they need to be on guard or worried. They may reciprocate by letting you off with a warning, not a ticket.
3. Explain why you were speeding
Sometimes, the officer may ask why you were in such a hurry. Other times, they won't. See if you can find a way to work your reasoning into the conversation. For example, when the officer comments that you were going 45 in a 30 mile per hour zone, you could tell them that you are nervous about a big meeting at work or that you didn't realize the speed limit changed to 30. This shows the officer that, like all humans, you are imperfect and made a mistake. You were not intending to speed; it just happened.
4. Ask for a warning
As long as you do so nicely, there is nothing wrong with asking the officer to let you off with a warning. Just be prepared to defend why you think a warning is deserved this time. Explain that you just got a new job and are trying so hard to catch up on bills; you really can't afford the ticket. Or, explain that you are moving next week and will have a really hard time making it to court. Don't lie, but do make the most of any situation you're in that may make getting a ticket more of a burden than it would be for the average person.
5. Bring up your driving record
This only works if you have a really good driving record. If you have had some tickets recently, don't even try it. Tell the officer that you have a clean driving record, and that is evidence of your great driving. This speeding incident is a rare exception and you don't need the heavy reminder of a ticket.
If you are given a ticket anyway, make sure you contract a traffic attorney at a law firm like Wood & Rabil LLP. They can help you fight the ticket in court, especially if you believe you were not speeding as the officer claims.