Many of us are familiar with the concept that people who have been accused of crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Maybe we only know this as a phrase police use in television shows, but it is in fact a very important legal principle. It means that once a person has been accused of a crime, they have the right to due process and to defend themselves against the charges. This principle applies to all kinds of crimes.
Some speeding violations don’t fall under criminal law, but the basic principle applies to speeding violations as well.
Many people don’t realize that after they have been accused of speeding, they have the right to defend themselves against the allegation. Typically, police give the driver a speeding ticket, and the process is then overseen by the New York Traffic Violations Bureau, or TVB. The TVB provides the accused with the chance to contest their tickets in a hearing before an administrative court. While the process is less formal than a criminal trial, the accused has the right to call witnesses, present evidence and to be represented by an attorney.
To take advantage of this process and assert the right to a defense, the driver must check the “not guilty” box on the back of the ticket, fill out the requested information, sign the document and mail it to the listed address in Albany. They must do this within 15 days of the date recorded on the ticket.
For many people, a speeding ticket can spell economic disaster. If they have more than a certain number of points against them on their traffic records, it may also mean having their driver’s license suspended.
To learn more about your rights and options after a speeding ticket, call a lawyer with experience in speeding ticket defense, and do it as soon as you can.
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