How to Fight a Cell Phone Ticket in New York
Did you know that it is against New York state law to use a cell phone while driving? Unless you’re using your cell phone or another device in a hands-free mode, you could be looking at some serious penalties. Do you know the best way to fight a cell phone ticket in New York?
Too many motorists make the mistake of simply pleading guilty when they receive a cell phone ticket in New York. Pleading guilty and paying the fine seems like the quickest, easiest way to a resolution.
In some ways, that’s true. Immediately paying that ticket does put an end to the situation, but it doesn’t end the consequences that come with a guilty plea.
Drivers frequently are surprised to hear that paying a ticket is the same thing as entering a guilty plea in court. It makes them feel like they’ve committed some kind of crime.
The reality is that this is a moving violation rather than a crime. While it’s not the same thing as breaking and entering or robbing a convenience store, the penalties for pleading guilty to a cell phone violation can seem harsh.
Consequences of a New York Cell Phone Ticket
Being convicted of talking on a cell phone without a hands-free device comes with serious penalties. If it’s your first offense, you will have to pay a fine of anywhere from $50 to $200.
What if it’s your second offense? Then you’re looking at a fine of between $50 and $250. Third-time offenders may be facing a fine of as much as $400. Is that something that you can afford?
Additionally, it’s worth noting that each conviction under this law adds five points to the driver’s record. Considering that many infractions only add one or two points, this means that this citation is a serious one. Keep in mind that if you get too many points, then your license can be suspended. What would happen if you lost your driving privileges?
Convictions under this law get even more expensive thanks to the $88 surcharge that’s assessed by the state. Plus, if you get too many points, you may have to pay the Driver Responsibility Assessment. When your insurance company learns of your new ticket or tickets, that will cost you more money as well. Premiums can skyrocket when a single ticket is added to your record.
Does This Law Only Apply to Cell Phones?
Some people think that it’s permissible to use other devices such as a GPS unit, tablet, laptop or digital camera while behind the wheel. That’s probably because they hear more about New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1225(c), which pertains to cell phones.
However, another section that’s known as 1225(d) is directly aimed at the use of any electronic device while driving. It’s even used to target motorists who text and drive.
If you get cited under this law, you’re liable to incur all of the same penalties, which makes it imperative that you don’t use electronic devices while driving.
Getting Caught for Using a Cell Phone While Driving
Life is incredibly busy, and it certainly is convenient to always be in touch. In fact, many motorists have gotten really comfortable with using their cell phone while behind the wheel.
It is possible for a police officer to write a ticket for an infraction of this law if the officer even thinks that you may have been using an electronic device. In fact, the law empowers the police to issue a ticket if they think that they see a cell phone or other device in the hand of a driver.
Occasionally, drivers think that they can beat the charges by using their cell phone bill to prove that they weren’t actually on a call at the time of the incident. This rarely works.
Your cell phone bill doesn’t reveal whether or not you were using your phone’s GPS capabilities or looking at pictures of your puppy at the time of the ticket. It even may be difficult to pinpoint whether or not you were engaged in a call. If you were texting, it is similarly impossible to “prove” that you weren’t texting at the exact moment that the police officer spotted you.
Fight a Cell Phone Ticket in New York
A skilled attorney is the only opportunity that drivers have to potentially reduce or dismiss a cell phone ticket. With their experience, traffic ticket lawyers frequently are able to improve the situations of their clients.
They are able to do this because of their rapport with the judges and prosecutors as well as their in-depth knowledge of the applicable laws. Additionally, an experienced attorney knows just what to say without revealing too much or too little, which is a frequent mistake when people try to represent themselves.
It is also worth considering that once you hire an attorney, he can handle the entire case for you. That even includes appearing in court on your behalf. Accordingly, you won’t have to take time out of your busy schedule to defend yourself in front of a judge.
Why You Need an Attorney to Fight a Cell Phone Ticket
Too many people believe that they can handle their own defense in court. Unfortunately, they end up getting in over their heads, causing them to admit to damaging facts.
The result is having to pay fines and surcharges as well as having points added to their record.
While an attorney cannot guarantee a particular outcome to your case, working with a legal representative will give you the peace of mind of knowing that you did everything you could to improve your situation. That may even involve a reduction in the ticket or a dismissal of the charges.
If you need to fight a cell phone ticket in New York, then you need the Law Office of James Lynch and Associates to help you. Pleading guilty is far more serious than most people realize. You can take control of the situation by hiring a qualified attorney who will work to get the charges reduced or dropped.