Bethesda Traffic Lawyer
Because of the potentially serious consequences that may accompany certain traffic offenses, it is always best to consult with an experienced Bethesda traffic attorney. Traffic offenses in Bethesda are comprised of two levels of offenses: payable and must appear. Payable offenses are minor traffic citations, such as those for speeding or running a stop sign, and are not punishable by jail time.
If an individual receives a payable citation, he or she has the option to plead guilty and pay the listed fine. If the fine is paid, no hearing will be held. However, that individual also has the ability to contest the citation by requesting a waiver hearing within 30 days of receiving the citation. If a hearing is requested, it will be scheduled to contest the citation. If the individual takes no action within 30 days of receiving a traffic citation for a payable offense, the MVA may be notified and that individual’s license may be suspended.
Must-appear traffic offenses are more serious citations that may be punishable by jail time. Such offenses include citations for DUI, fleeing and eluding the police, driving with a suspended license, or leaving the scene of an accident.
If an individual receives a must-appear citation, he or she does not have the ability to simply pay a fine; he or she must appear at a hearing. If a person is facing a traffic offense it is very important that they contact a Bethesda criminal attorney right away.
Procedure For Traffic Citations
Upon receiving a payable citation, an individual can choose to pay the preset fine listed on the citation without having to appear at a hearing in front of a judge. However, it is important to note that the payment of such a fine has the same effect as pleading guilty to or being found liable for the offense. Upon receiving a must-appear citation, an individual will be required to go to court to appear for a hearing.
If an individual receives either a payable or must appear citation and the points associated with the subject offense will result in an automatic license suspension, he or she may also request a hearing for the offense.
A traffic infraction is a payable minor traffic citation. Most minor traffic citations come with at least two points. If an individual pays the fine that is listed, the points associated with the citation will automatically be assessed to his or her driver’s record. The fine and points associated with a minor citation depend on the nature of the specific payable citation received.
If an individual who receives a payable minor traffic citation and elects to request a waiver hearing or trial, rather than pay the fine, such a hearing will be heard in one of the Anne Arundel County District Courts. If he or she is not satisfied with the outcome of that hearing, he or she has the ability to appeal the judge’s decision and have the case transferred to the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court.
A traffic misdemeanor is a must-appear citation. Traffic misdemeanors are different from traffic infractions due to the penalties involved. Most serious traffic misdemeanors have a maximum penalty of one-year incarceration and/or a $1,000 fine.
As with traffic infractions, an individual who is not satisfied with the outcome of his or her hearing has the ability to appeal the judge’s decision to the circuit court with the help of an experienced Bethesda traffic attorney.
Certain violations of the Maryland Transportation Article are designated as felonies. Traffic felonies are different than traffic misdemeanors due to the penalties associated with such offenses. While felonies, like traffic misdemeanors, carry the possibility of incarceration upon conviction, the length of such incarceration is generally longer for felony convictions. A skilled traffic attorney in Bethesda can thoroughly investigate the circumstances of particular cases violations with individual care and attention.
Contacting a Bethesda Traffic Lawyer
Any individual who has received a traffic citation in Bethesda should immediately contact an attorney so they can assess the details of the case and determine the best course of action to minimize any potential penalties.
A Bethesda traffic infraction lawyer can negotiate with officers and judges in order to minimize the penalties an individual may face if convicted. An attorney can play an integral role in the handling of both payable and must appear citations as the offenses associated with both forms of citation have significant potential penalties, including substantial fines, numerous points, license suspension, and jail time.
No matter what type of assistance you need with your traffic case, Bethesda defense lawyers are dedicated to protecting your rights and interests and limiting the consequences you may face.