College Park Traffic Lawyer
Many people in the College Park area are under the impression that traffic violations are minor legal matters and can be handled by simply paying a fine. While paying a fine may bring a traffic matter to a close in certain situations, traffic violations can often result in unforeseen circumstances. People who have received a citation for traffic-related violations are often surprised to learn that, in addition to fines, they could potentially lose their driver’s license, pay significantly higher insurance premiums, and even spend time in jail. A College Park traffic lawyer can help if you have questions or need legal representation.
A College Park Traffic Lawyer Can Help
In some cases, a traffic violation may even keep one from obtaining certain types of employment. Because of these potentially serious consequences, it is of the utmost important for anyone facing a College Park traffic violation to discuss their case with an experienced College park traffic lawyer. With the assistance of an attorney, the legal and collateral consequences of a traffic ticket can often be mitigated, and sometimes the case may even be completely dismissed by a court.
Traffic Law Enforcement in College Park, Maryland
As the home to the University of Maryland, as well as many people who commute to DC and back each day, College Park strictly enforces traffic laws. In addition, with the bars and restaurants that often accompany a major university, both state and local law enforcement are constantly on the lookout for people who may be driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol. Interstate 495 and Interstate 95 go through College Park, and U.S. 1 runs directly through downtown. With their high traffic volumes, these roadways are heavily patrolled by local law enforcement seeking to catch people who are in violation of College Park traffic laws. As a College Park traffic lawyer can tell you, among the more frequently issued citations are violations such as:
- Driving under the influence
- Failure to yield
- Driving with a suspended license
- Driving without current tags
- Driving with a revoked license
- Driving an uninsured vehicle
- Unsafe lane changing
- Following too closely
- Reckless driving
- Negligent driving
- Failure to stop at a stop sign
- Driving with a suspended license
- Failure to drive right of center
It is important to remember that simply being issued a citation does not mean that you are guilty, and in many cases a College Park traffic lawyer can help minimize the negative repercussions of being accused of a traffic violation.
Two Categories of Maryland Traffic Violations
In College Park and the rest of Maryland, there are two types of traffic violations: “must appear” and “payable.” As indicated by their names, must appear violations require the person accused to appear in court, while payable violations may be disposed of simply by paying a fine by mail or online. When you receive a payable traffic citation, you have three options:
- Pay the fine, and plead guilty
- Request a waiver hearing to plead guilty with an explanation
- Request a trial in order to plead not guilty
While many people may feel that simply paying the fine and moving on with their lives is the easiest solution, in reality, this option could result in serious consequences that may affect them years after the matter was closed. It is important to fully understand that paying the fine means that you are pleading guilty to the violation, meaning that it will likely result in points being added to your license. If you accumulate enough points within a certain period of time, it can result in the suspension or even the revocation of your license. Fortunately, an experienced College Park traffic attorney can often help keep points off of your license and minimize any short- or long-term consequences you may face.
Must appear violations are reserved for more serious offenses, such as driving without a license or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Importantly, must appear violations are punishable by a jail sentence. These kinds of violations may bring other penalties as well, such as probation, fines, mandatory driver’s education classes, or even the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.
Contact a College Park Traffic Lawyer Today
Anyone accused of a College Park traffic violation should discuss their case with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. To schedule an appointment with a College Park traffic lawyer, call our office today and receive your free, no-commitment consultation.