If you have recently received a citation that had an error such as a misspelled name or an incorrect address, you may be thinking that you won the ticket jackpot and will be able to avoid the citation because of it. While this sounds great, it is false in the majority of scenarios. If an officer makes a typo or a simple error, it does not necessarily make your citation invalid.
While most errors will not result in a dismissal, there are a few exceptions:
Error in the vehicle and traffic law (VTL) section
The wrong date being listed on the ticket
A lack of information supplied on the supporting deposition
In general, the errors on citations are simple mistakes such as a typo in the license plate number or an incorrect color listed for the vehicle. A judge will typically view these mistakes as exactly that—mistakes. The vast majority of these citations will be allowed to stand.
Whatever you do, don’t make the mistake of not appearing at your hearing just because your citation has errors. If you fail to show up or you fail to pay the fine, it could result in your license being suspended.
This is simply a risk that you should not take. If you truly believe that your ticket is invalid, the best thing to do is speak with a traffic ticket attorney.
If you are caught driving with a suspended license in New York (even if the suspension was due to a failure to respond to a citation) you could be charged with a crime. In other words, the simple mistake of thinking that your citation is invalid could lead to costly attorney’s fees and potential jail time. Don’t take that risk.
Officers tasked with enforcing traffic laws typically interact with a number of different drivers on any given day. Their job is to simply issue a citation as accurately as possible and move on. This means that errors do happen and that any information they give you on the side of the road may not be completely accurate.
Most mistakes that people make after receiving a citation are due to information received when speaking with an officer. An officer may not make it clear that they need to respond to the citation, may make it seem as though the ticket is not a big deal, or simply brush past questions in order to move on. This is not to say that officers aren't doing their best—they simply have a lot going on.
Plus, it is not their job to interpret the law, determine what a ticket may cost you, or how many points a citation may add to your driving record. It is up to the judge to understand and interpret the law. This means that you are far better off accepting your citation and then speaking with an attorney about what your options are after the fact.
If you have received a citation with errors, call or text the Law Office of James Medows at 917-856-1247. You can also reach us online. Even a traffic ticket with typos still needs to be fought, so get in touch and let us help you overcome it.