1. Is there a minimum threshold below which an officer will not write a ticket?
The old rule of thumb was a Police Officer would give someone 8 miles over the limit before deciding to stop an offender. Lately within New York City, I have seen speeds of less than this being ticketed. That being said an attorney familiar with a Police Officer’s margin of error can use this as a way to possibly generate a dismissal.
2. If everyone is speeding, am I safe?
If you drive above the speed limit, it is not a defense to say that you were driving in the flow of traffic at that time. You can very well be the one in the pack who gets caught. With today’s laser and Lidar technology that the Police employ, the old wide zones of influence which existed with the radar does not hold true. A Police Officer can use laser pointed technology and target one vehicle alone.
3. Does a camera speeding ticket carry points?
In New York State any summons issued via camera is issued to the car and not to a specific driver. The registered owner is responsible to pay it but it does not carry points against the license. In addition, unlike a traditional speeding ticket, there is no record held and therefore not used for insurance purposes either.
Two interesting facts –
– Fines for camera tickets go into the treasure of New York City Department of Finance as opposed to NYS if issued by Police.
– In places such as Israel points are assessed against one registered owner and the burden is placed on them to implicate someone else who may have been driving.
4. Is it a defense that I was “only” driving at 5 mph over the limit and not as fast as the Police Officer claims?
Over the last 25+ years I have been asked this question thousands of times: The basic answer is just like there is no such thing as being a little pregnant, similarly you were either speeding or not. There is a more nuanced and lengthy answer which ultimately may lead to a reduction in the charge but that is a bit more complicated.
This may be a good place to point out the distinction between fighting a ticket received in NYC and ones outside of NYC. Within NYC all tickets are marked for trial. It is essentially an all or nothing system. A limited exception is an attorneys’ ability to reduce a summons for speeding by a few miles if it is slightly into the higher point bearing category. Outside of NYC for example in Nassau or Rockland
County, speeding tickets can often be reduced to a non-point bearing violation or at least to a lesser charge.
5. How long do the points stay on my license?
(The following relates to all tickets)
Points are counted against you for 18 months. What that means is if you get a 4 point ticket for speeding on
January 1st 2018, that ticket will no longer be used against if you receive another ticket after July 1st 2019. It does not mean however, that the ticket you received 1/1/18 disappears from your driver’s abstract nor that an insurance cannot hold it against you anymore.
Note: If you are convicted of three speeding tickets within a single 18 month period, your license will be revoked for 6 months.