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Know Your Options For Fighting Your Ticket Before You Pay It

Tuesday, Dec 18th, 2012

Know Your Options For Fighting Your Ticket Before You Pay It- this blog was written by TicketKick.com, Your Go-To Resource for Beating Traffic Tickets.  

According to the 2012, Judicial Council of California, Court Statistics Report, well over 50 % of the individuals who get a traffic infraction just plead guilty or forfeit their bail! This may be due in part to drivers just not knowing their rights after receiving a ticket, or that they have any other options.

Whether you did exceed the speed limit or didn’t. Whether you did roll through that stop sign ordidn’t, you have options for dealing with your ticket and every driver should know their rights.

When you get any traffic ticket just flip it over. Your options for dealing with the ticket will be right there in black and white (or yellow depending on what color ticket the officer hands you!).

You get to choose a court trial or even a trial in writing. Of course you can also choose traffic school. That is if you haven’t already taken traffic school within the previous 18 months, were not ticketed in a commercial vehicle, and if you don’t want to first take a stab at fighting your ticket.  - this blog was written by TicketKick.com, Your Go-To Resource for Beating Traffic Tickets 

To beat your California Red Light, Speeding, Red Light Photo/Camera, Cell Phone, and Other Traffic tickets, call TicketKick.com.  If you don’t win, we don’t win.  It’s as simple as that. Go to www.TicketKick.com or call us at 800-580-1902.

This blog was written to provide information related to traffic tickets in California, is based on opinion only, is not legal advice, and is for informational purposes only.

Nightmare Ticket Stories

Tuesday, Jan 17th, 2012

Everyone gets traffic tickets...

...and when it comes to horrible traffic ticket stories, we've heard it all. When our customers give us the nitty-gritty details of their ticket scenario, we beg them to spare us the part where they "really, really had to go to the bathroom", and the cop was just not letting them go, so they wet themselves right there in the car! (True story). Honestly, if that's happened to you, it's probably not enough to convince the judge to dismiss your case. (If you were planning to use that defense, please, please spare yourself the embarrassment in court and leave it to the pros to come up with defenses, aka, TicketKick, duh!) With all of the stories we try to tune out due to their sheer cringy-ness, there are some that we legitimately think were unnecessarily rude, wrong, or simply horrible on the part of the officer or government. Now, let me interject myself: we support police officers. Yes! They're out there to keep our roads safe, and that's the number one priority. We don't, however, support abuse, unnecessary rudeness to the everyday driver, or tickets generated to raise revenue for the government. We asked Californians to send us their traffic ticket nightmare stories. We asked how they felt about how they were dealt with, and if they feel that the incident justified the fine.

"Just a scam to generate revenue"

Comedian Dan Nainan (www.danielnainan.com) travels from New York to Los Angeles every year for our weather and to perform. While in LA, he got pulled over after making a right turn at an intersection. Although he didn't quite understand why he was getting pulled over, the cop wrote him the ticket. "I decided to contest the ticket," he said. "The policeman came and spoke to me and said that I could plead guilty and pay the fine, but avoid any points point on my license, or any information going to my insurance company. He was very nice about it, and I actually felt grateful." Until he got the fine in the mail. "You know much the ticket was? FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS! I realized that this whole thing is just a scam to generate revenue, and it is disgusting! Because of this experience, I'm seriously considering not going to Los Angeles anymore and just toughing out the winters in New York, where one does not have to have a freaking car." Well said, Dan.

"Traffic tickets WERE intended as a safe driving measure"

Ben Schorr, CEO of www.rolandschorr.com received a ticket for supposedly doing 56 in a 50 zone. Fortunately, he was able to get his fine lowered and the violation knocked off his record because the judge thought the officer was silly for citing him for such a low speed (compared to much higher tickets given!). Ben certainly got an eye opener on how the whole system works. "Speaking to my friends who are LAPD officers, they told me that while they don't have any quota for tickets to write in a shift, their shift commander knows how many tickets they usually write in a shift and if they're considerably below (or above) that number, they might get asked why it was so different. I think that the traffic tickets were intended as a safe driving measure but I think in some areas, especially in these difficult budget times, they have occasionally been perverted to be a revenue-generator."

"I had never gotten a ticket because I always followed the rules"

My favorite was from Jane Angelich of www.supercollar.com. She said, "I have received one ticket in my 43 years of driving, and it was in California in 1991 while teaching my 15.5 year-old son to drive. As we were approaching our house, I began the lecture about how I had never gotten a ticket because I always followed the rules when operating the car. My son then informed me that my track record was about to change because the police car following me with the lights ablaze was about to pull me over. I was supposedly clocked going 40 mph in my own 25 mph residential area. I was so adamant that it was unjustified that I did go to traffic court and fight it. My son and I actually measured the distance between the two stop signs where we were stopped and compared it with the 0-60 performance of my car. It showed that the car couldn't get to 40 miles per hour at the point we were stopped. We prepared an elaborate visual, went to court and made the presentation to the judge. The officer that issued the ticket spoke first about the calibration of his radar gun and then I spoke. I thought I proved my case when the judge asked the officer to come behind the bench and they began whispering. But, I was found guilty and given the choice to go to traffic school, which I took to avoid the points. So much for my perfect driving record and my son, now 35, still reminds me of that great driving lesson."

Sushi Roll

The biggest complaint we hear is on red light camera tickets. California's red light fines are about $500, plus a point on your driving record, and most people feel that the systems are simply revenue generators. I haven't heard from too many folks who thought that making a right turn on a red without coming to complete stop before the limit line justified such a high fine. Blowing across the intersection, sure. But in reality, almost 75% of the red light camera cases we handle are NOT the type where the driver blew straight through the light. From my personal experience, if a cop's sitting there and you make that "California roll" (get the "sushi roll" heading now?), he wouldn't pull you over. I'm just sayin'...

Share your traffic ticket story!

Got a traffic ticket nightmare story you'd love to share? I'd love to hear it. Send it to: sara@ticketkick.com.

How do traffic tickets affect my driving record?

Friday, Sep 30th, 2011
We launched TicketKick.com last July, and have continued to grow since then. Our customers pay us to help them prepare defenses for fighting their traffic citations. We have helped thousands of customers contest their traffic citations, and about 70%of those customers get their cases completely dismissed. A typical speeding ticket in California will result in one point on a DMV driving record. While some insurance companies may not elect to raise rates after a point, others may increase premiums drastically. Insurers can raise rates by 20% or more, depending on the situation, the driver's policy, and other factors. This, in turn, can result in hundreds of dollars of premium payments over the course of 3 years, before the point is removed completely from a driver's record. Conversely to increasing rates, many insurance companies will opt to remove the "good driver discount" from a policy once a point is incurred. While this is technically not a rate increase, but rather a discount removal, the net effect is the same; higher insurance premiums for the driver. Recently we had a customer who's insurance premiums went from $100 to $120 per month because of a ticket that he decided to plead guilty to. $20 per month certainly adds up, and over the next few years he'll pay a whopping $720 more than he would have with a clean driving record. While the speeding ticket brackets do matter matter when it comes to points assigned, other than certain exemptions, it certainly affects the fine amount. Generally, brackets are assigned 1-15 MPH over the speed limit, 16-25 MPH, and 25 MPH and greater. Fines in the slower bracket are between $214 and $300, depending on the driver's previous record, the county, and the courthouse. The next bracket will see fines between $280 and $250, and the final bracket can see fines up to $450. There are a few exceptions the the previous paragraph. Anything 100 MPH or greater can carry a punishment of up to 2 points, and fines in excess of $500. In some situations, drivers can face license suspensions and other harsher punishments that most speeding tickets. In another situation if a driver were caught for traveling say, 95 MPH in a 30 MPH zone, the officer can slap a violation such as reckless driving, exhibition of speed, or another serious offense on, in addition to the speeding violation. Once a driver receives a ticket, there are multiple ways to prevent any point from ever hitting their record. Here are an exhaustive lists of all the options: 1)Attend traffic school: In exchange for taking an 8 hour course on driver's education, the courthouse will dismiss the charge. You'll still have to pay the fine amount, but your record will stay clean. This option can only be used for single point offenses, and can only be taken once every 18 months. Commercial drivers can't take traffic school, even if they were cited in a personal vehicle. 2)Plead to a lesser violation: Some judges will reduce a 1 point offense to a zero point offense, such as "coasting in neutral", or "blocking an intersection". These offenses do not carry a point, so it essentially has the insurance repercussions equivalent to a parking ticket. Expect to still pay the fine amount of the original charge. Not all judges are apt to make a deal like this, though. Many attorneys use this bargaining tactic when defending their clients. 3)Fight the ticket in court: In the American legal system, a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Exercise your right to defend yourself by going into court (or having an attorney do it for you) and pleading your case. There are dozens of defenses that can be used whether the violation is speeding, stop sign, red light, lane change, cell phone, etc. Expect to spend a few hours at the courthouse and be well prepared. If you hire an attorney, expect to shell out a bit of cash. If you don't win your case, try for traffic school or a lesser charge. 4)Fight your ticket through the mail:California has a rather unique process called a trial by written declaration, where a driver can elect to fight their ticket without ever appearing in court. California Vehicle Code Section 40902 outlines the procedure for a trial by written declaration. This is, in our opinion, the best thing to do when faced with a traffic ticket. You won't have to go into the courthouse and wait in long lines. Even if you lose, you can still have a court trial, called a Trial De Novo, where you can give it a second chance. The success rates are higher than those in court, partly because the officers are less likely to write in their side of the story, as required, than they are to show up in court. Better yet, TicketKick can prepare all of the paperwork for the driver, so all he or she has to do is sign the paperwork and send it in. Please note that everything aforementioned is specific to California. With that said, though, most states have very similar laws and much of this information can carry over to other jurisdictions. -The TicketKick.com Team (800) 580-1902 www.ticketkick.com Facebook.com/TicketKick
Posted in Beat My Ticket

"Do I Have to Show Up on My Court Date?"

Tuesday, Sep 27th, 2011
One of the biggest misconceptions we deal with is that people still think that they have to show up to court on the date on their ticket, and hope the officer doesn't show. If you're planning to attend your ticket party at the courthouse, don't count on the officer being there... at least not quite yet. The biggest question WE ask here at TicketKick is, "Why would you want to go to court, when you don't have to?" That's right. You actually don't have to physically appear in court, even if you want to fight your ticket. Here are some basic procedural clarifications, in case you're not totally up to speed on the court lingo (it's ok, we know you don't get tickets very often).

Arraignment Date

Or, "appearance date" or "due date". This is the date typically on the bottom of the ticket the officer hands to you, and the date listed on the courtesy notice. This is simply the date the court wants to hear from you by. It's the deadline to plead your case, to plead guilty or not guilty. If you want to fight your ticket, you must let them know by this day. If you just want to pay your ticket, your payment is due by this day. Traffic school, same thing. In most counties, you may request an appearance date extension so you have more time to figure out what you want to do. Keep in mind, though, that a few counties may deny a trial by written declaration request if an appearance extension is filed. (See trial by written declaration, below). Regardless of what you decide to do, you don't have to physically appear in court to make any of these requests (unless your courtesy notice specifically says you have a mandatory court appearance). Bravo! If you do decide to show up anyways because you really like the idea of going to the courthouse, waiting in line for hours, just to stand awkwardly in front of a judge, don't bet on the cop being there (crickets). He won't, because the cops are generally only called in if a court trial is scheduled.

Court Trial Date

Your trial date would only be set if you plead not guilty and specifically requested it. You would then have to appear on that day they schedule you in, to meet the officer and the judge face-to-face to present your defense. Yes, if the cop doesn't show, your case gets dismissed, but typically, the cops get paid big bucks just to show up to a court trial, so you'd better count on seeing him there (believe it or not, even red light camera tickets involve an assigned officer to show up). If you lose your case in court, you're pretty much at a dead-end with your case. You may still be able to request traffic school. You can probably sense that we're not a big fan of in-court trials.

Trial by Written Declaration- Your Best Option (In our humble opinion)

If you haven't already figure it out by reading all the great content on our "How it Works" trial by written declaration page, we specialize in helping drivers contest traffic tickets through this process. It's also known as a 'trial by mail'. You heard it right! You do not have to actually go into court to fight your ticket. California is one of the only states that offers this trial by mail scenario, and we still don't understand why everyone doesn't take this route. We help our customers by writing comprehensive legal defenses, giving them the forms they need with simple instructions, and having them mail it in by their arraignment date. Then they get a letter in the mail with the verdict: guilty or not guilty. About 70% of our customers get their cases dismissed with our defenses. If you were to be found guilty through a trial by written declaration, you're basically back at square one, with the opportunity to either fight it again, pay it, or request traffic school. It's a great place to start, and it's pretty darn convenient. We'll have more about appealing a guilty verdict later, but for now, you have a basic overview insight of the differences in court procedures. Give us a call if you still have any questions about your options, we'd be happy to help! (800) 580-1902.
Posted in Beat My Ticket

TicketKick® Announces Their Money Back Guarantee- Traffic Ticket Dismissed or TicketKick's Full Fee Back to Customer

Thursday, Jul 14th, 2011

TicketKick®, California's leading resource for traffic ticket defense, helps drivers beat traffic tickets now with a money back guarantee. If their customer's case is not completely dismissed, TicketKick® will issue a refund back to the customer. TicketKick® helps thousands of drivers save money on ticket fines, keep their driving records clean, and save time in court by preparing a comprehensive written defense that drivers can simply mail to the court to contest their traffic ticket.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) July 13, 2011 California drivers know all too well the fines and hassle associated with receiving a traffic ticket. Until recently, drivers who were cited with a ticket were left with the option of trying to fight it on their own, hire an expensive attorney, or just pay their ticket. California based legal company, TicketKick® fills that niche market for people who would like the assistance of a qualified team of experts to help them fight their traffic ticket without paying the average attorney fees or having to risk the extra cost associated with hiring assistance. TicketKick® has helped thousands of drivers fight speeding, red-light, stop sign, and other common traffic tickets and has always offered a money back guarantee of their defense fee. Until now, like other similar services in the industry, they charged a non-refundable administrative fee to help cover their overhead costs. Greg Muender, TicketKick's Founder and President says, "Most people were OK paying the admin fee, but we got to thinking, 'Why should we keep any of their money if their case doesn't get dismissed?' so now we don't, and now our customers truly have nothing to lose using our service." TicketKick® is now proud to announce their new refund policy: a money back guarantee of their Flat Fee, making them leaders in the industry as being the most affordable traffic ticket defense experts offering an unbeatable level of customer service and expertise in traffic ticket defense. They've also made it easier for their customers to apply for a refund if their case is not dismissed. "We used to require our customers to mail us their refund request documents, but now we welcome a simple and easy fax or email with a copy of their notice of decision so we can start their refund process right away," Greg added. "The point with TicketKick® is to provide the most simple and easy process possible in helping people get their ticket dismissed. Other companies may have very strict or ridged terms and conditions but that just makes the process difficult for everyone. We make it simple and easy so our customers can beat their traffic tickets and move on with their life." TicketKick® is a registered Legal Document Assistant in California, providing self help services in traffic ticket defense, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick® works with attorneys in California in developing their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed, and although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick® offers a refund and a free consultation for guilty verdicts. TicketKick® representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###

TicketKick Announces New How-To Video- "How to Get Out of a Traffic Ticket, What to Do When You See the Red and Blue" Tackles Tough Ticket Topics

Thursday, Jul 07th, 2011

Speeding, Stop Sign, Red Light, and other common traffic tickets can be avoided by implementing some basic tips in TicketKick's new how-to video.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 29, 2011 California based legal company, TicketKick, helps drivers fight their traffic tickets, and has had unparalleled success with their defenses. They're also out to help educate drivers of what they can do when they get pulled over to avoid a ticket in the first place, with a new how-to video released to show drivers how to talk their way out of a ticket. Greg Muender, TicketKick's Founder and President says, "We created a video with the purpose of being both educational and entertaining, depicting a scenario of a speeder getting pulled over. At first it was just for fun, but we've actually received a lot of calls from people saying that they used these tips, and were able to get off with a warning." Research has shown that an estimated 16 million traffic tickets are issued in California each year. TicketKick has helped fight several thousands of tickets and has seen about 3/4 of tickets get dismissed with their defenses. Mr. Muender adds, "Many tickets are wrongly issued. Here in America, you are innocent until proven guilty and it's up to the officer to prove your guilt. Not every ticket can be dismissed, and that's why we've set up a money back guarantee. Nevertheless, we have seen excellent success and every ticket is worth fighting." So what are the best ways to avoid a ticket? TicketKick's short video, "How to Get Out of a Traffic Ticket, What To Do When You See the Red and Blue" gives these 10 tips: 1) First and foremost, drivers should always drive safely and obey all traffic laws. TicketKick does not endorse speeding or other violations. 2) When they see the officer behind them, they should pull over immediately on the shoulder. If they wait too long to pull over, the officer might mistake them for trying to evade the situation. 3) By rolling down their windows, turning their car off, and placing their keys up on their dashboard with their hands on the wheel, the officer will see that they are non-confrontational, non-threatening, and willing to cooperate, which may take the officer's guard down a bit. 4) They should always hold their ground and avoid saying anything that can be used against them in court. The officer will probably try to get them to admit guilt by saying something like, "Do you know why I pulled you over?" The driver should display confidence that they were driving safely and according to the law. 5) When the officer tells them why he or she pulled them over, the driver can ask for a warning. Officers are generally allowed to issue warnings, but it's up to the discretion of the officer to do so. If the driver is nice and respectful to the officer, the officer may be willing to let them off with a warning. 6) The officer will probably ask to see their license, registration, and proof of insurance. Drivers should always have these easily available to find, to avoid keeping the officer waiting. If the officer runs their drivers license and finds that they have a clean record, he or she may be more willing to let the driver off with just a warning. 7) Drivers should always be courteous and respectful to the officer, never arguing with him or her. 8) Lastly, if the officer does write a ticket, the driver should always sign the bottom of the ticket. This doesn't admit guilt, this simply means that they promise to appear on this matter. 9)They should avoid saying anything that will make them stand out in the officer's mind, in order to have the very best chance at fighting it. 10) They should keep the ticket in a safe place. TicketKick will need the ticket information to formulate defenses for it. TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant, providing self help services to help people fight their traffic tickets, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California to develop their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics in traffic ticket defense. The offices of TicketKick are located in Mission Valley in San Diego, and although most of their business is conducted over the phone and on the web with customers all over the state, local customers are welcome to make an appointment to visit the offices of TicketKick and meet their team. Otherwise, TicketKick representatives are happy to offer a free consultation over the phone. TicketKick customers are encouraged to post their testimonials at Facebook.com/TicketKick.TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. # # #

California Based TicketKick Shows Drivers Their Way Out of a Traffic Ticket Through the Mail, Dismissals Skyrocket in Court.

Thursday, Jul 07th, 2011

TicketKick.com is an industry leading legal company in California who has helped thousands of drivers get their traffic tickets dismissed without ever having to go into the courthouse. The defense team at TicketKick have used groundbreaking defenses that have brought unparalleled success in fighting red light camera tickets, speeding tickets, and other common violations such as stop sign, carpool, cell phone and others. The goal of TicketKick is to not only get tickets dismissed, but to provide a free service to educate all drivers in California of what their options are when they get a traffic ticket.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 26, 2011
A recent survey conducted at the offices of San Diego based TicketKick shows that only about 1 out of 10 people who have recently received a traffic ticket are aware of the 'trial by written declaration.' This process in California allows drivers who have received a basic traffic infraction to mail in their defenses to court instead of having to stand before an officer and a judge. Of those who were surveyed, as many as 8 out of 10 people have had at least 1 ticket in the past and some have even had up to 5 tickets or more, and yet were completely unaware of what their options were in handling their ticket.TicketKick is out to change that statistic throughout all of California. TicketKick's Vice President of Business Development, Sara Schoonover shares her take on this statistic: "It's shocking to see that most people who live and drive in California every day do not know what their rights are when they get a traffic ticket. When we built TicketKick, our biggest goal was not only to help drivers get their tickets dismissed, but to be the go-to resource for answers to traffic ticket related questions, and to educate the public of what their rights and options are." When asked about where they stand with their competition in the industry, Ms. Schoonover said, "There really is no competition, considering we have such a high success rate all over California, we keep our fees very low, and we have an unbeatable money-back guarantee. Our customers know us for having excellent customer service, and our friendly representatives are happy to offer a free consultation for people to find out exactly what their options are. Everyone dreads dealing with the courthouse, so we've made the process friendly and easy. We're on their side." TicketKick's President and CEO is convinced that no other company in the legal industry knows as much about traffic tickets and court procedures as TicketKick does. "Most law firms cover a single area or county. TicketKick has helped drivers fight tickets in every county in California, and it's important to know what each county's procedures and trends are. The success of getting a ticket dismissed sometimes comes down to what kind of judge you get. We have gotten to know the policies of judges very well." He says. TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant, providing self help services to help people fight their traffic tickets, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California to develop their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics in traffic ticket defense. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed. Although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick offers a refund of the defense fee for most violations when customers are found guilty. The offices of TicketKick are located in Mission Valley in San Diego, and although most of their business is conducted over the phone and on the web with customers all over the state, local customers are welcome to make an appointment to visit the offices of TicketKick and meet their team. Otherwise, TicketKick representatives are happy to offer a free consultation over the phone. TicketKick customers are encouraged to post their testimonials at Facebook.com/TicketKick.TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###