Traffic Violations

Even those of us who take our responsibilities as drivers very seriously and always strive to follow the rules of the road could slip up here and there.  Perhaps you get distracted and roll through a stop sign.  Maybe you speed up to beat the yellow light and accidentally run the red.  You might turn right while a pedestrian is still in the crosswalk, or exceeded the speed limit on the freeway because you are in a hurry to get somewhere.

Generally, such moving violations result in a ticket if you get caught.  While this might not seem like a big deal, traffic violations can have a much bigger impact than you initially anticipate if you don’t take them seriously, especially if they’re major violations like excessive speeding, reckless driving, hit-and-run, or driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, for example.

You could also face more severe penalties if you incur numerous violations and are deemed a habitual offender.  What are the different types of traffic violations and what consequences could you face?  Do you need a lawyer to help you deal with traffic violations?

Types of Traffic Violations

There are a few different levels of traffic violations, including minor infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies.  Minor infractions include offenses for which you might only receive a ticket, such as speeding, failure to yield, seat belt violations, and so on.  Misdemeanors are more serious and can include DUI (driving under the influence), distracted driving (such as texting while driving), driving without a valid license, speeding in a construction zone, engaging in speed contests, careless driving, and more.

Felonies traffic violations are the most severe and could include incidents such as four or more DUIs, driving without a license as a habitual traffic offender, fleeing the scene of an accident where serious bodily injury has occurred, and eluding police while driving recklessly (engaging in a high-speed chase, essentially).

Penalties

Each class of traffic violation entails different levels of penalties, possibly including fines, community service, probation, and jail time. These vary widely depending on the type and severity of the violation.

However, you should know that traffic violations in Colorado are rated on a points system, and when drivers over the age of 21 get 12 points on their license within a 12-month period or 18 points within a 24-month period, they will lose their license for at least a year. Those under the age of 21 have even fewer points.

In addition, certain traffic violations like DUI result in immediate revocation of your license. There’s more, though. Even a single traffic violation could result in your auto insurance provider increasing the cost for your insurance policy, and this could last months or even years. Worse, your insurance provider could drop you for serious violations, depending on their policies.

Professional Help

While you probably don’t need to hire a lawyer to defend against a basic traffic ticket if you’ve never gotten one before and you’re unlikely to get another any time soon, more serious violations or a string of offenses could have a significant impact on your life, and you may need the assistance of qualified lawyer to fight misdemeanor or felony charges.

Contact the experienced professionals at Curtis Law Firm today at 303-625-6894 to learn more and develop a sound legal strategy for your defense.

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