Client Focused. Results Driven.
Law Offices of Shannon C. Smith

Traffic Ticket Attorneys in Northern Kentucky

Addressing Traffic Citations and Whether You Can Fight Them

You’re driving along, vibing to your favorite radio station, when you see blue lights in your rearview mirror. You look down and realize you were going faster than you intended. Fifteen minutes later, you’re pulling away from the traffic stop with a speeding ticket and a fine. Speeding tickets and other traffic tickets are common occurrences on Kentucky’s roads and highways, and many people just pay the ticket and move on with their lives. But this may not always be in your best interests.

Traffic tickets can mean points on your license and eventually end up in a license suspension or revocation if you get too many within a certain timeframe. However, a traffic ticket attorney can help you fight your ticket and potentially avoid more points on your license. Call the Law Offices of Shannon C. Smith, PLLC, to find out how our attorneys can help you address traffic tickets.

What Are the Penalties for Getting a Traffic Ticket?

The penalties for getting a traffic ticket in Kentucky involve fines, court costs, and points on your license. More serious infractions are worth more points. For example, going less than 10 miles per hour over the speed limit on a limited access highway results in 0 points, while going 11-15 miles per hour over the speed limit on a limited access highway is 3 points. Below are some common traffic violations and the associated points:

  •  Failing to stop at a stop sign or traffic signal: 3 points
  •  Failing to yield: 3 points
  •  Driving too fast for road conditions: 3 points
  •  Not having headlights on when appropriate: 3 points
  •  Texting while driving: 3 points
  •  Following the vehicle in front of you too closely: 4 points
  •  Failing to yield to an emergency vehicle: 4 points
  •  Improper passing: 5 points
  •  Going 16-25 miles per hour above the speed limit: 6 points
  •  Failing to stop for a school bus: 6 points

How much the fine for a traffic violation is varies depending on the infraction. For example, speeding tickets can range from $20 to $100, and there may also be court costs involved, which can be even more than the ticket. Typical court costs for a traffic ticket in Kentucky are around $150.

How Does the Kentucky License Points System Work?

The Kentucky Point System is designed to ensure that people who habitually violate the traffic laws face stronger penalties and to deter reckless drivers. When you get your driver’s license, it has 0 points. When you get a traffic ticket, the associated points go on your license. Once you get 12 points in 2 years, your driver’s license can be suspended. Points roll off your license 2 years from the date of the conviction. Drivers under the age of 18 are only allowed to accumulate 7 points before their license can be suspended.

How Do I Get My License Back After It’s Suspended?

Getting your license reinstated is a more involved process than many people realize. If your driver’s license has been suspended for less than 1 year, you will just need to pay the reinstatement fee once you are eligible to get your license back. However, if your license was suspended for more than 1 year, you will also need to retake the eye test and the written portion of the driving test to get your license reinstated.

Can an Officer Search My Car When They Pull Me Over for a Traffic Violation?

It’s not uncommon for someone to be pulled over for a simple traffic violation and then end up with criminal charges because of illegal items found in the car or the officer finding out that the person was driving under the influence of alcohol. For this reason, it’s important to be aware of your rights during a traffic stop.

Pulling you over for a simple traffic violation does not give an officer the right to search your vehicle. However, officers often ask that you allow them to. Unless the officer has probable cause that a crime has been committed or is in progress, they cannot search your vehicle without your permission.

Some examples of probable cause include seeing illegal items, such as drugs or drug paraphernalia, in plain view, smelling marijuana or alcohol coming from the driver or the car, or the driver admitting guilt. For example, if the officer asks if the driver has taken any illegal drugs, and the driver says yes, the officer then has probable cause to search the vehicle.

Do I Really Need an Attorney for a Traffic Ticket?

Many people aren’t aware that there are any other options than to pay the fine associated with the traffic ticket and incur the points on their license. However, it is possible to fight a traffic ticket. Tickets can be overturned for a variety of reasons, and an attorney can assess the circumstances surrounding your citation to determine if it was legitimate and what your legal options may be. If the ticket is related to a serious traffic offense that has a high point value, fighting the ticket can help you avoid those points and potentially keep your driver’s license if you would be pushed above the suspension threshold.

Traffic ticket attorneys know what to look for and what defense strategies to use to fight the ticket, such as contesting the evidence or offering to take a driving education course in lieu of a suspension.

If you need to fight a traffic ticket, call the Law Offices of Shannon C. Smith, PLLC, at 859-667-1204. Our attorneys can help you understand the consequences of just paying the ticket and inform you of potential alternatives.