Husband was driving golf cart from machinery barn 1/4 mile from home down public road had red flashers working, no slow moving vehicle sign or flag. Dnr officer ticketed him for this. We thought we could drive from field to field for agriculture business. When fields are not planted he goes across the fields, but now with crop in them, he goes down the road. Dirt road part of the way, then black top for a short distance to home.
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Michigan
Nothing, he has to report to court 3-10 days and either plead guilty or not guilty---we thought we were legal for farm use????
Thanks for using Pearl.com It will be my pleasure to assist you today.What city/county did this happen in?How is your husband's driving record?What does the actual violation say it is for?Thanks
Eaton Rapids MI in the country zip 48827 in Eaton County Michigan
He has never had a ticket in his life
violation says operating ovr vehicle on public road
Thanks for the information.I'm looking something up for you. I'll be back with an answer in about 5 minutes.Thanks for your patience.
In 2006, the Michigan Legislature amended the law regarding ORV's (off road vehicles). A golf cart falls into the definition of an ORV. Here is the law regarding golf carts.To be "road-ready," a golf cart must first be electric. Gas-powered golf carts are not allowed on Michigan streets and roads. All golf cart modifications must comply with Michigan MCL 257.25 and federal regulation CFR 571.500, which call for headlights, tail lights, turn signals, four-way flashers, seat belts, horn, windshield and windshield wiper, reflectors, parking brake and brakes on all four wheels, inside rear-view mirror and outside rear-view mirrors on the left and right sides of the vehicle. The golf cart must also be fitted with an energy-absorbing bumper bolted or permanently attached to the front and rear of the vehicle.A TR-54 form must be acquired from a state police office or downloaded from the state of Michigan website. This form is a detailed list of the modifications required, and the form a police officer must sign off on after the golf cart passes inspection. The approved TR-54 form, along with proof of insurance and a valid driver's license, must be presented at the Secretary of State office to receive a temporary plate.After the temporary plate has been issued, an inspector will come to the vehicle owner's home, examine the golf cart and attach a VIN plate. The golf cart will then be titled as a "low-speed roadster." Golf cart manufacturers do not want these altered vehicles titled under the manufacturer's name for liability reasons, so the make on the title will always be listed as "assembled.
Golf carts are required to ride as close to the right side of the roadway as possible. Golf carts are not permitted on a pedestrian sidewalk. The minimum speed for a golf cart is 20 mph, and the speed should not exceed 25 mph.
The registration plate must be illuminated by a white light and visible from 50 feet away. Low-speed vehicles, including golf carts, may haul no more than four passengers.
The officer could have given your husband a verbal warning. That would have been within his discretion. For whatever reason, the officer chose to write the ticket.
When he goes to court, he should ask to speak to the officer and/or the prosecuting attorney. If neither of them are there, then your husband should enter a plea of "NOT GUILTY" and ask for a hearing date to be set.
On the date of the hearing (or if the officer/prosecuting attorney is in court when your husband goes), again, he needs to ask to speak to either or both of them. Your husband can explain that he has a perfect driving record and that he thought that what he was doing was "legal." Unfortunately, the old saying that, "ignorance of the law is no excuse," is true. However, it is an explanation. Your husband can indicate that he now knows the rules for operating a golf cart on the road. At that point, your husband can ask that he be allowed to plead "responsible" to impeding traffic. That is a "0" point violation. He would have to pay the fine, but again, no points would appear on his record. Your husband can also ask that the ticket be "deffered" for a period of time (usually 6 mos to a year) and at the end of the time period, if there are no violations, the ticket would be dismissed. Your husband would still have to pay the fine for the original violation. However, most courts in Michigan do NOT allow for a "deferred" or "under advisement" resolution. Therefore, if your husband can plea responsible to "impeding traffic," and pay the fine, the matter would be concluded. It's actually a better outcome than a deferral/under advisement.
Your husband can also ask for a formal hearing in which the officer will testify and you have the right to cross examine (question) the officer. You can also testify if you choose to do so. The officer has the right to question him. If your husband is found responsible by the judge, it is unlikely that he will be able to get an impeding traffic, and 2 points will show up on his record and he will have to pay the fine.
The final option that your husband has is to hire an attorney who specializes in traffic law. Sometimes, an initial consultation is free or at a minimal charge. If the prosecutor/officer won't allow your husband to plead responsible to "impeding traffic," then your husband may wish to consider hiring an attorney to assist your husband in keeping his record clean.
I hope you find this information useful. If you have additional questions, please ask.
20+ yrs in criminal, landlord/tenant, family, & small claims
Hi Martha,Thank you SO much for "accepting" my answer. I'm glad you found the information useful. Best of luck to you and your husband. Thanks again.
His ticket says he can call the court to see what the ticket charge will be, would that office be able to cancel the points, or only if he goes to court
Hi,Sorry for the delay. I was finishing assisting another customer.Your husband can call the court and get the cost of the ticket. However, the clerks at the court have NO authority to cancel the points. Your husband will have to go to court. Only the prosecutor (with input of officer) has the authority to enter into an agreement to amend the ticket to "impeding traffic" which is 0 points and dismiss the original violation. And, it is only the judge who will ultimately approve that resolution.It is truly the best way to know that everything has been handled properly AND, if he is lucky enough to get an "impeding traffic," then that information will be in writing. That way, if there is ever any question in the future, there is proof of the resolution of the ticket.
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