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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 29823
Experience:  Lawyer. Former judicial law clerk. Worked for District Attorney's Office in Traffic Court.
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I just got a speeding ticket in a 65mph zone. The

Customer Question

Hello. I just got a speeding ticket in a 65mph zone. The officer verbally said that I was going "around 80-81mph," but he wrote 81mph on the ticket. The difference of being 15mph above the speed limit vs. 16mph over could be a significant increase in the fine. I'd like to confirm that notion and if it is correct, may I plea bargain or request an amendment to the ticket in court? Thank you!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Hi,I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened. The fine is based in part on how much over the speed limit a person was going, but there isn't a huge different between 15 and 16 miles per hour over. Twenty miles per over is where people will see a huge jump in the fine (and could sometimes be charged with reckless driving instead). You do have the ability to go to court and ask the DA to reduce the fine or the total speed (which also reduces the fine). They do this routinely in exchange for drivers agreeing to pay guilty and avoid the time and expense of holding a trial. The other option is to pay the ticket but request Traffic School, which means that the ticket would be removed from your record and not affect your insurance. This is something that can be done if you haven't been to traffic school within the past 18 months. The paperwork that comes with the ticket will tell you how to make that request, if you want to do that. If you have any questions or concerns about what I've written, please reply without rating so I may address them. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively to redirect a portion of the payment you have already made so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for your reply, Lucy. No need to be sorry. Things happen and I was speeding well above the limit. I was hoping for a little more detail from you based on the fine for being 15mph over vs. 16mph. The difference being "not huge" is a matter of relevance (I.e., $30 to an attorney seems a lot less than it appears to a white-collar worker like me).I already expected to pay the traffic ticket and go to traffic school. I'm trying to figure out if the difference in the fine amount is worth asking the court or DA for a correction to the ticket. The officer said I was driving between 80-81 mph. He wrote 81. That's the same as him telling me I drove 15-16mph over the limit, but he wrote 16mph. If the difference is large enough to me (aka, my primary reason for contacting, then I would like to challenge what the officer said vs. what he wrote (how to proceed with that is my secondary question). Thanks! -Erik
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Every county adds on their own assessments and has their own bail schedules. Not every county puts those bail schedules online. There's unfortunately no way for me to tell you what the exact fine will be for 80 miles per hour versus 81. We're also not allowed to provide specific legal advice, and if I gave you exact amounts that you could rely on in court, that would constitute providing legal advice.
Thus, unfortunately, all I am able to tell you is that the difference of one mile per hour is usually negligible unless you're going over 20 mph over the speed limit or have been charged with reckless driving.
And it's all relevant, because even if the fine on the ticket says $300 (a made-up number), you can always ask the DA to lower it and most of the time they will. 80 versus 81 mph usually won't make much of a difference in that negotiation, either, although it depends on the person you're talking to.