After getting a recent speeding ticket (87 in a 65 speed limit zone) I researched the best approaches to dealing with the traffic citation. The officer shot his laser over two to three cars and tagged me with a speeding ticket. Was I guilty, of course, was I mad about getting caught and the sting of the consequences, without question. When the officer pulled me over I didn’t have a reasonable explanation for my speed nor did I have a supermodel in the passenger seat dripping with distraction. What is the normal guy supposed to do? I will explain in detail and it may be a bit long winded, but well worth the time!!
I took my lumps and tried to figure out how to make it the cheapest and easiest way out. The officer said that the court would send me the ticket details and that I would qualify for traffic school. When I mentioned that that would be great because I heard there was a problem after 20 miles over the speed limit, he altered his story and said the judge would have to decide. The officer just wanted to make a clean get away…
I waited to get the ominous envelope in the mail, but it never came. I waited until I had three days to go (as stated on the ticket) before I went to the courthouse. I mention this because it was about 90 minutes drive from my house. I went to the courthouse in San Bernardino, California and waited in a long line.
At the window, I asked the employee what he would do if he were in my situation. Normally, we assume he wants what the courthouse wants… money, but he was very forthcoming. He said whatever you do, go before the judge and ask for traffic school and a fine reduction. I asked him what the fine would be just to pay and he said $342…wow! He booked me for 1pm and I went to lunch and arrived a little early for the court. I sat next to other offenders that got caught at the same location and for the same infraction. I felt victimized in a speed trap. There must be a strategy to get out of this situation.
The court door opened and the clerk announced that they are ready to hear everyone’s case. The judge stated that if you want to plead innocent you will need to come back and if found guilty you will get the total sentence. I knew that Perry Mason was not coming to my rescue. He then stated that you can plead guilty and he would be very lenient. This seems to be very prevalent with the judges, as most of the funds for a ticket go the court house and not the police department as everyone thinks. They don’t want to upset the honey pot. He cut my fine to less than half to $162 and gave me traffic school. The judge almost made me feel grateful for paying my ticket. But it gets better.
I gladly paid my ticket and signed up for traffic school. But, which school should I pick. I did some research on-line and found everyone liked this “Ticket-Toaster” and “Internet Traffic School”. I do not have anything to do with these companies, but am glad they are there. The research showed me the best way to take the tests. There are 9 tests plus a final exam. Pssst… this is the best part. The traffic school took me 45 minutes; instead of the usual 8 hours of listening to some knucklehead in white polyester tell me the ins and outs of traffic safety. To quickly complete the exams, copy the text from the chapters and paste them in to Word (Microsoft). Then copy the pertinent facts of the “test questions” into the search function of Word and the answers will appear quickly. At the end of each Chapter test, copy and paste the answers into a Word document and save them, along with the text. Keep doing that until all the tests are done. When you get to the final exam use all the resources you acquired to complete the final exam. This was the best $15 bucks I have spent to save hundreds on my insurance. I hope this helps my wayward friends to save time and money.