You Just Got a Speeding Ticket. Now What?
August 26, 2009
You look up with great hesitation, into your rear view mirror, and then quickly look away...and back again. You really do see lights, then comes the siren and that terrible feeling in your stomach. Ugh, not a speeding ticket!!
What next? Are you going to get a speeding ticket? Get off with a warning? What should you do? What should you say?
When you first realize that you may have been caught speeding, don't look away and pretend that you don't see the patrol car. A better idea is to make eye contact with the officer and even wave to them, to let them know that you see them and will be slowing down to the speed limit. Next you should slow down to the posted speed limit, immediately.
You may also want to cross your fingers...and toes, while the officer decides if he is going to pull you over.
If the crossing technique didn't work for you and you are indeed being pulled over, your goal is to get off with a warning and not a speeding ticket. This will be decided by the police officer and how you handle the situation could determine which you end up with.
When you are sure that you are being pulled over, immediately put on your directional signal and find a safe place to pull over. You'll want to choose a location where the police car can pull over as well, this is to ensure both your safety.
Once you are pulled over, stop the car and turn off the engine. Make sure that the radio is off and remove sunglasses and anything else that could be distracting. Place your hands on the steering wheel. Do not attempt to find your license and registration, until you are asked to do so. You want the officer to know that you are not a threat and you will not try to flee.
You'll want to turn on your interior lights, if it is night time and ask any passengers to remain quiet.
The first thing the officer is likely to ask you is, "Do you know why I pulled you over?" To this you should respond, "No Officer, I thought I was driving safely." This helps you in two ways. It gives you some credibility about being safety conscious, should it come up in court. It also lets the officer know that you were thinking about driving safely, this is assuming that you were not driving 110mph; in this case, you will get a ticket.
The officer may choose to lecture you on road safety. If this be courteous and attentive. Don't argue or debate with the officer. Don't get nasty and threaten the officer. Avoid saying much of anything, and don't give any silly excuses. Try not to make an impression with the officer, be forgettable. This will help you in court. Take your ticket politely from the officer and pull safely back on to the road.
There are really two things you can do when you get pulled over for speeding. The first is to act appropriately, mature and non-threatening. Hopefully, if you are lucky and have not committed a serious offense, you will get off with a warning.
The second thing you can do is to be totally forgettable to the copy, don't make an impact. Say as little as possible. Just take your ticket and begin to plan your speeding ticket defense.
Jeff Mulligan has written Case Dismissed to show you proven legal strategies to fight and beat a speeding ticket. Thousands of copies have been sold. http://www.speedingticketbook.com
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