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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2016

    Default Driving an Unregistered Vehicle With No License Plates

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: Texas

    Just hoping to get a little advice on the subject.

    My car is old and I've been planning to buy a new one when money permits. Because of this I haven't renewed registration/ inspection because it's expensive.

    Today I received four citations. Expired registration, no drivers license on demand (I left my wallet at home), operate vehicle without license plate or registration (why is this a separate citation from the first), and failure to pay toll (I have an EZ tag!!!) I was pulled over on a toll road but I was not failing to pay.

    The last one is total bs, I have an EZ tag that I pay regularly. The cop said my license plate number is different than what they have on file. ok but how is that failure to pay?

    My question is basically what should I do. Obviously I'll take care of all the issues lacking, should I get a lawyer? Should I just take care of all the issues and hope the court drops the tickets? When I get my new registration and they ask if I received a ticket (because it's very expired they always ask) what should I say. What happens if I say no(they will give me a current date)

    Thank you very much in advance

    P.s. I have a lot of respect for police, but this kind of forced solicitation in an agregeous manner is very disheartening. I wasn't even speeding!!! I haven't been ticketed in years.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Default Re: Driving an Unregistered Vehicle With No License Plates

    You weren’t speeding but your registration was expired (and perhaps with no license plates, that part is unclear) and the police officer could readily see that and that justifies the stop and the tickets for the expired registration (and perhaps lack of license plates). Once stopped, the officer may ask you for your driver’s license, registration card, and insurance card, which you are obligated to present upon the officer’s demand. Failure to do those things also ends up as a violation for which the officer may ticket you. Since you weren’t in compliance with the law, this one is on you; blaming the officer for your failure to keep things current and carry the necessary proof of it as Texas law requires is misguided. The good news is that you may be able to get one or more of these tickets dismissed if you fix the license and registration issues.

    For the expired registration, if you cure the problem by registering the vehicle and paying all the fees (and it will cost you more now because there is an extra 20% delinquency fee that is charged when the registration lapses) within 20 days of the day you were issued the citation then Texas Transportation Code (TC) section 502.407 authorizes the judge to dismiss the ticket upon your presentation of proof that you have done that, though the court may still charge you an administrative fee of up to $20 if it does dismiss the ticket. Note that whether to dismiss the ticket is up to the judge, so be polite and respectfully point out to the judge that the Code allows the judge to dismiss the ticket once you've cured the problem within 20 days.

    For the failure to show the driver’s license, TC § 521.025(d) provides that proof that you had a valid driver’s license at the time of the citation is a defense to the charge. Here, if you succeed in proving that, the court will dismiss the charges as this one is not at the judge’s discretion. If the driver's license was expired on the day you were cited, then TC § 521.026 gives the judge the discretion to dismiss the charge if you cure the problem within 20 days of the ticket and allows the court to assess a $20 administrative fee if the judge dismisses the ticket.

    If the E-Z pay tag was working and you can prove you paid the toll you probably can get that one dismissed, though if the tag was in the wrong vehicle that might be problem.

    So, you may be able to get a lot of these tickets dismissed, but it will cost you some time and some money, though less than you’d pay if you got convicted on everything.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016

    Default Re: Driving an Unregistered Vehicle With No License Plates

    Thank you very much for your reply. I'm not sure what happened with the title of the thread but my license plates are fine and valid. He tickets me for expired registration, and also no registration. My DL is valid just not on me. And ticketed for not paying toll, which I did. prior registration made me change my plates but because I didn't update the new number to the toll road authority he can say I did not pay?

    So sounds like if I take care of all these issues I and have a nice judge a lot of this can be dismissed.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Driving an Unregistered Vehicle With No License Plates

    If your registration is outdated then your plates are not fine and valid.

    While your latest post shows an improved attitude from the first, it is still "snarky" enough a judge may take issue with it. You need to make all efforts to check your attitude at the courthouse door. While a good judge will not expect you to kowtow to them, most all judges will demand you show respect for their position.

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