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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
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    3

    Default What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: California, driving on Highway 65 Southbound.
    Early afternoon under good visibility conditions, straight stretch of highway going uphill with only 2 cars ahead of me, driving toward the same direction i decided to pass the first car as it pulled to the right on a portion of highway with 2 lanes. Then i noted the lanes merging again into one and slowed down as i could not have passed the second car ahead of me...only to realize this car was a CHP and to my dismay it slowed down and started pulling on the side of the road ... i slowed down even more as i didnít know what to do and why was the CHP pulling off the highway, when the CHP car was completely off the road i passed it only to notice in my rear mirror that CHP car pulled back on the road and had itís swirling lights on. At this point i immediately signaled and pulled off the road and waited in the car. The officer came, knocked on passenger window and stated that i was pulled over for speeding and requested my dl, registration and proof of insurance. I provided the requested documentation no questions asked as this was my first ever time to be pulled over by law enforcement in my 20 years of driving and was in a bit of shock ... when he came back to the car he presented me with a citation and asked me to sign it ... by this time my initial anxiety of being pulled over had passed and asked him what did i do wrong as i have never ever been pulled over before. Officer stated i was driving 77 mph on a 55 mph highway ... i confess i do not know exactly at what speed i was cruising, it felt as i was going with the flow ... i had never been on that highway before, mostly drove around LA County freeways my whole life before this outing to the North.
    Anyhow my question is what can i do as i do not want this ticket to mess up my driving record or impact my insurance rates and the court where i have to present myself is about 170 miles away from my home ?
    Thank you for any suggestions in helping out a first offender !

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    19,253

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    Going with the flow is not a defense. Road conditions do not alter the maximum limits in 22349.

    If you have not done so the past 18 months, your best option, given your concerns (maintaining record, avoiding returning to the county you were cited), would be to avail yourself of the traffic school provision.
    Such is frequently offered when the courtesy notice is sent. If they don't (or you don't get the courtesy notice, which is as it says just a courtesy, not a requirement), you can contact the court and inquire. You should however make sure that you either resolve this or appear before the date on your citation.

    The traffic school option has you pay the fine plus an additional ($52 last I checked) fee. You also have to pay the tuition at the school you attend. Then when the results are reported, the court will not enter a conviction and your DMV record will remain intact and your insurance carrier won't know.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    17,221

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    See if you can take traffic school and keep it off your record. 22 over, I have my doubts. You can spend a thousand or two on a lawyer or just bite the bullet and pay the fine. You'll be stuck with an insurance surcharge for three years until it drops off. It happens. I went almost 20 years without a blemish until one day backed out of a parking space and clipped a car going by. Three years of higher rates and I survived. So will you.

    (I wrote that before seeing flyingron's comment. Take traffic school if you can get it. You might be able to take it online instead of going to a class.)

    From now on set your cruise control, pay attention, and have patience. You'll get where you are going without passing other vehicles.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2010
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    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    The threshold is more than 25 over. He's likely to be able to do traffic school.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Paso Robles, California
    Posts
    506

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    Quote Quoting flyingron
    View Post
    ...Then when the results are reported, the court will not enter a conviction and your DMV record will remain intact and your insurance carrier won't know.
    Cal. Veh. Code ß 41501(a) Chaptered (Stats.2010 Ch.216) States: "The court may order a continuance of a proceeding against a person, who receives a notice to appear in court for a violation of a statute relating to the safe operation of a vehicle, in consideration for attendance at a licensed school for traffic violators, a licensed driving school, or any other court-approved program of driving instruction, and, after that attendance and pursuant to Section 1803.5 or 42005, the court may dismiss the complaint..."

    In 2011 this code section was amended as follows: "After a deposit of bail and bail forfeiture, a plea of guilty or no contest, or a conviction, the court may order a continuance of a proceeding... the court may order that the conviction be held confidential by the department according to Section 1808.7."

    Although the 2010 version of this statute appears to make traffic school a pre-judgment diversion program by allowing the dismissal of the charges after successful completion of traffic school, the 2011 version removed it from that category. The current version made two major changes. First, it made traffic school available only under specific circumstances; 1) After a deposit of bail and bail forfeiture, 2) a plea of guilty or no contest, and 3) a conviction. Two of the three options, bail forfeiture and a conviction, would require the entry of a judgment and therefore preclude traffic school as a pre-judgment diversion program. Second, this current version has also removed the option for the court to dismiss the charges. VC ß 1803.5(a) states the successful completion of traffic school "results in a designation of the conviction as confidential."
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
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    3

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    Thank you all for your reply !
    If i understand correctly, i should follow up with the court and find out if i am eligible for traffic school, pay the fine and complete the school before court date and then my driving record will not be impacted. Is this right?

  7. #7

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    Quote Quoting FirstCited
    it pulled to the right on a portion of highway with 2 lanes. Then i noted the lanes merging again
    Can you post the exact location from google earth? This will allow us to verify the maximum was indeed 55 and not 65.

    Quote Quoting FirstCited
    my question is what can i do as i do not want this ticket to mess up my driving record or impact my insurance rates and the court where i have to present myself is about 170 miles away from my home ?
    If making an appearance in court is not an option, instead of what has already been recommended, you could choose to contest the citation with a Trial By Written Declaration. If the officer fails to write his declaration, omits an element, or you write a compelling defense the matter would be dismissed and you would not owe anything. Should you lose there are very high odds you will still be able to attend traffic school. While it's technically possible, I'm not sure I've ever heard of someone losing this ability with a TBWD.

    You can also request in your trial by written declaration, that should you be found guilty, you be assessed a lower fine.

    Quote Quoting flyingron
    The threshold is more than 25 over.
    Per court rule that is the threshold for the clerk. Per state law, a judge can allow traffic school for virtually any 1 point infraction including for a violation which was 26 or more over.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    19,253

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    You can also request in your trial by written declaration, that should you be found guilty, you be assessed a lower fine.
    I've never heard of this working. You're free to request it but most courts only have two buttons on their TBD: not guilty, return bail (uncommon) and guilty, bail forfeited.

    However, that doesn't give him the outcome he's requesting.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    326

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    Quote Quoting FirstCited
    View Post
    Thank you all for your reply !
    If i understand correctly, i should follow up with the court and find out if i am eligible for traffic school, pay the fine and complete the school before court date and then my driving record will not be impacted. Is this right?
    Correct. You will likely be given more time than your court date to complete the traffic school... you just have to pay the fine before that date. You can do traffic school online for next to nothing. Just call the court.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    423

    Default Re: What is the Best Thing to Do After Being Cited 22349 B VC

    You will get a courtesy notice in the mail which will tell you if you are eligible for traffic school. You can request it using the form enclosed with payment of the bail amount. Make sure you complete it. If you aren't eligible, then you can request a trial by declaration rather than appear in person. I've driven that road. There aren't a lot of speed limit signs because it's a rural state route and the max speed is 55 from end to end.

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