Lawyers Explain Driver Responsibility Fees – Pt.1

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers Explain
Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees

Our lawyers have been handling traffic tickets in the Detroit area since 1997. We pride ourselves on fighting aggressively for every client. And we always offer a FREE consultations to help you understand your options and the best way to handle your Detroit traffic ticket. However, one of the most difficult, confusing, and genuinely unfair aspects of Michigan traffic ticket law is the Secretary of State “Driver Responsibility Fees.”

In this two part article, we will try to help you understand when Driver Responsibility fees are assessed, how much they cost and what you can do about them.

What are Driver Responsibility Fees?

Driver Responsibility Fees have been in place since Oct. 1, 2003. They are separate fines added on top of your ticket fine. The ticket fine goes to the District Court where you were convicted of a traffic violation. The Driver Responsibility Fees go to the State.

The purpose of these fees is supposedly to “to encourage traffic safety by deterring potentially dangerous driving behavior.”  But our lawyers believe that the end result simply makes it harder for people with less money to keep or restore their driver’s’ license.

How Much are Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees?

Here’s where it gets really tricky! We have even met other lawyers who don’t understand the complicated “formula” for calculating Driver Responsibility Fees.

There are two ways to get Driver Responsibility Fees in Michigan: “category 1 offenses” which is somewhat less expensive; and “category 2 offenses” which is quite exorbitant.

Category (1) Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees

Many lesser traffic tickets count toward category 1 points, including: careless driving, speeding, improper turn, following to close, disobeyed traffic control device, failed to yield, failed to signal or observe, unauthorized or improper use of lights, prohibited turn, drove wrong way on one-way street, driving left of center.

Category 1 imposes a $100 assessment for persons reaching 7 points, and $50 for each additional qualifying point above 7.

So, for example, if you have 10 points your Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees, you will be assessed $250.

Category (2) Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees

Category 2 offenses are a special set of separate traffic ticket convictions that do not count toward your Category 1 total points.

How much your Category 2 fee will be depends upon will depend on what traffic ticket offense you are convicted of. Category 2 offenses range from $150 per year for two years all the way up to $1,000 for two years!

Category 2 Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees:

$1,000 per year for two years
$500 per year for two years
$200 per year for two years (certain tickets between May 1, 2004 & Oct. 1, 2012)
$150 per year for two years (certain tickets between between Oct. 1, 2003 and Oct. 1, 2012)

CLICK HERE for a Full List of  Category 2 Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees

 

 

CLICK HERE for Part 2 of Detroit Lawyers Explain Driver Responsibility Fees.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers

Our experienced Detroit traffic ticket lawyers will offer you a free consultation – to help you understand what your traffic ticket means for you, and to explain the best way to handle it in your situation. We will fight aggressively to help you avoid points that will result in increased insurance, license suspensions & large driver responsibility fees.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers: 800-717-4757

Lawyers Explain Driver Responsibility Fees – Pt. 2

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers Explain
Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees

Our Detroit traffic ticket lawyers have been helping people fight traffic tickets in the Detroit area since 1997. Our lawyers fight aggressively for every client. We offer a FREE consultation, to help you understand the best way to handle your Detroit traffic ticket.

However, one of the most difficult, confusing, and genuinely unfair aspects of Michigan traffic ticket law are Driver Responsibility Fees assessed by the Secretary of State. This is the second part of a two part article, aimed at helping you understand Driver Responsibility fees, how much they cost, and what you can do about them.

CLICK HERE for Part 1 of Detroit Lawyers Explain Driver Responsibility Fees.

What Happens if I Don’t Pay My Driver Responsibility Fee?

If you can not pay your Driver Responsibility Fee if full, you have the opportunity to enter into an installment agreement.

However, if you do not pay the Driver Responsibility Fee, and you do not enter into an installment agreement (or you default on your installment agreement) the Secretary of State will issue a an “Order of Action”. This Order of Action is your notification that your driver’s license has been, or will soon be, suspended.

If Your Driver’s License Has NOT Been Suspended Yet:

If your driver’s license has not been suspended yet, you may be able to AVOID the suspension by doing one of the following:

  1. Pay the Driver Responsibility Fee in Full
  2. Make an Installment Agreement

You can do either of these things by calling Michigan Dept. of Treasury at: (517) 636-5240.

At this point mailing is not recommended as most payment methods take up to 14 business days for mailing and processing time. And if the suspension goes into effect before your payment is received you will then have to take the steps below to terminate the suspension – and pay an additional $125 reinstatement fee.

The pending suspension will be dismissed from your driving record once the fee is paid in full or you have entered into an approved Installment Agreement.

If Your Driver’s License Has ALREADY Been Suspended Yet:

If your driver’s license has already been suspended for not paying your driver’s responsibility fees, you will need to pay the Driver Responsibility fee In Full (PLUS a $125 reinstatement fee) in order to terminate the suspension and have your license restored.

Under certain very limited circumstances, a driver’s license MAY be reinstated with an approved Installment Agreement. But the only way guaranteed to terminate your suspension is payment in full. The reinstatement fee of $125 may also be included in your Installment Agreement, if it is approved.

You can call Michigan Department of Treasury to pay your Drivers Responsibility Fee at: (517) 636-5240.

It is important to note that, unfortunately, you cannot use a “hardship appeal” for the Driver Responsibility Fee amount, or the Driver Responsibility Fee suspension. So even if you have very extenuating circumstances, a restricted license cannot be issued to you for “hardship”.

And remember that once your Driver Responsibility Fee is paid in full, you must pay a $125 reinstatement fee to the Michigan Department of State to reinstate your driving privileges.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers

Our experienced Detroit traffic ticket lawyers will offer you a free consultation – to help you understand what your traffic ticket means for you, and to explain the best way to handle it in your situation. We will fight aggressively to help you avoid points that will result in increased insurance, license suspensions & large driver responsibility fees.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers: 800-717-4757

 

Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees by Offense

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers:
Category 2 Driver Responsibility Fees

Driver Responsibility Fee: $150 per year, for two years
for traffic tickets between Oc. 1, 2003 & Oct. 1, 2012

  • Drove w/o Proper License/Endorsement/Vehicle Group Designator
  • Drove While License Expired
  • Drove While Unlicensed or License Not Valid

Driver Responsibility Fee: $200 per year for two years
for traffic tickets between May 1, 2004 & Oct. 1, 2012.

  • No Proof of Insurance
  • No Insurance

Driver Responsibility Fee: $500 per year for two years

  • Child Endangerment
  • Combined OWI and Controlled Substance
  • Driving Commercial Motor Vehicle While Disqualified
  • Driving While License Suspended/Revoked/Denied (DWLS)
  • DWLS Causing Death
  • DWLS Causing Serious Injury
  • No Insurance Under The Insurance Code
  • Operated While Impaired By Controlled Substance
  • Operating While Impaired By Liquor
  • Operating With Presence of Drugs (OWPD)
  • Person Under 21 With BAC
  • Reckless Driving

Driver Responsibility Fee: $1,000 per year for two years

  • CDL Manufacture/Distribute a Controlled Substance
  • Failed to Stop After Personal Injury Accident
  • Failed to Stop or Identify After Property Damage Accident
  • Failed to Stop or Identify After Personal Injury Accident Causing Serious Impairment of a Body Function
  • Failure to Stop or Identify After Personal Injury Accident Causing Death
  • Failure to Use Due Care and Caution Causing Death of a Construction Worker
  • Failure to Use Due Care and Caution Causing Injury of a Construction Worker
  • Failure to Yield For an Emergency Responder Causing Death
  • Failure to Yield For an Emergency Responder Causing Injury
  • Fatality Through Negligent or Criminal Operation of a CMV
  • Felonious Driving
  • Felony With Auto Used
  • Felony/Auto Used
  • Fleeing and Eluding officer 1st Degree – Causing Death
  • Fleeing and Eluding Officer 2nd Degree –  Causing Serious Injury
  • Fleeing and Eluding Officer 3rd Degree
  • Fleeing and Eluding Officer 4th Degree
  • Manslaughter
  • Moving Violation Causing Death
  • Moving Violation Causing Serious Impairment
  • Murder/Auto Used
  • Negligent Homicide
  • Operated Commercial Motor Vehicle with BAC .04 .07
  • Operating with Blood Alcohol Content of .17 of More
  • Operated While Intoxicated or While Impaired By Controlled Substance Causing Death
  • Operated While Intoxicated or While Impaired By Controlled Substance Causing Serious Injury
  • Operated While Intoxicated or While Impaired By Liquor Causing Death of An Emergency Responder
  • Operated While Intoxicated or While Impaired By Liquor Causing Serious Injury
  • Operating While Intoxicated
  • Operating While Intoxicated or While Impaired Causing Death
  • ORV – Allowed Person Under Influence Alcohol/Controlled Substance To Operate
  • ORV – Combined Operated Under Influence Liquor/Controlled Substance
  • ORV – Combined Operated Under Influence Liquor/Unlawful Bodily Alcohol Content
  • ORV – Operated Under Influence of Controlled Substance
  • ORV – Operated Under the Influence of Liquor
  • ORV – OUIL/OUID/OWI Causing Death
  • ORV – OUIL/OUID/OWI Causing Serious Impairment of A Body Function
  • ORV – Unlawful Bodily Alcohol Content (.10)
  • Reckless Driving Causing Death
  • Reckless Driving Causing Serious Impairment of a Body Function
  • Snowmobile – Felony/Snowmobile Used
  • Snowmobile – Operating Under the Influence of Controlled Substance Causing Death
  • Snowmobile – Operating Under the Influence of Controlled Substance Causing Serious Impairment of A Body Function )
  • Snowmobile – OUIL Causing Death
  • Snowmobile – OUIL Causing Serious Impairment of A Body Function
  • Unlawful Driving Away Auto
  • Fail to Use Due Care Causing Death of Person Operating Implement of Husbandry
  • Fail to Use Due Care Causing Injury of Person Operating Implement of Husbandry

CLICK HERE for Detroit Lawyers Explanation of Driver Responsibility Fees.

CLICK HERE for What Happens if You Don’t Pay Driver Responsibility Fees.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers

Our experienced Detroit traffic ticket lawyers will offer you a free consultation – to help you understand what your traffic ticket means for you, and to explain the best way to handle it in your situation. We will fight aggressively to help you avoid points that will result in increased insurance, license suspensions & large driver responsibility fees.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Lawyers: 800-717-4757

How Attorneys Beat Detroit Speeding Tickets

Detroit Speeding Tickets Attorneys Discuss:
How to “Beat” a Detroit Speeding Ticket

As experienced Detroit area speeding ticket attorneys, one of the most frequent questions we are asked is “How can I beat a speeding ticket?” In this article we discuss the consequences you could face for a speeding ticket in Detroit – and how you can reduce fines, avoid points and ultimately prevent unnecessary insurance increases.

Should I Pay My Detroit Speeding Ticket?

As a general rule, our traffic attorneys recommend that you “fight” rather than pay your speeding ticket.  Remember that if you simply pay your  speeding ticket, you are “admitting responsibility” and you will automatically be assessed fines and points. In Detroit, the faster you were driving, the more your speeding ticket will cost – and the more points you will be given on your driving record. CLICK HERE to see the fines and points for speeding tickets in Detroit.

“Points” may not sound like a big deal – but they really are. If you are over 21 years of age the Michigan Secretary of State will suspend your license if you accumulate 12 points. Points stay on your record for 2 years while the violation itself typically stays visible to police for seven – and up to ten – years.

But perhaps the biggest reason to fight a speeding ticket is the effect that points will have on your insurance rates. Speeding tickets in Detroit – and anywhere in Michigan – start at 2 points and go up to 6 points for reckless driving. And even a couple points can increase your insurance rates by hundreds of dollars of many years.

Every insurance company handles points differently, and there is not “set amount” that will (or won’t ) raise your rates. So paying one one ticket could cost you a “small” fine of $125 – $190 fine Detroit – but end up resulting in thousands of dollars in higher car insurance premiums.

What Happens if I Ignore a Detroit Speeding Ticket?

If you ignore a Detroit speeding ticket – and simply do not pay it or schedule a hearing – you “automatically” lose and will be assessed the applicable fines and points. This is called a “default”. Once you “default” you give up your right to have a hearing and contest (“fight”) your Detroit speeding ticket. CLICK HERE to see the fines and points for speeding tickets in Detroit.

Additionally, if you ignore your speeding ticket, the City of Detroit adds a $40 penalty to fine – if you do not pay or request a hearing within 14 days of the tickets due date.

And, if your speeding violation was a misdemeanor – such as reckless driving ticket – a warrant for your arrest will be issued if you do not respond to the ticket.

But, if you request a court hearing – and you have an experienced Detroit traffic attorney represent you – there is an excellent chance that you will be able to avoid or reduce the fines and points.

Can I Fight Detroit a Speeding Ticket Myself Without an Attorney?

If you follow the 36th District Court procedures by denying responsibility within 14 days and requesting a hearing you are “allowed” to represent yourself at the hearing. But your chance of winning your case and “beating” your Detroit traffic ticket are slim without an attorney.

Remember, it will be “your word against the officer’s word” – and who do you think the magistrate is going to believe? Additionally, the officer will typically have cold,  hard “proof” that you were in the form of “radar gun” results. Again, your word versus the radar gun is not likely to get you anywhere. Remember, you will be found guilty if the magistrate believes you were speeding – and it does not matter if you had a good excuse or valid reason for going too fast.

Can an Attorney Fight My Detroit Speeding Ticket?

An experienced Detroit speeding ticket attorney will be familiar with the 36th District Court’s policies, procedures and likely outcomes. An experienced Detroit traffic attorney will know the prosecutors, magistrates and judges.

Typically an attorney has access to meet with the prosecutor before your case even goes in front if the magistrate.  This means that the attorney can often negotiate or work out a speeding ticket “deal” and get a lower fine, fewer or no points, and in many cases can even get your speeding ticket dismissed.

Of course, you do have to pay an attorney. (There are no “appointed  lawyers” for cases that do not involve jail time.) But in the vast majority of cases, investing a relatively small amount of money in an experienced Detroit speeding attorney now can save you thousands of dollars in fines, insurance increases, driver responsibility fees & license restoration costs later!

Our Traffic Attorneys Fight Detroit Speeding Tickets

Our experienced Detroit speeding ticket attorneys will fight aggressively to help you “beat” or reduce your speeding ticket in 36th District Court – or anywhere across Southeast Michigan.

Call us today for a free consultation to discuss your Detroit speeding ticket, or any other driving infraction, in Detroit or anywhere in Michigan.

Fines & Points for Detroit Speeding Tickets

Traffic Attorneys Explain:
Fines & Points for Detroit Speeding Tickets

As experienced Detroit area speeding ticket attorneys, we are frequently contacted by clients asking what the penalties are for speeding tickets in Detroit. In this article you will find the fines, late fees and points you will face for a speeding ticket in Detroit.

Keep in mind that if you pay your ticket , you are admitting responsibility and you will automatically receive the fines and points listed below. Similarly, if you simply “ignore” your speeding ticket and do nothing, you will also receive the points and fines listed here – in addition to a $40 late fee per ticket.

However, an experienced Detroit area speeding ticket attorneys, like our lawyers, can help you reduce fines, avoid points and even get certain speeding tickets completely dismissed. While the fines below may be manageable, points on your driving record can result in thousands of dollars in insurance increases that you may not be able to afford. For this reason, it is always wise to discuss your Detroit speeding ticket with a skilled traffic attorney.

How Much is the Fine for a Detroit Speeding Ticket?

Traffic fines – including speeding tickets – vary from city to city. Your speeding ticket fine will depend upon the District (city) where you received your traffic ticket.

Below are the speeding ticket fines in the City of Detroit (36th District Court).

Detroit Speeding Ticket Fines *

Speeding 1-5/mph Over Speed Limit:         $125.00 ($165.00 after 14 days)

Speeding 6-10/mph Over Speed Limit:       $135.00 ($175.00 after 14 days)

Speeding 11-15/mph Over Speed Limit:     $150.00 ($190.00 after 14 days)

Speeding 16-20/mph Over Speed Limit:     $170.00 ($210.00 after 14 days)

Speeding 21-30 /mph Over Speed Limit:    $180.00 ($220.00 after 14 days)

Speeding 31/mph + Over Speed Limit:       $195.00 ($235.00 after 14 days)

If you have misplaced your Detroit speeding ticket, and don’t remember how many miles per hour “over” the limit your speeding ticket was for, you can call the 36th District Court traffic division at: (313-965-8700).

* These fines are effective at the time this article was posted in October 2017. Traffic ticket fines can and do regularly increase from time to time.

How Many Points for a Detroit Speeding Ticket?

Unlike the fees,  traffic points – including speeding tickets – do not vary from city to city. Points are set by the Secretary of State and are the same no matter where in Michigan you received your speeding ticket. Set point values are assigned to each traffic ticket – the more serious the offense, the greater the points..

Detroit Speeding Ticket Points

10 mph or less over the legal speed limit = 2 points

11 through 15 mph over the legal speed limit = 3 points

16 mph or more over the legal speed limit = 4 points

Reckless driving = 6 points

When you are convicted of a speeding – or if you “admit responsibility” by paying the ticket – the points will go on your driving record and remain there for 2 years from the date of the conviction. (note, however, that conviction itself can remain visible for 7-10 years, even after the points drop off. The Secretary of State cannot remove points. In some cases, however, atn attorney may be able to bring a “Motion” to “set aside” the court conviction and the points for it.

Drivers over age 21 will have their license suspended if they get 12 or more points in a two year period.  Drivers between the age of 18 and 20 will have their license suspended if accumulate 9 points in in a 12 month period, or 12 points in a 24 month period of time, 14 points for the duration of the license.

Our Traffic Attorneys Fight Detroit Speeding Tickets

Our experienced speeding ticket attorneys can help you “beat” or reduce your speeding ticket in Detroit’s 36th District Court – or anywhere across Southern Michigan.

Call us today for a free consultation to discuss your Detroit speeding ticket, or any other ticket, in Detroit or anywhere in Michigan.

CLICK HERE to learn more about fighting Detroit Speeding Tickets.

 

How Much Will a Traffic Ticket Raise My Insurance Rates?

Ask the Detroit Detroit Traffic Ticket Attorney:
How Much Will a Traffic Ticket Raise My Insurance Rates?

As experienced Detroit traffic ticket lawyers, we are often asked how much effect points will have on a client’s insurance rates. The short answer is “a lot.” But the full answer is much more complicated than that.

While traffic ticket fines can be different from Court to Court, driving record points are set by the Michigan Vehicle Code and are the same across all of Michigan, for any given traffic ticket. In other words, a careless driving ticket is always 3 points – whether you get it in Detroit or in Romulus or in Kalamazoo.

However – and this is a BIG HOWEVER – every insurance company treats points differently. Each auto insurance company has their own unique formula (“algorithm”) for determining your rate increase after you’ve had accidents or received driver’s record points.

This means that not every insurance company will penalize you the same, for the same number of points. For example, one major traffic ticket can increase your car insurance rate by only 20% with one insurer – and by 40% with another auto insurance carrier.

Obviously, the more points you have on your driving record, the more likely your insurer is to raise your rates.  But the number of points on your driving record may be treated differently by different car insurance companies.

Most insurance companies actually have their own point system – that is different than the Secretary of State point system. The insurers assign their own “point values” to each traffic ticket or accident. Then, they use their rating system to evaluate your insurance increase based on their “points” instead of each infraction.

If you want to find out what the specifics are for your insurance company, you should can request a copy of their rating factors from the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS). However, even with this information, it can be difficult to apply their exact formula to calculate your rate increases.

How Can I Keep Insurance Rates from Going Up When I Get Points?

If you already have points on your driving record, your best recourse is often to “shop around” for the best insurance rates. Since every insurer will treat your driving record points differently, you may find a difference of 30% or more. On a $2000 annual auto insurance policy, a savings of 30% saves you $600 per year.

But, by far, the best way to ensure that points do not raise your auto insurance rates is to hire an experienced Detroit Traffic Ticket Attorney to get the points reduced or dismissed entirely.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Attorneys Can Reduce Points

Under Michigan’s traffic ticket point system, points are placed on your driving record only after you have been convicted of, or found guilty of, or admitted responsible for, the traffic offense. So no points will affect your insurance rates if you are able to “beat” or “fight” your ticket. But remember, just paying the fee instead of “fighting” the ticket will result in automatic points. Also, ignoring the ticket will result in an automatic assessment of points.

Our Detroit Traffic Ticket Attorneys Can Help

If you are concerned about traffic ticket points, our experienced Detroit traffic ticket attorneys can help you understand the points you are facing – and fight to get them reduced or eliminated. Our lawyers have helped hundreds of Detroit residents reduce fines and points, and wherever possible even get their traffic tickets dismissed. Call us today for a free consultation with an experienced and affordable Detroit traffic ticket attorney.

Detroit Lawsuit Challenges Traffic Ticket Fines for the Poor

Detroit Women Bring Lawsuit to Challenge
Michigan Traffic Ticket Fines for the Poor

Like many people in Detroit, two woman received traffic tickets that they simply could not afford to pay. Kitia Harris and Adrian Fowler – both single mothers – received tickets for minor violations that they could not pay immediately. And, as is always the case, fines and penalties were added on. This made it even more impossible to pay the traffic tickets – and eventually both women lost their license.

25-year-old Kitia has a serious medical condition – so now she must rely on friends and family to take her to doctor’s appointments. And when no one can drive her, she is forced to cancel her treatment appointments.

Under Michigan’s current system, the Secretary of State automatically, indefinitely suspends a person’s licenses if they owe court-ordered fines and other fees, even if though they cannot afford to pay those fees. And as the late fees and driver responsibility fees keep piling on, it just becomes more and more impossible for the person to pay everything that is required in order to get their license back.

Lawsuit Claims Tickets Unfair to Poor

This vicious cycle of heaped-on traffic tickets fees, fines and penalties could happen to anyone. Perhaps it has even happened to you. In fact, an estimated 100,000 people in Michigan have their driver’s licenses suspended every year by because they didn’t, or couldn’t, pay their traffic tickets for minor traffic violations.

However, there may be some good news in store. Recently, attorneys for a national civil-rights organization called “Equal Justice Under Law” (EJUL) – along with Detroit’s Sugar Law Center attorneys – filed a class action lawsuit against Michigan’s Secretary of State, challenging these fees. That lawsuit accuses the State of Michigan of running a “wealth-based … scheme that traps some of the state’s poorest residents in a cycle of poverty.”

According to the lawsuit, Michigan unfairly keeps its poorest residents in a cycle of poverty by suspending their driver’s licenses when they can’t afford to pay court debts.  Without their license, poorer people cannot get or keep jobs, take care of their children, or even obtain necessary medical treatment.

EJUL is arguing that this in violation of the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the 14th Amendment – which punishes people for no other reason than they are too poor to pay the excessive traffic ticket fines, fees & penalties.

Last year, the Department of Justice also wrote a letter addressed to all courts across the country expressing concern about how poor people are affected by fees, fines and bond practices that sometimes cause people to stay in jail simply because they lack money.

Detroit Traffic Ticket Attorneys

It is too early for our Detroit traffic ticket attorneys to tell whether or not this lawsuit will eventually help reduce the unfair burden of traffic ticket fines on those who cannot afford them in Detroit and across Michigan. Our experienced Detroit traffic ticket attorneys are hopeful that this will be a step in the right direction.

In the meantime, if your license has been suspended for unpaid or outstanding Detroit traffic ticket fines, fees or penalties, call our attorneys for a free consultation today. Our attorneys will be happy to explain your rights and try to help you resolve your Detroit traffic tickets in the most affordable way possible.

Southfield Traffic Attorneys Discuss the 3 Kinds of Tickets

Southfield Traffic Attorneys Discuss:
The 3 Types of Traffic Tickets

If you received a traffic ticket in Southfield, Michigan, our attorneys want you to understand your rights. Choosing how you handle your traffic ticket will not only protect your driving record – but will help you avoid costly insurance hikes and/or even jail time.

In Southfield Michigan a traffic ticket can be either a civil infraction, a misdemeanor, or a felony. Each type of traffic ticket needs to be handled differently. In this article, our experienced Southfield Traffic Attorneys explain the differences of the three types of traffic tickets.

The Three Types of Traffic Tickets:

(1.) Southfield Civil Infraction Traffic Tickets

Most traffic tickets issued in Southfield, Michigan are civil infractions – which means that they are not a “crime” and there is no potential jail time. However, civil infractions can still come with large fines – as well as points on your driving record. And accumulated points can result in a driver’s license suspension and skyrocketing insurance to premiums.

Southfield traffic tickets are handled in the 46th District Court. Southfield now offers 5 options for responding to a civil traffic ticket. However, if you ignore it – or if even you admit responsibility and pay the fine – you may receive points that can result in license suspension or insurance increases.

If you have received a civil traffic ticket in Southfield Michigan, you should always call an experienced Southfield traffic ticket attorney. Our lawyers can help you make sure you address your civil traffic ticket in a way that will reduce or eliminate fines and points.

(2.) Southfield Misdemeanor Traffic Tickets

If you receive a misdemeanor traffic ticket – you may be facing a penalty that includes a jail sentence of up to 93 days. Southfield Misdemeanor Traffic Tickets are actually “crimes” – which means you will have a criminal record, in addition to points, if you do not beat the ticket.

Some of the more common Southfield Traffic Misdemeanor Tickets include: Reckless Driving, Driving with a Suspended License, and Leaving the Scene of An Accident.

Never ignore a Southfield Misdemeanor Traffic Tickets, because failing to appear for your traffic misdemeanor arraignment (hearing) will result in a bench warrant being issued for your arrest.

Also, traffic misdemeanors cannot be removed from your criminal record. And – in some cases – a traffic misdemeanor can also keep you from being able to remove or “expunge” other crimes from your record. So ignoring a Southfield traffic misdemeanor – or just pleading guilty and paying the fine – can leave you with a criminal record for the rest of your life.

Many people do not realize that a misdemeanor traffic ticket has such serious consequences. But you should always discuss your options with an experienced Southfield traffic ticket attorney. Our experienced lawyers can typically have your charges, fines and points reduced – or even dismissed.

(3.) Southfield Felony Traffic Offense

Technically, traffic “tickets” for which the penalty exceeds 93 days in jail, are actually called “felony complaints”, rather than a “ticket.” If you are stopped in Southfield for a felony traffic offense you will typically be arrested and taken into custody right there. And if you are not apprehended at the time of the offense, a warrant for your arrest will be issued.

Common Southfield traffic felonies can include: third offense OWI/DUI, vehicular manslaughter, negligent homicide, leaving a child unattended in a vehicle, and throwing dangerous objects from a vehicle.

You should never try to represent yourself in a felony traffic case. Not only can you lose your license, but you can also go to jail, which can mean losing your job. And a felony conviction also means that you will have great difficulty finding a job in the future due to your criminal record.

If you are facing a felony traffic offense in the 46th District Court – or anywhere in Wayne, Macomb or Oakland County – it is important that you talk to an experienced traffic ticket attorney. Our aggressive, affordable traffic lawyers understand that your freedom, your job and your financial future is at stake. We will give you a free consultation so you understand your rights, and we will fight your felony traffic matter with every resource available.

Our Southfield Traffic Ticket Attorneys Can Help

If you are facing a civil, misdemeanor or felony traffic charge, call our experienced Southfield traffic ticket attorneys today. Our lawyers have helped hundreds of people avoid jail time, reduce fines and points, and wherever possible get their tickets dismissed.

Detroit Lawyers Explain 36th District Court Traffic Warrants

Detroit Lawyers Explain
36th District Court Traffic Warrants

As an experienced 36th District Court traffic lawyer, I am frequently asked if failure to pay a Detroit traffic ticket will result in a warrant. Unfortunately, the answer is: “Yes, usually.” However, if you have unpaid traffic tickets, there are steps you can still take to avoid being subject to a warrant or an arrest.

There are two kinds of traffic tickets in Detroit: “civil” infractions and “criminal” infractions (which include misdemeanors and felonies. To see a full list of which Michigan traffic tickets are civil infractions and which are misdemeanors and felonies, CLICK HERE.

Civil Traffic Ticket Warrants Detroit 36th District Court

If you have been issued a civil infraction traffic ticket you two ways to respond:

  1. To admit responsibility for the violation and pay the fine within 14 days.
  2. Deny responsibility and request a hearing within 14 days.

Failure to respond to the ticket within the allowed time period will result in a default (“automatic”) judgment against you, including points and fines.

On the 45th day following the 21st day (66 days), your license will be suspended. If your license has been suspended it will cost you an additional $45 (plus the ticket fine) to have it reinstated. The 36th District Court will then give you a clearance form which you must take to the Secretary of State to lift the suspension.

Now, not only does this put you in danger of getting a Driving on Suspended ticket, but the 36th District may also issue a warrant for the unpaid fines.

Remember, a first offense for Driving on a Suspended License comes with a fine of $500 and up to 93 days in jail!

And, in recent years, the 36th District Court has been cracking down on any type of unpaid fines – including traffic tickets. They will typically issue a Show Cause Hearing, where you will receive a notice to appear before in Court and explain why the fines were not paid. And failure to appear for hearing will result in a bench warrant being issued for your arrest.

Even worse – the failure to appear is itself a new Misdemeanor. So, as you can see, failing to pay court fines just “snowballs” until you take care of it.

Misdemeanor Traffic Ticket Warrants in 36th District Court

In Detroit’s 36th District Court, 64% of traffic misdemeanor cases end in warrants. Misdemeanor traffic tickets are considered “crimes” and can result in fines up to $1000 and/or up to 93 days in jail.

Typically if you are issued a misdemeanor ticket, you will be taken to the Detroit Detention Center, for processing and will be allowed to post bond. You will be given a future court date for arraignment, at which time you can enter a plea or request a future hearing.

If you fail to show up for a 36th District Court traffic misdemeanor arraignment and/or hearing and/or do not pay the ticket fine they will immediately issue a warrant for your arrest. There is not a “grace period” for a misdemeanor warrant, as there is for the civil infractions discussed above.

And, again, a new Failure to Appear misdemeanor will also be added to the traffic misdemeanor you are already facing.

What to Do If You Have a Traffic Warrant in 36th District Court

The 36th District Court has more than $243 million dollars in unpaid ticket fees- so they are getting very serious about collecting money they are owed. In some cases they will put people on a payment plan – but in many other cases they are now putting people in jail for unpaid tickets.

As experienced 36th District Court traffic ticket lawyers, we understand that this “pay or stay” program can create an undue hardship. Going to jail on a traffic ticket warrant can have serious consequences. You can be arrested in front of your children, or even lose your job!

For this reason it is essential to call an experienced 36th District Court Traffic Lawyer, if you have unpaid tickets, have missed a Court appearance or have reason to believe there may be a warrant for your arrest.

Detroit 36th District Court Traffic Warrant Lawyers

Our traffic lawyers can immediately step into action for you. We have had great success getting offenses set aside, as well as setting up payment plans – and taking other steps to ensure that you are not arrested.

Depending upon the amount you owe, or the offense you are being charged with there are many things that a skilled 36th District Court traffic lawyer can do for you. In some situations we may be able to file a Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment – to show the Judge “good cause” that the default Judgment against you be “set aside”.

36th District Chief Judge King was reported in the Detroit News as saying: “We’ll be going out and we’ll be knocking on doors, bringing people in and I may even … start booting cars, seizing property and whatever we have to do.”

Let our experienced 36th District Court Traffic lawyer stop the “snowball” and get you back on track – so you do not have to worry about warrants or arrests for 36th District Court traffic tickets.

Free Consultation
Traffic Ticket Lawyers in Detroit: 800-717-4757

Attorneys Explain 36th District Court Traffic Ticket Amnesty

Ask the Detroit Lawyers:
Does the 36th District Court
Have Traffic Ticket Amnesty?

As an experienced 36th District Court traffic lawyer, I am often asked if Detroit, Michigan has a traffic ticket “amnesty program.” Unfortunately, the short answer is, “No”. The 36th District Court Ticket Amnesty program has ended. However, there are still many things that an experienced traffic lawyer can do to get unpaid traffic tickets set aside, or have fines & penalties reduced.

How do Traffic Ticket Amnesty Programs Work?

A traffic ticket amnesty program offers people with traffic tickets they didn’t pay an opportunity to pay their past due fines, without being charged any late fees or other financial penalties. Sometimes people can even take care of traffic infraction arrest warrants for civil infractions and some misdemeanors – without fear of arrest.

Traffic judges will usually say that the amnesty program is being offered as a way to give people a “clean slate”. However, in reality, most Courts run an amnesty period as a way to bring in a large amount of cash from unpaid tickets – while also reducing their backlog of cases.

Does 36th District Court have a Traffic Ticket Amnesty Program?

Michigan’s 36th District Court is the largest District Court in the state. All traffic misdemeanor citations and civil traffic tickets (including statute and ordinance violations) that occur within the City of Detroit are handled in the 36th District Court.

Once in a great while, the 36th District Court has offered a traffic ticket amnesty program. However, there currently is no amnesty program being offered in Detroit’s 36th District Court.

Unfortunately, amnesty programs do not occur very often – and are typically only offered for a limited number of days. This year The 36th District Court offered an amnesty program that ran only for 3 days in conjunction with the Fourth of July.

In 2017, the 36th District Court offered a Traffic Ticket Amnesty Program from Saturday July 1st through noon on Tuesday July 4th. During this time, any adjudicated case in which fines and costs had been assessed were eligible to have all late fees, penalties, and warrant costs waived, upon payment in full of the ticket(s).

Our 36th District Court traffic lawyers have never seen a Wayne County District Court offer more than one amnesty program in the same year. So, it is unlikely that Detroit will offer more amnesty any time soon.

What to Do if You Missed the 36th District Court Traffic Ticket Amnesty Program

Remember that failing to respond to a traffic ticket in the allowed time automatically results in a Default Judgment or “conviction”. This means automatic assessment of any points and fines, as well as the accrual of late fees. Your driver’s license will be suspended – adding $45 to the original fine, to have it reinstated. And, finally a warrant for your arrest may be issued!

For this reason it is important to speak to skilled 36th District Court traffic lawyer, if you have unpaid tickets, missed any traffic related court hearing, or think there is probably a warrant for your arrest.

Detroit 36th District Court Traffic Ticket Lawyers

Our caring lawyers understand that you simply may not be able to afford to pay the tickets, so it was just seem “easier” to ignore them.  But, keep in mind, the fines and penalties will just continue to grow – and you may be in danger of getting arrested at your home, at your employer, during a minor traffic stop, or even if you are in traffic accident.

Our experienced traffic lawyers have successfully helped hundreds of people with unpaid traffic tickets in 36th District Court.

In many cases, depending upon the amounts you owe, and the traffic infraction with which you are being charged, we can file a Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment – to show the Judge “good cause” why the Default Judgment against you be “set aside”.  We can also arrange affordable payment plans. And we take every legal action to ensure that our clients are not arrested on a traffic warrant.

Call our experienced 36th District Court Traffic lawyers today. We can help get you back on track, and stop any worries about an arrest warrant for 36th District Court traffic tickets.

36th District Court Traffic Attorneys
Free Consultation: 800-717-4757