Traffic Ticket

Minnesota Traffic Defense

Traffic Lawyer Thomas Gallagher on traffic defense.

Should you pay a traffic ticket, or get a traffic lawyer to fight it?

After a traffic citation most people want to keep it off their driver’s license record.  That’s because we don’t want to lose our license or pay higher insurance rates.  Though fighting it won’t always get that result, not fighting it never will.  Whether it’s worth it to you to hire a lawyer it a question only you can answer.

In the long run, it can be cheaper to hire a traffic lawyer.

What is a uniform traffic citation?

You have the right to a traffic lawyer for your Minnesota traffic defense case
You have the right to a traffic lawyer for your Minnesota traffic defense case

A citation is a summons to respond to court on a tab charge alleging a petty misdemeanor violation or misdemeanor crime.

People often refer to this as a traffic ticket.

A “tab charge” is a criminal or petty misdemeanor charge filed with the court as simply the name of the charge and statutory citation, without a sworn claim of facts alleging probable cause.  In other words, a tab charge is not a written Complaint.

Almost all traffic violations are tab charged, by citation.

What violations and offenses are traffic-related?

Traffic or motor vehicle-related crimes and violations range from felonies like Criminal Vehicular Homicide down to petty misdemeanors like equipment violations.  An experienced traffic lawyer can help you fight them all.  Some of these are discussed on other pages here:

Criminal Vehicular Operation
Reckless Driving
Driving After Revocation
Driving Without Insurance
Marijuana in a Motor Vehicle

Other common traffic tickets:

Red light
Stop sign
School Bus violation
Window Tint

Moving Violations and Equipment Violations

Convictions for Moving Violations and for driving conduct, insurance, or no license, generally go on the driving record.  Those convictions can lead to a license revocation, suspension or cancellation.  In general, equipment violations will result in a fix-it ticket or a fine only.

Most people want a traffic lawyer for charges that affect their driver’s license, record and insurance.

“Will I lose my license if I get convicted of a traffic violation?”

For some felony traffic crimes, the state revokes the driver’s license right way.  These include Felony DWI and Criminal Vehicular operation.

But the state won’t revoke a license for most traffic misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors unless the person has priors.  Minnesota Rules for the Department of Public Safety label repeaters “habitual violators.”  Rule 7409.2200.  The Rule tells us how many convictions trigger how long a license revocation.

The state will revoke a habitual violator’s driver’s license.  So if you have priors, you can prevent losing your license by preventing a conviction on a traffic charge.  The “conviction” triggers the driver’s license consequence.

This is another reason to hire a traffic lawyer for your traffic defense case.

Why do people hire traffic lawyers?

The most common reasons are:

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  • stop a conviction from going on the driver’s license record
  • prevent future traffic tickets by keeping it off the DL record
  • keep car insurance rates from going up
  • protect credit and health insurance
  • avoid employment-related issues
  • prevent revocation of driver’s license
  • prevent jail time for misdemeanor and other criminal traffic charges

Question about a Minnesota Traffic Ticket?  Call Traffic Lawyer Thomas Gallagher at 612 333-1500.