If you didn’t show up to court for your traffic ticket and you were issued a bench warrant as a result of your absence, you need to take immediate action. Many people believe that the solution for handling a bench warrant is by paying the ticket. In fact, many legal websites and “professionals” will direct you to do so. Do not pay your ticket without speaking to an attorney first!
While paying the ticket that landed you in court in the first place will take care of your warrant, you will be admitting that you are guilty to the crime in question. The best thing you can do once you are notified of your warrant or as soon as you realize you missed your court date, is to call our attorneys at Springfield Traffic Tickets without delay. We can help you have your warrant removed and fight to have your Missouri traffic ticket either reduced or expunged, as well.
Read on to find out more information about what happens in Missouri if you fail to show up in court to contest your ticket or fail to pay your traffic ticket and how an attorney can help you to resolve both.
What You Should Do If You Get A Traffic Ticket
Whether you received a ticket for speeding, failure to make a complete stop, failure to yield, etc., You need to call a traffic ticket attorney in Springfield immediately to discuss your options. Many people believe that if you are issued a ticket you need to just pay the fine and be done with it. This is an option, if you want to plead guilty to the crime and have points added to your license. Furthermore, if the traffic ticket is classified as a misdemeanor or felony, it could stay on your permanent criminal record.
The second, preferred option, is to contest your ticket with the help of a traffic attorney. Though it may be more time consuming and more money upfront than the fine itself, contesting your ticket could potentially keep points off your license, clear up your record, and help you avoid a higher premium on your insurance. To clarify, you have two options when you receive a ticket:
- Pay The Ticket (Admitting Guilt)
- Contest The Ticket (Solo or With An Attorney’s Help)
What Happens If You Fail To Pay You Ticket or Show Up In Court?
No matter what route you decide to take, you must resolve your ticket one way or another. The consequences for not paying traffic tickets in Missouri or failing to show up to contest your ticket are oftentimes greater than the ticket itself. If you fail to pay your ticket by its due date or fail to appear in court to contest it, a judge can issue a warrant, called a bench warrant for your arrest. A bench warrant simply means that the warrant has been issued by a judge rather than issued by a police officer and then a judge. A bench warrant can be found on public records and if not removed could keep you from getting jobs where background checks are performed. If you receive a bench warrant you could potentially be arrested and taken to jail. Additionally, you may also be held in jail until the date of your hearing. If you are found guilty of failing to appear for your court case you could be facing additional fines, probation, and potential jail time.
Other penalties for failing to resolve your ticket may include:
- Getting your driver’s license suspended. If suspended you’ll have to pay a reinstatement fee to regain your driving privileges.
- Having your car or truck towed
- Increased car insurance premiums.
- Inability to renew your licence or registration for a set period of time.
How A Springfield Traffic Attorney Can Help
If you have just received a traffic ticket call Springfield Traffic Tickets immediately to discuss your case with a seasoned traffic attorney. No matter how big or small your traffic violation is, we can provide you with legal assistance that will keep you from having to pay higher insurance premiums, having points added to your license and any additional fines or jail time that may be associated with your ticket.
If you failed to appear in court and a warrant has been issued, you must take immediate action. In many cases, we have been able to help our clients get their warrant recalled within 24 hours. Usually we are able to appear in court on behalf of our clients to resolve the bench warrant, but some judges will require that you also appear in court in order to expunge your warrant. Since every judge handles these types of cases differently, it is essential that you choose a Springfield traffic attorney who has knowledge of the courts in the jurisdiction where the warrant was issued. After your warrant has been removed, we will work towards negotiating the terms of the traffic ticket that landed you in court in the first place.
Don’t hesitate, call Springfield Traffic Tickets today to schedule a no-obligation consultation where we will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of your case and help you to get both your warrant and ticket(s) removed from your record.