Anthony M. Grandinetie

WHERE AND WHEN MUST I APPEAR TO ANSWER MY TICKETS:

By electing to hire The Law Offices of Anthony M. Grandinette, we do all the work for you; appearing in court, negotiating, and resolving your traffic case while you relax at home or attend to your work.

If you are issued a ticket for a non-criminal violation in Nassau or Suffolk Counties, the firm will be required to appear on your behalf at a local county, village, or town court.

In Nassau County, many tickets issued by police are returnable at the Nassau County Traffic and Parking Violations Agency, located at 16 Coopers Street, Hempstead, N.Y. 11550.

In Suffolk County, many tickets issued by police are returnable at the Suffolk County Traffic and Parking Violations Agency, located at the H. Lee Dennison Building, 100 Veterans Memorial Highway, Hauppauge, N.Y. 11788.

However, both Nassau and Suffolk Counties have many village and town traffic courts that are empowered by the legislature to dispose of traffic violations within their particular municipalities. These local municipalities usually operate traffic court in the evenings. In Nassau, local traffic courts are staffed by private attorneys who are hired to act as prosecutors. In Suffolk, local traffic courts are staffed by prosecutors from the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office. Village and town traffic courts are a source of secondary revenue for their townships. This usually translates favorably to motorists because local courts prefer not to waste their limited time and resources trying cases.

The first appearance date is always reflected on the face of the ticket itself. However, certain local municipal courts may, but not always, require your appearance. For example, a holder of a probationary/junior license or learner’s permit who is charged with a cell phone/texting violation on or after July 1, 2013 cannot plead by mail or online. You are required to appear for a hearing in a designated traffic violation office.

WHAT TO DO IMMEDIAELY AFTER THE TICKET IS ISSUED:

Don't delay! Call us or complete our simple 3-Step Ticket Resolution process immediately. It is the most efficient, cost-effective, and hassle-free way to favorably dispose of your traffic tickets.

If a ticket is not answered in the time allowed, your driver’s license could be suspended. In certain situations, you could even be found guilty of the charge simply based upon your failure to respond (a default conviction).

Driving with a suspended license is a crime. Driving with a suspended or revoked license can be classified as a misdemeanor or felony offense carrying potential fines of up to $5,000, jail, probation, or confiscation of your vehicle. As the number of suspensions you have increases, the penalties for each additional suspension increases as well. A driver is suspended for each ticket not answered and each fine not paid.

To plead Not Guilty, check the "not guilty" box on the back of the ticket. Fill in the requested information, sign it, and, within 15 days of the recorded violation date, mail the ticket to the address listed on the ticket. The DMV or the municipality where you received the ticket will send you a letter telling you when and where to go for your hearing. If you are hearing impaired or require an interpreter, include a request for one when you mail the not guilty plea.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER PLEADING NOT GUILTY:

  • The Plea Negotiation Conference Stage
    Cases are initially scheduled for conferences between the prosecutor and the attorneys. Plea negotiations are entered after evaluating the nature of the infraction, the driving history of the motorist, and other factors raised by either party.
    In the event a satisfactory compromise is reached, a plea is entered by the firm on your behalf, and you are notified of the disposition; what if any monetary fine is due, and when and to whom to make that payment. There are multiple sources of simple and convenient payment methods available at virtually all traffic courts today; in person, on line, by mail, etc.
    Of course we have an understanding of the parameter’s of your goals prior to entering any plea and you can be contacted by phone prior to the entry of any plea bargain.
  • Unsuccessful Plea Negotiations Result in Trial or Guilty Pleas
    A motorist can elect to enter a plea of guilty and negotiate the lowest fine possible. However, this is not always an available option. For example, if pleading guilty to a charge would result in a license or registration suspension or revocation upon conviction (such as driving without insurance or a third speeding violation within 18 months), it would be foolish to plead guilty rather than go to trial. In the event a disposition cannot be worked out for some unusual reason, your case will be set down for a trial date, for which your appearance will be necessary.
  • What Happens at your Trial
    As with all crimes, you are considered innocent of the charge against you unless you are proven guilty. You cannot be found guilty unless there is "clear and convincing evidence" that you violated the law.
    Sworn testimony will be given from the police officer who issued the ticket, explaining why the ticket was issued. One of our lawyers will then cross-examine the officer, and you may elect to call witnesses as well as present written or demonstrative evidence (e.g., photographs, phone records, charts, etc.). The judge may ask witnesses questions to better understand their testimony. You do not have to testify but you may if you wish. You cannot be found guilty just because you do not testify.
    When all evidence and testimony have been presented, the judge will decide whether or not you are guilty, based upon the evidence and testimony presented at trial. If the judge decides the charge against you was not proven by “clear and convincing evidence,” you will be found not guilty. If you are found guilty, the judge will set a fine and your license or registration may be suspended or revoked, depending on the violation and your overall driving record.
  • Appeals
    If you believe the judge’s decision was incorrect based on the facts and/or the law, the firm can file an appeal of the judge’s decision on your behalf. Any appeal must be filed within 30 days of the decision date.

DISMISSAL BASED UPON PROOF:

Although a summons may be dismissed based upon your compliance after the violation has occurred, there is a $50 Driver Responsibility Fee that must be paid. No fine will be imposed and no surcharge (totaling up to $200). Under the following circumstances certain summonses may be dismissed without fine or surcharge and only the Driver Responsibility Fee will be due

  • Equipment
    Most equipment violations may be dismissed if repaired by 1/2 hour after sundown the day after the day the violation was issued. To prove such a repair within the required time frame, an affidavit must be filled out and signed by a police officer or an inspection station mechanic. The affidavit must be completely filled out and submitted with the plea. You MUST KEEP A COPY of the affidavit in case it is lost in the mail or otherwise. If you are unable to produce an affidavit or copy of the affidavit, the summons will not be dismissed.
  • Insurance
    You may prove that you vehicle was insured on the date the violation for not carrying proof of insurance was issued by providing a letter from your insurance company (not an insurance broker). The letter must provide specific information such as specifying that the vehicle was insured of the date in which the violation was issued. Most insurance companies know which information to include in the letter. Insurance cards or proof of an insurance policy, etc., are NOT acceptable as proof of insurance. Only a specific letter indicating the specific date the violation was issued is acceptable proof. If the letter is sufficient to prove the vehicle was insured on the date in question, a driver responsibility fee of $50 will be imposed, however no fine or surcharge will be imposed. The maximum fines for uninsured vehicles is $1500 and carry up to an $88 surcharge, as well as the Driver Responsibility Fee of $50, which total $1538.00. A plea of guilty or a conviction for driving an uninsured vehicle will also carry a civil penalty of $750 from the Department of Motor Vehicle as well as the revocation of your driver’s license for one year.
  • Inspection
    Summonses for uninspected vehicles may not be cured by getting the vehicle inspected. If the vehicle was not inspected at the time the summons was issued, there is no way to correct this violation.
  • Registration
    Summonses for unregistered vehicles may not be cured by getting the vehicle registered. If the vehicle was not registered at the time the summons was issued, there is no way to correct this violation.

LICENSE SUSPENSION AND REVOCATION:

The most common reasons your driver’s license may be suspended or revoked due to motor vehicle violations are for failing to answer a ticket or pay a fine that has been levied after being found guilty of the violation. A traffic court judge does have the discretionary authority to suspend or revoke your license under certain circumstances.

Speeding/Misdemeanors — if you committed and were then found guilty of three speeding and/or misdemeanor traffic violations within 18 months, you can expect your driver’s license to be revoked for at least six months.

New Driver Probation — as a new driver, you are on license probation for the first six months after passing your road test. If during your probationary period you are found guilty of committing any two moving violations, your license will be suspended for 60 days. Additionally, it will also be suspended for 60 days if you are found guilty of committing a single, more serious, violation during the probation period. These more serious violations include speeding, tailgating, unauthorized racing, reckless driving, or texting/cell phone violations.

OVERVIEW OF THE NEW YORK DMV POINT SYSTEM:

  • Speeding: MPH over posted limit
    • 1 to 10 – 3 POINTS
    • 11 to 20 – 4 POINTS
    • 21 to 30 – 6 POINTS
    • 31 to 40 – 8 POINTS
    • Over 40 – 11 POINTS
  • Reckless driving - 5 POINTS
  • Failed to stop for school bus - 5 POINTS
  • Followed too closely (tailgating) - 4 POINTS
  • Inadequate brakes (private car) - 4 POINTS
  • Inadequate Brakes (employer's vehicle) - 2 POINTS
  • Failed to yield right-of-way - 3 POINTS
  • Disobeying traffic control signal, STOP sign or YIELD sign - 3 POINTS
  • Railroad crossing violation - 3 POINTS
  • Improper passing, changing lane unsafely - 3 POINTS
  • Driving left of center, in wrong direction - 3 POINTS
  • Leaving scene of property damage incidents - 3 POINTS
  • Child safety restraint violation - 3 POINTS
  • Any other moving violation - 2 POINTS

The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles issues points on moving violations pursuant to a schedule issued by the State Commissioner of Motor Vehicles and authorized by law. You can visit the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles for more information. Contact information for the New York state DMV can be found here.

TICKETS IN KINGS, BRONX, NEW YORK, QUEENS, AND STATEN ISLAND COUNTIES:

Tickets in these Counties are handled by a New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB). The Law Office of Anthony M. Grandinette is available to assist you before any Traffic Violations Bureau, however, you must call concerning our fee structure in these Courts.

If you plead not guilty to a traffic ticket your case will be heard by a DMV Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). An ALJ has the authority to determine your guilt or innocence and to set a fine if found guilty. Additionally, an ALJ has the authority to revoke or suspend your driver’s license and/or auto registrations if and when required by law or when they believe it is in the interest of the community at large.

  • Attend Your Hearing
    Hearings are open to the public and you are free go to any TVB office to watch the proceedings so you know what to expect at yours. If you wish to plead guilty and not have a hearing you can do so. Simply read and follow the instructions on the back of your ticket explaining how to file a guilty plea. The methods of payment available to you should be listed on the ticket.
    You may not, however, plead guilty by mail if the charge against you will result in license or registration suspension or revocation upon conviction (such as driving without insurance or a third speeding violation within 18 months).
  • Seeking a Postponement
    You may request your traffic ticket hearing to be postponed and rescheduled to a different date. For A ticket's first postponement, your request must be received by the appropriate TVB by mail at least 10 days before the scheduled date of your hearing. Postponement requests may be made in person at that office or by telephone at least one day before your initial hearing date. For a second postponement for the same ticket, your request must be made in person at the appropriate TVB office at least one day before your rescheduled hearing date. Any additional postponement requests must include a "good cause," or the reason you want the hearing rescheduled. Your "good cause" is subject to approval by a TVB Administrative Law Judge.