Are Traffic Tickets the New Taxation?
The answer is very obvious: Yes! Consider the following traffic ticket revenue from municipalities from local municipalities in metro-Atlanta from 2008-2012:
Now consider the bigger jurisdictions over the same 5-year period:
These figures are scary (they were taken from a recent article in the AJC about local governments profiting from ticket revenues) . The fact is that people hate taxes, especially here in the South and local governments are constantly finding more clever ways to generate revenue. It doesn’t end with the local governments. State surcharges of 40% of the base fine are charged to every ticket that goes into the Georgia’s coffers. In 2010 Georgia added the Super Speeder Law. This gem adds $200 to the cost of every ticket where you are convicted of a Super Speeder offense.
The government needs money because it spends more and more. They are writing more tickets to generate more revenue. When you go to court, trials are typically short, and the local Judges usually rubber stamp everything the officer says. That leads to a conviction for the ticket, points, and a record for the insurance company to inflate your insurance rates.
Do your best to avoid the abyss of the increased ticketing and taxes. Understand that if you are stopped, the officer will NOT give you a warning. Ask him very nicely to reduce your violation to a 14mph over the limit speed. Say “I do my best to be a good driver and keep my insurance rates low. Would you extend the courtesy of reducing the speed to 14mph over the limit so I can just pay the fine and not go to court?” If he says no, be polite and do your best not to make him remember you. Then call our office and see if we can help you. If the speed is reduced to 14mph over the limit, it becomes an expensive warning. No points, no record, and like it never happened. I tell people that call my office with a 14 mph over ticket not to hire me because it’s not worth it, and you don’t need me. Good luck and be safe!
James Paisley is managing Partner of the Paisley Law Firm and specializes in traffic, DUI, personal injury and wrongful death cases. Contact him now to talk about your case.