If a Texas police officer pulls you over, an otherwise uneventful day might become stressful. In some cases, you might not lose anything more than a couple minutes of your time while the officer issues a warning that your brake light isn’t functioning and is in need of repair as soon as possible. Then again, your traffic stop might include issuance of a speeding ticket, in which case you’ll need to decide if you’re going to pay it or contest it in court.
You might think that it’s easiest and best to simply use electronic payment to pay the ticket fee. In certain circumstances, however, you might decide that it would be better to challenge the ticket in court. There are, in fact, several legitimate reasons why you might want to do so.
If it’s your first-ever speeding ticket, you might want to challenge it
Perhaps you have a spotless driving record and have recently incurred your first speeding ticket. This is one of the most common reasons why drivers decide to contest a traffic ticket rather than pay it, no questions asked. If you have a ticket-free driving record, you’re likely going to have lower insurance premiums than you might have if you no longer have a spotless record.
Your chances of successfully challenging a traffic ticket are greater, as well, if police officers and a traffic court judge learn that you have never been issued a speeding ticket up to that point in time.
You might have the opposite problem — too many points against your license
On the flip side of getting your first-ever traffic ticket, perhaps you’ve received numerous others in the past. If you get too many points against your record due to speeding violations, your driver’s license may be at risk for suspension or permanent revocation.
If you have reason to believe that a ticket you’ve recently received is going to take you over the limit for points, you might decide to contest it in court.
Mistaken vehicle identity
If you were traveling along a Texas highway when a patrol car came up behind you in traffic with flashing lights, you no doubt pulled to the side of the road as safely as possible. The thing about speeding tickets is that police officers issue them, and they are human beings who are capable of error. It’s possible that a police officer can pull you over and give you a ticket that was meant for a driver in another car.
In Texas and other states where traffic is often congested, many vehicles sharing the road at any given time can be similar model, color, etc., which might cause a police officer to get confused, accidentally pulling over the wrong car.
If you’re unsure whether to pay a speeding ticket or challenge it
The decision to pay or contest a speeding ticket is ultimately up to you; however, if you’re unsure which might be the best course of action, it pays to seek additional support from someone with experience in traffic law litigation.