Traffic Violation

Police officer pulling over non-residents.

What “Non-Residents” Should Know About Driving without a California License

When you move and reside in another state, there are a lot of things to update. One of these things is a driver’s license. Even if non-residents have a driver’s license in another state, they can receive a ticket for driving without a valid California Driver’s License if they are found to actually reside in California, under California Vehicle Code section 12500a.

Under California state law, a driver must apply to obtain a California Driver’s License within 10 days of becoming a California resident. While most police officers will not issue a ticket if you have only been in the state for a couple of weeks, or even a month, you should obtain your driver’s license as soon as possible if you move to, register to vote, own a residence, register your vehicle, work in, or reside/live in California.

Do You Actually Reside in California?

So how does the officer know if you are a California resident if you show him or her a valid Driver’s License from another State or Country? He or she will ask you questions regarding: 

  • How long you have worked at the business you work at in California;
  • The address at which you are staying; and 
  • Whether the car is registered in California and belongs to the driver.

This can cause a big problem for tourists who come to visit or for those trying to make it big in Hollywood while couch surfing. While they may be there for more than a few weeks, they are not necessarily residents.

There have also been cases in which police officers have written tickets to European tourists who come for three months. For non-residents, if you receive a ticket for failure to have a California Driver’s License, you may not know how to proceed. 

How to Obtain a California Driver’s License

You can obtain a California Driver’s License by making an appointment at the local DMV for the vision and written tests. Also, you would need to fill out the Driver License or Identification Card Application (Form DL-44). This is only available at the DMV or can be mailed to you if requested.

When you go to the DMV, you are required to bring the following items and documents:

  • Social Security or Military ID card;
  • Proof of your full name;
  • 1 document (original or certified) proving your date of birth and legal presence;
  • 2 documents proving your California residency; and
  • A method of payment for the fee ($35).

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys Help Non-Residents Who Have Been Ticketed for Driving without a California License 

If you or a loved one has been charged with driving in California without a state license, it can have a negative impact. Fortunately, you are not alone and there are measures you can take to minimize the effects. One of these measures is to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced traffic ticket attorney. 

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys have your best interest at heart and will work hard in an effort to get your ticket either dismissed or reduced to a minor infraction with only a small fine. To learn more about how we can help or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!

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A stop sign in front of a city background.

What to Know About Stop Sign Tickets in California

Stop signs are extremely important so as not to drive into any oncoming traffic. They provide drivers with a necessary opportunity to be aware of any other cars within the vicinity in order to avoid an accident. Per the requirements of California Vehicle Code 22450a, the driver of any vehicle approaching a stop sign at the entrance to, or within, an intersection shall stop at a limit line, if marked, otherwise before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection. 

In a situation in which there is no crosswalk, the driver will stop at the entrance to an intersecting roadway. The driver should first stop at the painted line that protrudes out from the area of the stop sign. However, if there is no painted line, he or she should stop at the first line of the crosswalk. If there is no painted line or crosswalk, the driver should stop before the area where the two roads intersect. 

One widely held misconception is that the driver must stop for three seconds at a stop sign, but this is not correct. The only thing that truly matters is that you come to a complete stop and not a “rolling stop.” In other words, a complete stop is the cessation of any vehicle movement (i.e. the wheels have stopped turning). It doesn’t matter how many seconds your vehicle remains stopped. Even police officers sometimes misunderstand and perpetuate the fake three-second rule. 

Defenses to a Stop Sign Ticket

  1. Challenge the officer’s observation
  2. Challenge the officer’s subjective conclusion
  3. Prove that your conduct was justified
  4. Claim that there has been a mistake of fact
  5. Argue that the sign was only recently installed

Under California state law, the fine for failing to stop at a stop sign is $238 plus any other costs and fees. If you fail to pay the ticket or to show up in court, you will be subjected to additional fines and a potential suspension of your license. 

Those who are given a stop sign ticket must act prior to the “Notice to Appear” date as listed on the citation. You can choose to pay for the ticket, which would admit your guilt. In such a situation, when the payment is received the case will be closed and the court will send it to the DMV so that the point on your license can be visible. 

Contact the Cheap Traffic Attorneys Today

When arguing your case it is in your best interest to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced California traffic ticket attorney who has helped other clients who have received a ticket for allegedly failing to come to a complete stop. 

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys have your best interest at heart and will work hard in an effort to get your ticket dismissed. To learn more about how we can help or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!

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Police officer pulling someone over for a traffic violation.

Study Finds There May Be More to Traffic Tickets Than Breaking the Law

Have you ever felt as though you were targeted for a ticket based upon how you look? If so, you may just be right. According to a study published in the March 2019 SAGE journal, it was determined that cities with a larger black population depend upon fines for revenue, fining residents more on a per capita basis. According to the study, which examined race, representation, and revenue, a one percent increase among the black population equated to a five percent increase in per capita revenue from fines, as well as a one percent increase in the share of total revenue. 

The study examined how these fines varied on the amount of crime and the level of public safety, budgetary stress, and racial composition of both the law enforcement agency and the population. Looking at a sample of 93 cities in California from 2009 to 2014, it was found that cities that appeared to rely the most on fines for revenue had among the highest number of black residents and a law enforcement presence whiter than its community. In fact, black drivers are 20 percent more likely to be ticketed when pulled over for speeding than white drivers.

Incentives

One of the reasons for these findings has to do with traffic tickets and civil asset forfeiture, as these impact law enforcement behavior. In much of the same manner, government agencies that better represent the gender and racial makeup of their communities proved a decrease in the number of undesirable outcomes. 

Unfortunately, it is of little surprise that many studies have found minority residents and communities of color more regularly receive punishment for their actions than their white counterparts. Additionally, cities with a black population of at least 10 percent that were served by a disproportionately whiter law enforcement presence rely 60 percent more on fines as a source of revenue. 

Policing for Profit

One option for decreasing these negative findings is to eliminate the incentives currently in existence for law enforcement to bring in ticketing revenue. This situation, commonly referred to as “policing for profit,” takes the money made from these tickets and puts it back into the budget of law enforcement. Additionally, other things that can be considered to help the situation include taking state money and redistributing it locally, or electing more people of color and more ethnic minorities into important positions. 

It is extremely important to clarify that this does not mean that all law enforcement is racist. This is certainly not the case. However, what it does mean is that the data proves a correlation between race and traffic ticketing. 

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys Help Those in California Who Have Been Issued a Traffic Ticket

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys’ skilled Traffic Ticket Attorneys have the knowledge and experience to help individuals dealing with a criminal traffic violation. If you believe that you have been issued a ticket on the basis of race or another protected class, it is in your best interest to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced traffic ticket attorney. The California traffic ticket attorneys at Cheap Traffic Attorneys can help. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!

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Cheap Traffic Attorneys discusses the consequences of a California Roll, otherwise known as a rolling stop.

What Exactly Is a “California Roll”?

On the coast of California, one of the most common traffic offenses is the “California Roll,” or as it’s known in other places, a rolling stop. A “California Roll” occurs when a driver fails to come to a complete stop, with all wheels remaining stationary at a stop sign or flashing red traffic light. 

Rolling stops are extremely common since they sometimes seem excessive when you have clear visibility and can see that no one is coming from any other direction. They also commonly occur due to drivers being in a hurry or even not realizing that they failed to come to a complete stop. 

What Are the Consequences of Committing a California Roll?

The consequences of performing a rolling stop can be quite impactful. A ticket for a California Roll violation may result in a $238 fine and up to one point on your California driver’s license, which would then automatically be reported to your insurance company. 

When insurance companies are informed as to any incurred points on your record, your insurance premiums tend to greatly increase, costing you even more money. In fact, according to Forbes, these rates could increase by up to as much as 19 percent in such a situation. So although it may at first seem unnecessary to obtain an attorney simply for a ticket, it is often well worth it in the long run, as you will likely end up spending less money all told. 

How Can You Combat a Rolling Stop Violation?

There are a couple of different options for combating a rolling stop violation ticket. One such option is to go to traffic school. Those attending traffic school must take up 8 hours of their time and pass a test at the end to keep a violation off of his or her record altogether. 

Though traffic school can be effective, often the most effective solution is simply to hire a traffic attorney, who has the knowledge and experience necessary in order to know how to best go about getting your penalty reduced or ticket dismissed. These legal professionals understand the procedures involved with such a fight as well as what may be necessary to convince a court that there has not been enough evidence of a violation to uphold the ticket.  There are many requirements of a Stop Sign violation under California Vehicle Code section 22450a and the attorney may be able to use one of those requirements to your favor to dismiss your case.

The Cheap Traffic Attorneys Help Those in California Who Have Received a Traffic Ticket

At the Cheap Traffic Attorneys, we understand the significance that receiving such a ticket can have on your life and will work to minimize the consequences in any way possible. If you or a loved one has received a ticket for a California Roll violation, we can help. To learn more or to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys, visit us online or contact us today!