Louisiana Speeding Ticket Questions
1. How can I keep a speeding ticket or misdemeanor traffic violation off my record?
An experienced speeding ticket lawyer with specialized knowledge of Louisiana traffic laws can assist you in keeping a ticket off of your record. There are two Louisiana Code of Criminal Procedure Laws that provide other means to keep ticket or misdemeanor offense off your record. However, to participate in either one of these programs, you must pay the fine and applicable driving school fee.
2. What are the speed limits in Louisiana and how are they enforced?
Unless otherwise posted, the following speed limits apply throughout the state of Louisiana:
- Interstate: 70 mph or 75 mph/li>
- Limited Access Roads – 65 mph
- Other Primary Roads – 55 mph
- Residential Areas – 25 mph
Speed limits are enforced by use of radar, Vascar, pacing, aircraft, and laser.
3. I did not show up in court for a speeding ticket. What will happen to me?
The consequences may be severe: an attachment for your arrest may have been issued, a contempt fine may be assessed, and your license may be suspended or could be in the process of being suspended. The procedures and timelines vary greatly from court to court. Even if you missed your court date, you should act as soon as possible in order to prevent further harm to your driving record. You need a qualified Babcock Partners attorney to assist you.
4. Will my insurance rates go up if I get a speeding ticket?
Your insurance premiums could increase from 25% to 400% after a traffic conviction. Many people just pay the ticket when a knowledgeable attorney in many cases is able to save their driving record and keep their insurance rates from increasing. Traffic violations will follow you for years and can cause increased penalties for any future violations.
5. Can I still receive a ticket if I was not caught on radar?
You may receive a ticket at the scene, however it is possible you can fight the decision in court. In every charge of a speeding violation, the complaint must specify:
- the speed at which the defendant is alleged to have driven,
- the speed which is posted, and
- the time and place of the alleged violation.
Another form of checking speed is “pacing”: an officer in a patrol car with a calibrated speedometer accelerates to a speed roughly equivalent to the suspect’s, and then keeps a steady distance behind the suspect’s vehicle while consulting the speedometer.
6. Shouldn’t I just pay the ticket in the mail?
On the backs of most tickets, you will find what is known as the “window fine.” The instructions will advise you that you can pay this fine through the mail. However, they do not advise you of the effect of paying the ticket. If you pay the window fine through the mail, you will be found guilty and, in many cases, the convictions will appear on your driving record. You may also see an increase in your insurance rates. You should contact an experienced traffic ticket lawyer to discuss your rights. An attorney at the Babcock Partners will do their best to work with you to minimize or dismiss your speeding ticket.
7. Do I need a lawyer to help with my speeding ticket?
A Babcock Partners attorney who defends traffic tickets can assist you in many ways. We can successfully navigate the myriad of traps in Louisiana law that await the uninitiated. Though an attorney cannot guarantee dismissal of a ticket, we can help in many ways to try to prevent your ticket from becoming a conviction on your driving record and help protect your driving privileges and insurance rates.
8. What happens if I am caught speeding in a school zone?
Harsh consequences await a driver caught speeding in a school zone: if a person operating a motor vehicle in Louisiana exceeds the speed limit in an active school zone, the fine for such a violation is increased by fifty percent over the standard fine imposed. The proceeds from the fine increase are forwarded to the public school system in which the incident occurred. Louisiana law provides that the penalty for a first violation shall be a fine of not more than $175 or imprisonment for 30 days or less, or both. A fine of not more than $500 or imprisonment for 90 days or less or both shall punish a second or more violation.
9. Would attending traffic school help reduce my fine?
Traffic school is a 6 – 10 hour program of instruction on driving safety and traffic laws offered by a state authorized school. After successfully completing traffic school and submitting the proof of completion to the Louisiana DMV, the violation and the points are then removed from your driving record. Typically attendance at traffic school is allowed to remove a violation from your driving record only once every 12 – 18 months, and only if it is a minor traffic violation.
10. How long will my speeding ticket stay on my record and who has access to my permanent record?
The DMV and law enforcement agencies have immediate access to your driving record. In addition, for “good cause” reasons, employers, attorneys, and insurance companies may be granted access. Unless expunged by court order, offenses stay on your record forever. However, your insurance company may only be concerned with offenses during the last several years when setting your premium.
LOUISIANA TRAFFIC LAW
1. What is the law regarding driving without a license?
It is unlawful for any person to drive a motor vehicle on any public street, road, or highway of this state unless he has been issued a license by the department, or by a public license tag agent, authorized to issue drivers’ licenses.
2. What happens if I receive a speeding ticket in a state other than Louisiana?
Typically, the out of state arresting agency will report your ticket to the Louisiana Department of Motor Vehicles. Then your insurance company would be able to review your driving record regardless of where you are given a citation.
3. Can a police officer search my car in a routine traffic stop?
Typically, the answer is no. However, if the officer “reasonably suspects” that you are armed and dangerous or involved in criminal activity, he/she does have the right to request to search your vehicle. If the officer does see something suspicious, then the law allows him to perform a “pat-down” search of you and of the passenger compartment of your car. He or she can also “frisk” (feels the outside of) any purses, bags or any other item in the car that could possibly contain a weapon.
4. What are the most common Louisiana traffic law regulations?
- Open intoxicants are prohibited in the vehicle.
- Firearms are permitted in the vehicle.
- Studded tires are prohibited.
- Tire chains are not required.
- Louisiana has a seat belt law with primary enforcement for all front seat occupants.
- Louisiana has a mandatory child restraint law for passengers under 6 years of age. Children under age 3 must use approved car safety seats.
- Louisiana has a mandatory motorcycle helmet law.
- Registration and insurance card must be carried in the vehicle.
5. What are different types of traffic tickets that I can be issued?
Convictions for moving violations will go on your driving record. Some common examples of moving violations that will appear on your driving record upon conviction are:
- Running a red light
- Running a stop sign
- Changing lanes unsafely
- Failure to control speed
- Failure to yield right of way
The traffic ticket attorneys at Babcock Partners have successfully defended dozens of clients facing speeding charges in Louisiana. Contact us immediately if you or someone you know has been charged with a speeding violation. You need the support of an experienced legal team with extensive knowledge of Louisiana laws, procedures, evidence and sentencing.
Babcock Partners will work with you and do everything we can to produce a positive result.