The ins and outs of traffic law in Indiana

If you’ve ever gotten a traffic ticket, you know how frustrating the experience can feel. Even if your ticket is legitimate, being forced to pay hundreds of dollars to right a supposed wrong seems unfair. Every year, however, thousands of Indianans opt to pay their traffic tickets instead of fighting them. When should you do the same?

How Do Traffic Laws Work?

You can get a traffic ticket for a wide range of violations. The most commonly issued traffic tickets involve fairly mundane offenses like speeding, failing to signal, following too closely or failing to stop at a light or stop sign. It’s possible to get tickets for more serious offenses like reckless driving, driving without a license and driving under the influence as well. However, these offenses are also categorized as misdemeanors or felonies. Most tickets cover petty infractions or “violations” that don’t leave you with a criminal record.

What’s the Real Cost of a Traffic Ticket?

If you think that the only cost associated with a traffic ticket is the actual fine for the violation, you could be in for a nasty surprise. Traffic tickets come with a host of hidden fees, including late payment fees, additional levies for excessive speed and penalties for previously unpaid tickets.

Potential Penalties for Nonpayment

In addition to these additional costs, you might be subject to criminal penalties in the event that you fail to pay your ticket without going to court to fight it. In most cases, these penalties will be restricted to misdemeanor charges. However, such charges can remain on your record for years. Additionally, failure to resolve more serious tickets can lead to felony charges. Failure to pay a ticket can also lead to the imposition of a driver’s license suspension.

Considerations for Commercial Drivers

For commercial drivers, the stakes may be even higher. Many trucking, livery and courier companies have a zero-tolerance policy for moving violations. Drivers who accrue any points on their licenses may be subject to immediate termination. If you feel that a traffic ticket will jeopardize your career, it’s best to contact an attorney before the worst happens.

Getting a traffic ticket can feel like a big setback, but it’s important to remain calm and realistic about your prospects. While this post should serve as a handy guide for folks who aren’t quite sure what to do when they get the bad news, figuring out your next move is ultimately a personal decision. If you’ve been hit with an expensive ticket and want to explore your legal options, don’t hesitate to contact us online or call (317) 842-8283 to speak with a traffic law expert.