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How to Fight a Traffic Ticket in Montana

Montana traffic tickets are official notices issued to motorists who violate state traffic laws. The Montana Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) is tasked with maintaining all the state’s driver-related information and processing traffic tickets issued by law enforcement officials in Montana.

As with most U.S states, the traffic violations are categorized into two:

  • Moving Violations: These are the offenses that occur while the vehicle is in motion. They include drunk driving, running a red light or stop sign, and speeding.
  • Non-moving Violations: These are offenses that happen while the car is stationary—including illegal parking.

Montana traffic fines differ by the court. Failure to pay ticket fines on time may result in additional charges. Details such as the precise amount, penalties, and deadlines are written on the citation. Below is an overview of the Montana point system:

  • 3 points for speeding
  • 4 points for insurance offenses
  • 5 points for reckless driving
  • 5 points for racing
  • 10 points for DUI offense

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching more straightforward, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
  • The location or assumed location of the record or person involved. This includes information such as the city, county, or state that the person resides in or was accused in

Third-party sites are independent of government sources and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party sites may vary.

Is it Worth it To Fight a Traffic Ticket in Montana?

Yes, it is worth it for motorists in Montana that were wrongly served a citation to contest the ticket in a traffic court. This is because opting to pay the ticket is an inadvertent admission of guilt, which may lead to severe penalties

Similar to other U.S states, Montana has its point system, and with every citation, motorists accrue points to their license. Penalties begin once an individual gathers a certain amount of points. If a driver accrues too many traffic ticket points, their license may be suspended. Those who earn an estimated 30 points in three years will have their license revoked. According to Montana traffic laws, license suspension is different from revocation. Motorists who get their driver’s licenses revoked are considered habitual traffic offenders as defined in Montana code 61–11–213.

Ways to Fight a Traffic Ticket in Montana

Contesting a Montana traffic ticket often translates to a court trial. Hence, all concerned parties are advised to seek the services of a traffic attorney. Following the ticket, alleged offenders are expected to reply to the indicated court within fifteen days. Generally, the defendant’s representative will fight the ticket by:

  • Requesting for a contested hearing
  • Requesting for discovery
  • Gather and present the case in court
  • Bargain to get the charges reduced or dropped with the offense

How to Fight a Traffic Ticket Without Going to Court

Alleged offenders may fight a citation out of court by negotiating a bargain plea with the officer/prosecutor. Additionally, most mail-in cases can get dismissed if the accusing officers do not send in their statements or evidence. Outside these scenarios, Montana traffic tickets cannot be fought out of court.

How Do You Get a Traffic Ticket Reduced in Montana?

Alleged offenders in Montana may apply for a mitigation hearing to reduce the charge. If the judge rules in favor of the driver, the fines will be reduced. The prosecutor and the offender’s representative could also reach an agreement to replace the traffic ticket with some community service.

Can you Get a Speeding Ticket Dismissed in Montana?

Yes, Montana motorists can get their traffic ticket dismissed by taking a driving school course. This way, Montana road-users can get the tickets dismissed, prevent high insurance rates and traffic points. To do this, offenders must:

  • Seek permission from the court
  • Enroll in a traffic school
  • Finish the school’s course
  • Ensure to pass the final exam
  • Submit the certificate to the court

The Montana speeding laws are subject to the predetermined limits; however, a driver is expected to operate the vehicle prudently and carefully. As stated in Mt. section 61–8–303, the drivers drive at reduced speed rates considering the current weather, road conditions, visibility, and conditions. Therefore in a windy, snowy, wet, and low visibility condition, motorists are not to drive at the specified speed limit but slower.

What Happens if You Plead Guilty to a Traffic Ticket in Montana?

When a motorist pays a Montana traffic ticket, it is regarded as an admission of guilt, which means the alleged offender has waived the right to contest the citation. Therefore the Montana (DOL) department of licensing may suspend the driver’s driving license. Convicted violators will accrue more points on their driving records resulting in increased insurance rates.

Through a mitigation hearing, drivers would be required to do any of the following instead of paying the complete fine:

  • A community service
  • Reduction in fine
  • A payment plan every month

How to Find a Traffic Ticket Attorney in Montana

Recipients of a Montana traffic ticket are advised to employ an experienced traffic ticket lawyer in the state. In Montana, traffic attorneys can be found both online and offline. Also, certain third-party websites provide individuals with a list of professional Montana state traffic lawyers. These sites also disclose the credentials of the attorneys.

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