For many people, traffic tickets are one more unplanned for expense that they either do not want to pay for cannot afford. As a result, many Texas speeding tickets go unpaid. Though many people do not pay their tickets, or maybe because of it, failure to pay a speeding ticket in Texas is a serious violation. Not only does an unpaid ticket result in a suspended license, but it can also result in jail time and even greater fines than what the ticket was originally worth. Moreover, an unpaid ticket may go into collections, thereby negatively impacting your credit. If you have been ignoring a ticket you received in the mail, or if you plan to “forget” about the one hanging on your refrigerator, our Houston traffic violations attorneys at the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates advise against either option. This post explains why.
One of the first consequences that the city will impose for an unpaid parking ticket is an increase in fines. If you cannot afford to pay a speeding ticket, the worst thing you can do is ignore it, as that will only result in increased fines. Fines double after the first deadline you miss, and after that, your violation may turn into a misdemeanor, different levels of which carry their own fines. In addition to an increased fine, the courts may tack on a 30 percent collection fee for delinquent cases. If money is an issue, show up to your scheduled court date and plead your case before a judge. At the very least, the judge will set monthly payments that you can afford.
In addition to increased costs, an unpaid parking ticket can result in a suspended license. If this happens, you will be sent a notice of the suspension and/or be denied license renewal at the DMV. If you are caught driving without a license, you now not only have the first unpaid speeding ticket to deal with, but now you have a new “no driver’s license” fine of $209 to pay.
Warrant for Your Arrest
If your case drags on long enough, the city may pull a warrant out for your arrest. If you are stopped by the police for any reason or undergo a background check, you could be arrested and sentenced to jail time. If you have a clean record (outside of the unpaid ticket), you will more likely get community service hours.
Points on Your Record
A traffic violation already amounts to points on your record, but an unpaid ticket can result in even more dings. While most people do not take traffic points seriously, especially if they are not accustomed to getting them, more points can have a significant impact on your life. Some consequences of points on your record include:
- Increased likelihood of suspension or revocation;
- Increased car insurance costs; and
- Additional fines and fees associated with license reinstatement.
When to Contact a Galveston Traffic Lawyer
If you did not pay a parking ticket in Houston, Galveston, or League City, you face serious consequences ranging from increased fines to arrest. While you may not have needed a traffic attorney before, you may need one now. Call the Houston traffic violations attorneys at the Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates to protect your future today at (281) 280-0100.