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Traffic Tickets and Violations in Texas

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Tickets and Violations

As a licensed driver, you are required to obey Texas traffic laws and road rules. If you are caught breaking one, law enforcement will issue you a traffic citation.Traffic ticket fines and other penalties will be ordered by the court of the county the traffic ticket was issued in. Paying traffic ticket costs will also be remitted to that county court.

Information Related to Tickets and Violations

Most Common Type of Traffic Tickets

In Texas, certain traffic violations are committed more frequently than others. The following list details which traffic law violations are most often cited:

  1. Speeding is the most common traffic law violated in the US. On average, 110,000 speeding tickets are written per day. It is recommended that you pay speeding ticket fees as soon as possible because of how expensive the late costs become.
  2. Not wearing seatbelts and child car seats is a great safety concern in Texas. A recent law mandates that all passengers, even backseat passengers, wear seatbelts. Texas law enforcement also pays particular attention to whether or not children are properly fastened.
  3. Illegal cell phone use is prohibited in Texas. Texting is not permitted in most Texas cities, and learners permit-holders are prohibited from using a handheld device at any point in time (except emergencies).
  4. Running a red light is the fourth most common type of traffic violation in Texas. Its rank is due to the high number of red light cameras placed in intersections throughout the state.
  5. Driving under the influence is a great cause of concern in Texas. The legal blood alcohol level is .08 percent in Texas for standard drivers license holders 21 and older.

DMV.com Note: If you are pulled over under suspicion for driving under the influence, you must consent to a chemical test. Refusal to take a Breathalyzer test will result in an automatic, 180-day drivers license suspension.

About Traffic Tickets

Receiving a traffic ticket in Texas introduces a new layer of bureaucracy into the fold:

  • If you disagree with the ticket charge, you must contact a traffic ticket or DUI attorney.
  • You may have points added to your driving record.
  • Your driving privileges may be at risk of suspension.
  • Penalties like the following must be addressed:
    • Traffic school
    • Drug and alcohol awareness courses
    • Ignition interlock device is affixed to your vehicle
    • Payment of traffic ticket price

How to Pay Traffic Tickets

There are several factors that must be known to pay traffic tickets in Texas:

  • By paying the traffic ticket, you admit ‘guilty' to the traffic law violation. Depending on the charge:
    • Your car insurance may rise.
    • Points may be added to your driving record.
  • You must remit all charges to the county courthouse where the traffic citation was issued.
    • You have the option to appear in court to ask for the traffic ticket to be dismissed.
  • If you do not pay within the allotted period of time, you could pay triple as much as the original traffic ticket price.

Hiring a traffic ticket attorney or DUI attorney is the alternative option to paying a traffic citation fine. He or she can mitigate costs, penalties and points assessed to your driving record.
If you neglect to pay a traffic ticket on time, the consequence could be additional charges and corresponding fees:

  • Denial of issuance and/or renewal of driver's license and/or vehicle registration: $30 per case
  • An arrest warrant: $50
  • A separate charge for Failure to Appear ($232)
  • Ticket is sent to collections: Additional 30 percent of traffic fine

Pay Traffic Tickets to the Correct County

Follow this set of steps to pay traffic tickets or pay speeding tickets in Texas:

  • Determine the correct county the traffic violation was issued in.
  • Visit the county's website and follow the instructions for payment. Some TX counties allow you to pay traffic tickets online, and others accept payment by mail, over the phone or in person only.
  • If your traffic ticket violation was serious or a subsequent offence, you are most likely required to pay traffic tickets costs in person at the courthouse.
  • Hire a traffic ticket attorney to mitigate costs and penalties.

For a list of Texas county websites, click here.

How to Replace a Lost Traffic Ticket

If you lost your TX traffic ticket, the method to get a replacement and know the details of your citation depend on which faculty wrote the ticket out:
Texas Highway Patrol: The TX Highway Patrol offer a state-wide traffic ticket search online. Visit their Citation Search page and be ready to provide your drivers license number.
County law enforcement: Essentially, an officer of the law that is not a member of TX Highway Patrol works for a specific county. Determine which county you received the ticket, and visit the county's website. Each TX county has a different method for replacing lost traffic tickets. If you have any questions, call the county's courthouse directly.

Texas Driver Responsibility Program and Points Program

To encourage TX drivers to be responsible on the roads, the TX Department of Public Safety have designed a points system and Driver Responsibility Program.
When a driver is found guilty of a moving violation, points are assessed to his or her driving record. Depending on the severity of the moving citation, either two or three points will be added. No more than six points can be accumulated within a 36-month period of time, or you face the following penalty fines:

  • $100 surcharge fee for the first six points
  • $25 surcharge fee for each point after the first six

When a driver is cited for any of the following actions, a surcharge of $250 is assessed:

  • Driving while license invalid
  • Failure to maintain financial responsibility
  • Operating a motor vehicle while vehicle registration is suspended

Points Breakdown

Drivers receive two points on their driving records for:

  • Driving more than 10 percent faster than the posted speed limit, other than a school zone.
  • Breaking child passenger safety seat systems laws.

Drivers receive three points for being convicted of a moving violation that resulted in an accident.
If you are unsure of the number of points you have assessed, order a driving record.

Traffic Offenses

There are a number of moving traffic violations that do not result in points on a driving record, nonetheless there are other restrictions put in place. A drivers license will be suspended if the individual receives the following:

  • Four or more moving traffic violations within the same 12 months
  • Seven or more moving traffic violations within the same 24 months

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