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Drivers can receive a traffic ticket in Oregon for a wide range of traffic violations. Police officers also issue OR traffic citations for certain more serious offenses, such as reckless driving and driving under the influence, which are considered as misdemeanor crimes within the state. Drivers can either enter a plea of "no contest" and pay the traffic fine, or they can choose the option to fight traffic tickets in OR through the corresponding court for purposes of ticket dismissal.
Fighting an Oregon Ticket
Drivers who would like to prepare an Oregon traffic ticket defense and present their case in court can initiate the process to dispute traffic tickets by entering a plea of "not guilty". You can generally inform the presiding court of your decision and request a court date by mail, by phone or in person. Note that the process of fighting traffic tickets in OR may vary based on whether you were ticketed for a traffic violation or a traffic crime. If you were accused of a traffic crime, you are granted the same rights as in any criminal case. Because court proceedings can be complicated, it is usually best to hire a licensed legal representative who has experience challenging traffic tickets in court. This can be done easily online by providing an image of your traffic ticket and answering a few questions about the information the traffic ticket contains.
During their traffic ticket trial, drivers will be granted the opportunity to challenge speeding tickets in OR or other types of citations by presenting their testimony and any relevant witnesses and evidence. If you are found guilty, you will be required to provide the applicable ticket violation payments and the judge will report the conviction on your driving record. Depending on the nature of the offense you may also be subject to further penalties. If you are found "not guilty" of the offense, the OR traffic fine will be dismissed and your vehicle insurance rates will remain unaffected.
Paying an Oregon Ticket
The procedure to pay driving tickets in Oregon can generally be completed by mail, by phone or in person. Drivers can also utilize the option to pay traffic ticket online in OR for most types of traffic cases. Depending on the nature of the traffic violation and the presiding court, the availability of the methods of paying driving fines will vary. For instance, for certain more serious offenses, you may be required to make a court appearance and settle the issue in person. Note that, regardless of the method you choose to pay traffic citations in OR, you must complete the procedure by the date displayed on the ticket in order to avoid further fines and penalties. For more information about the Oregon ticket violation payment process, visit the "How to Pay Traffic Tickets" page.
Lost Tickets in Oregon
When settling a traffic citation in Oregon, drivers often need to utilize the information displayed on their tickets. For example, you may be unable to successfully pay your OR traffic fine or submit a plea of "not guilty" if you do not know your citation number, the date by which you must take an action or the fine amount. Therefore, if you lose your traffic ticket, you will need to retrieve the information contained within in order to successfully complete either procedure. Recovering a lost traffic citation in OR is a procedure that can generally be completed through the court that is handling your case. After establishing contact with the court clerk, you will be asked to provide several types of information, such as your name, date of birth and driver's license number. You can continue with the process of paying or contesting a traffic ticket in Oregon when you retrieve the necessary information.
Oregon Fines and Penalties
Motorists who are unable to beat a traffic ticket in Oregon will be required to pay the fine associated with the ticket. When setting a base traffic fine in OR, courts and law enforcement officials follow the guidelines of the state schedule of fines, which outlines the minimum and maximum fine amount of OR traffic violations. Note that certain courts may even offer you the option of implementing a monthly payment schedule, if you are unable to immediately pay the full fine amount.
The OR traffic fine schedule groups similar offenses in categories, and the following list outlines several examples of standard fine amounts for the different violation classes:
- Standard Class D violations: $110
- Standard Class A violations: $435
- Furnishing alcohol to a minor: $435
- Refusal to undergo a chemical alcohol and/or drugs test: $650
Note: In addition to the base amount of their traffic tickets payments, drivers may also be required to pay additional court fees, which will vary based on the practices of the court that is handling their case. Because the penalties associated with traffic tickets can be quite severe, many drivers prefer to fight their tickets. Legal representation can be found easily online, and a licensed lawyer may be able to have penalties reduced or even completely dismissed.
Points in Oregon
Convictions of traffic violations in Oregon do not result in demerit points, as the state Driver and Motor Vehicle Services Division (DMV) does not implement the standard point system. The state DMV corrects risky driver behavior through its Driver Improvement Program (DIP). Per the rules of the DI program, the total number of traffic ticket convictions you receive on your record within a certain time period determines whether or not you will be penalized by the OR DMV.
Note: Certain courts may offer you the option of completing a state-approved traffic school program in OR for purposes of avoiding a conviction on your record.
How Tickets Affect an Oregon Drivers License
In addition to paying driving fines in Oregon, drivers who incur several traffic citations within a specific period of time may also be subject to certain adverse effects on their driving privileges. Based on the number of times you fail to dismiss traffic tickets through the state court system and your current age, the type of administrative action taken against your license to drive will vary. For instance, adult motorists are penalized with a restriction on their driving privileges if they:
- Commit three accidents within an 18-month period.
- Collect three traffic citation convictions within an 18-month period.
- Have a combination of accidents and convictions that totals three in an 18-month period.
Drivers with restricted licenses will only be allowed to operate their vehicles between 5 a.m. and midnight, unless driving to and from certain locations, such as work, school or medical institutions. If you commit more than three traffic violations in OR within a 24-month period, on the other hand, your license will be suspended.
Oregon Car Insurance Fines and Violations
Oregon traffic fines are also administered to drivers who operate their vehicles without the mandatory car insurance coverage. If you are unable to beat a traffic ticket for a no-insurance offense, you will be required to pay the base traffic fine, as well as any additional court-set costs. You will also be required to file proof of financial responsibility (Form SR-22) for three consecutive years.
Note: If you receive several OR traffic citations within a specific time period, you may also inadvertently incur an increase in your automobile insurance premiums, as insurance providers regularly review your driver's record.