Steps To Fighting A Ontario Traffic Ticket
You should never outright plead guilty to an Ontario traffic ticket. You can always fight it in court. It is your right to a trial, and it is the law that they need to prove you guilty because you are innocent until proven guilty. If you agree to pay the fine you are admitting fault and waive your right to challenge the ticket and the subsequent penalties
One of the ways to remain innocent until proven guilty is not to say anything more than is needed when you are pulled over. Do not answer any questions such as “Do you know why I pulled you over?” or “Do you know how fast you were driving?” Answer these questions with an “I don’t know, officer” and be nice about it. Cops hate smart people. They appreciate and reciprocate respect.
First, select Option 3 on the back of the ticket and schedule a trial. You must select Option 3 on the back of the ticket and send in your ticket. You can do this by going to the courthouse or requesting a court date through certified or registered mail to the courts.
Second, request Disclosure. This is the officer's notes about the incident. These notes are freely available to you, and it's your right to have Disclosure before trial. Disclosure is meant for you to study and use in your trial. It's always a good idea to get Disclosure before your trial and First Attendance meeting.
Third, go to a First Attendance meeting with the Prosecutor. Here you can ask for a plea bargain. A plea bargain is where you plead guilty to a lesser charge and not guilty of the more serious one. Careless driving charge is a good example for a plea bargain. If you plead guilty to a lesser speeding charge you can avoid the major more serious charge of the careless driving. The prosecutor can offer you a plea bargain. You do not have to accept right there and then or at all. If you do choose to accept a plea bargain you will not have to go to trial. You can get a reduced fine, reduced offense, or even get the ticket thrown out altogether, but that usually doesn't happen. If you want your ticket completely thrown out, you might have to go to trial.
Finally, some tickets can come with very high fines, demerit points and possible suspensions so in these cases you might think about hiring a Professional Paralegal to represent you in court.
Depending on if you were going 49 km/h over the speed limit or not and how many demerit points are already on your drivers abstract can be a determining factor if you were to represent yourself in court or hire a Paralegal.
It's also a good idea to remember prevention is always the best way to avoid paying for a traffic ticket! Don’t be afraid to ask for a warning. The cop may just be in a good mood and let you off with just a warning, but whatever you do, be nice, and fight your traffic ticket!