Fighting a Cell Phone Ticket in North Carolina
In North Carolina, a "cell phone ticket" is a traffic ticket that is issued to a driver who is caught using a cell phone while driving. The penalties for a cell phone ticket vary depending on the severity of the offense. First-time offenders are slapped with a minimum $100 fine. Repeat offenders get stiffer punishments such as having to appear in court, paying all court-related charges on top of their fine, and facing possible jail time.
Apart from these, as a cell phone ticket is considered a violation of NC law, it can be used as a primary or secondary basis for insurance claim denial. It may also lead to an increase in insurance rates and may result in points getting added to your license, and eventually, license suspension or revocation.
How Do You Fight a Cell Phone Ticket in North Carolina?
Fighting a cell phone ticket in North Carolina can be a bit of a challenge, but it is definitely not impossible. The first step is to understand the law and how it applies to your specific situation. If you are ticketed for using your cell phone while driving, you will likely be charged with violating § 20-137.4A. This law prohibits drivers from using any type of wireless communication device while driving, including cell phones, text messaging devices, and handheld GPS units.
If you decide to fight the ticket, you will need to appear in court on the date listed on the citation. Be sure to bring any evidence that may help your case, such as witness statements or photos of the scene. The prosecutor will then present their case against you, and you will have an opportunity to argue your defense.
The next step is to try to dispute the ticket. If the prosecutor has no evidence, you may be able to get the ticket dismissed. If the prosecutor has evidence, such as that from a bodycam or a dashcam, you can try to plead guilty and ask for a reduced penalty. In this case, you may be able to get the fine reduced or have the points against your driver's license reduced.
How to Prepare for Your Court Appearance
If you have received a ticket in North Carolina for using your cell phone while driving, there are a few things you can do to prepare for your court appearance.
First, try to work with an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the court process. You may also want to gather evidence to support your defense, such as witness statements. This could include witnesses who can attest that you were not using your phone at the time of the violation, or documentation that shows you were using your phone for a legitimate purpose, such as contacting emergency services.
Next, be sure to show up to court on time and have copies of any tickets or citations that were issued handy.
Finally, if you have photos of the scene of the infraction, you may bring them to court with you. These photos may be used to indicate that you were parked at the time as they may show where you were located in relation to the road and any other vehicles. Such evidence can sometimes be used to verify or contest the ticket.
Get the Help of a Traffic Ticket Attorney
If you are ticketed in North Carolina, do not hesitate to reach out to an experienced traffic lawyer at Coastal South Law who can help you fight the ticket and avoid any penalties.