Is Hiring A Private Attorney Beneficial With The New Traffic Laws In Place?
When it comes to the speeding ticketsspecifically, the judge can no longer give anyone court supervision on a class B or class A speeding ticket; his hands are tied because the law now prohibits that. It doesn’t matter if you have a great driving record, you will have to be able to negotiate the case to something for which you can get supervision.
That’s why you need a good private attorney who knows what he’s doing in your corner, to help you. You have to be careful to make sure the attorney knows what they’re doing, because many attorneys don’t know how to deal with these new laws, including many relatively smart attorneys, because many of them don’t keep up with the day-to-day changes in the law and they don’t realize that if they get you court supervision on a reckless driving charge through a negotiated disposition, they may not be helping their client as much as they think.
How Long Does the Reckless Driving Charge Stay on Someone’s Record?
If your attorney can get you court supervision, it won’t go onto your record at all. Court supervision means you pay a fine and perhaps complete some other conditions, and when you do that and keep a clean driving record, the case will be dismissed, even if you originally pled guilty, and nothing will ever appear on your record.
TheSecretary of State keeps track of court supervisions, but no one else can seem them, including your insurance carrier or your employer; it becomes part of your private, confidential information and is not part of the public record that anybody could look up and find out. That’s why you want court supervision.
What Will be the Most Difficult Aspect of the New Rules for an Attorney?
For me, it will depend on which state’s attorney I have to deal with and whether or not they’re having a bad day; after all, they are human like everyone else, and if they’re having a bad day on a speeding case, they may not be as reasonable. Usually, they’ll want a certain level of fine, certain amount of charitable contribution, but then, on a bad day, they’ll want to add as much as 40 hours of public service to it, which is insane. That’s why the hardest thing for me is dealing with a state’s attorney who isn’t being reasonable.
Here’s an example of a case that was difficult. There was a judge here in my county who refused to give Hispanic people court supervision. In Illinois, Hispanic people who are not residents can’t get an Illinois license, which means it’s always up to the judge whether or not to accept the plea for court supervision or grant court supervision. For years, this judge would not give Hispanic people court supervision because they can never get a license, anyway, so court supervision didn’t matter.
I was upset about this because it’s very unfair; these were hard-working people. Well, eventually, Illinois changed the law, the these people can now get a driver’s license, and all of those people this judge screwed care having a nearly impossible time getting a driver’s license now. That’s another reason you need a good attorney; they should know about all of the judges, and knows how to deal with each one, because they’re all different personalities. If you get the “hanging judge,” you’ll need an attorney with the guts to ask for another court date or transfer the case to another venue, where they can get you a better disposition.
Part of being a good attorney is not necessarily finishing the case on the date the case is up, but knowing how much time you need to handle the case properly; knowing if you drew a bad prosecutor or a bad judge, that it is not your day to have the final battle, and you need a continuance. Sometimes, getting the best result is a matter of strategy, which is why you need an experienced attorney who knows the prosecutor and the judge, who knows their tendencies, and knows how the battles are fought. You have an absolute right to one automatic change of judge, called the change of venue.
Most of the time, the judges are happy to pass the work onto someone else, because they have plenty to do, and they would rather take faster, easier cases. And it’s good for you, because there are always nicer judges than the “hanging judge,” and the right attorney will know who they are and that will pay dividends for you.
The Importance of Finding the Right Attorney
Once again, it’s impossible to stress too much that it’s absolutely necessary to find an experienced attorney in the area of law pertaining to your case, who knows the area and the courts. For example, I’m in Northern Illinois, and I would never pretend to know anyone down in East St. Louis, Illinois even though I’m licensed to practice down there. I wouldn’t know a prosecutor or judge down there, which means hiring me for that would be like rolling the dice; I know the law, but I won’t know which judges or prosecutors are good or bad, and that’s important.
You should find someone who’s experienced and who has been practicing in your county long enough to be comfortable with the various players in the court system that they will have to deal with, because they kind of have your future in their hands. Anyone can go into court and plead you guilty; what helps is if they have the knowledge to get you the best results possible.
There are quite a few helpful things in the law that can help you, and the right attorney will find them. For example, there are good stops and bad stops, and some attorneys don’t know the difference, while others can look at the video and spot them easily. This is important; in Illinois, drivers should only receive two court supervisions in a year, and that’s the absolute limit, but an experienced attorney in the know can often get someone more than two court supervisions in a year, and that depends on the reporting process is in the county you’re in, which means knowing the ins and outs of the system.
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