I Was Given a Ticket in Long Beach, What Happens in Court?

Many folks who have been given a ticket have never been to Court to contest the violation.  In California, a person cited for a traffic ticket may challenge the violation by going to Court and pleading not guilty.  How do you do it?  First, show up in Court on time.  When your case is called be prepared, here is what the Judge must do:

Once a defendant has taken his or her place at the podium, the judge or commissioner informs the defendant of the charge, and asks the defendant how he or she wishes to plead.  The defendant may plead guilty, not guilty, or no contest.  A no-contest plea has the same legal effect as a guilty plea, except that it may not be used against the defendant as an admission in any civil suit based on the same act. A no-contest plea is subject to the court’s approval.  In Long Beach traffic court, defendants will sometimes plead guilty with an explanation, hoping to receive a reduced or suspended fine or lower penalty. Such a plea has the same effect as a guilty plea, in that it constitutes an admission to each element of the charged offense.

One seasoned Long Beach Criminal Defense Attorney states that when a defendant pleads guilty or no contest, the judge or commissioner imposes sentence, assuming that the defendant has waived the right to delay sentencing under the applicable law. The judge has a range of possible punishments he can impose. A defendant who pleads not guilty is given a trial date. Many judges generally try to discourage defendants from pleading not guilty to minor traffic violations, e.g., registration or equipment violations. They will often suggest to defendants charged with these offenses that they plead no contest, and that, depending on the explanation for the violation, they will consider waiving the fine or substantially reducing it.  Good luck in your case, this information should help you significantly.

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