speeding ticket

Hidden costs of traffic tickets

Last Nov. 15, on U.S. 220 in Clearbrook, a Glenvar resident, who moved here from California in 2006, was on his way back from visiting a friend in North Carolina.

Joe Campbell was traveling 66 in a 45 mph stretch in his Subaru station wagon. Since he was speeding, he was approached by a traffic police..Because Campbell, 67, was polite and cooperative, the cop gave him a break. He didn’t charge him with reckless driving, which he could have.

It was the first traffic ticket he received in Virginia. Admitting his mistake, he decided to mail in the fine. That was the time when things got a little weird.

Speeding tickets in Virginia do not specify your fine; you have to make your calculation. For instance, it’s $6 for every mile per hour over the limit you’re driving.

For Campbell, it translated into $126, which is pretty stiff. The tickets also require drivers to call General District Court before mailing the fine. So Campbell did and he learned from a taped message that he also had to pay a $66 “processing fee.

Although no process was involved, the $66 processing fee must be paid.

A clerk on the phone at the courthouse in Salem said that have to call the Supreme Court of Virginia. From two other persons I the Supreme Court of Virginia, no clear answer as given regarding the process involved.

Jennifer Perilli, assistant to the director for public relations, referred the problem to Paul DeLosh, the court’s director of judicial services. He enumerated There is five-step process that occurs when you send in your speeding ticket and fine. The first – the clerk opens the envelope; the second – they review fines and costs that are due; third – the clerk verifies that the correct amount was sent in; fourth – they log the payment into a financial management system at the courthouse; and the fifth – the normal process of taking the check, or cash, and depositing it.

In reality, all the 5 steps are done for free every time you get a paycheck. DeLosh reasoned out that the fees are mandated by the code that was cooked up by Virginia General Assembly.

DeLosh helpfully cited the applicable code section and the result is so weird since the processing fee dated back at least 16 years.

Recently, the legislature has added a bunch of other fees to it. It costs $39 is for the clerk to open the envelope and so on. But speeders nabbed by police have to pay: $3 for the Virginia Crime Victim-Witness Fund; $1 for the Regional Criminal Justice Training Academies Fund; $2 for the Courthouse Construction/Maintenance Fund; $4 for the Intensified Drug Enforcement Jurisdiction Fund; and $2 for the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Victim Fund.

If you total the whole thing, it will only come up to $51, not $66. Separate state laws allow for additional “local option” fees. Thus, when you send in a ticket for speeding, you’re also paying for witnesses that are unneeded because you’re pleading guilty. And for the education of future police officers who will try to catch you speeding again.

Next year, perhaps the Court of Virginia can do something for the good-driving little guys: They better pass a law that allowing employees to charge a “processing fee” employers for cashing paychecks.

If you have received a traffic ticket, please contact an experienced speeding ticket lawyers. Protect your right to drive legally

Source: Roanoke Com
(http://www.roanoke.com/columnists/casey/wb/304127)

Posted in Virginia | Tags: , , , , , ,
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