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Discussion Starter #1
I got a speeding ticket a couple months ago. I've been too busy lately to go defend myself or to go to traffic school, so I hired an attorney to defend me.

A "pre-trial conference" was scheduled for 8/20. I called the attorney's office 8/21 to find out what happened. They told me that they entered a plea of "not guilty" and the case was going to trial 9/20.

Ok, so 9/22 rolls around and I haven't heard back from them. I called to find out what happened at court. The lady on the phone told me "Withheld adjudication. You owe $135 court fees. I'm sending you a letter now."

So I got the letter last Friday. I just opened my checkbook to pay my fine, and noticed some missing details. It says nothing of a trial on 9/20. It says that I entered a plea of "no lo contendere" on 8/20, and that my fine was due by 9/20 !!!

WTF !!? How can they be so f*cking incompetent. My license is now suspended and I'm going to have to go down to the courthouse to straighten this **** up. Also, I'm relatively certain my insurance will be affected by this. Should I sue them or what??
 

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Sounds like your attorney did resolve this case. Are you sure you got the proper documentation from the attorney? Perhaps they sent the wrong letter. If it was adjudication withheld, usually this judgement means points not assessed. Go to the DMV and find out if points assessed on your license? If not the $135 seems a fair penalty to avoid the points. If not, I think you'll find it difficult to find an attorney to "sue" over this. Might be a case for small claims court. Breach of Contract. Your loss would be the attorney fees, court costs and increase in insurance. Are you in Dade, Broward or Palm Beach county?
 

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Attorney selection is important for this very reason. Since they're all bar members, it's usually difficult to get one attny to file suit against another with any meaningful results. It will probably be difficult to find an attny to even take the case as they act under a similar code to police officers where each "has the others back" so to speak.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Gator,

My complaint isn't about the $135. It's about the fact that they didn't tell me I owed it until after it was due, and misinformed me about the status of my case!
 

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Do you have this misinformation in writing? Otherwise I'd guess that you're out of luck. I doubt they're going to admit that they lead you astray.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just got off the phone with them. License isn't suspended yet, luckily. They're cutting me a check for the late fee, and they apologized for the mix-up.
 

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I understand you are upset with the communication you received. It is entirely possible that the situation is fine, and the attorney's admin. has misinformed you. Each county in South FL has their own procedures in traffic court, so perhaps she was confused. Check with the DMV. If your license is suspended, then you need to speak to the attorney directly. You should have been informed of your fine prior to a suspension, and perhaps the attorney can help you out.

I agree with the other poster that if the situation is as you have described, you'll likely find it hard to find an attorney to represent you. However, contact the bar.

I have a great attorney in Boca I use for traffic court. He's never let me down.... knock on wood....
 

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I got a ticket, mailed in an apearance as per the instructions on the back, never heard anything more.... about a year later i sold a car to my roomate, and he wanted me to re-new my tags for him until he registered in another state - no problem, i go to DMV and they say i can't renew the tags because of the suspension... what suspension? your liscence- for the past 6 months!

the court said they "do not accept" mail in appearances - even though there are instructions on the ticket to do this... so found guilty without appearnace. my licence had my old adresse, the letter had all my current info - so they sent the fine to the old adress... i never got it. to make matters worse it was winter with a foot of snow and the courthouse parking lot plowed a paver into the lot and did 350 dollars of sill damage to my BMW.... now get this part, so for nearly a year the court was unable to "find" me to tell me my liscence was suspended or that i owed a deliquent fine, yet the day after i take (all day) off work to clear up the mess our office admin calls me into her office and says "i have a court notice to garnish your wages, i have no choice but to comply" WTF?! it was for the deliquent fine.. oh, they can find out where i work.. heaven forbid they would call or anything...

I wasn't even speeding!



"when the law break in, how you gonna go? with your hands above your head or on the trigger of your gun!"

to points the the person who can call the song and band!
 

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sweet! i got my lines mixed up! haha - been too long since i listened to london calling
 

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transio

how much was it to hire a lawyer? I'm guessing that the $130 was for your speeding ticket? Do you know what he said in court? I have an appearance on Oct 7th and I want to talk to the judge (no DA) to cut a bargain before the I have to appear. If not I'm almost prepared to defend myself. I requested a motion for discovery from the police for a lot of info and am waiting for that. On top of that the law requires that i have at least 30 days to review that info. So no bargain then I'll have to argue for a continuance. I'm also trying to postpone the case for as long as i can. I have one point from an accident that will disappear in 7/05.

thanks,
Ara
 
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