I was recently stopped and issued a ticket for not wearing a seat belt in Palm Beach County, Florida.
Later in the day, I finally looked at the ticket and realized it was written to a completely different person. The name, address, and driver's license number are all different from mine. The vehicle information is correct.
Should I try and get this thrown out, and how do I check to see if the officer subsequently wrote someone else a ticket under my name for a much worse, and more costly, offense? I have no issue with paying the ticket. I'm more concerned with finding out whether the ticket I received (or a completely different ticket) was applied to my driver's license.
Speeding / Traffic Ticket Lawyer
I would tell you to hire a traffic attorney to make sure it gets straightened out because the police will report your ticket to the clerk (court) in Palm Beach County, but if the clerk makes a mistake and thinks you were supposed to be in court and you were not, then when they announce your name in court and you are not there, the judge can order your license to be suspended. Plus you said the officer got everything on the ticket wrong, so this could happen to you. If you did not update your driver's license or if some other driver with the same name as you did not update his, or some other clerk in a different county made a mistake, then it could be a pain trying to straighten this out because the clerks or Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will want proof that you are really you.
Best case is that you are never properly summoned to court, you don't get pulled over again, and your ticket gets dismissed after 6 months if the judge decides the statute of limitations is over. Worst case is there is another person out there with the same name as you who has arrest warrants because he does not show up to court, does not pay his fines, the police think you are him and he is you, and arrest you instead.
You can keep tabs with the websites I have given, but I would hire an attorney.
Criminal Defense Attorney
The officer may have filled out a partial ticket and then let the person go. I am amazed he did not pick up on this fact.
Counsel above is correct... get a traffic attorney or this could be a nightmare if they somehow put it together. How? The officer still had to call your driver’s license number in to dispatch, and he will have a copy of that info if the clerk catches what he has done (which is not likely, but can you take the chance?).
Criminal Defense Attorney
I sometimes see that in my practice. The problem is that you cannot retain us to fight a ticket issued in someone else's name.
You can visit the Palm Beach County Clerk and Comptrollers website and search by your name at:
You can reach them by phone at (561) 355-2996.