I made an error in judgment and went to court without representation. I got a speeding ticket almost a year ago 91 mph in a 55 (State Police). I went to Cherry Hill Municipal Court alone, the liaison told me that the court would not accept the unsafe driver plea so & I plead down to a 71 in a 55. At the time i thought i was getting a decent deal. I later learned that even 16 mph over was going to cost about $900 to $1000 a year in insurance sir charges. I only have those 4 points on my license. Could i file an appeal and re-open the case to possibly have it downgraded. I think it would be better if i went at it again except this time with an attorney.
Employment / Labor Attorney
No. You have 20 days to appeal a conviction in municipal court, so you are well out of time. You also need to have legal grounds to do so and changing your mind isn't one of them. Finally, there's a very good chance that you would spend more on the appeal in legal fees than you would gain from such an effort.
A response to a question posted on Avvo is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. It is informational only. Allan E. Richardson, Esq. email@example.com Richardson, Galella & Austermuhl 142 Emerson ST., Woodbury, NJ 08096 856-579-7045.
4 lawyers agree
Criminal Defense Attorney
You have 20 days to appeal. Even with an attorney you would have likely got 2 points. You can file a PCR for 5 years on constitutional grounds. You have not posted such a reason but there may be one. You should have received a 3 point reduction from MVC for 12 months clean. You can take a safe driving course and get rid of the last point. The points stay on insurance for three years but the safe driving course may reduce those points by 2 as well. Ask your company if they accept that reduction.
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
As stated by Mr. Richardson, the time for filing an appeal has long passed. Additionally, you lack grounds for an appeal, as changing your mind is not sufficient cause. Court fees are imposed by the court, however, surcharges are levied by the Motor Vehicle Commission, and unfortunately, most prosecutors and judges do not mention that even if you get minimal fines in a court for a plead conviction, they do not prevent the MVC from imposing their own surcharges. And your insurance company can treat points in their own way (some even impose rate increases for convictions that don't impose points like lack of seatbelt or improper cellphone use charges). And you already had your charge downgraded. I don't know of any judge in my area that would permit an unsafe driving plea for someone who was alleged to have been going 91 mph. In fact, I know judges who would impose a license suspension of 10 days even if they permit the charge to be lowered. So consider yourself lucky.
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DUI / DWI Attorney
Your error in judgment was not going with an attorney on a traffic offense that could have most likely gotten you suspended. Any one of my colleagues here would have gotten you closer to 2 points than 4. That being said, 4 points was not a bad outcome given your legal experience.
Your only avenue would be post-conviction relief, and I would be hard-pressed to see how you would convince a judge that you somehow pled to a lesser offense without understanding the ramifications of the plea. In my estimation, most judges wouldn't allow it unless there was something extraordinarily deficient in the judge's acceptance of your plea.
I also agree with my colleagues on here that it would cost you more to get your PCR application granted than you would gain from it.
Finally, you should not be assessed $1000 extra a year in insurance surcharges unless you had prior points on your license or have gotten more since pleading guilty to the 4 point ticket.
1 lawyer agrees