If you explain to the court that you had two tags at the time and that the dealer had not properly affixed the tag to the car and you can show proof of the existence of the tags, not much is going to happen. You might have to pay court costs.
The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Florida. Responses are based solely on Florida law unless stated otherwise.
Just fix your tags and explain the situation to an attorney. I would hire an attorney, you may try to explain this to the judge and say something wrong or the judge may think you are full of it. Plus, traffic court moves very fast so if you get into a long-winded explanation you might confuse the judge, and then they think you are not believable.-even if you are telling the truth.
To be guilty of this charge the state has to be able to prove that you KNOWINGLY attached an unassigned tag. Based on your description of what happened - you have a defense to this charge. While it may only be a 2nd degree misdemeanor, you may want to hire an attorney & fight this to keep your clean record.
Karen J Tufte
Florida law requies that the state have proof that you attached the tag. Unless the trooper saw you attach the tag, they will have difficulty proving the charge. Combined with the proof that both cars were registered and insured, there is a very strong likelihood that the state will dismiss the charge at arraignment. If not, you should retain counsel and press the state to do so.
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I hesitate to tell you to go it alone ( without an attorney) id contact an attorney and have him attend your arraignment. Provide the attorney with all the proofs of registration, insurance and new car purchase in advance. Your attorney should be the one to contact the prosecutor beforehand and hopefully get it resolved. It always dangerous for anyone accused of an offense to speak on his own behalf....remember " he who represents himself,represents a fool". Good luck. For whatever it's worth I once put the wrong tag in by mistake...it happens.