The show cause hearing is typically a hearing where you get to "show cause" for why you didn't comply with the terms of your deferred. In these situations, it is ultimately up to the judge to determine what he wants to do with you, but your surgery may be reason enough for the judge to give you more time. You might want to consult a local attorney familiar with that court to see what the judge likes and expects to see.
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ANSWER: You asked, "What typically happens in the show cause hearing...." and the answer is it depends on the jurisdiction and judge. However, the purpose of the hearing is exactly what is sounds like, that is, to show (or give) a cause (or reason) why you failed to complete all the terms of your probation.
You should NOT waive (fail to show up for) the show cause hearing. Go and explain to the judge your situation. The fact of the matter is that you did comply with the order to appear for a road test - you simply failed it. Explain to the judge you tried to comply and that you will do so again in March if he/she will grant you an extension. Be polite and a reasonable judge will likely give you the extension of time to complete a successful road test.
I suggest you hire an attorney to help you out and assist with telling your story to the court. There are many quality traffic ticket lawyers in the metroplex who can help you for a relatively small fee, certainly smaller than paying for convictions and extra fines.
Justin A. Coquat, J.D.
The Coquat Law Firm is based in San Antonio, Texas and answers questions on AVVO.com for general information purposes only. Attorney answers are intended to be informative opinions only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship. If you would like to hire an attorney from The Coquat Law Firm, please call us at 210-745-0144.