91 km/h in a posted 50 zone

mcbuckets
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91 km/h in a posted 50 zone

Unread post by mcbuckets on

I was clocked and pulled over leaving Chatsworth just before the posted speed limit changes to 70 (was clearly visible where I was clocked, but I had not yet passed the sign). The officer had clocked me at 101 in the 50 zone, and was nice enough to give me a ticket for 41 over (the alternative being a major offense, car impound etc..).

For what its worth, I've been driving for 10 years with zero offenses or at-fault accidents. When giving me the ticket, the officer recommended taking option 2 - guilty with explanation, saying that if I've never had a ticket it would likely be reduced.

Naturally my first choice would be to try to get this thrown out entirely, my concern is if I plead not guilty, the prosecutor will amend the charge to 51 over which is a major offense, will severely impact my insurance and may affect my work (I go through security clearance screening every 5 or 10 years).

If i plead guilty with explanation and show up in court can the charge be amended to the higher amount? My strategy for explanation is my driving record and that the 70 sign was visible so i was less mindful of my speed. How likely is this to help? If I don't like the outcome do I still have the option of trial?

Images of my ticket are attached, looking for general advice - thanks in advance!

EDIT: the image quality is very poor for some reason when uploaded...

The top right corner of the ticket, the officer noted "51 km/h over, court date, 7 day impound + d1 susp"

The back of the ticket option 2 states: "Plea of Guilty - Submissions as to Penalty: I want to appear before a justice to enter a plea of guilty and make submissions as to penalty (amount of fine or time to pay). Note: you must attend the court office shown below within the time and days shown"
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Zatota
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Unread post by Zatota on

The charge would only be amended if you plead not guilty. If you plead guilty, it will remain at 41 km/h over. Don't count on the speed being reduced further. If anything, a sympathetic JP could reduce the amount of the fine (if, for example, you can demonstrate financial hardship) or, more likely, give you additional time to pay.

The standard time to pay is 30 days. I once convinced a JP to give a friend who had just started a business, investing a substantial portion of her life savings, but was in hospital because of a car accident 180 days to pay.


mcbuckets
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Unread post by mcbuckets on

Zatota wrote:
Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:15 pm
The charge would only be amended if you plead not guilty. If you plead guilty, it will remain at 41 km/h over. Don't count on the speed being reduced further. If anything, a sympathetic JP could reduce the amount of the fine (if, for example, you can demonstrate financial hardship) or, more likely, give you additional time to pay.

The standard time to pay is 30 days. I once convinced a JP to give a friend who had just started a business, investing a substantial portion of her life savings, but was in hospital because of a car accident 180 days to pay.
Thanks for the reply. Given my scenario you would just pay the ticket and not risk it getting amended in court?

Is a ticket as high as 41 over really grouped similar to other minor offenses with respect to insurance?

How come I don't have the option of early resolution many have mentioned in the forum?

Thanks again.


Whenaxis
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Unread post by Whenaxis on

You also have the option of going to trial (Option 3) and request disclosure to see the evidence. After reviewing the evidence, if you don't think you can win it, you can speak with the prosecutor before the trial to get a plea deal. A possible offer could be 15km/h over the speed limit (0 demerit points, reduced fine). If there's no deal, you can always plead guilty on the day of your trial and make submissions (i.e. ask for more time to pay). The justice of the peace is not usually able to reduce the fine amount because it is fixed by law in s. 128(14) of the Highway Traffic Act.

Generally, speeding 1-49km/h above the speed limit is considered a minor offence for most insurance companies. 50+km/h above the speed limit is major. The only difference in terms of speed is that 30-49km/h over the speed limit carries 4 demerit points. But with 10 years clean driving record, demerit points don't really matter until you start racking up a lot of them.

Early resolution was only previously available in certain areas -- and increasingly is no longer been offered because it lengthens the time it takes to go to trial (for those who choose early resolution and then choose to go to trial) and because the same deals made during early resolution are also generally offered again at trial.


mcbuckets
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Unread post by mcbuckets on

Thank you for the reply Whenaxis.

I am considering option 3, my hesitation is that the prosecutor has leverage (the ability to amend the charge to a major) and will be unwilling to bargain/offer a plea deal...

Would it be common for the prosecutor to take into account my driving record and offer a better deal?

I'm not too worried about a few hundred dollars for the fine, my worry is that this will cost thousands in the long run through increased insurance premiums for 3 years.

Marko


Whenaxis
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Unread post by Whenaxis on

While that is a possibility, the prosecutor can only amend the charge up if you choose to plead not guilty and proceed with a full trial. The officer will need to testify as to the actual speed. But if the prosecutor is unwilling to offer a plea deal, you can still plead guilty to the reduced charge of 91 in 50 and avoid a full trial, and you don't risk the prosecutor amending the charge up.

The prosecutor will not so much look at your driving record -- the only time that it might be considered is if you have a lot of previous convictions, then they won't be willing to offer a deal or they might ask for a higher penalty if it proceeds to a full trial.

But often times, I've seen prosecutors offer the same deal for the same charge indiscriminately because there's a lot of cases to deal with in a short amount of time. The prosecutor wants to avoid a full trial because it takes a lot of time. Even in cases where the evidence is clear, prosecutors have offered plea deals. For example, for speeding charges, I've seen prosecutors reduce down to 15km/h over even when the charge has already been reduced at the roadside by the police officer.

I was looking at research online from Insurance.com and a study showed that these were the average increases based on speed:
  • Speeding 40 km/h over the limit: 15 per cent
  • Speeding 25-39 km/h over the limit: 12 per cent
  • Speeding 1-25 km/h over the limit: 11 per cent
All speeding charges 1-49km/h are generally considered minor. And depending on your insurer, there might be ticket forgiveness and there may be no increase at all.






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