My husband was driving my car and passed a school bus with flashing lights. He did not realize this until he was past the bus. The driver honked at him but there were no cops nearby and he didn't get pulled over. I believe the driver or witnesses reported this and we got issued a ticket in the mail. The ticket is under my name as the registered owner: charged with Fail to Stop for School Bus- Overtaking- Owner . Section 175 (20). I've heard some reassuring comments that subsection 20 (owner) does not carry demerit points like subsection 11 or 12 (driver), which carry 6 points. I've also read that this charge does not show up on the driver's abstract. Can anyone confirm that? What is the source of this information? I've requested early resolution.. not sure what it will accomplish but I figure it's a first step. I might consider trial but would I then have to identify my husband as the driver? Can the ticket be re-issued in his name as driver and then involve the 6 demerit points? I'm not worried about the ticket fee ... I'm more worried about insurance hikes. When I get an online quote and list "fail to stop for school bus", I get quoted insane things like $11,000 / year :O. I guess this is seen as a major conviction but the online quotes don't let you differentiate between subsection 20 (owner) and subsections 11 or 12 (driver). I would appreciate any advice... guidance.. help. If anyone has been in a similar situation, how did things end up for you? Thank you all .
When you are charged as the OWNER and not the driver, then it does not affect insurance, it does not go on your drivers abstract and you do not accumulate any demerit points. So the easiest way to deal with an owner ticket, is to just pay it and you are only out the amount of the fine and it will not affect you any other way.
TAKE IT TO TRIAL
If you take it to trial, the person who called the police has to be there to testify as well as the police officer that wrote the ticket. This can sometimes work in your favor as witnesses do not always make it.
If you go to trial and either you or husband get on the witness stand to testify, and they ask who was driving, then yes you would have to tell them. But there is no reason for either of you to get on the witness stand in this case, so you would NOT have to tell them who was driving. As long as neither of you are under oath, then you do not have answer any questions about the incident.
The only other way they could identify the driver is if the police come to question you or your husband about the incident and one of you tells them he was driving. You have the right NOT TO TALK TO POLICE in this case and neither you or your husband are under any obligation to answer questions about it. So if they show up to ask questions, tell them you would prefer not to answer any questions about the incident. Do not lie about who was driving, just don't tell them (this is legally your right as a Canadian)!
Also, you do not have to tell the prosecutor who was driving at the early resolution or any other time (unless under oath on the witness stand).
Early resolution may or may not get you some kind of lesser charge. The prosecutor may offer you some kind of deal for a lesser charge, but make sure you are still being charged as the OWNER.
+++ This is not legal advice, only my opinion +++
Just curious.. is there an official source online or elsewhere that says that owner offences don't show up on an abstract?
Didi_87 wrote:Just curious.. is there an official source online or elsewhere that says that owner offences don't show up on an abstract?
The conviction goes against your plates, not your license. If you don't pay, you can't renew your plates. Just like a parking ticket, red light camera, or any other offense where you are charged as the owner.
If you're still not convinced, you can always call your insurance provider and ask.
I talked to X-Copper and they reassured me that since the officer did not observe who the driver was and did not obtain a license, the charge goes against the vehicle in general and is not something that would show up on my driving abstract, thus would not affect insurance rates. They said it's similar to a red light camera ticket, which goes against the vehicle. I decided to go to court and chose option B (early resolution). They ended up reducing the amount of the ticket to $300 but did not withdraw the charge. I paid and a few weeks later obtained my driving abstract to make sure and there was no charge listed there on my personal abstract. My insurance rates did not go up at all.
Your average ticket may come with demerit points (if that matters to you) or the possibility of an insurance increase. Since the threat of added expenses may follow you even after you pay your fine, your representation has no problem accepting your money.
Since there is no points and insurance implications, the fine is the end of the road. The charge does not attach itself to a license number. It follows the plate. If you don't pay, you can't renew your stickers.