Many people have heard rumors or experienced firsthand that appearing in court for a speeding ticket can often result in the dismissal of the ticket if the officer who wrote the citation is not in court that day for whatever reason. In Cook County, Illinois, where there may be over a couple thousand tickets on the court docket each day that is often the case and people commonly get their tickets thrown out if an officer fails to appear on the first court date. Many people may be surprised to learn that this is not the case in Lake County, Illinois and may find themselves missing more time away from work to attend court and spending more money and effort handling a speeding ticket than if they hired a competent traffic attorney to appear for them. I will first outline the Lake County system for handling traffic matters and then explain why hiring an attorney may be the best option for those looking to negotiate or contest a traffic violation.
THE LAKE COUNTY BRANCH COURT SYSTEM
The three main branch courts in Lake County, Illinois are located in Park City, Mundelein and Round Lake Beach. All petty offense traffic tickets along with some misdemeanors such as Aggravated Speeding (30-40 mph over the limit) and driving with a suspended or no driver's license are heard in these branch courts. Unlike some other court systems the initial court appearance is not considered a trial date, but rather an initial status date at which time a person can appear and plead guilty or not guilty to an offense and a police officer's presence in court is not required. If a person pleads not guilty then the case is set for trial and the police officer will be notified by the prosecutor of the future trial date. The person will have to appear again in court a second time and if the officer is not in court when the matter is set for trial the ticket may be dismissed, but this dismissal is not automatic. If you are charged with the misdemeanor traffic offenses a Prosecutor has 180 days from the date of a trial demand to proceed with a case under Illinois law. Judges and prosecutors are generally not inclined to dismiss Aggravated Speeding tickets or Suspended License matters because an officer missed one court date. No matter what type of ticket you have in Lake County you can spend alot of time trying to resolve a traffic ticket and miss several days of work and also spend quite a bit of time waiting in court as other cases are being called as well. Thankfully, there is a solution balanced to protect your rights but not sacrifice your job and personal time and sanity in the process.
HIRING A QUALIFIED LAKE COUNTY TRAFFIC ATTORNEY
Here at the Richard Albanese Law Office we have a simple plan and goal for your Lake County traffic matters: Minimize the stress to the client and maximize the best potential outcome for each case. This is a realistic goal in every case as Richard has handled literally thousands of these matters combined as a Former Prosecutor for over a decade and now as your defense attorney. Sometimes the best outcome may require going to trial on a case, or working out a favorable disposition with the Prosecutor, or getting the minor case thrown out completely when an officer does not show up for a trial on a petty offense. Often on petty speeding tickets or other minor traffic violations an attorney can appear with an authorization to represent form without the client having to come to court at all. This method obviously saves the client the time and financial benefit of not having to miss work only to appear in court for potentially several hours only to learn another appearance is necessary in the matter. Additionally, If a person sets a case for trial in Lake County, goes to court twice and the officer appears, then what? Most citizens are not trained in methods of cross examination and are no match for the experienced police officer's testimony in court. With increased insurance premiums and a potential loss of driving privileges at stake doesn't it make sense to have a Professional on your side? Please call the Richard Albanese Law office for a free phone consultation on your traffic matter in Lake County, Park City, Mundelein, Round Lake Beach, or anywhere else in Illinois and Wisconsin. The Richard Albanese Law Office can be reached at 312-882-1973 or found on the web at http://www.criminalandtrafficdefenseattorney.com or by email at [email protected]