FAQs & Legal RESOURCES
Commonly asked questions about traffic ticket defense in Toronto & the GTA.
Do insurance companies consider demerit points?
Insurance companies look at your risk points not demerit points. However, there is a general rule that more serious offences carry some or more demerit points than minor offences. Insurance companies generally classify offences in 3 different categories. (Some use more) They are minor, major, and serious. The offence itself will describe the conduct of driving to the insurance company, not the points. Demerit points will be on your record for 2 years from the day of offence and are not recorded until you’re convicted. So if it took you a year to go to court, they’d only be on for another year. The conviction remains on your record for 3 years. 2 years after the points have been deleted. Your insurance company only needs the offence to calculate your premiums.
Can I plead guilty to save my points?
A court has no jurisdiction (authority) over demerit points. Demerit points are assessed on the offence by the Ministry of Transportation. Police officers, prosecutors, and Justices, have no power to deal with points. However, a plea bargain to a lesser offence could be negotiated to save points.
If I only have 1 or 2 minor convictions, will my insurance company penalize me?
It all depends on who your insurance company is. Each company has its own policies on how it assesses your risk as a driver. Some companies will forgive 1 or 2 minor convictions, others won’t. Some will forgive a couple if you’re over 25. Having been in an accident will certainly affect the premium as well. Even if they would forgive a couple, remember that an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. Even if they do, you’re gambling on not getting a third. And if you’re in an accident, they may not forgive those 2 minor offences anymore. It’s always better to defend the offences rather than risk it causing a premium increase.
I got charged with not having my permit and insurance card? If I bring these to court they'll throw out the charges, right?
Well, it is entirely the Prosecutors call. Some cities will withdraw the offences and others will accept a guilty plea for a lesser fine. There is no hard fast rule on the discretion of paper charges.
Does the officer have to show me the radar gun?
No he doesn’t. Sometimes it may be too dangerous to let you out of your car. Especially if you’re stopped on a busy highway. Not showing the radar or laser reading does not mean you’ll win your case.
What if my name is spelled wrong? Will I win my case?
Not necessarily. In fact. Not likely. The courts in these kinds of cases have broad powers of amendment. Unless the name is almost completely wrong, more than likely it will be amended.
What if the police officer doesn't show up?
Some people think that just because the police officer doesn’t show up that they’ll win automatically. That’s not true. The prosecutor might ask for an adjournment same as you could if you needed more time for one reason or another.
There's no licence plate on my ticket. Can I get the charge thrown out?
No. Again, the court has broad powers of amendment. The licence plate does not go to the heart of the charge and so it probably won’t help you much.
I had a trial that I did myself. I got convicted and think that the decision that the court made was wrong. Is there anything I can do?
Yes. You can launch an Appeal. Speak to one of our qualified legal representatives and find out what your potential grounds are.
I called around for some fee quotes. Why are the fees typically a lot more than the fine? Why not just pay the fine?
Well. Your court agent is cost effective not because of the fine. That’s usually insignificant. He or she is cost effective because they are keeping your premiums down. When you consider that your premiums will increase for 3 years. That ticket can be much more expensive than the mere fine.
Did you know...
legal traffic facts
• Making a False Statement is a $10,000.00 fine
• Driving a Motor Vehicle Without Insurance is a $5,000.00 fine
• Permitting another person to drive your motor vehicle without insurance is a $5,000.00 fine
• You must always carry your original documents at all times
• If you are charged or detained by the police, it is your right to remain silent
• You are presumed to be innocent until proven guilty
• It is your right to see the disclosure (the information produced against you) pertaining to your case
• You have a right to a language interpreter of your choice
• It is your responsibility to read the back of the ticket you received
• You are entitled to legal advice
• It is your responsibility to report an accident to the collision center and to contact your insurance company in order to determine which party is liable
• After an accident you are obligated to provide information to all parties
• Your insurance can double for as little as 1 conviction
• Even if your 25 years of age or older, 2-3 traffic tickets can put you in a high-risk market
• Demerit points mean nothing to your insurance company
• If you are convicted for driving while under suspension, you could be sentenced to go to jail for a maximum of 6 months
• If you are convicted for Driving a Motor Vehicle Without Insurance, your vehicle can be impounded for up to 90 days
did you know...
demerit points across ontario
7 Points – Failing to Remain at Scene of Accident
7 Points – Driver failing to stop when signaled or requested to by a police officer
6 Points – Careless Driving
6 Points – Racing
6 Points – Failing to Stop for School Bus
6 Points – Exceeding Speed limit by 50 Kilometers per hour or more
5 Points – Driver of public vehicle or School Bus failing to stop at Railway Crossings
4 Points – Exceeding Speed limit by 30-49 Kilometers per hour
4 Points – Following too closely
3 Points – Exceeding Speed limit by 16-29 Kilometers per hour
3 Points – Driving through, around, or under Railway Crossing Barrier
3 Points – Failing to Yield Right of Way
3 Points – Failing to obey a stop sign, signal light or Railway Crossing Signal
3 Points – Failing to Obey directions of police constable
3 Points – Driving or operating a vehicle on a closed highway
3 Points – Failing to report an accident
3 Points – Improper passing
3 Points – Improper Driving where highway divided into lanes
3 Points – Crowding Driver’s Seat
3 Points – Drive Wrong Way – Divided Highway
3 Points – Cross Divided highway – No proper crossing provided
3 Points – Wrong Way in one way Street or Traffic
3 Points – Failing to slow down and proceed with caution when approaching stopped emergency vehicle
3 Points – Failing to move into another lane when approaching stopped emergency vehicle – if safe to do
2 Points – Backing on a highway
2 Points – Pedestrian Crossover
2 Points – Failing to share road
2 Points – Improper Right Turn
2 Points – Improper Left Turn
2 Points – Failing to Signal
2 Points – Unnecessary Slow Driving
2 Points – Failing to lower headlamp beam
2 Points – Improper opening of vehicle door
2 Points – Prohibited Turns
2 Points – Towing of persons on toboggans, bicycles, skis, etc. prohibited
2 Points – Failing to obey sign prescribed by regulation under subsection 182(1)
2 Points – Driver failing to wear complete Seatbelt assembly
2 Points – Driver failing to ensure passenger under 16 years wears complete seatbelt assembly
2 Points – Driver failing to ensure child passenger under 23 Kilograms occupies position with seatbelt
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Did you know...
The Ontario Highway Traffic Act
We offer a complimentary web copy of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act as regards to traffic tickets, speeding tickets, permits… and all the rules of the road! Click here to access the Ontario Traffic Highway Highway Act Links
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