A speeding ticket can be an infraction or a misdemeanor depending on how many miles over the speed limit you were stopped at. Any speed 15 mph or above the speed limit, or speeding 80 mph or more is a class 3 misdemeanor. Cops might charge you with a careless and reckless, a class 2 misdemeanor, if the speed is especially high. All other speeding violations are infractions.
Why does it matter? First, a class 3 misdemeanor looks somewhat worse on a criminal background check than an infraction. I’ve heard multiple stories of people not being able to obtain housing or get a job until it’s clear the conviction was a speeding ticket. Second, if the speed is high enough, the DMV might suspend your license. Third, without a prayer for judgment continued (PJC), your insurance will also increase significantly.
A PJC is a deferred judgment. It allows you to avoid court fines (but not costs) and a statutory insurance increase. You can use one every two years for court purposes and every three years per household for insurance purposes. A household is defined as everyone on an insurance policy — so if you have a child away at college, but still on your policy, that will count towards the household. You should NEVER use a PJC without speaking to a Raleigh traffic lawyer first.
Have you received a speeding ticket in Wake County? There’s a good chance you don’t have to appear in court if you hire an attorney. A Raleigh traffic lawyer can appear in court for you, plea your ticket to a lesser speed, and ask for a PJC from the judge or magistrate if necessary.
You should also NEVER pay off a ticket without speaking to a lawyer first. If you are eligible for a reduction, you could be saving yourself thousands in car insurance premiums.
Attorney William Pruden offers free speeding ticket consultations for Wake County charges. Contact him at 919-880-2124 for more information.