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New York Traffic Violations Legal Blog

Get help after texting and driving allegations

Not long ago this New York traffic violation defense legal blog offered readers a detailed and informative post on what texting and driving actually means under New York law. Texting and driving does not only apply to the act of sending a text message while behind the wheel of a car. Its broad definition includes practically any use of an electronic device by a driver and can apply to many different scenarios.

Making a phone call while driving may constitute texting and driving, and so too may using a computer to look for directions or watch a movie be prohibited conduct. A person who uses a GPS function on their phone may be considered texting and driving if they enter an address into their system, or they may be in violation of the law if they check a page on their pager.

How the Driver Violation Point System affects driving privileges

In sports, it can be advantageous for someone to accumulate as many points as possible. This is because under most sets of rules, the person with the most points at the end of the game wins. However, the opposite is true for New York drivers. The more points a person acquires on their driving record, the more consequences they may have to face.

A driver can have points assigned to their record for many different types of traffic violations. Speeding will cause a driver to accumulate anywhere between three and 11 points, depending upon how fast they were going. Tailgating, failing to yield, and illegal passing are only a few of the moving violations that can cause a person to have points assessed against their driving record.

Why is it sometimes illegal to make a U-turn in New York?

A U-turn is a specific type of driving maneuver. It happens when a driver changes the direction of their vehicle while staying on the same road. For example, a driver may be traveling west on a street and may be unable to make a left-hand turn into a parking lot; to access the lot, the driver may elect to make a U-turn to get their vehicle pointing east and capable of making a right-hand turn into the desired lot.

U-turns are not always permissible on New York roads. A U-turn may be permissible at an intersection when such a message is posted through a sign and the driver gets a green left turn arrow. U-turns may also be permissible in places where no express consent is given, but there are specific places where U-turns are prohibited.

Understanding right of way on New York roads

Readers of this blog may have encountered this common situation. They are driving along and come to a stop sign, where they come to a full stop. However, they reach the intersection at the same time as another driver. Who should go first, and more importantly, who has the right of way?

"Right of way" is an important concept that can have a lot of bearing on whether a person acted legally or not with regard to possible traffic offenses. It can differ depending upon whether two drivers are on the same road, whether one is on a separate road and turning onto the road of the other, or whether one has to cross the path of the other to make a turn.

What does texting and driving actually mean in New York?

Smart phones have become a staple in New York residents' backpacks, purses, and pockets. It is rare to find a person who has never used one of these powerful handheld devices and many people own them for use in their personal and professional lives. For all the convenience that phones have added to individuals' lives, they have also been targeted by lawmakers as potential distractions to individuals who get behind the wheels of vehicles.

In New York, a person can receive significant fines if they are caught texting and driving. However, in some cases, a person may be accused of this infraction when they are not sending text messages. This post will outline what conduct is prohibited in New York when it comes to using a cell phone in a car, but readers should seek their own advice concerning their particular legal challenges.

Can I be sent to jail for speeding?

Under the law, a New York driver is speeding if they operate their car above the posted speed limit in a particular area or zone. Therefore, a person driving 27 miles per hour in a 25 miles per hour zone is speeding, but it is a stretch of logic to suggest that this person should face the same penalties as someone who drove 90 miles per hour in a 45 miles per hour speed zone.

For this reason, the penalties for speeding are assessed based on how far above the speed limit the driver was going. In New York, a person who speeds less than 10 miles per hour over the posted limit may be sentenced to up to 15 days in jail; they may also be filed up to $150. However, if a driver speeds more than 10 miles per hour over the posted limit, they may be sentenced to jail for up to 30 days.

Mistakes and problems can affect field sobriety tests

As some readers may not know, field sobriety tests are physical assessments that law enforcement officials implement to determine if drivers are operating their vehicles while intoxicated. Many jurisdictions, including New York, use several standardized tests to examine drivers' sobriety and, despite the relative common application of these assessments, mistakes are sometimes made. When problems arise in the field sobriety testing process, individuals may be wrongly accused of driving while drunk.

For example, one test that is often used to assess a driver's sobriety is the one leg stand. This seemingly simple test requires a subject to stand on one leg and hold their balance before switching to the other side. However, several different factors can impact its results.

Representation for individuals facing alleged traffic violations

The Fourth of July is a popular time of year for New York residents to pack up their vehicles and take road trips for vacations with family and friends. While most people enjoy relaxing outings with the people who mean the most to them, some individuals fall into the unpleasant experience of being stopped by law enforcement officials for driving infractions. Because of these alleged acts, drivers can receive tickets, citations and possibly be arrested for committing traffic violations.

Traffic violations can take on many forms and can be punished in different ways. Depending upon how many speeding tickets, moving violations or drunk driving charges a person has on their record, their sanctions may be much worse than those of others. To avoid the consequences of traffic violation convictions and to protect their driving records, individuals who are stopped this holiday week may choose to consult with defense attorneys about their legal options.

What is a moving violation?

Readers of this blog may have received a ticket for a moving violation. Moving violations differ from non-moving violations for exactly the reason they sound: they occur when a vehicle is in motion. Unlike non-moving violations, which may be cited for illegal parking or illegal vehicle modifications, moving violations occur when drivers break the laws that govern safe driving practices.

Traffic violations can take on many forms. One of the most common moving violations that drivers are ticketed for are right-of-way violations. If a driver has the right of way on a roadway, then other drivers must yield to them. A driver with a protected turn signal or green light, or a driver who is turning right generally has the right of way over drivers making other driving actions. If a driver turns in front of or overtakes another driver's right of way, then the first driver may have committed a moving violation.

Speed limits change on controlled highways

One of the few places that a New Yorker can legally drive 65 miles per hour is on a controlled highway, and only then if the location where they are operating their vehicle is posted as having such a limit. In the state of New York, highways and interstates can have different speeds in different places and it is up to drivers to know and recognize when speed limits change.

For example, in a rural setting the speed limit on an interstate could be 65 miles per hour since the threat of traffic and other road hazards is relatively low. However, if a driver stays on that interstate as it passes through a congested metropolitan area that speed limit may decrease and a driver who is operating at 65 miles per hour could be doing so in violation of the law.

Call 212-257-8321 to receive a free, no-obligation ticket evaluation from The Law Office of Craig Bondy or reach us by email.

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