When charged with a traffic violation, it’s important to understand the difference between the two types of traffic courts in New York.
The Traffic Violations Bureau
The TVB is not a true court. It is a state administrative agency that handles traffic tickets issued in:
- The five boroughs of New York City
- The city of Rochester
The most significant things to note about the TVB are:
- There is no plea bargaining. For each violation, a judge will find you either not guilty (no points, no fine) or guilty (points if applicable and fine). There will be no reduction of a charge or other negotiation.
- Failure to respond on time to a ticket or appear in court can quickly result in the suspension of your license or even an automatic guilty finding by default.
Due to the fact that there are no reductions or plea bargains at the TVB, the only way to challenge a ticket is to have a trial (hearing). The police officer serves as Prosecutor—the District Attorney is not involved with these administrative hearings.
Feifer & Greenberg, LLP has extensive experience and has successfully defended thousands of drivers at the TVB. Our attorneys are in each TVB office every day to fight cell phone tickets, speeding tickets and other moving violations issued in the TVB jurisdictions. We are confident that our firm provides the absolute best TVB representation and defense possible.
Local Village, Town, City and County Courts
Local village, town, city and county courts throughout the state handle traffic tickets issued outside of New York City and the few other Traffic Violation Bureau jurisdictions. Unlike the Traffic Violations Bureau, these are actual courts that follow traditional court procedures and often handle matters beyond traffic tickets. If you fail to appear for your hearing date, these courts may issue a warrant for your arrest.
The most significant things to note about the local courts are:
- Negotiation (plea bargaining) is an option. In most cases we can get prosecutors to agree to a deal which can significantly reduce the fine, surcharges, points, driver assessment fees, and potential insurance increases. A trial or hearing is only necessary when negotiation has failed for one reason or another.
- Failure to respond on time to a ticket or appear in court can quickly result in the suspension of your license.
There are many local courts throughout the state and they don’t all handle traffic tickets exactly the same. Understanding these differences is crucial as far as the strategy we employ and the recommendations we make to our clients.
Feifer & Greenberg, LLP appears daily to contest traffic tickets in local courts throughout New York. Our partners, associates and of-counsel attorneys are quite experienced and we are proud of our achievements and history of success in these courts.