Traffic Court Blues
July 9, 2010 12:51 PM   Subscribe

My wife has a ticket in North Charleston for Careless Operation. The officer told her that the $255 ticket would be reduced when she showed up in court. How much will it be reduced, and is it worth asking for the court date to be changed?

She's going to be in Charleston for a job interview Monday and court is on Tuesday. She'll be staying with her parents Sunday night, but would rather not have to come up with an excuse as to why she's staying overnight until Tuesday. We're also not trying to get the ticket to just go away, although that would be nice.

What is at issue is that she's looking for a teaching job and we both subbed this past year. Our income right now basically doesn't exist. Stuff won't start coming in until mid to late August.

So, does anyone have any advice about calling the court and seeing about changing the date? How long do you usually have to pay a ticket like this? Her time is at 2:30, so when should she expect to actually be done in court? Most importantly though, how much can we realistically expect the ticket to get reduced to?
posted by theichibun to Law & Government (4 answers total)
I don't know specifically about careless operation, but when I attended traffic court there (although City of Charleston, not North Charleston) I saw people get their tickets cut in half. I know it's not very specific to your case, but it could definitely be worth your while to go, especially if you're on a fixed income.
posted by bluloo at 5:42 PM on July 9, 2010

Now, I don't know about your specific area, but AFAIK, traffic courts in general are very prepared to set up payment plans with people. They'd rather get the money over time (with interest, usually) than have to go after all the broke people with tickets that don't pay and put out warrants, blah blah blah.

When I first read your question, I thought it was saying that your wife had a ticket for a concert of a band called Careless Operation.
posted by ishotjr at 7:33 AM on July 10, 2010

I 'heard from a friend' that North Chuck traffic court moves surprisingly promptly, at least in the morning. Most everyone also got their fines slashed in half with a guilty plea.
posted by toastchee at 8:58 AM on July 13, 2010

Response by poster: Well, I heard from my wife less than 10 minutes ago. She went up there and told them she wouldn't be able to get to court at the appointed time. They were fine with that, slashed the fee by $100, and now we're done with it.
posted by theichibun at 9:38 AM on July 13, 2010

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