General Question

FlutherAlot's avatar

Can I beat this ticket?

Asked by FlutherAlot (145points) March 7th, 2010

Ok this pertains to FLORIDA law.

I was pulled over today for a no seat belt violation. Do I have a chance beating this in court? Here is a technicality I noticed. Here is what the Florida state statue says:

(9) By January 1, 2006, each law enforcement agency in this state shall adopt departmental policies to prohibit the practice of racial profiling. When a law enforcement officer issues a citation for a violation of this section, the law enforcement officer must record the race and ethnicity of the violator. All law enforcement agencies must maintain such information and forward the information to the department in a form and manner determined by the department….”

The officer had simply written “non-hispanic” on the ticket. Non-hispanic is ambiguous and not a race. Non-hispanic means black, white, jewish, arab, canadian, indian, you name it. I am in fact white, the officer was white as well. Is this a technicality?

Even if not do I stand a good chance of going to court anyway hoping the officer does not show (one seat belt ticket)?

Other defenses I have are (tell me if they are viable):
I could tint my windows dark, take pics, and claim how could the officer had seen me.

The officer did in fact speed up to get beside me. I was doing the legal speed limit. Speeding up beside me means he violated the law.

I could install a non 3 point belt (bottom only) in my car and take pics. I could then claim the officer did not see the bottom portion of my belt and pulled me over. You are allowed to have a bottom only restraint belt to my knowledge.

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49 Answers

Val123's avatar

Pay it. Don’t lie to the courts.

FlutherAlot's avatar

I have had over 15 tickets. I still have no points. A few of them were 30+ over the speed limit. They can be beaten and if things like that have been beaten, so can my seat belt (although I usually get the lawyer). My record has been clean for 2+ years.

Plus how are they lies (well the first and 3rd other defences are, but the officer DID speed and he DID write non-hispanic)

What is the morality in giving an ADULT a ticket for making a decision that does not infringe on the rights of any other driver?

mcbealer's avatar

How much is the ticket? Your time spent scheming, fuming, schleping to court is in all likelihood way more valuable (not to mention court costs if you lose) than just paying it.

filmfann's avatar

The race bit is a technicality, but it has no bearing on the citation. You will have to pay.

FlutherAlot's avatar

$114 and I will go to court or get the lawyer (guarenteed). Time is of no importance so I want to try to take it to court myself.

What if marijuana was found, but the officer had no probable cause to search my car nor did I consent. The search is then illegal, so therefore the marijuana can not be admitted into evidence.

Woulden’t the race technicality do the same for the ticket? The officer did NOT comply with the statute in it’s entierty. How do all these lawyer get people off of tickets then?

mcbealer's avatar

$114?!? highway robbery… quite literally

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Good luck with that ;)

mrrich724's avatar

Seriously? You are willing to “install” a new seatbelt system just over this ticket? Why don’t you just pay it. After you pay for tinting, or pay to have a new seatbelt system, or go through all these hoops, you may have well just logged online and paid the ticket to begin with and just gotten it over and done with without worrying.

Another option is doing a trial by declaration. It’s like attending court, but on paper and mailing it in. In order for you to lose, the citing officer has to respond to the declaration. They can not do this on their paid time, so “about” 50% of the time, they don’t even respond, in which case you automatically win. In your declaration, you can provide the pictures or whatever it is you want to use as proof that your belt was in fact on.

I did a trial by declaration, I was still found guilty (of going over 21 mph over the speed limit), but, the judge granted me $181 back (out of the $281 ticket, meaning my ticket was dropped almost 66%, AND he took the points off my license), so it’s a simple way to make your penalty easier without worrying about doing all the things you were listing…

EmpressPixie's avatar

When is the last time you filled out a race form? Non-Hispanic is most likely short for “non-Hispanic Caucasian”, something I regularly check on those things. In other words: the race was filled out correctly.

FlutherAlot's avatar


Seat belt is easy for me. All I have to do is get a shorter strap (cheap at junkyard right next door) and bolt it on. Then it looks legit.

I can tint myself. I have the tint and have always wanted to do it anyway. Now is a good excuse.

Which defence would be best for me? Most likely the cop won’t show anyway.

Or I could always plea no contest and just ask the judge for leniency. My brother does this and it usually works on non-movings.

Or just pay the lawyer…. ($69)

Trillian's avatar

What @EmpressPixie said. That’s what I was going to say. Cauc – non hispanic.

marinelife's avatar

Your race thing will not stand up. The officer wrote non-hispanic (meaning non-hispanic white person). It was shorthand.

Installing the new belt will not work, because it won’t match the other belts in the car and the officer can claim he remembers it was a shoulder restraint.

The speeding up thing is not a defence, because the cop is allowed to speed to see what you are doing in the car.

As for the tinted windows, they would have to be a legal tint, which in Florida is:

“Windshield Non-reflective tint is allowed along the top of the windshield above the manufacturer’s AS-1 line.
Front Side Windows Must allow more than 28% of light in.
Back Side Windows Must allow more than 15% of light in.
Rear Window Must allow more than 15% of light in.”


FlutherAlot's avatar


Still hard to see. I can take pics showing an officer could no way in hell distinguish that I had my belt on. To make things even better lets say I install illegal tint 5% and testify to it. There is no way in hell a cop can see through 5%, and it’s not like the judge will just tack on a citation for 5% tint

Yes and I can claim that I had my bottom restraint belt on the entire time but he did not accept it as a proper safety belt and gave me the ticket anyway. The courts are busy as hell anyway.

mrrich724's avatar

If you haven’t been busted before, and you generally have a good record, just ask for leniency. Now if you’re always getting tickets, maybe not.

I wouldn’t try the seatbelt thing anyway, b/c I’m assuming your car was built (I can be wrong) after the threepoint belt became standard in cars. Also, you may want to check and see if there is a law saying that you must have a 3-point system installed on newer cars if you choose to go that route.

But I don’t think $70 for the lawyer is too much to just have piece of mind and have it over and done with.

re: the race card. I wouldn’t spend too much time on that one, b/c it’s Florida, and having grown up in Florida practically my whole life . . . I think we all know that one is a far stretch, LOL

FlutherAlot's avatar


Ya I know, I just want to try it myself this time expecially for a non-moving (no risk if i lose). It just amazes me how these lawyer can get me off that many times. If they can do it I can too!!!!

marinelife's avatar

@FlutherAlot I have been trying to ignore your distasteful insistence on wiggling out of this ticket no matter that you have to lie and attempt to make the cop a liar, but you are making it impssobile. I have to say I hope you go to all this trouble and get the book thrown at you.

FlutherAlot's avatar


You actually agree with a seat belt ticket?? Damnit tickets are a joke they get beaten all the time. Now I could see you saying that if I commited a REAL crime. Come on bra

mrrich724's avatar

I don’t agree with seatbelt tickets because we live in America, and I think you should be able to do what the hell you wanna do.

I agree with laws that prevent people from causing harm to others/ society. But if in the end, it’s only going to be bad for you . . . I think it should be your choice ;)

thriftymaid's avatar

Pay the ticket. You were illegally and unwisely in a moving vehicle without your seat belt engaged. The statement on the ticket regarding race will most likely satisfy the statutory requirement. My guess is that the most common minority in your area is hispanic.

Trillian's avatar

As a former EMT I agree with your assertion that you shouldn’t have to wear a seat belt. Please go to all the EMT dispatch offices and the State Police post and sign a waiver that states you also have no need of EMT services if you ever crash your car and are injured. While you’re at it, please get on a motorcycle and don’t wear a helmet, and put a clause in your waiver stating such. Before you get back in a moving vehicle, feel free to have a few drinks.

DrBill's avatar

The seat belt trick will only work if the car was manufactured with a lap only belt (pre 1970)

I would just pay the ticket and ask for court supervision (will not go on your driving record)

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

You have no chance of beating this ticket.
A traffic cop’s word will be taken over yours 10 out of 10 times.
Contest it anyway and you may get a reduction of the fine.
Repeat: You will NOT beat this ticket.

mrrich724's avatar


I wear my seatbelt, I just doing think it’s up to FL, or any other person to tell me to, and then collect money on it if I do not.

I know the repercussions, and I think that most people do as well, but should have the choice to choose whether they act safely or not

And about “no need of EMT services,” where is that coming from? As long as the EMT’s are getting paid for providing a service, I don’t see why one should have to decline the service because they made a decision for themself…

FlutherAlot's avatar

Well tell me then how the f*** do the lawyers do it? I have gotten out of 15\15 tickets. A lawyer is human like me and you. The laws are clear cut online (the seat belt law takes up less than a page). How the f*ck do they do it?????

btw most people dont complain about a technacality because most people dont even go to court. Most just ignorantly pay the ticket.

My seatbelt defense would be my OEM seatbelt is broken so I simply installed another one into it. (that is if fla allows non-3points)

john65pennington's avatar

You do not have a defense. no matter was written on your citation, you apparently still violated the seat belt law and this is all that the court is concerned about.

phillis's avatar

You didn’t wear your seatbelt, even though you knew you are supposed to. You gambled and you lost. End of story. I am totally unwilling to help you beat such a silly rap. To me, it appears that you much prefer to spend time evading responsibility for a decision that you felt was worth it, and now that you’re getting spanked for it, suddenly you’re playing the race card.

Instead of insulting your race (whichever one you are) by playing the race card like a pansy to beat a ticket that you earned, man up and take it, like you are supposed to. I would have a lot more respect for a person like that. This is ridiculous.

FlutherAlot's avatar

@john65pennington @phillis

I dont give a rats about the responsibility or being a man. Its a damn seatbelt. No one has answered my question:

“How the hell do the lawyers get me off of tickets then?”

I deserved to pay all 15\15 of my tickets. Yes I was speeding all those times. I was speeding 30+ TWICE. I did burn out. I had illegal tint. I had no seat belt. The cop seen me and even clocked me, but I got off. How?? I don’t know. Was it technicalitys? The lawyer worked his magic. Now how can I work that magic myself?

By not “manning up” to dumb ass tickets I saved my self a shit load of money, a lot higher insurance premiums, and stimulated the local economy (paid the lawyer and his staff). I have not had any crash other than a very minor fender bender (that I paid cash for) to this date!!

phillis's avatar

I won’t be answering that question, and I hope that if you do find the tiniest loophole, you have to pay through the nose for a lawyer to tell you that will cost a hell of alot more than the ticket. Good luck, and don’t forget to wear your seatbelt!

bostonbeliever's avatar

alright i didn’t read all the comments, too many, so i hope i’m saying something original here.
just pay the ticket. $114? really?
all that fuss over such a small amount? you broke the law, you should pay the consequences. plus driving 30+ over the speed limit is a bad idea and you are putting other people and yourself at risk. i sincerely hope you drive more responsibly.
tinting the windows would serve to just add more of a fine as an attempt to cover up evidence. obviously the officer was being slightly racist (towards hispanics) by saying “non-hispanic” but that really doesn’t relate to what you’re arguing.
also: you pay a lawyer, you go to court, you win. ok you don’t pay the fine but the legal fees will probably cost more anyways.

FlutherAlot's avatar

@bostonbeliever @phillis

The lawyer is $69, the ticket is $114. In my expierence with my 15 tickets even when I did get fees the ticket had I paid it would still have cost more than the lawyer + fees. Either way I win when I get the lawyer.

In fla we have a lot of ticket lawyers (my favorite is The Ticket CLinic). Their fees are very reasonable (less than $100 ALWAYS). I love fla for this reason.

I just want to try things for myself and save the $69 this time :).

Ill keep you posted on the case.

snowberry's avatar

I hate drivers like you, because you make the streets unsafe for pedestrians and the rest of us who are careful drivers. Don’t tell me you are careful. Purposefully disobeying the traffic laws is an accident waiting to happen. I obey the laws, and I don’t get tickets. I hope it ends up costing you a butt load of money, and from now on, when you are caught, you never get out of your tickets again.

phillis's avatar

I got a ticket for not wearing my seatbelt this past summer. It cost me $25. Florida apparently adores willful dismissal of simple laws. Easy money!

FlutherAlot's avatar

What did you do in court? Ask for leniency??

phillis's avatar

I paid the ticket because I earned it. The set fee for not wearing your set belt (a non-moving violation) in Smyrna, GA., is $25. I didn’t scream racism, although I could have, since the officer was a different color than I am. I could have taken all kinds of routes, but that wouldn’t have been fair play. I sucked it up, like adults do when they fuck up.

FlutherAlot's avatar

Ohh you said florida. I’m not claiming racisim (he was white, I am white). I am claiming that he failed to follow proper procedure (he simply denoted non-hispanic), so therefore grounds for dismissal. The statute says he must denote record my race and ethnicity and maintain the information in a maner that the department sees fit. I will ask the prosecution for such documentation regarding police procedure in my county on how the department “sees fit” when recording the race (which he will most likely fail to produce).

I think I am just going to A) pay the lawyer B) Show up and ask for lienency. btw $114 is a lot when you go to school and work part time.

filmfann's avatar

So, ur gonna pay a lawyer, rather than pay a ticket?

FlutherAlot's avatar


Yes if I choose not to fight it. I have never paid a ticket. Like I said earlier lawyer+fees(IF any) < ticket cost. ALWAYS. 99% never fails. The lawyer is $69

snowberry's avatar

@flutheralot, please stay far away from me. Far away.

jca's avatar

@FlutherAlot: “What is the morality in giving an adult a ticket for making a decision that does not impinge upon the rights of any other driver.” not wearing a seatbelt impinges upon everyone, because if and when you are in an accident, and possibly rack up thousands, tens of thousands of damages, injuries requiring hospitalization and rehabilitation, or death, how do you think your insurance pays for all that? why do you think that such a law exists? because chances of injury or death are greater to drivers who do not wear seatbelts. do you think the couple of hundred dollars a year you pay for insurance covers that?

i’m sure that whatever the officer wrote meets his departmental standards for specifying race. he did not make that term up on his own. if you say the officer was speeding, you will be laughed out of court. how do you thing cops would do their jobs if they did not speed? Look at the back of cop cars. Some of them say “Interceptor” on the back. They are especially made to speed. Cops go fast – that’s what they do – they speed. That’s how they do their jobs. I live in NYS, and our window tints are not supposed to be darker than a certain amount. if you tint your windows, it will be the cop’s word against yours and i’m willing to bet the judge believes the cop before he believes you. this all seems like so much effort just to beat a ticket but to each his own.

you seem determined and you seem like for every negative someone brings up, you have an answer, so let us know how it turns out. to me it seems like a whole lot of thinking and strategizing for not a lot of money.

Trillian's avatar

@mrrich724 I was addressing myself to @FlutherAlot.

pikipupiba's avatar

@FlutherAlot I really do hope you win this case! But seriously dude, SLOW THE F*** DOWN!!!!!! I have no problem with you not wanting to wear your seatbelt, but putting others in (more) danger is NOT OK!!!!!!!

(and to answer your question: magic)

jca's avatar

a lot of lawyers win cases just because they’re friends with judges, go to lunch with them, see them at parties, etc. so the judge may be doing the lawyers a favor by letting the client off. that’s why you should pick a lawyer from the town where you got the ticket. if you pick a lawyer from far away, he’s just being a lawyer.

plethora's avatar

You have way too much time on your hands. And you are expecting the judge to make a reasoned logical decision? Judges do whatever the Hell they want to do.

YARNLADY's avatar

@mrrich724 The laws that say you must wear a seat belt are not for the people who already do wear them. They are not telling you, they are telling the dopes who don’t care about themselves or the other people on the road they have to .

john65pennington's avatar

Fluthealot, you dodged the bullet before, but now its time to pay the piper.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

You seem to see getting away with breaking the law as a game. Driving is a privilege not a right. Keep this attitude towards driving and you will ultimately have your right to drive taken away.

Please pay the fine and smarten up. If you can’t live with the driving laws then cut up your licence and stop driving.

DrBill's avatar

You have been tried for 15 tickets and don’t know how the lawyer got you off?

Go get the lawyer, go to court, this time pay attention to what he tells the court.

TheThrelkeldKult's avatar

It isn’t important IF you can beat it.

It is your right and responsibility to fight it anyway.

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