Minnesota Traffic Tickets Questions & Answers

Q: What does "strict liability offense" mean in the context of traffic tickets?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Dec 18, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
A basic requirement of criminal law is that every crime must have an element of criminal intent. Strict liability is associated with civil lawsuits where intent is not required for liability to attach to the person who caused the harm. Though there are a few cases that claim "strict liability" a criminal law context, a deeper look reveals they do not demonstrate strict liability. In a petty misdemeanor traffic case, the level of intent required may be diminished, since a petty is "not a...

Q: There is a bad snow storm happening with significant wet snow. I was trying to make the turn onto my street.

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets and Car Accidents for Minnesota on
Answered on Dec 1, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
You could call and check with police. Whether they want to respond directly may depend on the amount of damage to the sign pole. You may want to check with your insurance company to see if you have coverage, and whether they need a police report. They might not other than a hit & run hitting you. Minnesota law may require you to file a Motor Vehicle Accident Report depending on the amount of damage. You could check with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety website for more on that....

Q: What type of circumstances would warrant having to go to jail after driving above the speed limit?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Nov 27, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
It's difficult to imagine circumstances where a person would be sentenced to jail time for speeding alone. First, it's likely that 99% of all speeding tickets are petty misdemeanor charges. The maximum penalty for a petty misdemeanor in Minnesota is a fine only; no jail time at all is possible. Less than one percent of speeding tickets may be charged as a misdemeanor, which means a maximum penalty of a fine and 90 days of jail. But it's rare for anyone to get sentenced to the maximum jail...

Q: Are there any traffic violations that constitute felonies? What are they?

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Nov 5, 2018
Jonathan Matthew Holson's answer
Felony DWI, Criminal Vehicle Homicide/Operation are two obvious ones but they are not really considered traffic violations.

Q: I had a municipal marijuana charge in Missouri when I was 17 out of state and now I'm 18 but wasn't able to make it to

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Traffic Tickets, Juvenile Law and Municipal Law for Minnesota on
Answered on Oct 16, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
If it's a question about a Missouri case, you could post the question under the appropriate Missouri category so that a Missouri lawyer will see it, and perhaps answer it for you. In case you weren't aware, this was posted in Minnesota, the wrong state for the question.

Q: I got a speeding ticket for going 123mph in a 70mph in Clinton county MO. I’m 17 and from MN. Will I go to jail?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Oct 14, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
If it's a Missouri case then it will be handled in Missouri courts under Missouri laws with Missouri lawyers and court officials. A Minnesota lawyer would not be in a good position to answer this question. If you have a lawyer already, that would be the first place to go for answers. If you do post a question here, try it for Missouri lawyers. It doesn't matter where you live, only where it happened.

Q: If I got a speeding ticket 42 mph in 30 mph zone, will the ticket go to my record? Some speeding ticket dont go to recor

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 25, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
The so-called "Dimler speed law" only applies to drivers accused of going 65 or less in a 55 or 60 mph zone. Those won't go on a non-CDL, Minnesota drivers license record by statute. But that law does not apply in 30 mph zone, unfortunately. You may be able to keep it off your drivers license (DL) record though, if you appear in court and talk to the prosecutor. The prosecutor might offer a disposition that would prevent it going on your DL record. If important, you'll do better with a...

Q: My husband recieved a seat belt ticket. The ticket was made out to me. I was at work. Will they throw it out?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 22, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
Does a seat belt ticket affect a person's drivers license or insurance? I doubt it. It's mainly just a fine. If I was issued a seat belt ticket, I'd consider just paying it. But if you go to court, perhaps the prosecutor will dismiss it against you since you were not driving or in the car at the time. It is possible that the police officer made a simple error when printing out the ticket, but has the correct ID of the drivers in his or her notes. If so, a new ticket could be issued...

Q: My friend got his license taken because of a alcohol related offence but he never got charged with the offence

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets and DUI / DWI for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 20, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
In Minnesota we have a law commonly called the "implied consent law." It allows the government to administratively revoke a person's drivers license if a police officer claims to have arrested the person on probable cause DUI and then the person either refused a chemical test for alcohol or their sample was read at 0.08 or more within 2 hours of driving, operating, or controlling a motor vehicle. Later, the person might or might not get charged with a DUI crime but the "implied consent"...

Q: Cops were taking photos of people driving in a “bus only lane.” Can the photo be used to issue a ticket?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 11, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
A big problem with attempts to enforce traffic laws with only photographs is identity. Typically, the vehicle and plate number can be documented, and linked to the owner. But the driver can rarely if ever be identified. That's why police officers cannot be replaced with cameras. If the government were somehow able to get evidence of who was driving at the time (like an admission from the driver), they could then have enough evidence to prosecute.

Q: Not coming to a complete stop. I want to push it to a jury trial, court says it is not a crime. How is it not a crime?

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 11, 2018
Jonathan Matthew Holson's answer
I'm not sure that I understand your question. But you are required to come to a complete stop at a stop sign. I do not see many folks ticketed with it unless an accident occurs. But then the charge is usually careless driving or failure to yield rather than failure to come to a complete stop.

Q: Can a officer issue a ticket 5 months later for no proof of insurance stop back in march

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Sep 9, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
The question implies that this has, in fact, been done? While it's possible delay in charging might help defend the case, a defense lawyer like me would need all available facts and information to determine legal issues favorable to the defense. That one fact alone, without more, would not be enough to get the charge dismissed.

Q: I received a few tickets back in 2010/2011, is there a statute of limitations on how long those charges remain?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Aug 29, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
A statute of limitations limits the time period for filing a criminal accusation. As long as the charge was filed with the court within the limitations period, the statute of limitations would not provide a defense. Older cases tend to become difficult for prosecutors to prove, however, for several reasons.

Q: From Illinois: speeding 88 in a 70 in Jackson county, MN. Any way to keep this off my record?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Aug 29, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
I would suggest a phone call to a criminal defense lawyer in or near Jackson County to discuss. Sometimes we can settle traffic cases favorably without out-of-state people having to return, but there are local differences.

Q: In Minnesota,stopped for allegedly going 64 in 50. Can I fight this on my own and win? If I lose how bad is the penalty?

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Aug 14, 2018
Jonathan Matthew Holson's answer
The issue is not whether you were issued a ticket because of your prior record vs. just getting a warning. The State has to prove that the speed limit was 50 mph and that you were driving faster than that. I don't honestly see driving with the flow of traffic as being a defense. But certainly whether you were clocked vs. another driver is relevant. Be aware that some of the squads have dash cams that are also equipped with GPS so that might show how fast the tropper was driving to catch up...

Q: Can a ticket for giving a ficticious insurance card be amended and changed to a driving with no insurance when I went to

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Aug 6, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
Sort answer: yes, a prosecutor generally can amend criminal charges.

Q: I have a work permit to drive only to and from work, can I ride with my child with a learners permit as licensed driver?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Aug 6, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
You could call a "Driver Evaluator" at the Minnesota Department of Public Safety for a definitive answer. My recollection is that a person driving with a Minnesota learner's permit is legal to drive only with a licensed driver 18 years older or older. Since a person with a "limited license" (work permit) is a licensed driver, the person driving on a learner's permit should be o.k.when driving with a licensed adult. There could be a practical problem since the limited license only allows...

Q: I got a ticket and was in an accident 2.5 years ago. I’m trying to get onto my works auto insurance. Anyway to clean up?

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets and Car Accidents for Minnesota on
Answered on Jul 20, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
There is no way to age traffic violations on a person's drivers license record with Minnesota Department of Public Safety, faster than time passing in the normal way.

The only way to solve that problem would be to file a motion to reopen the case with the court, get the court to allow that, then resolve it in a way that does not result in a conviction for a moving violation. If the charge was connected to a motor vehicle accident, that may be challenging.

Q: What happens if I don't pay any of my traffic tickets? Can they revoke my drivers' license?

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Jul 13, 2018
Thomas C Gallagher's answer
Too many Minnesota moving violations within a 12 or 24 month period will result in suspension or revocation of drivers license. Unpaid fines alone should not result in license loss. But the state can add collection fees, and do credit collection activities that can be damaging. Better to pay right away than create bigger problem for later. Better still, go to court and fight them!

Q: I want to go to court and try to get it dismissed so it won’t go on my record (record is clean first ever ticket)

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota on
Answered on Jun 21, 2018
Jonathan Matthew Holson's answer
You should absolutely go to court. If you don't have anything else on your record, you should be able to do something so that it does not go on your driving record so long as you pay a fine/costs and don't get any additional tickets for a year to six months. Well worth the trip to court.

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