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December 10 2014 by Jeff Legal Question

Hi Jeff,

While there's no guarantee the ticket will get tossed solely because it's missing the officer's info, it does seem worth contesting. Both because the judge might deem it "facially insufficient" and toss it on technical grounds, but also because it shows a lack of transparency on the officer's part and deprives you of investigating the officer's testimony in previous hearings.

Good luck and let us know how it goes!

Disclaimer: the legal information presented on this site is not intended to offer legal or medical advice. The content on this website is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the professional judgment of a legal and/or healthcare professional, and you should not rely upon any material or statements in this website for legal or medical advice. It is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

November 13 2014 by Anonymous Legal Question

That's awful. Hopefully you weren't injured when you were right hooked by the runaway driver.

According to bike lawyer Steve Vaccaro, most states have their own equivalent of the federal Freedom of Information Act, through which you can request a driver's info. Go to the DMV wesbite for whatever state the plates were registered with and try to find a preprinted form that allows you to do that.

Turnaround time can take up to six weeks, and there may be a processing fee associated with the request, but that should help you in filing an insurance claim and/or bringing charges against the driver that cut you off and caused the crash.

Good luck!

Disclaimer: the legal information presented on this site is not intended to offer legal or medical advice. The content on this website is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the professional judgment of a legal and/or healthcare professional, and you should not rely upon any material or statements in this website for legal or medical advice. It is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

November 10 2014 by Emma Red Light Question

Hi Emma,

You can always mail in a ticket if you're unable to pay it online. Red light fines for cyclists are $188. Just make sure the ticket is postmarked before the given due date.

While you can always plead not guilty and argue circumstances in hopes the court will show leniency and reduce your fines or throw out the ticket altogether, there's no guarantee you'll get a sympathetic judge. Especially if you've admitted to running the red.

So when deciding whether it's worth it or not to plead your case in court, you should weigh that likelihood against sacrificing a good chunk of a weekday in traffic court, which is never fun and rarely convenient. 

Good luck and ride safe!

Disclaimer: the legal information presented on this site is not intended to offer legal or medical advice. The content on this website is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the professional judgment of a legal and/or healthcare professional, and you should not rely upon any material or statements in this website for legal or medical advice. It is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

November 10 2014 by Bridget Bike Security Question

Hi Bridget,

Sorry about your bike! Williamsburg — especially around the Bedford Avenue L Train stop — is a high-risk area for bike theft, but hopefully your ride is somewhere safe.

Your best bet is to give the appropriate precinct a call (you can use the NYPD's Precinct Finder if needed). If it was impounded, they should be able to direct you to the lot where it can be retrieved.

With a few exceptions, the NYPD generally clips bike locks only when their presence is deemed a potential security risk (on presidential motorcade routes, for example); the Department of Sanitation periodically cuts locks off derelict bikes, but assuming your bike was still rideable, that's probably not the case. 

Good luck getting your bike back! 

November 19 2014 by Clare Red Light Question

Hi Clare,

While you can always plead not guilty and argue circumstances in hopes the court will show leniency and reduce your fines or throw out the ticket altogether, there's no guarantee you'll get a sympathetic judge. Especially if you've admitted to running the red.

So when deciding whether it's worth it or not to plead your case in person, you should weigh that likelihood against sacrificing a good chunk of a weekday in traffic court, which is never fun and rarely convenient. 

Good luck and ride safe!

Disclaimer: the legal information presented on this site is not intended to offer legal or medical advice. The content on this website is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the professional judgment of a legal and/or healthcare professional, and you should not rely upon any material or statements in this website for legal or medical advice. It is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

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