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Cincinnati Moving Violations Attorney

Much of the time, a traffic violation is a nuisance. You get pulled over for something you weren’t aware you were doing, or that you didn’t do at all, but you think it isn’t worth it to try to argue with the officer. You grudgingly accept the ticket and pay the fine. But did you know that when you pay the fine for a moving violation, you’re actually pleading guilty to the offense?

Many moving violations are infractions or minor misdemeanors punishable only by a fine. However, some can be criminal misdemeanors with a jail sentence. Even when a traffic violation is a minor misdemeanor with no possibility of a jail sentence, you may find there are consequences you never imagined if you plead guilty or are found guilty of the violation. The possible consequences of an Ohio moving violation ticket can include:

  • A jail sentence and a criminal record if it’s a criminal violation
  • Costly fines
  • Points on your driver’s license
  • Suspension of your driver’s license or disqualification of your CDL
  • Increases in your car insurance premiums
  • Losing your job if you drive for work in any capacity
  • Liability for negligence in a civil lawsuit if your violation resulted in an accident

Because of the ways a traffic violation can affect your life for years to come, it’s worth talking to an Ohio traffic defense lawyer about your options for fighting the ticket. You may actually save yourself money in the long run if you’re successful in contesting the ticket — especially if the ticket is one that could cost your driver’s license or your job.

If your moving violation is a criminal offense, you don’t have the choice to just pay it. When the violation is punishable with possible jail time, you have to go through the court process. In that circumstance, a good Ohio traffic defense attorney could help you avoid jail time or other negative consequences.

Common Ohio Moving Violations and Penalties

Traffic laws are complex. There are a number of different types of traffic offenses under Ohio law — some of them you might not even realize are illegal until you get a ticket. These are some of the most common types of traffic violations we see, but they’re certainly not the only ones you get that might benefit from the help of a lawyer.

Assured Clear Distance Ahead

Under Ohio law, when you drive you’re required to maintain an “assured clear distance ahead.” Essentially, this means leaving enough room between you and the car in front of you so that you can come to a sudden stop without crashing. When you rear-end someone in an accident, you may be cited for failure to maintain an assured clear distance ahead.

An assured clear distance ahead ticket in many cases is a minor misdemeanor. The fine is $150, and 2 points will be added to your Ohio driver’s license. However, there are some circumstances in which an assured clear distance ahead violation is a criminal offense.

  • Two Previous Violations — An assured clear distance ahead violation is a 4th degree misdemeanor when you have two prior tickets for assured clear distance or speeding in the past year. If you’re convicted, the possible penalty include up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.
  • Three or More Previous Violations — An assured clear distance ahead violation is a 3rd degree misdemeanor when you have three or more prior tickets for assured clear distance or speeding in the past year. If you’re convicted, the possibly penalty includes up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

Failure to Obey a Traffic Control Device

Under Ohio Rev. Code 4511.12, you’re expected to obey various sorts of traffic control devices or face penalties. A traffic control device might include a sign, a signal, a flagger, lane markings, or other devices. You might get a ticket for failure to obey a traffic control device if you:

  • Run a stop sign
  • Run a red light
  • Disobey a flagger
  • Disobey a “no turns” sign
  • Disobey a sign telling you to maintain your lane in a construction work zone

In many instances, failure to obey a traffic control device is a minor misdemeanor. The penalty includes a $150 fine and 2 points on your driver’s license. However, failure to obey a traffic control device can be a criminal misdemeanor in some cases.

  • One Prior Moving Violation — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of one previous moving violation in the past year, a traffic control device violation is a 4th degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.
  • Two or More Prior Moving Violations — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of two or more previous moving violation in the past year, a traffic control device violation is a 3rd degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

Failure to Stop for a School Bus

The rules of the road when it comes to how we behave around school busses are designed to protect children. The law expects drivers to stop when a school bus is letting children on and off so that children aren’t endangered by moving cars or other vehicles.

When you fail to stop when a school bus is properly displaying its stop sign, you’re subject to a higher fine than some other types of moving violations. If you plead guilty or are found guilty, you may have to pay up to $500. You’ll also accrue 2 points on your driver’s license.

Failure to Yield

There are actually a number of different laws that address failure to yield. You may get a ticket if you fail to yield right of way:

  • At an intersection
  • When turning left
  • Through highways, stop signs, or yield signs
  • When entering a highway from any place other than another roadway
  • To a pedestrian on a sidewalk
  • To a funeral procession
  • To a pedestrian in a crosswalk
  • To a blind person

In general, failure to yield is a minor misdemeanor. The punishment is a $150 fine and 2 points on your driver’s license. However, when you have multiple tickets it can be a criminal misdemeanor.

  • One Prior Moving Violation — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of one previous moving violation in the past year, failure to yield is a 4th degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.
  • Two or More Prior Moving Violations — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of two or more previous moving violation in the past year, failure to yield is a 3rd degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

Failure to Control

Failure to control might also be referred to as a “physical control” violation. The law is fairly straightforward — drivers are expected to maintain reasonable control over their vehicles while on the road. In practice, what that means can be a little more vague. You might be cited for circumstances that are beyond your control, such as sliding off the road in snowy or icy weather.

Failure to control is a minor misdemeanor. The punishment if you plead guilty or are found guilty is a $150 fine and 2 points on your driver’s license. If your loss of control resulted in an accident, a conviction for failure to control might be used as evidence of your negligence if any other parties to the accident decide to sue you.

U-Turns

People make U-turns all the time, but often they may be illegal. Some places have signs posted specifically allowing U-turns. Other places have banned U-turns altogether. In general, Ohio bans U-turns on hills or curves where you can’t be seen within 500 feet by a driver approaching from either direction.

A ticket for an illegal U-turn is a minor misdemeanor violation under Ohio law. The penalty is a $150 fine and 2 points on your driver’s license. However, a U-turn ticket can be a criminal misdemeanor when you have prior moving violations.

  • One Prior Moving Violation — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of one previous moving violation in the past year, an illegal U-turn is a 4th degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.
  • Two or More Prior Moving Violations — When you have pleaded guilty to or been found guilty of two or more previous moving violation in the past year, an illegal U-turn is a 3rd degree misdemeanor. The punishment if you’re convicted includes up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

Drivers License Points

A 2-point violation may not seem like a big deal on its own, but when you have multiple violations, you may soon run the risk of losing your driver’s license. Ohio requires suspension of your driver’s license when you get a total of 12 points.

Fighting Your Cincinnati Moving Violation

If you’ve been ticketed for a moving violation in Cincinnati or the surrounding area, it’s worthwhile to at least consult with a lawyer about your options. An experienced Cincinnati traffic defense lawyer might be able to get your ticket dismissed and help you avoid paying fines, getting points on your driver’s license, and paying more for car insurance.

Fight Your Ohio Traffic Ticket Today! Call LHA.

Criminal charges can be an overwhelming and frightening experience. You are probably worried about your freedoms and privileges being at stake and have a lot of questions. You can rest assured, because Cincinnati traffic lawyer Brad Groene is here for you. Get the justice that you deserve. Don’t hesitate to contact us today at or email us at advice@cincinnaticriminalattorney.com.
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