More than likely, you have seen enough courtroom television to have some understanding of the term statute of limitations. But, how does this apply to municipal court hearings? Are there time limits for traffic offenses? Are the police precluded from writing you a ticket if it is outside allowable time?
Statute of Limitations for Traffic Violations
You may have heard all kinds of time limits as they apply to various areas of the law. For example, some use the blanket example of a personal injury claim. They believe they have up to two years to make a claim against a negligent party. Unfortunately, ignorance of the law rarely works in a person’s favor. Some cases require notification earlier than two years. The same is true with traffic tickets. Although many are subject to just thirty day restrictions, time limits are lengthened for some offenses.
What does the thirty day limitation mean? In order for you to receive a traffic violation for many offenses, you must receive a ticket or summons within thirty days. Otherwise, any case against you will be dismissed by the court. The section of the law that sets this time period is found at NJSA 39:5-3.
Exceptions to the Rule
Like many things in life, there are exceptions to the rule. If investigation reveals that you have committed certain motor vehicle offenses, the time limits may be extended. The court has the ability to order a police officer or some other government official to serve you with a summons for the following violations. Please note the time period that applies to each of these tickets:
Offense Statute of Limitations
Illegally obtaining a Driver’s License One Year
False Driver’s License Application while Suspended One Year
Falsifying Application upon Examination One Year
Leaving the Scene of an Accident One Year
Drunk Driving 90 Days
Passing a School Bus 90 Days
DWI with a CDL License 90 Days
Refusal to Submit to a Breathalyzer Test 90 Days
Operating a Boat while Drunk 90 Days
Why do Time Limitations Matter?
Although it is not necessarily a frequent occurrence, there is always the possibility that a summons has been issued out of time. This means that even if there is evidence that otherwise proves guilt, charges cannot be pursued.
At the Law Offices of Beninato & Matrafaljo, we recognize that our clients turn to us for an experienced legal defense. We can assist you in determining the best approach to handling your day in court. Contact us for legal advice concerning your receipt of traffic violations.