Category Archives: Blog

Proposed Bill May Result in Less Expensive Traffic Tickets

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One of the most important bills making its way towards potentially becoming law is the major texting while driving bill that would turn it from a secondary into a primary offense. While the bill is aimed at reducing the dangers of distracted driving, there is another bill that was recently approved aimed specifically at traffic tickets. Pay close attention as it may help you out in the future should you ever receive a traffic ticket.

This latest bill (unrelated to the texting while driving bill) could potentially allow drivers to receive a discount of up to eighteen percent on their traffic ticket provided they participate in a driver improvement course. The bill would apply to non-criminal traffic infractions and the discount could only be applicable if the driver hasn’t already chosen the course option within a twelve month period. Drivers would be allowed to use this option a maximum of five times during their lifetime.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket lawyer today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

The Massive Rise in Careless Driving Crashes

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Florida is one of the few states in the country with texting while driving laws that, when compared to other states, are unusually lenient. Perhaps, as a result, crashes are seeing a dramatic rise in the Sunshine State, according to a Sun Sentinel article released earlier this month.

While lawmakers continue to debate and iron out the kinks in an effort to create stricter texting while driving legislation, a recent analysis shows more than two million crashes that are typically associated with texting and driving have alarmingly risen. Between 2013 and 2016, accidents jumped by more than ten percent, yet crashes involving careless driving have increased over three times that amount. One of the largest culprits involved in these careless driving accidents is failing to remain in the proper lane followed closely by running stop signs. Improper passing, sideswiping a vehicle traveling in the same direction and ignoring road signs/markings have also jumped.

According to the Sun Sentinel article, texting while driving has gotten so bad, law enforcement officers often mistakenly stop drivers thinking they’re under the influence only to find the driver is sober, albeit preoccupied with their phone.

You can read more at the following link: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/florida/fl-reg-texting-driving-crashes-rise-20180122-story.html.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with one of the Miami criminal traffic lawyers today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

Uber Drivers Will Have to Take a Break

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We all know Uber is one of the most convenient ways to get around the city. For many Uber drivers, the service is one of, if not their primary means of income. This means they probably spend several hours a day on the road, which could result in fatigue or worse, drowsiness. Uber is taking this into account by launching a new feature aimed at helping drowsy drivers.

Should an Uber driver work for twelve hours, he or she will receive a notification on their phone asking them to take a six-hour break. While it may seem tempting to disregard, Uber will not allow the driver to continue using the app until those six hours have passed. Hence, drivers are essentially being forced to take a break. Drivers will also receive an alert when they are approaching the twelve-hour mark.

A recent survey by the National Sleep Foundation revealed some concerning results showing that close to seven million people have admitted to dozing off while driving. While drivers may not appreciate being forced to take a break, Uber believes it’s “a call that can’t be ignored”, according to the Sun Sentinel article where the news story was originally published.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Texting While Driving Bill Passes Another Committee

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If you’ve been keeping up on recent blogs, you’ve likely noticed the regular updates being posted regarding the Florida bill currently under evaluation that would allow law enforcement officers to pull over drivers if they are caught texting while they’re behind the wheel. Yesterday, the bill passed yet another hurdle, this time successfully making its way through the third and final House committee. Before the bill will become law, it will still have to pass in the House as well the Senate.

Should the texting while driving bill become law, Florida will join 43 states that have already made texting while driving a primary offense. As mentioned in previous blogs, Florida’s current laws have had it as a secondary offense since 2013, which means a driver would need to be pulled over for a different reason (i.e.: speeding) before they could receive a citation for texting. These citations remain rare, with fewer than 1,500 people being ticketed for it in 2016.

 

One of the major issues that could derail the texting while driving bill is the risk of racial profiling, a concern expressed among civil rights advocates and black legislators, according to a Miami Herald article. To deal with this concern, an amendment to the bill would require police to record the driver’s race and ethnicity when they have been stopped for texting. Should the police wish to search the driver’s phone to confirm they were texting, the officer would have to inform the driver that they have the right to decline the search before the officer can proceed.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with someone at the Miami ticket law firm today.

 

Violation Points and Your License

babyDriverAs is the case in many other states, Florida’s driver licenses work on a point system when it comes to traffic offenses. Unlike your average board or video game where the player with the most points wins, the more points accumulated on a license, the greater the odds of the license being suspended. In other words, your driving privileges are revoked. Though police aren’t actively looking for drivers with a suspended license, being caught may result in severe consequences, including potential jail time.

Points on your license will typically remain there for a maximum of three years before they are removed. Your driving record will show these blemishes, but the points will not affect your license. There is also the risk of accumulating points while driving in other states. Hence, it’s imperative to be a safe and responsible driver.

Generally, the points system works as follows:

  • Twelve points within a one year period may result in your license being suspended for thirty days.
  • Eighteen points within an eighteen-month period may result in a three-month suspension.
  • Twenty-four points in three years will result in a one year license suspension.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with our legal team about fighting your Miami civil traffic tickets.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

Texting While Driving Bill Clears Another Hurdle

textingThe Florida bill that would turn texting while driving from a secondary into a primary offense continues to make its way successfully, recently passing the hurdle of the House Judiciary Committee. The Committee approved the House bill but it did not approve a potential change to a Senate bill that would require law enforcement to make a note of a driver’s ethnicity and race when writing a texting while driving ticket. The change/requirement was added to address concerns about racial profiling among minorities.

In its current status as a secondary offense, a motorist can only be cited if he or she has been pulled over for a different reason. Should the Senate and House legislation succeed, the offense would be “upgraded” into a primary one, allowing law enforcement officials to stop a driver if the person is caught texting while driving.

In 2016, over 50,000 motor vehicle crashes in Florida alone were caused by motorists driving distracted. Over 200 of those crashes, unfortunately, resulted in fatalities.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a red light camera violation attorney today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Heads Up: Miami Marathon’s Weekend Road Closures

marathonIn case you weren’t aware, the annual Miami Marathon is returning this Sunday, January 28, bringing hundreds of thousands of runners to the Magic City and beyond. For Miami drivers heading to work or elsewhere, it’s a good idea to take proactive measures and be aware of the various road closures.

For starters, Miami Beach officials are recommending that anyone who will be entering or exiting the barrier island between 6:00 AM to 10:00 AM should use the Julia Tuttle Causeway instead of the MacArthur Causeway. The marathon kicks off bright and early at 6:00 AM in Miami’s American Airlines Arena and runners will be traveling towards Miami Beach through the MacArthur Causeway followed by Ocean Drive, the Venetian Causeway, and even south to the neighborhood of Coconut Grove.

The Miami Marathon will be over by 2:00 PM, though there is a procedure in place to ensure the roads reopen once they’re clear of runners. It’s worth noting, however, that northbound Biscayne Boulevard will also be closed from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM from Southeast 3rd Street to Northeast 2nd Street on Saturday.

You can see the full list of expected Miami Marathon road closures by clicking here. Stay safe!

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

New Report Suggests Lowering the DUI Threshold

duiCould more be done to prevent fatalities due to drunk drivers? According to a government-commissioned report released earlier this week by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine panel, yes, more can be done indeed. The report suggests a multitude of recommendations, including lowering the legal blood alcohol level threshold from .08 to .05.

Here in Florida, more than 8,000 deaths were caused by drunk drivers between 2003 to 2012, per the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Additionally, just over two percent of adults in the state reported they operated a vehicle after having had a little too much to drink, compared to the country’s average of 1.9 percent. The panel believes policies and initiatives need to be implemented to tackle and reduce “preventable deaths” while driving.

Other suggestions include a greater amount of sobriety checkpoints and ignition interlock devices for any DUI offender. These breath analyzing devices should be monitored for at least two years for first time offenders and four years for a second offense. In Florida, these devices are already required for individuals convicted of a DUI.

You can read more about the report by visiting the New Report Calls for Lowering Blood Alcohol Concentration Levels for Driving, Increasing Federal and State Alcohol Taxes, Increasing Enforcement, Among Other Recommendations page.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket attorney team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with one of the Miami criminal traffic lawyers today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Red Light Camera Bill Moves on to the Senate

redLightFor those following the latest developments in Florida’s efforts to ban red light cameras, the bill proposing its banning recently made it past the state House with a vote of 83 to 18. However, its future as it makes its way through the Senate remains uncertain. This marks the third year in a row that the bill (HB 6001) has successfully made it beyond the House.

House Republicans that support HB 6001 believe red light cameras are being utilized by counties and the cities within them as a means of making money. These cameras were originally implemented back in 2010 after legislators gave the okay to local governments to use the cameras for the purpose of issuing tickets to any driver running red lights. However, ever since the cameras were rolled out, they have generated a significant amount of controversy.

Should HB 6001 successfully pass in the Senate, the bill would require that local governments phase out their red light cameras by 2021. If this were to happen, it’s believed the banning could save Florida drivers as much as $159 million a year in citation fees. Supporters of red light cameras believe they assist with traffic safety.

What are your thoughts on the red light cameras?

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

Florida’s New Driver’s Licenses Are Now Available

new-dlArguably more important than your credit cards, your driver’s license is an essential item in your wallet. From doctor’s visits to buying a house and proving who you are, it’s crucial to have. Florida has now made this vital ID even safer.

Last year we mentioned how the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) will be rolling out its plans to issue the newly redesigned driver’s license. These new licenses can now be obtained online or by visiting a Florida DMV.

To make these cards the most secure ones yet, the DHSMV worked closely with law enforcement to ensure a driver’s information remains secure. The new licenses have much greater security aimed at deterring counterfeiters, improving identity protection, and increasing the difficulty in making fake duplicates.

Additionally, the new licenses now have even greater versatility. Instead of being used largely for the purpose of verifying your identity, the new licenses consolidate other licenses you may have such as a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) hunting license. The licenses also have improved versatility for displaying designations such as being dependent on insulin, being deaf or hard of hearing, organ donor, and more.

You can learn more about the new licenses by visiting http://www.flhsmv.gov/newDL.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami speeding ticket lawyer today.