It’s only been open since April, 2013, but the Suffolk County Traffic Violations & Parking Agency (SCTVPA) already has the unofficial honor of being the highest-priced court in New York State. Based on the fact that attorneys from my traffic law firm appear in 100s of NY traffic courts for our clients each year, it is clear from the results we carefully monitor that STVPA imposes the highest fines in the State.
Below are a few recent few cases that we recently resolved at the STVPA, located at the H. Lee Dennison Building, Ground Floor, North Entrance, 100 Veterans Memorial Highway, Hauppauge, NY 11788:
- JN – Original charge 6-point speed and 2-point failed to dim headlights reduced to a 0-point 1202(b)(2), with a $700 fine.
- SF – Original charge 6 point speed reduced to 0-point 1202(b)(2), a 0-point violation, with fine of $450.
- LK – Original Charge VTL 1144 reduced to 0-point 1202(b)(2), with fine of $350.
- HK – Original Charge 6 point speed reduced to 0-point 1202(b)(2), with fine of $450
These fine amounts are significantly higher than those imposed in other traffic courts for similar cases.
With that said, the deals themselves are terrific. Anytime, you can get a moving violation that carries 4 or more points to 0 points, you getting a good deal.
Further, I want to be clear that I am NOT complaining. I am confident to write that traffic defense lawyers (including myself) are virtually all pleased with the new system. Previously, most traffic tickets in Suffolk were adjudicated at the Hauppauge Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB). At the TVB, there is no plea bargaining so motorists who fought their cases were not offered any plea deals. Instead, they had to defend themselves at a hearing where the only outcomes were guilty or not guilty (i.e., nothing in between). Further, the chances of winning at a hearing were low.
The new system, while pricey, is still a significant improvement over the former TVB system. Now we can only hope that New York, Rochester and Buffalo follow Suffolk’s lead and replace their TVB systems.
Let me tell you all the state is doing is taking advantage of the motorist they can care less they are only looking for money and the new system is so unorganized where they get off charging $400 for a parking ticket?
Thanks for sharing your opinion. I am sure that paying high fines can be frustrating.
Aren’t these fines capped by State law? Can the court charge, e.g., a $10,000 fine for 1202?
Great question (and as always thanks for being such a loyal reader of this blog).
I just researched the issue and found out that the maximum fine for a VTL 1202(b)(2) conviction is $400 (first offense). It goes up to $600 and $750 for second and third convictions.
It appears, therefore, that the SCTVPA is actually over-charging some motorists. I will look into this further.