Gwinnett County Recorder’s Court handles traffic citations issued by the local county police department and Georgia State Patrol, including violations for driving without a license.
Driving without a valid license in Georgia is a significant traffic offense that could result in a misdemeanor penalty on your record. You are also facing a range of other consequences. So it’s a good idea to understand the possible outcomes before you make any decisions regarding a plea or going to court.
Pleading Guilty to a No License Charge
Your first option for resolving a no license charge in Gwinnett is to pay the fine before going to court. This action is the same as entering a guilty plea, which means you will have a misdemeanor offense on your record.
Additionally, the state could still suspend your license. And, if the police officer caught you driving on a suspended license, you are often facing an additional six months suspension.
While paying the fine might seem like an easy resolution, that’s not always the case. Especially since you cannot resolve all violations – and avoid court – by paying the ticket. These “must appear” offenses require you to show up to your court date and enter a plea.
Pleading Not Guilty to a Traffic Violation
You or your attorney are usually required to appear in court if you decide to plead not guilty to driving without a license. But this is not something that you should take lightly, since a plea of not guilty is the same thing as asking for a trial. You want to be prepared to request the type of trial you are looking for – bench or jury trial. This is more of an important decision than most drivers realize. If the court convicts you, you face a minimum $500 fine, two days in jail, and a suspended license for up to six months.
But, a skilled Gwinnett traffic violation lawyer can help improve your odds. They may be able to:
- Identify areas in your case that would be a viable defense
- Get charges reduced
- Help you avoid an automatic license suspension
On the other hand, if you don’t know your rights and understand the options, you may end up paying more fees and facing harsher penalties.
If you’re serious about fighting a no license charge in Georgia, schedule a free consult with a traffic attorney before going to court.
What If I Miss My Court Date for a Traffic Violation?
It’s common for people to misplace a citation and completely forget about their court date. But failing to show up to your arraignment has painful repercussions.
Not only are you looking at more fees and time spent in court to resolve your Failure to Appear (FTA) status, but the state issues a bench warrant for your arrest and contacts the Georgia Department of Driver Services to suspend your license.
Even worse, if you are unaware the state has taken this action, you could end up in jail if an officer catches you driving on a suspended license. So, even when you can prove that a lawful excuse kept you from your court date, resolving an FTA can be a costly experience.
If you have questions about your fine or your court date, you can contact the Gwinnett Recorder’s Court at 1-877-794-0988. You can also visit them online at Www.Gwinnettrecorderscourtpmts.Com.