After saving your money and vacation days, you have finally found yourself cruising down Beachfront Avenue and enjoying the Florida sun. You are looking for the nearest ocean access, and the only thing on your mind is how long you can remain in the sun without burning. You are thinking about having dinner at a dockside restaurant just so you can remain near the water while you eat. However, you are not thinking about how fast you are driving.
The next thing you know the blue lights are flashing in your rearview mirror and you are being stopped by the local police. After providing your license, registration, and insurance papers, the police officer informs you that you were doing 12 miles over the posted speed limit. He flips open his ticket book and begins to write. You already know this is going to be expensive.
Has Your Vacation Been Ruined?
The good news is that Florida understands that a majority of the drivers on their roads are from another state. Because of this, most speeding tickets, if they are not so serious as to be a felony, can be paid by mailing in the ticket within 30 days of the offense. This allows you to continue with your vacation without any worries, just as long as you remit payment when you arrive home.
If your speeding ticket is considered a felony offense, such as for driving in excess of 15 mph over the limit, you may face a court date and need the services of a speeding ticket attorney. Because of your out-of-state residence, there may also be additional complications for you if you do not hire an attorney to represent your felony offense.
Most states treat speeding tickets from other states as if the offense occurred within their borders. This means that if a felony ticket in your state results in an automatic suspension of your license if convicted, it will also apply to the speeding ticket in Florida you just received. If there are automatic points added to your license, or driving school requirements, these will still affect you in your home state when you get written up in Florida.
To avoid all of these problems, pay your tickets promptly, and if you are required to go to court, seek legal representation.
Enjoying Your Vacation
While it is very easy to become engulfed in the local flavor and culture of your vacation destination, it is always important to remember the rules of the road. In Florida, because the beach and other tourist destination areas generally have large amounts of traffic both in cars and on foot, the speed limits are reduced in these areas.
It is also important to remember that when you are visiting Florida, there are specific rules that apply to school zones and construction areas. It is against the law to drive over 20mph in a school zone when the lights are flashing in the zone. Speeding fines are doubled during this period, and if you are going too fast, it is a felony.
Speeding fines are also doubled in a construction zone if workers are present. There may also be other conditions in Florida, such as fog, that may require you to drive below the posted speed.
If you have received a ticket, do not let it ruin your vacation. Make sure that you pay it as soon as possible, and if it is necessary, seek professional legal representation if the ticket is considered a felony.