How to Get a Reckless Driving Ticket Dismissed

How To Get A Reckless Driving Ticket Dismissed

Updated March 18, 2024

It only takes a few moments for a normal day on the road to go awry. Even a brief lapse in judgment or an errant movement in your vehicle could have serious legal consequences. Situations like these are why there are nearly 4,000 fatal crashes in California each year.

Getting a reckless driving citation can come with serious complications, such as blemishing your driving record and subjecting you to potential jail time. The good news is it's not impossible to navigate this area of traffic law as long as you have the right attorney on your side.

Let's explore everything you need to know about how to get a reckless driving ticket dismissed.

Traffic School/Defensive Driving Course

In some situations, a judge might allow you to complete traffic school or a defensive driving course to have your ticket dismissed. This allows you to avoid getting points on your license.

There are many school providers available, but the curriculum is generally the same. If you're taking the course online, your primary concern should be finding a legitimate website that doesn't impose unnecessary fees.

These can quickly add up and waste your money. You can also attend the course in person if you prefer. Regardless of how you handle the course, you will receive a certificate you can use to prove your completion.

Trial by Written Declaration

California has a procedure known as "trial by written declaration." This allows you to argue against your ticket in writing instead of speaking in court.

You can use this opportunity to make a formal statement and provide evidence. People who choose to fight their tickets on their own often prefer this option, as speaking in front of a judge can be nerve-racking. Public speaking is one of the most significant fears the average American has.

Prosecutor Negotiation

It's possible to reach a settlement with the prosecution instead of going to trial. This allows you to get your ticket dismissed as long as you satisfy their criteria. Consider a situation where you have multiple traffic charges from the same incident.

One is for speeding, one is for reckless driving, and another is for failure to wear a seatbelt. The prosecution could allow you to drop the reckless driving charge if you accept the failure to wear a seatbelt charge.

The nuances of this situation will vary depending on what you're charged with and who the prosecutor is. However, it's worth trying to reason with them. This has the potential to save you substantial time and money.

Errors in Citation

When citing you for reckless driving, law enforcement could potentially make an error. This could come in many forms, such as misspelling your name or writing down the wrong address.

Even a single error can cause issues for the prosecution. An often-seen scenario is when the court documents the wrong address.

Misidentifying the vehicle or driver is another common citation error that can be difficult to defend. These are often grounds for dismissal, especially if the errors are egregious.

Lack of Evidence

In some situations, there can be a lack of evidence for your traffic citation. To clarify, let's assume you received a reckless driving citation after getting pulled over by law enforcement. However, you were going exactly the speed limit and weren't exhibiting dangerous behavior.

The officer mistakenly pulled you over instead of someone else in an identical car who was driving recklessly. The officer never clocked your speed because he witnessed the other vehicle's behavior. Since they don't have evidence that you were driving recklessly, your ticket could be dismissed.

Procedural Issues

This term can refer to various circumstances, such as the methods and rules the court uses to ensure people have the right to a fair trial. An illegally held person in jail is a major procedural issue that can get your reckless driving charge dropped.

The same can be said about a witness testimony that disproves the prosecution's claims. Not all cases will have procedural issues, but it's imperative to capitalize on situations that do. Your attorney can recognize when it's time to take action.

Finding an Attorney

With so many attorneys available, it can be overwhelming to pinpoint the one best for your situation. Keeping an eye out for certain criteria can help streamline the process. Listed below are the key details to consider.


Never choose a lawyer who doesn't have a strong reputation. There should be no shortage of positive feedback from previous clients.

Checking their online reviews is a great way to start. Many attorneys also have client testimonials. These are far more in-depth than conventional reviews and provide detailed information about what you can expect.

When in doubt, ask your family and friends for recommendations for a lawyer with a solid reputation.

Level of Experience

Inexperienced attorneys won't always fall short of your goals. However, they'll be much less likely to help you reach them.

A lawyer who's been around for ten years or more will have no trouble guiding you through your case. You should also make sure they're experienced with handling reckless driving charges. This is a serious offense, and you should never roll the dice when looking for representation.


How enthusiastic are they about helping you? If they don't seem committed to your case, it's best to search elsewhere.

You can gauge how interested they are by paying attention to the questions they ask. Reputable attorneys will want to know as much as possible before moving forward.

Understand How to Get a Reckless Driving Ticket Dismissed

As long as you find the right lawyer, you'll have no trouble protecting yourself from legal consequences. Keep the answer to "How to get a reckless driving ticket dismissed" so you can take the right course of action and avoid issues you may have otherwise encountered.

F Your Ticket is Southern California's premier traffic ticket dismissal service. We strive to deliver fast outcomes without sacrificing quality. You'll learn more about the many benefits we can provide when you book a free consultation today.