Plea Deals

Plea Deals

Traffic tickets can be troublesome and expensive, yet ultimately they exist to make our roads safer. But when reckless drivers are able to plead down serious violations that should be removing them from the driver’s seat, the safety of all Long Islanders on the road is put at serious risk.


Plea Deals Can Be Dangerous!

Some residents are skeptical about traffic tickets and it’s understandable why. According to an article published by Newsday this week, Long Island collected a total of $146 million in traffic fines in 2017 and some of the fees collected were from the controversial red-light cameras. Despite this belief, traffic tickets have a dual purpose when it comes to municipalities: to punish drivers who are not following the traffic laws in hopes to reduce reckless behaviors, while using the additional revenue to better our cities and towns.

Plea deals, however, can make protecting our roads via traffic tickets far more difficult. Unlike red-light camera fines which are issued to the vehicle owners with no point penalties, traffic tickets issued for dangerous behaviors such as speeding have the option for a driver to plead down to lesser charges, affecting multiple different parties in the process.


How Plea Deals Work

When a reckless driver gets a ticket for speeding or careless driving, the first reaction is to fight back. Initially, drivers have the option of downgrading the ticket or having it amended to an ‘unsafe driving’ charge by way of a plea deal. The driver not only gets out of points on their license but avoids the mark of an actual speeding or careless driving charge on their record. Plea deals still require drivers to pay larger fines, but not as hefty as the original offenses. Fees collected on traffic tickets for less serious offenses stay within the municipalities themselves and don’t require the collection of a  surcharge which is handed over to the state.


Encouraging Dangerous Drivers

Even though a driver might have a lighter wallet after accepting a plea deal, there are no significant incentives not to repeat these reckless behaviors without the additional penalties to worry about. In the State of New York, the law states that a driver will have their license suspended if they get 11 points or receive three speeding tickets within an 18-month period. Drivers who plead guilty to lesser charges may have met these requirements if they had pleaded guilty to their original tickets but plea deals allow them to skip these severe consequences and continue practicing dangerous driving habits.


Inaccurate Data

Data collection needed to improve traffic laws and infrastructure can be skewed when drivers accept plea deals. Our state and national organizations such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) rely on reports and statistics analyzing driving behaviors to update traffic laws and policies that protect us on the road. They also use the data to determine areas of priority when it comes to road improvements, renovations, and speed limit adjustments to help keep accident rates down.

Plea deals provide inaccurate data concerning the number of actual speeding and careless driving offenses cited on our roadways, making it harder to use the data correctly to improve traffic safety. An article published by Data-Smart City Solutions in October 2017 highlights the importance of accurate data when it comes to New York City achieving its Vision Zero goal of zero traffic fatalities. Unreported dangerous driving habits can provide an unreliable impression about how safe certain traffic areas are and what plans would be most effective in making them safer for drivers and pedestrians.


Missed Revenue for State

In addition to inaccurate data, the state misses out on revenue from traffic tickets in the form of surcharges for serious traffic violations. The state collects about $100 per offense in addition to the fine paid for the traffic offense. Though residents may find these surcharges over the top and unnecessary, these fines go towards funding court-appointed attorneys, crime victim assistance programs, and to the state’s general fund which supports various state agencies.


Insurance Companies Fooled

Insurance companies can also bear the brunt of drivers accepting plea deals for traffic tickets. When a driver displays reckless behaviors on the road, their insurance premiums go up as their risk to others goes up too. Without the correct information on how risky drivers really are, insurance companies are deceived out of charging appropriate premiums to cover these dangerous motorists. They also miss out on data that can be used to improve policies and create useful reports analyzing road safety from a national perspective.


Tickets Really Do Save Lives

Traffic laws may be cumbersome but studies show they work. In an analysis of regional highway safety laws and FARS mortality statistics performed by Auto Insurance Center, data showed that states with the strictest traffic laws saw lower rates of road fatalities caused by vehicle crashes. In another study published in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, researchers analyzed the effectiveness of a ticket program in Massachusetts. They found that as unpopular as traffic tickets were, drivers drove safer during heavily ticketed periods than they did when ticketing was lax.


Drive Safe NY

All of the fuss around plea deals and traffic tickets can be avoided if drivers use safe driving habits on the road. Speeding and using reckless maneuvers to get where you need to be quicker is not worth taking someone’s life. Slow down, pay attention, and avoid using aggressive moves that could cause unnecessary and preventable accidents.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, the law firm of Siler & Ingber is here to help. Our expert team of personal injury attorneys has been fighting back against negligent drivers in New York City and Long Island for over 20 years. Contact us at 1-877-529-4343 today for a free case review to find out more about your options.


Share this post



PROMOTION PERIOD: The Siler & Ingber Mineola MegaStar Contest begins on March 20, 2023 at 12:00 am ET and
ends on May 1, 2023 at 11:59 PM ET.

ELIGIBILITY: To be eligible, a MegaStar must be a legal U.S. resident at least 16 years of age as of date of
Nomination. A Mineola MegaStar is defined as a person who lives or works in Mineola and is admired or idealized for their courage, dedication, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. By participating, Entrants agree to be
bound by the official rules. Sponsors reserve the right to verify and determine eligibility in their sole discretion.

TO PARTICIPATE: During the Promotion Period, Siler & Ingber will accept from the members of the public (herein, the “Nominators”) nominations of Eligible Entrants (Mineola Megastars) who live or works in Mineola. Nominations may be entered by visiting and completing the online form and essay submission or by emailing photo and essay to during the Promotion Period to receive one (1) entry. Essay must not exceed 500 words. Acceptable essay formats are word documents or pdf ONLY. Nominations submitted without all required information or after the Promotion Period will be disregarded.
Online submissions must be received by May 1, 2023 at 11:59 PM ET to be eligible. All entries become the exclusive property of Siler & Ingber and will not be acknowledged or returned.

ESSAY: During the promotion period, an Entrant can nominate a Mineola MegaStar for the contest by submitting a
photo and essay. The essay must describe why the individual should be chosen as the award winner, including how the individual demonstrates some or all of the following qualifications:

1) an inspiring example to others by helping make Mineola a better place to live (through volunteerism, extra-curricular actives, special projects, giving back, etc.)

2) going above and beyond to aid a friend, family member, stranger or community in a time of need; and/or

3) love of profession and desire, determination and diligence to help outside of normal job responsibilities. The essay must be in English and no more than 500 words. All information provided must be truthful, accurate and complete. An Entrant cannot nominate more than one Hero.

Submitted Materials: Each essay must satisfy all the following submission requirements the Submission


· The essay must be the original creation of Entrant.

· The essay must not portray any recognizable individual without their prior consent, including consent from the

· Entrant must either own all rights to the essay or otherwise have the right to submit the essay in the contest and to provide the rights to Sage Surfaces as set forth herein.

· The essay must not infringe any third party’s intellectual property rights.

· The essay may not contain illegal, indecent, obscene, pornographic, or sexually explicit content, or otherwise offensive material or inappropriate content such as aberrational behavior, graphic violence, drug abuse, or nudity.

· The essay must not promote bigotry, racism, hatred or harm against any group or individual or discrimination based on race, gender, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age.

· The essay must be non-defamatory and must not invade any third party’s right of privacy or publicity.

· The essay must otherwise be appropriate for publication or broadcast or display on a general interest website.

By submitting an essay, each Entrant represents and warrants that the essay meets all of the submission
requirements and that the distribution, reproduction, display and any other uses of any part of the essay by Siler & Ingber as permitted herein will not infringe any third-party rights. Each Entrant further agrees to indemnify and hold Siler & Ingber harmless from and against any and all claims, demands, damages, costs, liabilities and causes of action of whatsoever nature that are based upon or arise out of any breach by such Entrant of such warranties or representations made by contestant or of these official rules.

By submitting an essay, Entrant grants to Siler & Ingber a non-exclusive, perpetual, world-wide, royalty-free license (and waives all moral rights in and to the essay) to display or otherwise use the essay in connection with this promotion and as set forth herein. If Siler & Ingber determines, in its sole discretion and at any time during the promotion period, that any nomination violates the submission requirements, is otherwise unsuitable, offensive, or in poor taste, or violates these official rules, Siler & Ingber reserves the right to remove and disqualify the essay. Siler & Ingber retains sole
discretion as to whether any nomination satisfies the submission requirements and the official rules.

WINNER SELECTION: For the entry period, a panel of judges will select potential Mineola Megastar finalists based on the compelling nature of the essay based on the criteria set forth herein. Top 5 entries will be announced on May 10, 2023. We will post the top 5 on social media. Final winner announced May 15, 2023. Award Ceremony for Mineola MegaStar will take place on May 19, 2023.

WINNER NOTIFICATION AND RELEASES: We will attempt to notify potential winners via telephone and/or email. If a potential winner: (a) does not respond within 48 hours of initial notification attempt; (b) is not in compliance with these official rules, (c) does not meet the eligibility requirements, (d) declines the prize, he or she will be disqualified, and an alternate winner will be selected by applying the criteria set forth above.
PRIZES: There is 1 Mineola MegaStar. Winner will receive a $500 Cash Prize.

PUBLICITY AND MARKETING: Submission of a nomination in the contest constitutes permission to Siler & Ingber to use Entrants name, identity, title, likeness, distinctive appearance, physical likeness, image, portrait, picture, photograph (whether still or moving), screen persona, voice, vocal style, statements, gesture, mannerism, personality, performance characteristic, biographical data, signature, social media handles and identities, and any other indicia or imitation of identity or likeness for purposes of advertising and trade, in any medium, without further notice, approval, or compensation, unless prohibited by law.

PRIZE RESTRICTIONS: No transfer, assignment, sale, duplication, cash redemption or substitution of Prize (or portion of Prize) is permitted, except by Sponsors, which reserve the right to substitute a Prize (or applicable portion of Prize) with one of comparable or greater value, as determined by Sponsors. Sponsors are not responsible for and will not replace a lost or stolen Prize or any component thereof. All Prize details are at Sponsors’ sole and absolute discretion. Non-compliance with these Official Rules may result in disqualification and, at Sponsors’ sole discretion, the awarding of Prize to an alternate winner.


Do I Have A Case

    Skip to content