Contrary to what you might think, getting a ticket out-of-state can have the same consequences as getting a ticket in-state. Most states have entered into various interstate compacts where they will share specific details of traffic tickets for out-of-state drivers. In the event you receive a citation for speeding or some other traffic violation, your state’s DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) could be notified.
The two compacts most states’ DVMs use are the Driver’s License Compact (DLC) and the Nonresident Violator Compact (NVC). The DLC will report details of the traffic violation/conviction to your home state. The NVC is the compact used to enforce unpaid out-of-state tickets.
How Do I Resolve an Out-of-State Ticket?
You may have different options for resolving a ticket you received out-of-state. You should have the option to fight the ticket and appear in traffic court in the issuing jurisdiction. For most people, driving back to the state where they received the ticket is not financially feasible, so many choose to just pay their ticket.
However, before paying the ticket, you will want to contact the issuing jurisdiction’s traffic court (which is typically on the ticket and/or paperwork provided by the officer at the time of the ticket). Some states may allow you to complete traffic school for an out-of-state ticket and have it dismissed. While there is a cost for traffic school, those fees are normally much lower compared to the costs and fees associated with paying for the moving violation(s).
For states that do offer the traffic school option, you do not have to return to the state to attend traffic school. Most states will allow you to complete the required course(s) through an approved online program, like the ones we offer, here at Ticket School. They may require you to complete a state approved course in your home state or complete one that is approved in the state where you got the ticket.
To pay your ticket, the police officer who issued the ticket should have provided you with information on where you can pay it by mail, online, or over the phone. If you did not receive this information, you need to contact the issuing jurisdiction’s traffic court as soon as possible. Most tickets have a set period of time allowed to dispute or pay them.
Based on the type of infraction, and what system your state uses, and whether or not the points follow you from the ticket issuing state to your home state—the number of points could be added to your license for the paid ticket.
What if I Don’t Pay the Traffic Ticket?
If you fail to pay an out-of-state traffic ticket, the citation does not go away.When you go to renew your license or if you get stopped for another moving violation in your state, your license could already be suspended. You could potentially also receive a ticket for driving on a suspended license.
Before you can renew your license, you would need to resolve any outstanding ticket and pay any other license reinstatement fees. Furthermore, additional points would likely be added to your license for the new ticket.
Ignoring an out-of-state ticket is never a good idea. You should take steps to resolve any ticket by completing approved traffic school courses (when given that option) or by paying it. For more information about our traffic school courses or to register for one if you have a ticket, please feel free to contact us at (800) 558-9887 today!