1) Pay the ticket, accept the fine and demerit points.
2) Book an Early Resolution Meeting and discuss the case with the prosecutor. Moving violations will not be erased by the prosecutor and you will either have to accept a smaller charge or set the matter to trial.
3) Set the matter for trial, possibly work out a deal with the prosecutor or maybe get off the charge all together.
To download a form to file your ticket click Notice of Intention to Appear. We can also file your ticket for free in the GTA, don’t pay somebody to file your tickets. Just download the form or fill it out and print it, then fax it to 905-952-0687 or scan and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The difference between steps 2 and 3 are very important.
First, at the early resolution meeting the prosecution will usually not have any evidence and the officer is also not there. Only document charges like Fail to Surrender Licence or Fail to Surrender Insurance Card will be withdrawn. Other charges like Speeding or Disobeying a Stop Sign can’t be withdrawn but may be reduced. The process usually takes longer from to start to finish than setting the matter for trial.
Second, setting the matter for trial is the only way of possibly beating the ticket all together, the officer has to attend and bring the evidence. You may still speak to the prosecutor to make a deal but if the officer doesn’t show then they will usually withdraw the charge. You may also run a trial and possibly beat the charge. You spend less time between checking in and waiting for the court to start then you do with the Early Resolution Meeting.
Filing for trial: Your options have recently changed based on amendments to the Provincial Offences Act. The changes are to make the Court system quicker but also to make it easier to pay the ticket and harder to challenge the ticket.
The common traffic ticket called an Offence Notice has three options on the back. The first is to pay, the second is to meet with a prosecutor and the third is to challenge the ticket. All tickets must now be filed at the court location listed on the back of the ticket, no longer can you file the ticket at a different court house within the 15 days.
The first two options are available regardless of where you live in relation to the court. However if you want to excercise your right to a trial you or your representative must appear at the court house listed on the back of the ticket regardless of where you live in relation to the court. The proper form must then be filled out. See above Notice of Intention to Appear for the correct form.
The summons as previously stated has a date and location for you to appear. When appearing on this day you may speak to a prosecutor there and resolve the matter though they usually do not have all the documents ready to prove the allegation against you. They usually do not have the officer present to prove the case as well. They hope that on your own admission you will accept a plea to a lesser charge.
You may also set the matter for trial. They will pick a date usually several months away so that both the defence and prosecution may get ready for trial. On the trial date you may have the opportunity to resolve the matter depending on the facts of the case.
The positive, it’s quicker than setting the matter for trial, you may get a lower fine than on the trial date. The negative, you are pleading to a charge they can’t prove unless you admit it, it is usually an all morning process and the conviction will be registered against you. The conviction will usually carry high penalties including Licence Suspensions and Jail Time or Vehicle Impoundment. These types of charges will put you into facility or high risk insurance.
Once charged the process is set for you in terms of your first appearance and obligations. The charging document you receive will have a date for you to appear at court and you will receive a separate document for you to attend a police facility for finger printing.
You are required to attend the first date listed on your charging document unless you’ve hired representation and they’ve informed you otherwise. To discuss these types of charges further please contact our office and have your papers with you.