No person other than the person or their attorney who received the citation may enter a plea.
- Guilty – You admit that the act is prohibited by law and that you committed the act charged.
Before entering a plea of guilty you should first understand the following:
- The State has the burden of proving that you violated the law.
- You have the right to hear the State’s evidence and to require the State to prove you violated the law.
- A plea of guilty may be used against you later in a civil suit if there was a traffic accident.
- Nolo Contentere (No Contest) – You do not contest the State’s charge against you. You will be found guilty, unless you are eligible and complete a driver safety course or deferred disposition. A no contest plea may not be used against you in a subsequent civil suit for damages.
- Not Guilty – You are denying guilt and requiring the State to prove the charge filed against you. If you plea not guilty, you must decide if you wish to hire an attorney or represent yourself at trial.
- Plea Form
Any person under the age of 17 is considered a juvenile. All juveniles are required to appear in open court, with a parent or legal guardian, to enter their plea before the Judge. You will be notified of a specific date and time to appear before the Judge.
Any person age 17-21 is considered a minor. If you are 17 years of age and charged with an alcohol-related offense, you are required to appear in open court with a parent or legal guardian.
Failure to appear in court as required may result in an additional charge of Failure to appear AND a warrant being issued for your arrest.
All other minors are considered and handled as adult cases.
The following offenses may be dismissible:
- Expired Registration – If registered within 20 working days of the date the citation was issued and proof is provided to the court. There will be a $20.00 dismissal fee.
- Expired Inspection – If the inspection has not been expired for more than 60 days and the vehicle has been inspected within 20 working days of the date the citation was issued. Proof of inspection must be provided to the court. There will be a $20.00 dismissal
- Expired Driver’s License – If the driver’s license has been renewed within 20 working days of the date the citation was issued and proof is provided to the court. There will be a $20.00 dismissal fee.
- Fail To Display Driver’s License – If you actually had a valid driver’s license and you provide proof to the court, there will be no dismissal fee.
- Fail To Maintain Proof of Financial Responsibility (No Insurance) – If you are able to provide proof that you or the vehicle you were driving at the time the citation was written was covered by insurance, this charge may be dismissed at no charge.
- Fail to change address, operating a vehicle with only 1 license plate, obscured license plate, or defective equipment – Contact the court to find out if the offense is dismissible.
Driving Safety Course
If you are charged with a traffic offense, you may be eligible to take a driving safety course to dismiss the charge filed against you. The request must be made before the appearance date on the citation.
At the time of the request, you must present proof of financial responsibility (liability insurance) that was in effect at the time of the offense, enter a plea of guilty or no contest, provide a copy of a valid Texas driver’s license, and pay the court costs and an administrative fee for the offense.
In order to be eligible to take a driver safety course, you must not have taken a driver safety course in the last 12 months.
The following are NOT ELIGIBLE to take a Driver Safety Course:
- Have not requested or taken a driving safety course within 12 months and are not currently taking a course for another traffic violation;
- Held a commercial driver’s license (CDL) at the time the offense occurred
- Speeding 25 or more miles per hour over the speed limit or over 94 miles per hour
- Passing a school bus
- Reckless driving
- Flee or attempt to flee from a police officer
- Failure to stop and give information
- The offense occurred in a construction zone when workers are present
If approved, the case will be postponed for 90 days to allow you time to complete the course. You must attend a driving safety course that has been approved by the Texas Education Agency or a motorcycle operator’s course approved by the Department of Public Safety.
If you fail to complete the driver safety course or submit all documentation as ordered you will be notified to appear before the Judge to show cause why you failed to comply.
Deferred Disposition (Probation)
All requests for Deferred Disposition (Probation) must be made in person before the appearance date on your citation. Approval, length of the deferral period and terms and conditions of the deferral order are subject to the Judge’s discretion.
- You are NOT ELIGIBLE for deferral if you held a commercial driver’s license at the time the offense occurred.
- You are NOT ELIGIBLE if the offense was committed in a construction zone while workers were present.
- Drivers under the age of 25 are required to take a driver safety course as a term or condition of the deferral order.
- Driver’s that hold a provisional driver’s license are required to retest at DPS
Failure to comply with any term or condition of your deferral order may result in revocation of the order and conviction may be placed on your driver record.
For questions regarding your citation please contact the Court Clerk at (979) 828-3257 or (979) 828-1316.