VEHICLE AND TRAFFIC CHARGE REQUEST FOR REDUCTION

To persons who have received a Vehicle and Traffic ticket and request a reduction/plea-bargain:



1.)    Do not contact the District Attorney’s Office for any reason involving your traffic ticket by any means, except as specified in the website instructions. Should you attempt to do so, your request for a plea-bargain will be automatically denied. No one in the District Attorney’s Office is permitted to give you any advice, legal or otherwise, nor is anyone permitted to communicate with you other than as discussed on this website.


2.)    We strongly recommend that you retain an attorney. The New York State Bar Association has a list of Attorneys:


Self-represented / Pro-Se Defendants:


3.)    If you choose to waive, or give up, your right to an attorney, you may still be eligible for a reduction of the offense for which you have been charged.


4.)    If you do not retain an attorney and you plan to represent yourself, understand, most importantly, that you must strictly comply with all orders of the Court.


5.)    If you would like to simply plead guilty as charged without going through the reduction/ plea-bargain process, you may do so through the Court.


6.)    Note also, that if you believe that you are not guilty of the offense with which you have been charged, you are not eligible for a plea-bargain and you must wait for the Court to schedule a trial date in your case.


7.)    If you would like to plead guilty to a lesser offense (a reduction/plea-bargain), the Court, the District Attorney and you must agree on all of the terms of that plea-bargain.


8.)    In order for you to be eligible to apply for a plea-bargain of your traffic ticket, your Vehicle and Traffic Ticket must be for a non-misdemeanor offense, i.e. an infraction. Neither alcohol-related, drug-related or AUO offenses are eligible for plea-bargains by this means. For those offenses, it is even more important to retain an attorney.


9.)    If you have decided to give up your right to retain an attorney and if you wish to seek a plea-bargain, you must strictly
comply with the following steps to properly seek a reduction:

        a.)    DOWNLOAD and print the Vehicle and Traffic Charge Request for Reduction Form; answer all of the questions on that form; AND

        b.)  Sign and date the form; AND

        c.)  Mail the form and include:

            a clear copy of your traffic ticket(s); AND

            a copy of your Driver's Abstract from your local DMV or from http://www.dmv.ny.gov/; AND
            a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

        TO:        Columbia County District Attorney
                      325 Columbia Street, Suite 260
                      Hudson, NY 12534


10.)    IMPORTANTYour application will be automatically DENIED and you will receive no response unless you strictly comply with all of the instructions and we receive all of the requested materials.


11.)    If this office receives all of these materials, an Assistant District Attorney will review your case and mail a written response to you. It will take 4 to 6 weeks to process your application. Do not contact our office to follow up on your application or for any other reason. Keep copies of all documents for your records.


12.)    You must also contact the Court to request an adjournment of your Court date. The Court may not grant such an adjournment request; that is entirely in the Court’s discretion. Also, merely requesting a reduction does not automatically excuse you from your scheduled Court appearances, or any other Court Order.


13.)    If you receive a plea-bargain offer from the District Attorney that is acceptable to you, sign it and mail it to the Court. A list of local Courts and their addresses is available on this webpage.


14.)    Understand that the Court may not approve our agreement. Even if you follow all of these instructions, it is still possible that you may not be eligible for a reduction, based on decisions of the Court or the District Attorney or other factors. If so, the Court will schedule your case for trial on a date and time the Court alone will determine.


15.)    If you are given a plea offer, you will only receive one (1) plea-bargain offer. If the Court or you reject that offer, the DA will not make another offer. If the plea-bargain offer is not entirely acceptable to you, you must contact the Court to learn of your trial date (on the original charge(s)).




FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQS)


1.)    Where do I submit my payment?

        The payment and plea agreement (with your signature) must be mailed together to the court listed on your ticket. A list of    Courts and addresses can be found at the bottom of this page (Local Court Addresses and Telephone Numbers).        
              
        
2.)    What is a driver’s abstract?

        It’s your most recent driving record available through your local DMV or the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles’    website:
        
https://dmv.ny.gov/dmv-records/get-my-own-driving-record-abstract


3.)    How do I know if you received my payment and signed plea agreement?

        If you submitted your payment and signed plea agreement, you need to contact the court to learn whether the court accepts the plea agreement. Contact information for each Court can be found at the bottom of this page (Local Court Addresses and        Telephone Numbers).    


4.)    Can I get a copy of my ticket?

        The District Attorney’s Office does not have copies of traffic tickets.


5.)    When is my payment due?

        Payment is due at the time of the plea. If payment is not made at the time the plea is made, the offer is withdrawn and the    original charge remains.


6.)    Can I submit a regular check?

        No, your payment must be submitted to the Court using a certified bank check or money order.


7.)    Can I submit my request form and documents by email?

        No. You must submit everything by regular mail.


8.)    Will my plea result in points?

        Information on Driver Violation Point System can be found here:

    
        Information can be found here:

https://www.wikihow.com/Send-an-S.A.S.E.-(Self-Addressed-Stamped-Envelope)


10.)    May I discuss this process or my ticket with the DA’s Office?

          We will not discuss your plea – ever, by telephone or in person or by any other means. If you do not understand the            process, we, once again, recommend that you retain an attorney.


**IMPORTANT REMINDERS**

THE COURT MAY NOT APPROVE OUR AGREEMENT.  IF SO, YOUR CASE WILL BE SCHEDULED FOR TRIAL.

SHOULD YOU BE CONVICTED BY GUILTY PLEA OR AFTER TRIAL, THE COURT ALONE WILL DETERMINE THE SENTENCE.

DO NOT CONTACT THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S OFFICE BY ANY MEANS OR FOR ANY REASON  INVOLVING YOUR 
TRAFFIC TICKET, EXCEPT AS SPECIFIED IN THE WEBSITE INSTRUCTIONS.  SHOULD YOU ATTEMPT TO DO SO, PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT NO ONE RECEIVING YOUR TELEPHONE CALL OR EMAIL IS AUTHORIZED TO COMMUNICATE WITH YOU.  PLEASE ALSO UNDERSTAND THAT WE CANNOT PROVIDE YOU WITH ANY ADVICE, LEGAL OR OTHERWISE.
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Lisa Bleau,
Mar 4, 2021, 9:23 AM
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Lisa Bleau,
Jan 13, 2021, 10:22 AM