Errors and Mistakes on Speeding Tickets

Speeding tickets may have two (2) types of errors called, “Minor Mistakes” and “Fatal Errors”.

Types of Ticket Errors

Most minor mistakes on speeding tickets are allowed to be fixed or corrected by the court. Minor errors will not result in a ticket being canceled, where as most fatal mistakes should result in the ticket being dismissed or withdrawn, with exceptions.

Speeding Ticket Mistake characterMinor mistakes are:

  • fixable by the court
  • information not crucial for a conviction
  • will not get the ticket canceled

Fatal errors are:

  • not fixable
  • crucial for a conviction
  • can result in the ticket being canceled

Minor Mistakes

Minor mistakes on a traffic ticket are allowed to be fixed by the court.

Where there is a minor mistake on a traffic ticket, the court is allowed to fix the mistake or make an amendment to the ticket, correcting the error.

Examples of minor mistake(s) on a speeding ticket could be:

  • spelling mistakes
  • incorrect or vague locations
  • misspelling of a name or location
  • incorrect time (except for sign tickets)
  • improper description of vehicle

The justice (JP) may correct minor errors where the discrepancy has been presented to the court.



Where an error is presented, be prepared to argue the legalities of the law, case law and any legal precedents to the justice.

Fatal Errors

Fatal errors are mistakes that “may or should” get the ticket canceled. With fatal errors, there may be conditions or caveats to a dismissal.

Although a Justice of the Peace “should cancel” the ticket for a fatal error, many times they do not and an appeal may have to be filed.

When presented with a fatal error, the Justice may respond that, by the defendant appearing in court, any prejudice regarding the error has been absolved. The court/judge may have the view that a conviction to the speeding ticket should be registered, regardless of the error.

Where a fatal error is presented, advocates need to be prepared to argue the legalities of the law and present case law and any legal precedents to the justice.

Justice to Examine the Certificate

Prior to entering a plea, the justice is “suppose” to examine the ticket to ensure that there are no fatal errors.

Where the justice finds a fatal error, the justice should cancel or quash the ticket (Quashing a speeding ticket is the legal term for canceling a ticket).

A defendant (the person who received the ticket) or the agent of the defendant may ask the justice to examine the “Certificate of Offence”.

Where the advocate discovers a fatal error, the error can be presented to the justice with the request to quash the certificate. The ticket/certificate must be “Proper on its’ face”.

Should the justice examine the certificate of offence and find that it is not “Proper on its’ face”, then the justice should cancel the ticket.



Common Errors

ErrorFatalFixable
Date is wrongyesno
Time is wrongNoYes
Name is wrong- spellingNoYes
Address is wrongNoYes
Licence number is wrongNoYes
Wrong locationMaybeMaybe
Charge is wrongMaybeMaybe
Charging Act is wrongMaybeMaybe
Signature of officer missingUsuallyMaybe
Fine is wrongYesNo
No Jurisdiction on ticketYesNo



Caution about Errors

Drivers may want to seek legal advice about dealing with the speeding ticket error.

Whether or not a speeding ticket is canceled due to a fatal error or minor error is still up to the justice.

Many courts and judges will have the opinion that once you appear for your case, then the error doesn’t matter.

The legal ruling on this is that you have “Attorned to the Jurisdiction of the ticket”, therefore the error is not applicable in your situation.

When dealing with errors like improper fines, an experienced advocate or paralegal may advise you go the route of not responding to the ticket.

Failing to Respond and Improper on its Face

Where you have not responded to the ticket the justice is suppose to review the ticket to ensure it is “proper on it’s face”,  meaning there are no errors on the ticket.

If the justice finds that the ticket is proper on it’s face, then they may register a conviction.

Where the ticket is improper on it’s face, the proper remedy for the court is to quash or cancel the ticket.

The justice of the peace, do not always make the decisions that they should have or that you believe they should have.

Should the justice make an error in judgement then the only remedy left to the defendant is to take the case to the appeal court.



Error on Ticket – Judge does not Cancel

At this stage of the hearing if the justice sees the error on the speeding ticket they should to cancel or “quash” the ticket.

Where the justice does not see the error or doesn’t cancel the ticket and registers a conviction, then you have to file an appeal to the higher court.

The appeal would say that the Justice made an error in judgment, in that the speeding ticket had a fatal error and the Justice should have quashed or canceled the ticket.

As this starts to get into technical law you may be advised to seek the legal help of a speeding ticket paralegal.

Always fight your speeding ticket!