1.1 What are my options?
When you’re charged with a traffic offence and have been given a ticket, you have 15 days to choose from three options (which you can find on the back of the ticket). Choose wisely!
Option 1: Pay to Plead Guilty.
If you ignore your ticket or voluntarily pay your ticket, you will accept whatever consequences the prosecution wants. A great option if you want to give away your hard earned cash!
Option 2: Early Resolution.
Meeting with the prosecutor to plead guilty for a deal. The prosecution does not need to prepare a full case, and the officer does not need to show up to testify. A high chance of getting a reduced charge (meaning a lower fine and demerit points), but you will still be convicted.
Sometimes, but not always recommended—if you plan on spending your time at the courthouse anyway, why not stand before a Justice and defend yourself properly?
Option 3: Take it to Trial.
Stand before a Justice and make your case. Strongly recommended, as this is the only way to mount a full defence and access rights you may not get to use in Option 2 (such as the right to review the evidence). With a little preparation, you can dramatically increase your chances of being found not guilty.
*Options 2 and 3 are not mutually exclusive. This means you can still meet with the prosecutor to plead guilty if you book a trial, and you can turn down the prosecutor's deal and go to trial if you request a meeting with the prosecutor.
If you're confused about which option to take, take a look at our Provincial Offences Guide.