Stunt Driving Ticket
Getting stunt driving charge is quite a serious offence in Canada. It may cost you a lot of money, license suspension, jail and, in the end, will influence you insurance rate. So, once you’ve got a summons to court for stunt driving under section 172 (1) of the Highway Traffic Act in Ontario, you have to know all the details.
Let’s take a look at them!
What is Stunt Driving
Any of the following driving acts can constitute a stunt – which is essentially a departure from normal operation of a motor vehicle on the highway:
- Speeding 50km/h over the posted speed limit;
- Attempting to turn left at an intersection before the opposite traffic had opportunity to pass first and safe;
- Racing by distancing yourself from other vehicles with rapid acceleration;
- Driving without due care or attention to other motorists on the highway just as stated in Careless Driving Charge;
- Pulling sleds, carrying persons in the cab of the pick-up truck or regular trunk;
- Trying to step out of the motor vehicle by letting go of the steering wheel or standing on the motor bicycle;
- Any type of wheel burn out, doughnuts or popping a wheelie on the motorcycle.
Is this a criminal charge? – The answer is NO. However, penalties for performing a stunt are severe.
Penalties for Stunt Driving
Acc. to the Highway Traffic Act stunt driving charges may include:
- jail up to 6 months;
- immediate vehicle seizure for 7 days;
- fines can range between $2,000 to $10,000 plus 25% victim surcharge for the first time;
- immediate licence suspension for 7 days;
- driver’s licence suspension upon conviction: stunt driving first offence: for not more than 2 years; subsequent convictions: for up to 10 years.
Failing to pay your fine resulting from stunt driving will get your driver’s licence suspended automatically. Also, having a record for performing a stunt on the highway will impede your ability to get insurance in the future prompting you to pay high-risk insurance companies that charge at least 300% more per month for at least 3 – 6 years!
What To Do If You’ve Got Stunt Driving Ticket?
If you have been served with a summons to court for stunt driving, the first step is to stop driving under any circumstances and try to recover your motor vehicle as soon as possible to avoid expensive towing and storage fees and possible charges for driving while under suspension.
If you still have to drive, you are risking that in case of an accident you will be sued personally for any material damage. Also bear in mind that insurance companies do not provide coverage to motorists who knowingly decide to operate a motor vehicle while under suspension. Reinstating your driver’s licence prior to getting behind the steering wheel is essential even if you had to drive for work the next day.
After that you must appear to the court in person or you may hire a professional stunt driving lawyer, who can appear on behalf of you. Prior to your court date you are supposed to prepare proof that your driver’s licence has been reinstated to have an opportunity to resolve your case to a speeding offence.
Important: when you end up convicted for stunt driving it will remain on your record forever, which means subsequent offences will be subject to higher fines and more serious punishment. Stunt driving record does not go away after 3 years. At the same time if you already have a record, it can seriously hinder your ability to apply for government jobs in the future or some other positions requiring a clean driving record.
How to Beat Stunt Driving Charge in Ontario?
Step 1: Hire a stunt driving lawyer or paralegal, who will prepare an effective strategy and all documents for your best defence.
Step 2: In case if you’re not going to present a defence, be ready to show to a prosecutor that you have already reinstated your driver’s licence for plea negotiations. Prepare all necessary documents or letter with relevant information to your case. Usually it takes at least 1 to 3 court visits to finalize everything.
Step 3: You must appear at the court on specified date and ask for a trial. Before trial, prepare questions for a police officer and other witnesses, related to your charges for stunt driving. Questions must be asked in such a way so that you get answers, which prove that the situation was different than police officer’s version.
When it comes to fighting charges for stunt driving you should definitely prepare by researching previously decided cases to understand what evidence courts consider when making a decision after trial has been completed.
The whole process is quite stressful and requires a cold mind and good strategy. Any wrong (even small) step in the beginning can lead to conviction or can have a poorer outcome than it could be. Thus, the best strategy in this case to consult with a knowledgeable paralegal.
X-COPS are dealing with such cases almost every day, so we’re ready to provide you with the best possible result. Just make a call today!