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Utah Criminal Defense Attorney in Salt Lake City

Will a traffic ticket be considered a probation violation in Utah?

In most Utah criminal cases, a traffic ticket will not be considered a probation violation. But the specific probation requirements imposed by a judge will be different in each case. If a person is unsure of the terms of probation, an experienced criminal defense attorney can help.

Based in Salt Lake City, criminal lawyer Stephen Howard provides legal services to clients throughout Utah. Contact us today to arrange for a confidential consultation.

Probation Conditions in Utah Criminal Cases

When a person is placed on probation in Utah, a nearly universal condition imposed by judges will be that the person must violate any state, local, or federal laws. Read literally, this could include traffic tickets. Some judges will specifically state that a minor traffic violation will not be treated as a violation of probation. But even if it is not specifcally stated, a traffic ticket will usually not trigger an order to show cause and most Utah judges will not revoke probation for a minor traffic violation.

Although it is rare, Utah law does allow a judge to impose conditions of probation that can include having no traffic violations while on probation. If a person has a driving record with an excessive number of traffic violations, or if the present case involved both traffic and criminal charges, a judge may be more likely to inlude traffic violations in the conditions of probation. But in such circumstances, the judge can be expected to specifically state that minor traffic violations will be considered probation violations.

A DUI, driving with metabolite, or impaired driving charge will not be considered a minor traffic violation by most Utah judges, and will likely result in an order to show cause being issued. Driving on a suspended or revoked license, driving without registration, or driving without insurance are also likely to trigger an order to show cause.

Status of Traffic Tickets under Utah Law

It is surprising to many people to learn that Utah law classifies many minor traffic violations as misdemeanor offenses. Even a parking ticket can be charged as a criminal misdemeanor.

While most traffic citations will not appear on an official criminal history report, court dockets and orders will often record minor traffic offenses as misdemeanor convictions. Even if you are never required to go to court, even if you resolve the case with a "voluntary bail forfeiture" (paying the fine without admitting guilt), the case can still be entered in the court records as a criminal conviction.

Finding a Utah Criminal Attorney in Salt Lake City

Utah Criminal Defense LawyerBased in Salt Lake City, criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard offers legal services to clients throughout Utah. He has extensive experience defending probation violations and orders to show cause. His track record in defending felony and misdemeanor includes not guilty verdicts, dismissals, and appellate reversals in some of the most serious charges on the books in Utah.

If you are facing an order to show cause for a probation violation, or if you have a pending criminal charge, contact us now to schedule an initial consultation with Utah criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard.

RELATED QUESTIONS:
Is there a time limit on when a probation violation can be filed?
How do I get a 402 reduction after I complete probation?
Can probation be terminated early?


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  • Criminal Defense AttorneyDismissed - Charges of insurance fraud were brought when investigators found reason to believe that client's claim of injury was fraudulent. Client was seen kicking a soccer ball, and investigators concluded that the injury claim was false. By obtaining medical records and other administrative records, and by pointing out to the prosecutor that the alleged injury interferred with the client's ability to lift - not his ability to kick a ball - the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the case.
  • Drug Crimes Defense Attorney Utah Dismissed - Client facing first-degree felony drug distribution charge and potential life in prison. Charges were based on allegations that client had sold drugs to an undercover police officer, then made a full confession. Successful mitigation work resulted in negotiated offer of misdemeanor plea-in-abeyance and ultimate dismissal of case.
  • Utah Expungement Attorney Expungement - Worked to restore client's expungement eligibility through 402 reduction process, then filed successful expungement petitions in multiple courts obtaining expungement orders and clearing client's official criminal history.
  • Violent Crimes Assalt Defense UtahProbation - Client charged with aggravated robbery based on allegations he entered a store with a gun and mask and demanded cash. Client confessed to police before hiring a defense attorney. Defense mitigation efforts resulted in a negotiated resolution that removed life in prison as a possibility, and secured a probation sentence from the court.
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Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
560 South 300 East, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

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