Archive for June, 2010

Should I fight my traffic ticket?

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Virginia is tough on drivers who speed.

I’ve talked before about Reckless Driving, which is really so much more than just a speeding ticket.

But what about your ‘garden variety’ speeding ticket that doesn’t rise to the level of Reckless Driving?  Most of these tickets can be paid online through the court website and you don’t need to show up at all.  But is it a good idea to just pay the ticket?

That’s really a personal decision.  The ticket itself may not cost much.  and I’ve had client’s tell me that they really don’t want to spend the money for an attorney to go to court to fight the ticket.  I can understand that.

But you also need to consider the increased cost of your insurance.  I had a client who got 2 speeding tickets within 3 months and his insurance bill went from $250 every 6 months to over $600 every 6 months.  That $700 a year in increased insurance cost would have paid for an attorney in just one year.  (and his increased insurance rate will go on for much longer than one year).

Something to think about.

I lost my job….what about child support?

Friday, June 4th, 2010

This is a tough economy.  Many people are losing their jobs, or being required to take a pay cut in order to keep their jobs.  This is always a difficult time, but it can be a really bad time if you owe child support.

In Virginia, child support is based on the guidelines that are found in the Code of Virginia Section 20-108.2 and these numbers are based on the monthly gross incomes of the parents.   Once the court orders the amount of child support, that amount stays the same until the court modifies the amount.  Even if your income drops dramatically, the amount will not change until and unless you petition the court for a modification in the child support amount and the court makes a new child support order.

I’ve had clients who didn’t really understand this and just didn’t pay their child support payments for a few years.  That’s right….a few years!  I had one client that was injured on his job and not able to work but his child support stayed the same.  The result, he owed over $40,000 in back child support!  And interest on that amount.

If you’ve lost your job and you are ordered to pay child support, you really should consider filing a petition to have the child support amount redetermined.  Losing your job would be considered a ‘material change in circumstances’ which should allow the courts to recalculate the amounts.

If you need help, give us a call at 757-234-4650.