Oswego Town Court

Traffic Violations
Procedure for Handling Traffic Tickets
If you receive a traffic ticket you have several choices on how to handle it.

Pleading Guilty
If you are charged with a traffic infraction you can plead guilty by mail, using the reverse side of the ticket, Part A. Follow the instructions and send the completed form to Oswego Town Court, 640 County Route 20, Suite 2, Oswego, NY 13126. Note that the form contains space for you to include an explanation for the violation should you wish to do so.

Upon receipt of your guilty plea a judge will determine the fine and the court will notify you of the amount by mail. You will be expected to send the fine to the court within 30 days by bank draft or money order payable to Oswego Town Court. If you need time to pay, contact the court and necessary arrangements will be made.

Pleading Not Guilty
You can plead not guilty by mail, using the reverse side of the ticket, Part B. Follow the instructions and send the completed form to Oswego Town Court, 640 County Route 20, Suite 2, Oswego, NY 13126.. You have the option of requesting a supporting deposition which is a sworn statement from the ticketing officer that contains a more detailed explanation of the basis for the charge than is provided on the ticket. If you mail a not guilty plea you do not need to appear in court on the date stated on the ticket.

Upon receipt of your not guilty plea the court will schedule a trial and you will receive notice of the date by mail. A trial is the proceeding at which a judge will make a determination whether you are guilty or not guilty. At the trial the officer who issued the ticket will testify and you will have the opportunity to cross-examine him/her. Thereafter you and your witnesses if any will have the opportunity to testify. The Assistant District Attorney can cross-examine your witnesses and you. When the testimony is completed the judge will make a decision and will usually announce it in court at the trial. If you are found not guilty, the matter is completed. If you are found guilty, the judge will determine the fine and arrangements for payment will be made.

Court Appearance without A Plea by Mail
A third option is to appear in court on the date designated on the face of the ticket. At that time you can enter a plea and/or ask for a trial. You will have the opportunity to provide any explanation you would like the judge to hear. Your explanation will be considered in the resolution of the case.

Point System
If you are convicted of a violation that occurred while your car was moving (e.g. speeding, failing to stop for a red light, failing to stop at a stop sign, etc.), points will be assigned to you based on a schedule adopted by the New York State legislature. If you accumulate three speeding violations or 11 points within an 18 month period, the Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend your license. The number of points attributed to various infractions are as follows.

Speeding (mph over posted limit): 1 to 10 3
Speeding (mph over posted limit): 11 to 204
Speeding (mph over posted limit): 21 to 306
Speeding (mph over posted limit): 31 to 408
Speeding (mph over posted limit): More than 4011
Reckless Driving5
Failing to stop for school bus5
Following too closely (Tailgating)4
Inadequate brakes (While driving employer’s vehicle)4
Failing to yield right-of-way2
Violation of traffic signal, stop sign, or yield sign3
Railroad crossing violation3
Improper passing or lane use3
Leaving scene of an incident involving property damage or injury to an animal3
Child safety restraint violation3
Any other moving violation2

Legal Advice
Whether or not you need an attorney to handle your traffic infraction is a personal decision that only you can make. If your license is in jeopardy based on the point system or if a traffic charge resulted from an accident, you are well advised to consult an attorney.


Ellery Terpening
Office Hours
Edward Mervine
Office Hours