What If My Court Date Has Already Passed?

 Missed court date, Appeal, Motion to Reopen

I am contacted daily by individuals who simply forgot about their court date, misplaced their traffic summons, or prepaid the ticket unaware of the consequences. Some of our clients tried representing themselves but were unsuccessful in reaching a favorable outcome on their own.

One option is an appeal. Virginia law entitles you to appeal the ruling to the Circuit Court with in ten calendar days of the original ruling. An appeal will move the case to the higher Circuit Court where it will go in front of a different Judge. Virginia Courts are incredibly strict about the ten-day deadline and will not make exceptions. If it is within ten days of your conviction, you will need to contact an experienced attorney like myself as soon as possible to get the process started. 

Another option is to file a Motion to Reopen. If you are with in sixty calendar days of conviction a Motion to Reopen can be filed. Unlike an appeal, a Motion to Reopen is not guaranteed to be granted and would keep your case in General District Court with the same Judge. If granted, a new court date will be assigned to allow the Judge to reconsider the original verdict. If you are within the sixty-day window it is important to contact an attorney familiar with the protocol as soon as possible. The sooner a motion to reopen is filed the more likely the court is to grant it.

I have handled countless appeals and Motion to Reopens in courts across Virginia. If you missed your court date or were unhappy with your results and are within the ten-day or sixty-day time frame I would like to invite you to call me to discuss which option is best for you. I can be reached by phone at 804-451-6033 or email at trey@mattoxlawpc.com. Alternatively, you may simply fill out the form on the right-hand side.