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What are Indiana Traffic Court Records?

Indiana traffic court records are the legal documents and case files created from the proceedings of the traffic courts in Indiana. These include records related to moving violations & non-moving under the Indiana Motor Vehicle Code.

Are Indiana Traffic Court Records Public Records?

Traffic court records are designated as public records under the public access to information law. This ensures that members of the public have the right to request access and view all traffic records of Indiana traffic violations and infractions except for specific records that have been restricted by a judge or the law.

Getting a Traffic Ticket in Indiana

An Indiana Uniform Traffic Ticket is a computer-generated long-form issued for traffic violations by law enforcement officers. It is a representation of the officer's observations regarding the alleged violation and may be completed by the officer at the scene. It will usually have copies for the offender, the officer, the courts, and other relevant stakeholders. It may include data of the offender, including full name, date of birth, social security number, and physical & mailing addresses (if different). Details of the vehicle involved as well as the offender's license information, may be added. The charge being cited and the statute section being violated may be listed, along with the location, date, and time of the incident. Also included on the ticket may be the court's name and location, which the offender should appear before, and a date and time for the appearance. It may also state if a court appearance is required or not.

Court appearances are usually not required for minor infractions. The officer may include a description of the offenses and details of the incident in his own words. Fines to be paid should be included on the ticket, but if not you can contact the county court listed to obtain the amount. You may be expected to sign the ticket before receiving your copy. This may not be viewed as an admission of guilt, only an acknowledgment of the charges against you.

Indiana traffic violations and infractions are categorized into moving and non-moving offenses. Moving violations are violations of traffic laws by a moving vehicle and can include misdemeanors and felonies. Non-moving violations relate to parking offenses or faulty vehicle/equipment. Non-moving violations can occur in vehicles in motion but are differentiated by their treatment in the courts and at the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), in that non-moving violations are not reported to the BMV and thus do not show up on your driving record.

Traffic tickets have financial repercussions, including fines, court fees, and penalty points on your record. Indiana operates a points system, and traffic violation conviction reports are typically sent to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, which maintains the points system. Obtaining 18 points in 2 years may lead to probation or suspension of your license for 30 days or more. Convictions on up to 3 major offenses in 10 years may lead to the tag of a Habitual Traffic Violator (HVT) and a 10-year suspension. The offense being cited determines the fine you may pay, as fines for different violations vary. Failure to pay by the assigned court date and failure to appear in court may lead to a guilty verdict against you and possible issuance of an arrest warrant. You may also be liable for additional late fees. Refer to your traffic ticket or Traffic Violation Bureau website for your exact citation amount, deadlines, and penalties.

What to Do When You Get a Traffic Ticket in Indiana?

If you receive a traffic ticket in Indiana, you have the following options

  • Admit the charge and pay the traffic ticket
  • Plead No Contest
  • Deny Charges.

Admitting to an Indiana traffic violation may be viewed as a guilty plea and your acceptance of responsibility for the charges. It can be considered consenting to all penalties, including all fines, fees, and other charges, and rescind your right to contest the ticket.

  • You may pay your fine in person at the office of the court's clerk, via mail sent to the office of the court's clerk, or online. To do so, you may need the citation number, driver's license number, name, and date of birth, and you must have a maximum of 40 days from the date of the citation to pay the ticket. Costs due for each violation are indicated on the ticket; if not, they can be found on the county's website or by contacting the Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB). Paying before your court date cancels the need for a court appearance.
  • Indiana traffic convictions are reported to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), and a notice of your conviction may be sent. This may result in points being added to your driving record and a probable suspension or revocation of your license. There may also most likely be an increase in insurance premiums.

Contesting a Traffic Ticket in Indiana

A No-Contest plea means accepting to pay the ticket without an admission of court. This can protect you from liability in civil cases that might arise as a result of the violation. It generally has the same effect as a guilty judgment so that you may be liable for all fines and penalties.

Denying an Indiana traffic violation is viewed as a Not Guilty plea. Doing so informs of your intention to contest the ticket in court.

  • To do so, you consent to this option by marking the Not Guilty checkbox on the ticket and mailing it to the court within 60 days of receiving the ticket, or you appear in court on your listed date and inform the judge, who may then set a date for the hearing. You may also visit the court before your court date and inform the court's clerk of your intention (this is preferable for most courts), and a date for your hearing may be communicated to you.
  • You may be expected to provide your defense at the hearing and should consider the services of an attorney. 

What to Expect in an Indiana Traffic Court

If you are found Not Guilty, all charges may be dismissed, and you are free to go, though you may still pay court fees. If you are found guilty, you may be liable for all fines and penalties as decided by the judge. If convicted, you might be eligible for a Defensive Safety Program, and successful completion of the course may lead to a reduction in penalty points on your record.

Convictions go on your record with the Indiana BMV and remain for 2 years.

The District Attorney has initiated an Infraction Deferral Program enabling persons who have committed certain traffic violations to maintain a point-free driving record. Completing the program may ensure a ticket dismissal, avoiding accumulating points on the license and having the points added to a person's record. The program is voluntary, but once you enter the program, you may be required to complete all of the terms of your agreement. 

How Do I Find Indiana Traffic Court Records?

Traffic court records may be available on the Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB) website or third-party websites. Physical access to traffic records can be obtained by putting in a request at the court clerk's office. Applicants for these may need to visit the court clerk's office to make and be granted the request. You may then have access to view the records. Coping of the records may attract a court fee.

Publicly available records are accessible from some third-party websites. These websites offer the benefit of not being limited by geographical record availability and can often serve as a starting point when researching specific or multiple records. To find a record using the search engines on these sites, interested parties may be required to provide:

  • The name of someone involved, providing it is not a juvenile
  • The assumed location of the record in question, such as a city, county, or state name

Third-party sites are not government-sponsored websites, and record availability may differ from official channels.

What Information is Required to Obtain Indiana Traffic Court Records?

To obtain traffic records about a third party, you may need information about the record you are requesting, such as a first and last name, date of birth, and social security number. Other information might also be required. You may need to provide a valid ID for verification, and depending on the scope of the request, you might need to pay court fees.

Are all Traffic Violations Handled the Same Way in Indiana?

Most traffic violations in Indiana are considered civil offenses by the courts and handled in more or less the same manner irrespective of the type of offense cited on the ticket, so while fines and penalties received may differ, the processes involved in resolving the case may be the same. The exception might be if you are considered to have committed a crime (a criminal offense) while committing the traffic violation, in which case your offense may be treated as a criminal.

Can Indiana Traffic Records be Sealed or Expunged?

Indiana law allows for the expungement of most offenses except for serious violent and sexual offenses after graduated waiting periods. It also enables sealing expunged non-conviction records and records of less serious convictions.

A person may petition the court to seal the records for an arrest or criminal charge that did not result in a conviction after one year from the date of arrest or charges being filed. If the person qualifies and has provided all of the required information, the court is required to grant the petition. If granted, the information may be removed from the petitioner's criminal history. A person convicted of a misdemeanor may be eligible for expungement if at least five years have passed from the date of conviction. Also, the petitioner may be required to show that no charges are pending, that no crimes have been committed in the previous five years, that all fines, fees, and restitution have been paid, and that there were no convictions for two or more separate felonies that involved the use of a deadly weapon. The court may grant the petition if the petitioner meets all requirements and pays a filing fee.

How Does One End Up in an Indiana State Traffic Court?

One can end in an Indiana traffic court if one chooses to deny the charges and contest the citation received from a law enforcement officer and issued for a traffic violation. The charges against you may be considered infractions or violations, not criminal offenses. You can also end up in traffic court if you wish to pay the fines but wish to enter a plea of No Contest to the charges.

Which Courts in Indiana have Jurisdiction to Hear Traffic Violation Matters?

Traffic violation cases in Indiana are handled by the Circuit Court of the county where the violation was alleged to have occurred.

Indiana Traffic Court Records
  • Criminal Records
  • Arrests Records
  • Warrants
  • Driving Violations
  • Inmate Records
  • Felonies
  • Misdemeanors
  • Bankruptcies
  • Tax & Property Liens
  • Civil Judgements
  • Federal Dockets
  • Probate Records
  • Marriage Records
  • Divorce Records
  • Death Records
  • Property Records
  • Asset Records
  • Business Ownership
  • Professional Licenses
  • And More!