How Notarized Waivers Work For New York Traffic Tickets

Some judges require notarized waivers to waive personal appearances for traffic tickets. These judges are wrong. Judges cite CPL 340.20 (2).  The statute says “permits entry thereof by counsel upon the filing by him of a written and subscribed statement by the defendant declaring that he waives his right to plead to the information in person and authorizing his attorney to enter a plea on his behalf”. The word “subscribed” means signed not notarized. See Black Law Dictionary “Subscribe.”  Some judges cite CPL § 380.40 that states “Where sentence is to be pronounced for a misdemeanor or for a petty offense, the court may…. dispense with the requirement that the defendant be personally present. Any such motion must be accompanied by a waiver, signed and acknowledged by the defendant.” The word “acknowledged” means notarized. But the notarization requirement does not apply to traffic tickets. CPL § 380.40 states an exception for “a different or inconsistent procedure is provided by any other law” and VTL § 1805 specifically allows for waivers that are not notarized. Furthermore CPL § 380.40 can’t be used for traffic tickets because then every guilty plea can’t be accepted because it is not compliance with CPL § 380.40

By: Benjamin Goldman Law Office 189 Southwoods Drive Monticello, NY 12701 (845) 391-3615 .

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