Speak to an Ontario Traffic Ticket Lawyer or Criminal Lawyer for free by telephone, WhatsApp, WeChat, Text Messaging (SMS) or Zoom.

The Highway Traffic Act in Ontario provides a list of Ontario driving infractions. There are different types of infractions that can generally be classified as minor, major, and criminal infractions. Criminal infractions fall under the Criminal Code of Canada and have severe consequences. Charges under the Criminal Code can happen anywhere, on private as well as public property.

By now, if you’re a driver, you’re familiar with demerit points. If you get a traffic ticket, you’re most likely concerned about the fine you’ll receive, as well as how many demerit points are attached to the ticket.

Financially much more significant than the fine, is the impact a ticket will have on your insurance. Insurance companies have different ways of assessing risk. Certainly any major or criminal convictions or even one or more minor convictions will result in an increase to your premiums once that record appears on your driver’s abstract and that will cost much more than any fine.

In certain cases, you may find yourself uninsurable and the insurance company could deny you insurance in the future. Some people may find themselves relying on public transportation, taxis, or Uber should they have too many traffic tickets or accidents on their insurance records.

The following are lists of some of the more common types of traffic infractions.

Minor Tickets:

Defective brakes

Driver’s licence violations

Driving with an insecure load

Driving without an up-to-date inspection sticker

Failing to share the road

Failing to signal

Failure to use seatbelts

Failing to yield to another vehicle or pedestrian

Failure to surrender your licence to authority

Failure to produce evidence of insurance to authority

Failure to carry an insurance card

Following too closely (tailgating)

Headlight offences

Improper driving in a bus lane

Improper opening of a door

Improper passing, lane change or turn

Improper railway crossing

Improper towing

Improper use of divided highway

Obstruction of licence plate

Obstructing traffic

Overloading (too many people in the car)


Stop sign or traffic light infraction

Unnecessary noise

Unnecessary slow driving

Unsafe move

Unsafe or prohibited turn

Unsafe vehicle

Use of radar warning device

Major Tickets:

False statement of insurance

Failure to follow restrictions in a school zone or improper passing zone

Failing to report an accident

Failure to report damage to highway property

Failing to stop or improper passing at a school bus

Operating motor vehicle with no insurance

Producing false evidence of licence or insurance

Speeding in a construction zone

Violating licence restrictions (non-alcohol related)

Distracted driving including:

Use of a phone or other hand-held wireless communication device to text or dial

Use of a hand-held electronic entertainment device, such as a tablet or portable gaming console

Viewing display screens unrelated to driving, such as watching a video

Programing a GPS device, except by voice commands

Serious Tickets and Criminal Convictions:

Careless or dangerous driving

Criminal negligence

Driving impaired (blood alcohol level over 0.08 in Ontario)

Driving uninsured

Failing to obey police

Failing to remain at an accident scene

Motor manslaughter


Refusing a breathalyzer test

Speeding 50 km over the posted speed limit (or set limit in your province)


Violating licence restrictions (alcohol-related)

Ontario Traffic Tickets

If you have been issued a traffic ticket, you should speak to a lawyer to determine whether or not there are any fatal errors on the ticket that may affect whether or not a conviction is possible. You should understand that by paying the fine, you are admitting guilt. Some people will say never agree to an early resolution or to meet with the prosecutor. That’s not necessarily true. Depending on what deal you’re able to strike with the prosecutor, it may not always be worth it to go to trial and take the risk of a conviction on a much more serious charge, especially one that may take away your driving privileges or result in huge penalties. For most people, it may be beneficial to negotiate a lesser fine, understanding that a fine is a guilty plea and it will most likely affect your insurance premiums.

If you are determined to fight your traffic ticket, you should speak to a lawyer with respect to documentary disclosure from the Crown. Even if you request disclosure yourself, there may be additional disclosure that the Crown has not provided to you but you will need to be able to particularize and request. Usually, the key to winning a case rest with the little details that are easy to miss without a lawyer’s help.

You should also know that certain offenses are considered strict liability offenses. What I have seen at trials is people trying to fight a speeding ticket by explaining why they were speeding. Unless the reason is to save yourself or somebody else’s life, under strict liability rules, a court will likely not forgive a speeding ticket just because there is a reason for speeding. That being said, it’s not that speeding tickets are not fought successfully. It just means you have to have an understanding of the law to understand what legal arguments may work and what may not. Unfortunately, most people who go to court alone and represent themselves do not understand the legal tests when fighting a speeding ticket, when making 11b applications, pursuing rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as well as what disclosure they may be able to get and how to effectively cross-examine the police officer.

If you’re looking to make an application for your case to be thrown out due to unreasonable delay, you also need to be up-to-date as to the case laws involving delays. This is an ever-evolving area of law and a lawyer can help you with your legal strategy.

Speak to an Ontario Traffic Ticket Lawyer or Criminal Lawyer for free by telephone, WhatsApp, WeChat, Text Messaging (SMS) or Zoom.