Cell Phone Ticket in New York

by Adam Rosenblum

Have a question about your cellphone ticket? Post a comment at the bottom of this page and we will get back to you as soon as we can. For a free consultation with our attorneys call us at 888-883-5529.

How to Fight a Cell Phone Ticket in New York

One of the most common questions we get is how to fight a New York cell phone ticket. This is a multi-faceted answer that depends on the circumstances of your case. There are two basic ways to handle a New York cell phone ticket: at trial, or via a plea bargain settlement. In general, if a cell phone ticket can be negotiated down to a 0-point parking ticket, we would advise our client to take it. Though a fine of up to $150 will be assessed, it is a small price to pay to prevent points from accruing on the person’s driving record.

How to Beat a Cell Phone Ticket in New York

There are a few ways you can beat a New York cell phone ticket: Taking the ticket to trial and being found “not guilty” by the judge via a motion to dismiss (if there are certain errors that make the ticket legally defective or insufficient, for example) If you schedule it for trial and the officer doesn’t show and the judge decides to dismiss the case for lack of prosecution.

ebookThe first way can be a real long shot because if the facts are in dispute and especially if it’s your word against the officer’s word, most of the time the judge will accept the officer’s word over yours (after all, you are a little biased, aren’t you?).

The second way can be very effective, but only under the right circumstances (after all, most tickets are accurately written or contain minor defects that don’t render the ticket invalid).

The third way is a long shot because even if the officer fails to show, the judge can, and most likely will, reschedule the trial. Contrary to popular belief, there is no rule, law, or policy that requires a judge to dismiss a ticket simply because the officer fails to show up for trial. A judge is free to reschedule the trial at will. These reasons serve to reinforce our general belief that if a reduction to a 0-point offense can be negotiated, that is the best option.

New York Vehicle and Traffic Law 1225-c and 1225-d

New York’s Vehicle and Traffic Law (VTL) contains two distinct laws related to use of portable electronic devices while driving:

  • VTL 1225-c Use of Mobile Telephone
  • VTL 1225-d Use of Portable Electronic Devices (includes texting while driving)

Remember, a VTL 1225(c) ticket is entirely different than a VTL 1225(d) ticket. 1225(c) is a cell phone ticket (“c” for cell) while 1225(d) is an electronic device ticket (“d” for device).

If you received a 1225(c) ticket, the officer is alleging that you were actually engaged in a call at the time he observed you. For 1225(d) tickets, it is irrelevant whether you were engaged in a call or not. If you were texting or using an app, you can be given a 1225(d) ticket.

What many people don’t realize is that a 1225(d) ticket can also be given for devices other than phones. A GPS, MP3 player, camera, or other hand-held electronic device also counts under the 1225(d) law.

New York State Resident With a Cell Phone Conviction in New York

If you hold a New York State driver’s license and were to be convicted of driving while using a cell phone or texting while driving, NY DMV will add 5 points to your driver’s license. As you already know, points on your license can lead to increased auto insurance and ultimately to a license suspension if you accrue 11 points within 18 months. What you may not know is that you can fight your cell phone ticket – and beat it, or get it reduced.

Out-Of-State Resident With a Cell Phone Conviction in New York

Even if you do not live in New York State, New York will create a driving record based on your name, date of birth, and mailing address and points for violations that you have been convicted of in New York will add up. If you get 11 points in New York State within 18 months, you will lose your right to drive in New York State regardless of whether you hold a New York license or a driver’s license from another state. Not only that, chances are a cell phone ticket conviction in New York will appear on your home state’s driver’s license. If your home state assesses points like New York does, points will accrue and you can be looking at an auto insurance hike and a license suspension if you accrue enough points. Click here for more information regarding out-of-state residents.

Traffic Violations Defense

For a free consultation about experienced and vigorous defense of your New York cell phone ticket or any other traffic violation, call 1-888-883-5529, or contact us to tell us about your case.
We can produce results. But don’t take our word for it. See our reviews from our past clients.
Note: New York increased the penalties for cell phone tickets to 5 points as of 6/2013.

176 thoughts on “Cell Phone Ticket in New York

  1. I am from MA. I was ticketed (1225D) in Clarkstown while in traffic on I87. I had GPS running on my phone, I changed lanes, the GPS fell (I do not have a holder) heard the GPS give an instruction which I could not hear from the car floor. I picked it up to look at the map to see where it was directing me – normally take 95 over GW to NJT – and was pulled over. I explained that I had the phone on GPS, displayed the screen to the officer. Her reply was to say you cannot touch the device in NY only listen to it and asked if I was lost. I stated I was unaware of the “no touch” rule in NY. I said not lost just don’t know the area and need GPS to navigate to correct exit.

    I certainly do not feel picking up my phone from the driver side car floor and looking at the GPS map warrants 5 points on my license. What are my chances of ‘winning’ a not guilty plea? Is it all or nothing is this case?

    Also , I find the information provided on the ticket to be less than clear. How do I go about pleading not guilty? When do I need to submit the plea by? Do I include a written statement at that time? Does a not guilty plea automatically require a court appearance from out-of-state drivers?

    Thanks!

    Karen Duval on
    • Karen,

      The violation you received, 1225-d, Use of Portable Electronic Devices includes GPS devices. This violation carries with it 5 points and a fine. You can plead not guilty by mailing in the ticket by the plea-by date on the ticket, appearing in person on that date or signing a waiver and allowing an attorney at our firm to handle the matter for you. Clarkstown, NY permits plea bargaining so we would attempt to negotiate a deal to either reduce or eliminate those points in exchange for a fine to the court. Please feel free to contact one of our attorneys at the number below so we can discuss your options in more detail.

      The Rosenblum Law Firm
      888-883-5529

      Adam Rosenblum on
  2. Received a 1225C2A with the description of “Cell Phone Use”. The office acknowledged that the phone was in my hand only and not anywhere near my ear. Also I was using a bluetooth device and merely holding the phone. Do I have a defense?

    John on
    • John, what court is handling your case? This ticket carries 5 points and can cause a significant increase in your insurance rates, but you do have the option to fight this to either reduce/eliminate the points and penalties.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  3. I received a ticket for talking on cell phone 1225(c) in the Village of Blasdell, NY. I have a clean driving record. What would the fine(s) be and points if I plead guilty and how long would the points stay on my license – I don’t think there is a way to get this reduced by talking to the prosecutor?

    Denise on
    • Denise, this is a 5 point ticket which carries a fine of $138 to the court plus a steep insurance hike. Blasdell Village Court does allow plea bargaining to get your points reduced. Therefore, I suggest you plead Not Guilty.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  4. I was driving a small commercial vehicle and received an “operating cmv using mobil cell phone” Section 1402CII was listed on the ticket (New York State). The trooper told me he cut me a break and that this was cell phone violation that does NOT carry the 5 point penalty, only a fine and surcharge if I plead guilty.

    Nowhere can I find information on this type of ticket or how he cut me a break. I think he lied just to keep me from arguing and to send the ticket in guilty. I’ve called the Trooper Station, dept of transportation and every other NYS office and keep getting the run around and no help.

    Is there a cell phone ticket in New York State that does not have the automatic 5 point penalty?

    Michael Sherwin on
    • Michael, sections 1225(c) and 1225(d), the two ‘cell phone’ statutes in NY, both carry 5 points. Without further information, I can not say for certain what the officer is charging you with.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  5. I was ticketed for 1225c in New York State. I was only changing the music that was attached to my vehicle by an Input/output aux cable. any chance to beat that?

    Brian McTague on
    • Specifically, 1225C states that the phone must be depressed to your ear. 1225D is more broad reaching and would encompass manipulating the phone in any manner. Please feel free to call so we can discuss your options in more detail.

      Lindsay Bernstein, Esq.
      Rosenblum Law Firm
      888-883-5529

      Adam Rosenblum on
  6. Hi, i got a Cell phone tickets. i have already 6 points. this is my first cell phone tickets. i am a taxi driver, if i got 5 points my license will be revoked in my guess. i want to pay all fee & 5 points fine,but don’t want to carry those 5 points. I have one week left in my tickets. The ticket says 122C2A. Is it right

    Arien Alden on
    • A cell phone violation (1225C2A) carries 5 points. You will be suspended in New York if you accrue 11 or more points within any 18 month period. Please feel free to call so we can discuss your options in more detail.

      Lindsay Bernstein, Esq.
      Rosenblum Law Firm
      888-883-5529

      Adam Rosenblum on
  7. Hi, i got a Cell phone tickets. i have already 6 points. this is my first cell phone tickets. i am a taxi driver, if i got 5 points my license will be revoked in my guess. i want to pay all fee & 5 points fine,but don’t want to carry those 5 points. I have one week left in my tickets.

    Arien Alden on
  8. I’m a CT driver and recently received a ticket for use of “portable electronic device while in motion” while in NYC. I plead not guilty and will fight the ticket at the Traffic Violations Bureau.

    I believe the officers originally pulled me over for a broken tail light (which I forgot I had) but gave me a cell phone violation ticket when they observed I was recording them after they pulled me over.

    The officers were directly behind me at a red light when they pulled me over so it would seem unlikely that they would not notice my broken tail light.

    I can provide my cell phone records which I know probably won’t be enough, but does prove I was not using data, texting or on a phone call. Prove I had a broken tail light as substantiated by mechanics before the ticket occurred. Pictures and videos of the incident as well.

    I know the TVB has a minimum 65% conviction rate, but what are the chances I will not be convicted using this defense?

    Also I’d like to request discovery evidence. How do I go about doing this?

    Jennifer M. on
    • Jennifer – It is difficult to give any data on what your chances will be at a trial – as the Judge will have discretion with respect to what arguments they believe deserve merit. There is no discovery in this court system, which further complicates any attempts to presenting a defense.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  9. Something came in the mail today and I cannot figure out what the fine is, hope you can help me. My husband got the ticket and this is the first I’m finding out about it. It says OP MV PORT ELEC DEV in Bronx. Is that a cell phone offense? It also doesn’t say what the fine is and I can’t find it online. Can you help me? I just want to pay it and be done before his license is suspended. Is it really 5 points?

    kimberly smith on
  10. Hi I received a ticket for 1225C2A. I was indeed talking on the phone when the officer pulled me over. I’ve been living in NY for 10 months and honestly did not know that it was against the law to talk on the phone from driving. I am from TN where it is not a law. Not using that as an excuse, but what are my options to avoid the 5 points on my record. I’ve never received a ticket in my life so receiving 5 points for this really frustrates me. I received the ticket in Albany NY and Albany City Court Traffic Part is listed on the ticket.

    Jacinda on
    • Hi Jacinda, unfortunately it is a NYS law to drive while talking on the phone. This is a 5 point ticket with a maximum court fine of $200. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like more information about having the ticket reduced, please contact for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  11. I am MA driver licence holder,
    I received a ticket for Improper Cellphone Use, when I checked the time on intersection and attached phone back to the steering wheel holder.
    I have to apear in person in TVB if I plead not guilty.
    Do we have any chances to not get any points in trial?
    Or here is only convicted or not?
    And if I convicted then I what I should pay?
    For the 1st time use the same penalty as for 2nd or 3rd?
    Thanks

    Demian on
    • Hi Demian, you are looking at a 5 point ticket with a maximum fine of $200 for a first offense. Second and third offense the penalty does change. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like to find out more about your options to have your ticket disputed, please contact our office for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  12. My daughter was lost & was holding her phone using her GPS & was pulled over by an undercover officer in an unmarked car. She was in a bad area & didn’t want to pull over. Should she try to get the ticket reduced?

    carol hynes on
    • Hello Carol, did your daughter receive a ticket for using a cell phone? If so this is a 5 point ticket with a maximum court fine of $200. Her insurance rates will also increase in rates by 20 to 25 percent for 3 to 5 years. We suggest pleading not guilty. If your daughter has received a different ticket and you have some concerns and want to have it reduced, please contact us for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  13. Just received a 1225D ticket in NYC, was not using any electronic device rather was just drinking from my water bottle. Was willing to give officer my phone for him to see. Officer was 3 lanes away on a main street, and I have a slight tint on my front window. What is my course of action here. Getting fine for drinking water in NYC doesn’t seem fair.

    Dennis Chang on
    • Hello Dennis, it is unfortunate that you received a ticket on a water bottle. However, this is not enough proof to have the ticket dismissed. You are looking at a 5 point ticket with a maximum court fine of $200. This will also cause your insurance rates to rise. Dennis we suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like more information about how to get your ticket reduced, please contact us for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
    • Hi Larry, this is a 5 point ticket with a maximum court fine of $200. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like more information about having the ticket brought down, please contact us at 888-883-5529 for your free consultation.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  14. Hello!

    I received a 1225c2a ticket 3/19/2016 along with inadequate muffler/exhaust ticket. I would like to know if even though I mistakenly missed my court date if I could still fight it. I didn’t receive the letter with the court date until yesterday evening (court was scheduled for yesterday 4/18/2016) due to them sending to my old address. Also, the officer had said he’d been trying to pull me over for a bit of a distance BUT I did not see flashing lights or anything behind me until I pulled over. And when I pulled over her followed extremely close to the point I had to unsafely pull to the side of the road. If I had hit my brakes to safely pull over the officer would have rear ended me. Is it still possible to fight even though court was missed and I got two tickets at the same time?

    Thanks!
    Taylor

    Taylor on
    • Hello Taylor, the cell phone ticket is a 5 point ticket with a maximum court fine of $200. The inadequate muffler ticket holds no points but could of $200 or more and or 30 days in jail. We suggest pleading not guilty if you haven’t already done so. Please contact our office to find out how to fight these tickets and have it reduced to minimum penalties. We can be reached for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  15. Good evening
    I received today a ticket for using the phone while driving. 04/16/16 at 12:53 . Very insane. I owned a s550 were everything is at your fingertip. While I was parking the car in revers I was stopped from cops. The officer came to my window and asked for driving license and registration. I asked why, he said after I will handle the documents to him he will notify me why. I handled everything to him and he stated that I was on the phone while driving. I told him that he was mistaken.
    The cop than asked me to show him my cell which was on my left pocket. He left and came back after ten minutes with a ticked. Very arrogant and unprofessional . I told him that I will see him on court and he replayed to make sure to hire a lawyer .
    Honestly Ii don’t need to use my phone at all in the car. Also I can show the bill that this is not the case.

    Ardit on
    • Hello Ardit, unfortunately you are looking at a 5 point ticket with a maximum fine of $200. We suggest pleading not guilty. Please contact our office for a free consultation if you have any further questions or concerns. We could be reached at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  16. Ok so I got a 1225d the cop said he saw me holding my cellphone which Impossible because Infact my car has blutooth. It was on my seat I had my remote for my radio in my hand. I was hitting the next button to change music. That remote was sold with the radio pioneer head unit. It is not illegal to hold the remote to the item that is installed into my car. I do know that much. Can or should I ask for a plea bargen I have 8 points on my license I can’t get anymore points

    Joshua on
    • Hello Joshua, you are facing a 5 point ticket with a maximum fine of $200. With 8 points on your license already, your license will be suspended. We suggest pleading not guilty. Please contact our office for a free consultation to find out about having this ticket reduced to minimum penalties. We can be reached at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  17. I was given a ticket for “using device while in motion”. Thing is I did not use a device while in motion, I did used my phone at a stop light, I don’t know if that counts as “in motion”. I just used the zocdoc app to confirm an appointment, that’s it. Of course it’s my word against the cop’s, he thought I was texting, can this ticket be dismissed?

    David on
    • Hello David, being on at a stop light does still count as being motion. This is a 5 point ticket with a maximum fine of $200. This will increase your insurance rates by 20 to 25 percent for 3 to 5 years. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like to find out more information on your options to have your ticket reduced, please contact us at 888-883-5529 for a free consultation.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  18. Hi, I just got a cell phone ticket yesterday in Oneida County, NY and everything that I have researched so far says that this is a 5 point violation on your liscence with up to $200 fines and dramatic increases in auto insurance. Is there any way to get this reduced by asking for a DA? I need to avoid paying a ridiculous amount of money over this whole thing including insurance because my insurance is already high due to me being a first time insured on my own and I’m a college student. Thanks.

    Patricia H on
    • Hello Patricia, the information you have mentioned is correct. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like to find more about having your ticket reduced, please contact our office for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  19. I am a New Jersey resident (NJ driver’s license) and was on my cell phone, holding it with the speaker on, while driving in Manhattan. Are there points for this?

    Cheryl on
  20. I got a cell phone ticket while driving and I was not talking on the phone or texting. I only picked up the phone to press the home button and check the time. I still got the ticket and it says 1225-01. Can I fight this? I already have two other cell phone tickets. The other was for the same reason just pressing home button to check time. Is there a way I can get no points? I am so upset. I wasn’t using it. How should I plead?

    Wendy on
    • Hello Wendy, unfortunately the information you have provided is not enough to have this ticket dismissed. For each cell phone ticket is 5 points and a maximum court fine of $138. If found guilty on all these tickets your license will be suspended. We suggest pleading not guilty to all of them. Please contact our office for a free consultation to find out how you can have your ticket reduced to the minimum penalties. We can be reached at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  21. I received a ticket for “use of an electronic device while in motion” or “Operating a motor vehicle with a portable electronic device” in NYC, but I have an Ohio drivers license. Will points still appear on my license?

    Madison on
    • Hello Madison, you are currently looking at a 5 point ticket and a maximum fine of $138. Your insurance will increase 20 to 25 percent for 3 to 5 years. The point do transfer to your Ohio license. We suggest pleading not guilty. If you would like more information about getting your ticket reduced, please contact us at 888-883-5529 for a free consultation.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  22. Hello,

    I received a cell phone ticket (1225D1) on 2/4/16 in NYC. I was stopped in traffic and glanced at my phone, when the officer walked over to my vehicle, and issued me the violation. Is it possible to plea bargain? If not, pleading not guilty may just end up costing me the same points and a higher fine. What are my options?

    Frank Martinez on
    • Hello Frank, right now you are currently facing a 5 point ticket and a maximum fine of up to $138. Your insurance will face a substantial climb in the rates you pay for the next 3 to 5 years. Our suggestion is pleading not guilty. If you are interested in finding out how your ticket could be reduced please contact our office for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  23. Hello,
    I recieved 1225c2a ticket yesterday “imp use of cell (right hand speaker)” the phone was on speaker on dashboard in phone holder. While i stopped at a red light i decided to plug the phone on charge since i was running low on battery then put the phone back to phone holder on dash again. Police officer saw the whole thing still gave me a ticket? He approached to me on foot told me to pull over. I understand that this is a 5 point ticket. What are my options?

    Tommy on
    • Hello Tommy, as you mentioned a cell phone ticket is 5 points on your license. This includes a maximum fine court of $150. Your insurance will increase by 20 to 25 percent for the next 3 to 5 years. Our suggestion is pleading not guilty to this ticket. If you would like to find out more information about having your ticket disputed and reduce you can contact us for a free consultation. You can reach us at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  24. Hi, I received a ticket, however, I wasn’t in motion, my car was stopped at an intersection and I was ending the call. However, the officer gave me a ticket. Could I fight this is anyway?

    Morgan on
    • Hi Morgan, from the information you have provided we understand you have received a cell phone ticket. This is a 5 point ticket and a fine of up to $150. Your insurance will increase by 20 to 25 percent as well for the next 3 to 5 years. We suggest pleading not guilty to ticket. If you would like further information about fighting the ticket, please contact our office for your free consultation at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  25. This may be too late but I got a ticket for cellphone use when I wasn’t using my phone. I have my phone bill to prove that I made or received no calls or texts. I had it in my hand because it fell from the phone holder on the dash and cop in back of the squad car claims he saw me with it in my hand. I went to trial with all of my proofs and equipment but still got charged. The $138 “reduced fine” doesn’t bother me as much as the 5 points. Is there anything I can do at this point? Oh and I am a NJ resident and I was driving in NYC.

    Nadine roper on
  26. Hello!

    I received a ticket 1225D(1) and the officer said it would only be 1 point. It says operating a vehicle with cell phone in right hand.

    However, all the research I have done says 1225d is 5 points. Does the 1 next to the D mean the officer could make it only 1 point?

    Phillip Salem on
      • Hi I just received a ticket for having my gps In my hand setting it up. It wasn’t my phone gps but the actual gps. The officer told me the ticket would be $50 with no points. I paid it via mail because the 15 days were almost up. I just received a letter that the 50 did not cover the additional $88 surcharge which now everything was $138. When I went online to pay the $88 it shows the ticket was 5 points! Is this the case, even for a gps its 5 points????

        Melissa on
        • Improper use of an electronic portable device, the ticket you are being charged with, is not reserved exclusively for cell phones. The officer was incorrect in the information they had given you. We might be able to help you fight this ticket, even though a guilty plea has already been entered. You may contact us for a free consultation at 888-883-5529.

          Adam Rosenblum on
  27. Hello Mr. Rosenblum,

    I received a 1225C2A ticket yesterday, for driving while holding the phone to my right ear, just after I had crossed into NY from MA.

    The ticket was issued from the Bedford Town Court, 321 Bedford Rd., Bedford Hills. Because this is out of NYC, is there a chance I could get a plea deal?

    This is my first ever offense. I otherwise have a clear driving record. I am out-of-state, with an MA license. I am worried this will increase my out of state insurance.

    Should I plead guilty or not guilty on the mail in form? is there any chance of lowering the points/fine from this? thank you for your help.

    Sylvia Ryerson on
    • Sylvia – it is possible to fight this ticket and obtain a reduction, as you have suggested. If you have any questions as to the type of reduction you should be seeking, you may contact us at 888-883-5529.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  28. I was stop by a police officer who said that He saw me using a electronic device while in motion. I was using my hand free technology on my car which connects to my cell phone every time I get in into the car. I did not have the cell phone on my hand. I was using the cell ( Hands Free) 7 minutes before he stop me. The phone was on my compartment. He Also gave me a ticket for fail to signal and I told him that the signal was on. He then said I had them on but I put them late.
    I need to know if the cell phone ticket can be negotiable (pay the fee and avoid points) or can be win in this case.The case is already scheduled for a hearing. I am from Bronx, NY. Thank you in advance.

    David on
    • David – If this case is being held in the traffic violations bureau, then there is no way to negotiate a plea, as this is a trial only court. While challenging, it is possible to win your case through using the proper legal arguments.

      Adam Rosenblum on
  29. I got a ticket from a police officer in ny..he was assuming I was using a portable device. .in the ticket he didn’t put the Vtl1225d code ..can I fight that ticket?

    Yonel on
  30. Hi Adam, I received a ticket for VTL 1225c2a, operating a motor vehicle while using a mobile phone. I explained to the officer that although my hand was up to my face, my phone was in the center console charging(which is the honest truth). I hadn’t been on my phone since 6am and received the ticket at 11:46am. I pleaded not guilty and had a court date a few days ago where I sat with the prosecutor. I explained the same to her and was also willing to provide my phone records which clearly show that no calls were made at the time of the ticket. She proceeded to tell me that phone records aren’t usually accepted as I could’ve been texting at the time or using the phone for emailing, etc… I made her aware that texting, etc… Falls under section, VTL 1225d, which she denied being true. I’m awaiting a letter for a trial date and am wondering what my options are. Any help or information would be of great help. Thank you in advance.

    Paulo T. on

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