According to Nevada law and for anyone that has been driving for any significant amount of time, it should be known that drivers must wait for traffic until there is ample room for oncoming traffic when making a left-hand turn. This is called yielding and all drivers must do this in this scenario.
Even if you are able to make the turn without getting hit by the traffic coming your way, if you make those drivers slow down or brake then you are not conducting a proper yield.
Penalty for Failing to Yield
If a traffic officer catches you not making that left-hand yield you will be cited and charged with a misdemeanor on your record. If this situation occurs in the city of Las Vegas, you can expect to receive a fine in the amount of $305 dollars.
Violations such as this often have much lower fines in the smaller jurisdictions in Nevada. For example, violating NRS 484B.253 in Reno will net you a fine of $170, which is much lower than in Las Vegas.
Needless to say, trying to save some time by darting through traffic is not only dangerous but is also an expensive endeavor. In addition to fines, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in Nevada will also post four (4) demerit points on the guilty driver’s license.
If you do get caught and are issued a citation you can help yourself by making a plea deal. Most often when this happens, the traffic ticket gets reduced to what is known as a non-moving violation. On some rare occasions, the charge can be dropped completely. Reach out to us at Ticket Busters and we can assist you.
Types of Defense for Failing to Yield Charges
If you are caught in violation of NRS 484B.253, some common defenses a lawyer might make could include:
- Did the defendant really not yield? It’s quite possible that eyewitnesses and/or the officer in charge were incorrect in their accusation and the driver actually did yield. In many cases, there may not be an actual witness to the event and therefore it is the defendant plus the lawyer’s word against the prosecution. In some cases, the charges could even be false.
- If the lack of a yield occurred because there was an emergency situation then that could provide a good defense. A couple of examples could be an emergency vehicle with sirens blazing in the area and the defendant had to move to avoid disruption. Another simple example could be a medical episode occurring with the driver or a passenger or possibly with a nearby car threatening a more dangerous situation.
Regardless of the situation or your defense, you never want to just ignore a ticket once one is issued to you. If you do ignore a ticket or even forget about it, a bench warrant will usually be issued for your arrest in Nevada. So, just like any other criminal or traffic charge, if you get one we recommend you contact legal services to assist you.
Do Drivers Always have to Yield When Making a Left Hand Turn?
The answer is usually “yes”. Really, the only reason they wouldn’t have to is if the intersection has a left-hand turn arrow and if that is the case then yielding is not needed (assuming the arrow is green).
If I am Ticketed, How Do I Defend Myself?
The most common defenses were listed earlier in this article. Here we will dive into those a bit more:
In many cases, it might be perceived that a car made a left turn without yielding when they actually did. If you were ticketed and you know you yielded, then a good defense attorney would seek out eyewitnesses that can verify your story. More and more there are also surveillance cameras posted on traffic lights. Your attorney will check to see if there was a camera present at your intersection (or even one from a nearby business) that might show your car yielding to oncoming traffic.
If the prosecution feels as if there is sufficient evidence to show reasonable doubt that you were not guilty then it’s quite possible they will drop the charges or at least reduce them.
The cameras and eye witnesses may also assist if the driver was falsely accused of not yielding. Those situations are strange but they do happen. Road rage is quite common and drivers can get very upset especially when stuck in traffic. If there were no witnesses or cameras then it’s one party’s word vs. the other and that doesn’t make for a solid case for the prosecution.
What Happens with the DMV and Tickets for Failure to Yield?
As we mentioned earlier, four demerit points are issued for this type of moving violation. When a driver accumulates twelve or more points their license is then suspended for six months. If that happens you don’t have many options other than to request a hearing with the DMV and just like transacting business with them, it is difficult so don’t count on winning the hearing.
The four demerit points issued for failure to yield stay on your driver record for a year and then they are removed.
Is my Car Insurance Impacted by this Violation?
Most insurance companies will raise rates when one of their policyholders is ticketed for a moving violation. One can’t blame them as tickets equate to more dangerous drivers which means more accidents and more claims.
Now, if you get your ticket reduced or dropped then there should not be any impact on your insurance rates. This is another good reason to call Ticket Busters. By using the service, you might just save some dollars on your insurance.
Is Traffic School Needed for this Type of Violation?
Traffic school may not be the worse thing if the judge allows it for an option to get your ticket reduced to a non-moving violation. Traffic school can be a disruption to your schedule and take up some time but if it keeps your insurance rates low and a fine reduced then it might be worth it.
The best case scenario is to just get the ticket dropped and a lawyer can help you do that. In some situations, you might be able to buy your way out of traffic school by paying a fine.
Not Acknowledging your Ticket
As previously mentioned, if you ignore your ticket a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest. It doesn’t matter if you forgot about it, lost it or your dog ate it. Thirty days after your fine or court appearance was supposed to occur is when things get real. You can be arrested at any time which most often occurs when an officer stops you for another violation of some sort.
If this happens, it is advised to hire a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Prior to getting arrested, sometimes community service can be done to redeem yourself from missing the deadlines.
How Am I Impacted If my Driver’s License is from Another State?
Each state is governed differently so if you are cited with a ticket in Nevada but resides elsewhere then you should consult with an attorney in your home state.
Are Truck Drivers or those Driving Commercially Impacted?
Aside from the four demerit points and fines, there are no other special deductions made for those with a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).
Is it Recommended to Fight the Ticket or Just Pay the Fine?
We at Ticket Busters recommend you fight the ticket with our services. We can either set up a defense to bring doubt to the prosecution or offer a plea deal.
Both scenarios often lead to reduced or dropped charges.
Can a Conviction for Failing to Yield Ever be Sealed?
In most cases, after one year of the decision, you can request the conviction to be sealed. If the charge is dismissed then no waiting period is needed as you can accomplish this right away. If a seal is requested then a formal petition must be submitted.
Can I Get Deported for a Simple Failure to Yield Violation?
If you are an illegal alien or non-citizen it is highly recommended you speak to an attorney immediately if you are cited with a ticket for failing to yield on a left turn (violation of NRS 484B.253). There is no deportation threat for legal aliens.
Are there Stricter Fines or Punishments if a Death Occurs due to Failing to Yield?
Anytime a death occurs due to a moving violation there are always additional consequences. The death can be from anyone, a pedestrian, another driver or the passenger of one of the automobiles. Negligent would be considered and a lawsuit could be filed if three criteria are met:
- There was a violation of NRS 484B.253.
- Was the victim deemed to be a member class of the people in which the law was written to protect. Basically, anyone that was sharing the road.
- Was the failure to yield on a left hand turn the cause of the injury or death.