How to Beat Following Too Closely Ticket in California

california tailgating ticket

Following too closely also known as a “tailgating” is the primary reason for rear-end collisions. California law 21703 VC states that the driver must keep a reasonable distance between them and the vehicle in front of them. The distance may need to be more depending on speed, road, weather conditions and traffic accidents. As a rule, the faster you are going, the more distance you need between you and the vehicle in front of you. 

Unfortunately, you may not realize you are following too closely to another vehicle while running late or being impatient. Or you may feel you were giving enough space but a police officer believes you were too close and tailgating. That is when you may get stopped by a police officer and receive a follow too closely or tailgating ticket. Police officials and other investigating teams in California are taking these violations seriously.

So let’s discuss how to beat a following too closely ticket in California.

What is Following Too Closely Ticket?

According to Highway Traffic California:

 “The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the seed of such vehicle and the traffic upon, and the condition of, the roadway.”

 The reasonable spacing between vehicles depends on the speed limit, traffic volume and road conditions. If the vehicle is driven as a convoy, the rules stipulate that there must be enough space between the two vehicles so that the other vehicles can easily participate in the convoy. This means that the convoy must have a distance of at least one car between the two vehicles.

Even if the car you are watching is a friend or family member, you can still get a ticket. Always leave a 60 meters distance between vehicles.

How to Avoid Following Too Closely Ticket

It is important to keep a safe distance from the car in front of you as you do not know what they made do such as brake suddenly. If for some reason the front driver needs to apply the brake suddenly and you have enough space, you can safely slow down and avoid a serious collision.

To avoid following too closely ticketL

  • Focus on the road — Do not check your phone, change the radio or day dream. 
  • Drive with the flow of traffic – It’s dangerous to drive too fast or too slow.
  • Give yourself enough time – Leaving the house in a rush will make you more likely to drive recklessly or too close to other cars. 
  • Drive in the correct lane – Recall slow traffic should be on the right lane! Therefore, if you want to go faster move to the left lanes. This way you avoid tailgating cars or trucks that are moving slower.

Cost of a 21703 VC – Tailgating Ticket

After violating following too closely, you will receive a fine of $238 and have one point added to your DMV driver record. This means your insurance premiums will increase for the next 3 years which increases the risk of suspension of your driving license. 

How to Fight a Tailgating Ticket

21703 driving law claims you must give “reasonable or prudent distance.” Therefore, this ticket is really your word against the officers. So if you believe you gave reasonable distance then you should definitely fight this tailgating ticket. It could be the officer had a bad vantage point and believed you were too close. When in fact, you were giving the car in front of you enough space.

For drivers who want to fight this code, the best way is trial by written declaration. Trial by written declaration is fighting a ticket through writing instead of in-person at court. Learn more about getting your ticket dismissed through trial by written declaration.

TicketBust Traffic Ticket Dismissal Services

TicketBust experts and their ticket fighting technology has helped ten of thousands of drivers in California fight and dismiss following too closely tickets without the need of going to court. This saves every driver time and money. If the ticket is dismissed, it means no points, no fine and no court! So just sign up on, upload your traffic ticket information and answer a few questions. Once you receive your written defense package, sign the defense and mail it to the traffic court. Fight your ticket today!

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