When you receive a traffic ticket in Illinois, it will almost always say that going to court is not a requirement. Frequently, an officer may tell you that if you pay the fine, you will not have to go to court. Even though that officer may have good intentions, missing out on your opportunity to challenge the ticket is not necessarily good advice.
According to the Illinois State Bar Association, traffic tickets can affect your license. It could potentially lead to suspension of your license. So when you receive a ticket and it says no court appearance required, you still need to find out how that ticket could affect your license. For example, did you know that if you pass a stopped school bus and you admit or plead guilty to a ticket, you face an automatic license suspension from that one ticket?
Also, for example, if you are under the age of 21 and you receive a ticket for illegal transportation of alcohol, even if you pay the fine, it will automatically result in a license suspension. If you are over the age of 21 and you paid three traffic tickets within a year, that would result in a license suspension. If you are under the age of 21 and you paid two tickets within a 24-month period, that will also result in a license suspension.
Therefore, it is important that whenever you receive a traffic ticket, at least in Illinois, you find out if you can safely pay this ticket or if you need to go to court.