Supporting Deposition (Definition: All You Need To Know)

What is a supporting deposition?

Should you request a supporting deposition?

What are the important elements that you must know!

Keep reading as we have gathered exactly the information that you need!

Let’s understand the meaning of this legal term!

Are you ready?

Let’s get started!

What is a supporting deposition 

A supporting deposition is an official legal document provided by a police officer providing details and information regarding a traffic ticket or moving violation.

Typically, the supporting deposition is issued at the same time as the traffic ticket and comes with it.

In some cases, the police officer may prepare the supporting deposition manually and provide it to you separately.

In most cases though, the supporting deposition will be printed immediately with the traffic ticket.

For example:

Mary is speeding and gets pulled over by the police. 

The police officer uses a computer to print out her traffic ticket and along with the supporting deposition where the officer provides additional details and information about the context of the speeding violation.
Author

Supporting deposition definition 

What is a supporting deposition traffic ticket?

A motor vehicle driver is entitled to a supporting deposition when charged with a moving violation or when a police officer issues a traffic ticket for a driving infraction of some sort.

The supporting deposition is an official document provided by the police officer providing supplemental factual information related to the traffic ticket and why the police considered a violation of the law.

It’s a “support” statement or “complementary” information where the sheriff, police officer or trooper will provide factual descriptions of the moving violation, explain how things happened, what he saw etc.

Elements of a supporting deposition 

A supporting deposition provided when a ticket was issued must respect certain elements:

  • It must be issued in a timely fashion when requested 
  • It must contain supplementary factual information about the traffic violation
  • It must be signed by the police officer who issued the ticket 
  • It must be delivered to your attorney or legal representative, if you have one, if the defendant requests it 
  • It must not contain opinions of the police or legal conclusions but only facts 

Should you request a supporting deposition 

When should you request a supporting deposition?

If you are looking to contest a traffic ticket, you should ensure you have a supporting deposition.

If not, you should request one by checking the appropriate box on the supporting deposition form (Section B of the Uniform Traffic Ticket)

In New York, the request must be submitted:

  • Before trial
  • Before pleading guilty 
  • Within 30 days of the hearing date printed on the ticket 

When your not guilty plea is submitted and supporting deposition requested, the court clerk will inform the police authorities that they must issue a supporting deposition further to your request.

That’s when the police officer has a certain amount of time (typically 30 days) to provide the requested supporting deposition, or it must be delivered no later than five days before trial.

It’s a good idea to consider the content of the deposition provided by the police so you can see whether you should go before the judge to beat the ticket entirely or get into plea-bargaining negotiations with the prosecutor.

If you seek a plea bargain, you may reduce the fine and surcharge and potentially earn fewer demerit points.

Dismissing a traffic ticket 

There are a few ways that you may potentially request the dismissal of your ticket.

If you are issued a traffic ticket that does not contain a supporting deposition and that you do not agree with the charges, you should contest the ticket but also ask for the supporting deposition to be provided to you.

If the police officer does not provide the deposition in support of the ticket, you should ask for the dismissal of the ticket based on the applicable sections of the Criminal Procedure Law.

Takeaways 

What is supporting deposition?

Should I request a supporting deposition?

When you are given a speeding ticket in the New York State, you can request a supporting deposition from the police officer.

Supporting depositions contain factual statements provided by the police officer justifying why they considered that you committed an offence for which you were charged on the traffic ticket.

In some cases, it may be worth asking for the supporting deposition to better prepare your case and in other cases you may not want to ask for one so you can dismiss the ticket on technicalities.

Your best bet is to consult with a New York traffic ticket lawyer to see what’s the best thing to do for your specific case.