About Off The Record

By Derek Lakin
Published on: Sep 11, 2017

Promoted as the smart way to fight your traffic ticket, Off The Record's mobile and web technologies promise to make it easy for the country’s more than 200 million drivers to fight tickets, keep violations off their record, and protect their insurance premiums from unjust penalties.

In fact, the website indicates it’s as easy as ordering take-out; the company also boasts a 97 percent success rate.

Compared to traditional traffic ticket lawyers, we’re told the process works over four steps and takes less than a minute. You won’t be required to mail in your ticket or show up in court, the company will send you real-time updates and allow you to communicate with your lawyer at any time, and you’ll be notified if any further action is required once your case is resolved.

But compared to the long-term costs associated with insurance rate hikes, should you choose to hire Off The Record? How do they compare to the competition? What about just handling it yourself? Let’s answer this question first.

Is It Possible to Fight a Traffic Ticket on Your Own?

There are many moving variables that may have an effect on whether or not you can contest traffic tickets. Some of these factors include:

  • the city, county, and state in which the ticket was received
  • your previous driving history
  • the type of ticket and severity

However, the process is often intimidating, cumbersome, confusing, and time-intensive. After all, according to DMV.org, you’ll need to—at minimum—ensure that have legal proof that the ticket can be contested, that you have time to devote to (sometimes multiple) court appearances, and that you’re approaching the case using the best strategy.

As a result, as mentioned on the Off The Record site, the vast majority of drivers just choose to pay the fine. However, if you decide to contest your ticket and go to court without the help of a lawyer, Jalopnik’s Steve Lehto recommends:

  1. Reading the back of the ticket, which outlines how many days you have to respond.
  2. Entering a plea, such as Not Guilty.
  3. On your court date, dressing nice, arriving early, and pleasantly pleading your case, depending on your chosen strategy.

In the end, he emphasizes that “The bulk of the run-of-the-mill tickets get reduced in bargains like this. Why? Prosecutors often have 100 files to dispose of and time to only try 10 of them. The other 90 have to go away somehow. The lesser ones usually get the deals. But there is a lot of wiggle room in there. Every case the prosecutor can resolve by way of an agreement is one less that has to be dealt with later."

Don’t have the time or the know-how to go through the process yourself? Let’s find out what you’ll need to do with Off The Record’s app.

How Does the Off The Record App Work?

Currently only available for iOS devices, the Off The Record app works over the following steps (note: More or less, these steps also apply to their website):

  1. Take a picture of your ticket and send it in.
  2. Answer a few questions to tell them about your ticket.
  3. The company’s proprietary Smart Match platform will intelligently match one of their 250+ experienced lawyers to your ticket.
  4. You’ll pay one flat fee. If the case doesn’t go in your favor, you’re covered by their money back guarantee.

Screenshot of the Off The Record AppAfter taking a picture of your ticket and paying the one-time fee through their website or iOS app (pictured above), Off The Record will match you with an experienced lawyer who you can message at any time. Image credit: Apple Corporation

It seems that Off The Record’s app and website-based technology have the potential to save customers a lot of time, hassle, and frustration when contesting a traffic ticket. But does this mean they’ll always be able to completely avoid the violation from impacting your driving record?

What Are Some of the Possible Outcomes With Off The Record?

According to the company’s FAQ, they “work exclusively with traffic lawyers who have extensive experience dealing with all types of traffic matters,” which means they can contest all traffic violations, including popular ones like speeding, illegal use of the HOV lane, and negligent driving.

Regardless of the ticket type, Off The Record emphasizes that their primary goal is to get the ticket and the associated fine completely dismissed, which is most likely to occur if you have a spotless record, or if your ticket has errors or inconsistencies.

However, depending on the specifics of your case (as mentioned in the previous section), this might not always be possible. Other potential outcomes could include:

  • Non-Moving Reduction – Here, your lawyer will negotiate to have the charge reduced to a non-moving violation. This might still involve a (sometimes reduced) fine, but the violation will not appear on your driving record or impact insurance premiums.

  • Point Reduction – You’ll still have to pay a fine, but reducing the points associated with the violation could minimize its impact on your driving record.

  • Deferral – The current violation won’t appear on your record, as long as you don’t receive another one for a certain period of time. The Off The Record website indicates this is typically only implemented as a last resort.

  • School & Classes – Similarly, the state will drop the case if you agree to take some sort of traffic school or defensive driving class. Again, this is typically only used when no other options are available.

  • Committed (Case Lost) – While the company boasts a 97 percent success rate, sometimes nothing can be done to avoid the full penalty and the driving record impact of a violation.

How Much Does Off The Record Cost & What Are Their Eligibility Guidelines?

No prices were listed on the Off The Record website at the time of our research. We contacted the company for further information, but we have not yet received a response.

From an eligibility perspective, Off The Record’s FAQ indicates that their services are “available in most states and cities across the US. We’re working hard to make it available everywhere, and we add new cities each week.”

The only way to find out if they’ll be able to address your ticket is to take a picture of it and send it in through the app or website. If they can’t help (or even if they can and you simply choose not to proceed), you won’t have to pay anything.

If they can help, what will you pay? This seems to largely depend on the specifics of your case, although their FAQ emphasizes they “work hard to make sure we have the most competitive fees available anywhere. If you find a lawyer with a more competitive legal fee, let us know. We may be able to price match.”

Also, any legal fees you pay to the company do not include fines or court fees you’re assessed during the process.

OTR also offers a 100 percent money back guarantee if they’re not able to resolve your case, and you’ll know whether or not your ticket is eligible before you book your case.

If you have questions, Off The Record’s customer service department can be reached at (844) 687-2946 or team@offtherecord.com.

What Can We Learn From Off The Record Customer Reviews?

Outside of the company’s iOS app, we didn’t come across a lot of online customer feedback for Off The Record during our research.

On iTunes, the app had a total of 151 combined reviews, with an average rating of about 4.5 stars. There, most compliments appeared to revolve around effective results, ease of use, and solid customer support.

On the other hand, what few complaints there were frequently referenced no ticket dismissal and high prices.

From a company perspective, Off The Record was co-founded in 2015 by Alex Guirguis, who previously worked as a software engineer for Amazon and Golder Associates, as well as a Program Manager for Expedia.

According to an interview in GeekWire, Alex noted that OTR had its first customer 30 minutes after launching in the iOS App Store.

Off The Record vs. TIKD & Other Ticket Fighting Services

We talked earlier about the inconvenience of going to court, but the reality is that there are almost certainly at least a few traffic ticket lawyers in your area that can be hired to attend on your behalf. Going this route, CostHelper Personal Finance reports that the average speeding ticket costs somewhere between $900 and $2,500 to contest.

But it seems that Off The Record is one of the leaders in this niche, as the only other direct competitor we encountered during our research was TIKD. How do their key factors stack up?

Outside of the fact that they both promise to help you fight traffic tickets, they work fundamentally differently.

For example, with Off The Record, customers will pay a preset fee for legal services, as well as any fines or other money ordered due by the court. On the other hand, TIKD customers pay their associated fine to the company, who then “hires a qualified attorney on your behalf to challenge your ticket.” This payment can even be split into three installments.

But if any additional fines, court costs, or other additional costs arise, TIKD covers all of them. Then, if money is left over, they refund customers the difference.

How to Choose the Right Ticket Fighting Company?

Whether Off The Record, TIKD, or traditional legal counsel, WiseGeek notes that choosing representation can prove difficult, as there are many lawyers out there who focus on traffic tickets, hold significant experience, and boast “detailed knowledge of the technicalities of having a fine dismissed or reduced.”

As a result, they recommend focusing on using online consumer review sites like HighYa to distinguish the cream of the crop, as well as references from loved ones, and of course, each companies’ overall legal fees.

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, Avvo.com recommends also asking the following questions:

  • How long have you been handling traffic cases like mine?
  • How many traffic cases like mine have you successfully handled?
  • What would you consider a successful outcome in my case?
  • How much will you charge me?
  • Will you appear with me in court, or will you send someone else from your firm?

What Are Our Final Thoughts About Off The Record?

At the beginning of this article, we referenced some of the inherent difficulties in contesting traffic tickets, such as the system’s complexity and the time commitment involved. But as FindLaw.com outlines, even just deciding whether or not you should contest a ticket can be a relatively involved process.

It seems that Off The Record removes nearly all of these potential roadblocks and makes contesting traffic tickets quick, easy, and competitively priced.

On top of this, the company came with almost universally positive online customer feedback at the time of our research. And even if you don’t end up counting yourself among their 97 percent success rate, they seem to stand behind their services with a 100 percent money back guarantee.

Next: Did you recently receive a ticket or become involved in an accident? Read how much your auto insurance rates might go up as a result.

Read 329 Off The Record Customer Reviews and Complaints

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Average Customer Rating: 4.5
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 275 4 star: 18 3 star: 3 2 star: 5 1 star:  28
Bottom Line: 90% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 329
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  • Aaron did it thanks to you guys!

    • By Dejanee D.,
    • New York,
    • Mar 6, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    So happy that Aaron was able to help me on getting my tickets reduced down to a 4-point violation! I was looking at 12 points and getting my license taken away. I'm happy you could help me with this one. I'll be referring to friends and family if the need arises.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • My lawyer went to court 15 minutes late

    • By Zahir A.,
    • Georgia,
    • Mar 5, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had 7 years of a clean driving record, knowing that, I thought I would get my tickets thrown away with the lawyer's help. The things that really bother me is that I could do this by myself instead of hiring a lawyer and paid $180 for no reason.

    Teasley William Law Group did not suggest to me otherwise. They could have at least said that one can by law request for Nolo every 5 years in Georgia. More over, the fact that my lawyer was late and I had to apologize for my lawyer's tardiness to the judge. It was an absolutely horrifying experience. It was a total waste of $180.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

  • Things Off The Record does not tell you

    • By Alan D.,
    • Kansas,
    • Mar 4, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    I was introduced to Off The Record via a pop-up ad. Since I had received my first ticket in 10 years, I decided to give them a try.

    The ad said that it would cost me $250 which would be refundable if the lawyer lost my case. After I filled out the information, the price went up to $300, which I paid.

    A day later I received an email saying that since my ticket was on a commercial driver's license, they would not honor the guarantee of getting my money back. The lawyer never contacted me to get any details about the case, they just decided they could rake me over the coals since my job depends on my license.

    At this point, I canceled and requested a refund. I am still waiting for that.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

  • Speeding ticket

    • By Chevan W.,
    • LaBelle, FL,
    • Mar 4, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Off The Record is doing a good job, I am pleased with the service they offered to me. By defending my case in court, they are trustworthy and can be relied upon in handling your case in court. The police wanted to give me 3 points on CDL and that would cause my insurance to increase, but Off The Record brought it down to 0 points. Give thanks for such a company.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • What a relief

    • By Corey R.,
    • Georgia,
    • Mar 4, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Off The Record was able to keep my driving record clean by fighting and beating my traffic summons in Dekalb County court.

    If you drive for a living or depend on your DL to get work and function, I highly recommend OTR for you and yours.


    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • Traffic violation

    • By Timothy R.,
    • Olympia, WA,
    • Mar 2, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am very pleased to announce OTR was able to get my citation dismissed. First time using this service, won't be my last. Prompt response from the attorney, when my case was created online.

    Very pleased!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • 9 points reduced to 2

    • By Ashley L.,
    • New York,
    • Feb 28, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Easy and affordable. My attorney got my out-of-state speeding ticket reduced from 9 points to 2 points with little effort on my part (was traveling from Massachusetts through upstate New York, visiting family). Highly recommend, it is well worth the money spent. Did not have to go to court once, very convenient, thank you!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • 2nd to none!

    • By David O.,
    • Bellevue, WA,
    • Feb 27, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Such a blessing that I found this app, and was paired with Jacque LeJune. I would recommend him and this app hands down! It was so convenient, and my attorney was super thorough and kept me in the loop from start to finish.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • Terrible business

    • By Hector R.,
    • Feb 26, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Terrible! This business is a complete joke! Absolutely do not trust this business. I'll explain; I received a speeding ticket. I was doing 89 mph on a 65-mph freeway. That calculates to 24 mph over the speed limit. If the speed is under 25 mph, you qualify for traffic school, I know that already. The fine for the infraction was $367, and an option to take traffic school for $59, for a total of $426. The lawyer that went to court for me, did a crap job, because I was still found guilty and the court is now charging me $461. I contacted Off The Record to establish getting my refund and was told that I do not qualify for a refund because I received the option of traffic school. I tried arguing that I already had the option of traffic school and the lawyer did not earn it. Off The Record argued back saying that the lawyer did earn me traffic school because traffic school isn't guaranteed. What a total crock! So, I lost the $200 Off The Record fee and not have to pay the courts $461, for a grand total of $661! I could've only paid $426 and been done.

    Also, if Off The Record comes back and says "once you make the option to fight a ticket, you waive the right to traffic school." They can shove it! All the lawyer did is keep asking for extensions for the court date. I filed with Off The Record on July 31, 2019, the lawyer pushed this to February 6, 2020. I received a letter from the County on July 20, 2019 stating that I qualify for traffic school. Being an experienced lawyer, he could've told me that the ticket was a wash and that he had no real tactics to fight it and that I would be better off paying the fine that they gave me along with traffic school. Nope, they stole $200 from me.

    I urge everyone reading this to not do business with Off The Record. If I could attach all the documentation I have to this review, I would; to prove what I ask stating is 100% real and accurate.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

  • My personal experience

    • By Robert B.,
    • Hinesville, GA,
    • Feb 26, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Affordable price and convenient to use. Someone will go on your behalf to court and fight for you. However, my personal experience. My case was prolonged and when trying to see what happened on the second court hearing, it was extremely difficult to get a hold of my rep. It was days before he got back to me. Could be the work load, but there should be someone able to answer questions when you need them or request some. Although they seem to hire competent reps for the agency. Would use again if I need them. If I could, I would give them an above-average rating.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

  • Speeding ticket

    • By Marina B.,
    • Everett, WA,
    • Feb 21, 2020
    • Verified Reviewer

    Not only did I get a speeding ticket but I forgot about it (Christmas craziness time) and the lawyer still was able to take care of it for me, past due! I was so relieved! And it’s no longer affecting my driving record or my insurance for the next few years! So grateful for this app!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Showing 1-11 of 329

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