About Off The Record

By Derek Lakin
HighYa Staff 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?

While we're certainly not legal professionals, and the specifics surrounding your citation (the city, county, and state in which it was received; your previous driving history, the type of ticket and severity, etc.) can play a big impact, most drivers can contest traffic tickets.

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

While we didn’t test the process ourselves, based on what we learned above, 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.

In the end—again, while we didn’t test their services firsthand, 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.

Sign Up for HighYa Newsletter

Sign up for HighYa newsletter and get our best content delivered in your inbox as well as 3 free eBooks to help you save money and shop smarter. Enter your email below to get started!


Read 137 Off The Record Customer Reviews and Complaints

Write a Review
Average Consumer Rating: 4.5
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 115 4 star: 5 3 star: 1 2 star: 3 1 star:  13
Bottom Line: 88% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 137
Sort reviews by:

  • Editor’s Note: It is our understanding that this company has been asking its customers to leave feedback on HighYa. We assure you that each of these reviews has still been subjected to the same verification & vetting process that all submitted reviews go through. Learn More Here
  • They are the worst

    • New York,
    • May 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Off The Record does not communicate well and they do nothing but take your money. All their website reviews are fake. Just get a real lawyer. I was found guilty because of them and had points and fees. Waste of time. No way they have 92% success.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • Fast response and easy to communicate with!

    • California,
    • May 7, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I reached out to OTR days before my last extension on a speedy ticket I had received. The responded very quickly and got my case moved back to work on my case without me having to miss work to go to court. I downloaded the app and it was easy to communicate the lawyer taking my case. Any questions I had I would just message him and within minutes I had answers. Any updates to my case was known right away. The lawyer was successful and won my case so that was a PLUS! I would definitely contact OTR if I ever get another ticket, hopefully not!

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Guilty

    • New York,
    • May 2, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Guilty, no help, like a lottery - if they win, they win. It's a gimmick, waste of the money, probably I was going to do better. I asked him numerous times to change the date, did not, it made it worse for me.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 3 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Do not use Off The Record

    • California,
    • Mar 28, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Off The Record promised a 92% success rate. That is false. OTR is a platform designed to have you ripped off twice, first by paying them double the cost of my ticket, and then later telling me that they were not successful in solving my case. I believe that they would use part of the money I already paid them for the cost of my ticket and the balance for their service. They decided to keep the full amount and told me that I had to make another payment to the court. I will not recommend OTR to anyone. Please people, learn from my experience, do not use this service. It will be best for you to handle it yourself, you will spend less money and time if possible.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Ticket

    • Brooklyn, NY,
    • Mar 12, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Off The Record is the worst solution for your ticket. You will end up paying $299 for their service and your ticket will be more. I got an $80 ticket in New Jersey, I could not go to court so I tried Off The Record. I ended up paying $299 for service and also my ticket became $345. It is an absolute disaster, I would not recommend it to anyone, not even to my enemy. They are just robbing you.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 0 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Good job!

    • New York,
    • Mar 11, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am pleased to say that working with an Off The Record lawyer was a pleasure. He assisted me with a courteous and professional manner that resulted in a very successful resolution of a problem which I had not met before. Based on my experience, I would highly recommend Off The Record for it really lives up to its name...

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 0 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Speed ticket reduced

    • Baldwin, NY,
    • Mar 10, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had a speeding ticket last year going 85 miles an hour, my lawyer Robert got it to reduce to a small minor ticket with no points. I highly recommend Off The Record. Thank you Robert again for your help.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 0 out 1 people found this review helpful

    No ticket, no problem

    • Redmond, WA,
    • Mar 6, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I got a ticket Saturday night for speeding on the freeway. Went past a highway patrolman who pulled me over. Went to Off The Record and they handled everything. My ticket was dismissed, and I don't have any points on my license, and no hike on insurance. Very happy with the results.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 0 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Satisfied client

    • Toms River, NJ,
    • Feb 22, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Hi my name is Benjamin Kumadu of Toms River, New Jersey. Sometime in August 2018, I was on my way to Montreal, Canada and I was stopped by a Trooper who says I changed lane when there were signs that the road was merging into a single lane.

    At first, I thought the Officer was going to warn me, but to my surprise he issued me a ticket.

    Since I lived over 300 miles away, it was impossible for me to go to court, so I just went on the Off The Record app on my phone and made the initial contact, the rest was history.

    My case was dismissed. My advice to other motorist is that get the app on your phone and the next time you are issued a traffic violation, put the attorneys there to work for you.

    I am really A SATISFIED CLIENT.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Total scam

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Feb 20, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    They boast some 97% success rate or some bull crap like that. What they don't tell you is that apparently that includes the traffic school option. Well, I don't need to pay your lawyers $200+ PLUS my fine PLUS extra money in court fees just to take an option that I could've done initially by myself. I am super skeptical of half the reviews on here. Yes, some look real, but some really don't.

    Caveat emptor and read the fine print y'all. Pretty scammy if you ask me.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

  • Amazing service

    • Nevada,
    • Feb 19, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I was working in Connecticut and staying in New York during December. On December 22nd, I was pulled over on the Long Island Expressway by a State Trooper and given four tickets in one traffic stop. I did some online searches and found Off The Record. I went through the steps, and within a couple of hours, a lawyer sent me a message saying he would be calling me in a couple of days. We spoke on the phone, and he was confident that he would be able to greatly reduce my tickets. A week or two later, he called to say that two tickets were thrown out, and the other two were changed to no point tickets, so my insurance wouldn't be affected.

    Highly recommend the service.

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

    Help others find the most helpful reviews

    Was this review helpful?

    yes no

Showing 1-11 of 137

Write a Review for Off The Record!

Share your experience to help others shop smarter & discover great products.

Write a Review