Parking Tickets (2019 Complete Guide) – Pay, Fight or Avoid

Parking Tickets: Your Complete Guide and Everything you Need to Know

Parking tickets in New York City

Finding legal parking in the city can be difficult and expensive, so those with a car often find themselves with costly parking tickets.

What happens if you don’t pay?

If a parking ticket isn’t paid within 30 days, it is considered to be delinquent. The most common consequence of a delinquent parking ticket is an increase in the fine amount, which can be up to double or triple the original amount. In addition to fines, the city may involve collection agencies, demand interest, tow the car, or move to suspend the driver’s license.

How to fight your parking ticket 

To dispute a NYC parking ticket, a request for a hearing should be made within 30 days of the citation. Requests may be submitted for up to a year, though the citation will enter “judgment” status after 100 days and additional documentation will be required. A request can be made in person at the Department of Business Finance Center, by mail, online, or through the “NYC Parking Ticket Pay or Dispute” mobile app. 

Avoiding payment

To get out of paying a parking ticket, look for any error in the citation as they can often render it invalid. All evidence supporting a “not guilty” plea should be submitted with the hearing request. When presenting evidence, use clear language and a formal tone. Additionally, written or verbal testimony from an eyewitness may help support the overturning of a citation. 

Possible reasons a parking ticket may be disputed:

  • Ticket is illegible
  • Incorrect plate number or plate type
  • Wrong or unspecified vehicle color
  • Vehicle body type is unlisted or incorrect
  • The model year is unlisted or incorrect
  • The vehicle manufacturer is unlisted or incorrect
  • Date or time is incorrect or unlisted
  • The county is unlisted or incorrect
  • Days/times in effect are incorrect or unlisted
  • State of registration is incorrect or unlisted
  • They didn’t specify whether you were parked in ‘Front of’ or ‘Opposite’ the address in question

How to pay your NYC parking tickets

You may pay your ticket online, in person at the Department of Finance Business Center, or by mail to the NYC Department of Finance. If you aren’t going to contest the ticket, paying it promptly is the best way to avoid additional penalties. 

Parking Tickets in Chicago

In Chicago, there is no statute of limitations on parking tickets, which means they are never forgiven with time. The city is notorious for harsh enforcement of parking violations. 

What happens if you don’t pay up?

A delinquent parking ticket may double or triple in cost. Three or more delinquent tickets may lead to a booted car, as will 2 that are over a year old. The city will move to suspend the driver’s license if 10 or more are accumulated.

How to fight your parking ticket

The window of time to request a hearing in Chicago is a dauntingly short 7 days. After this time, a Notice of Determination is issued that stating liability by default. At this point, 21 days is given to appeal the decision. A hearing may be requested online, by mail in a signed personal statement, or in-person.

Avoiding payment 

The most likely course of action to overturn a parking ticket is to request a hearing as quickly as possible and to appear in person. Additionally, thorough knowledge of the municipal code may allow loopholes or inaccuracies to surface 

How to pay your Chicago parking ticket

Payment can be made online, at one of the multiple pay stations around the city, in person at the Department of Finance locations, or by mail to the City of Chicago Department of Finance. If payment is not an option due to lack of funds, the city does offer a Fresh Start Program that requires filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and setting up a payment plan to forgive tickets over 3 years old.

Parking Tickets in Santa Monica

Large crowds in popular beach areas such as Santa can make parking difficult, and the city does not slack on enforcement. 

What happens if you don’t pay up?

In Santa Monica, the most common consequence for a delinquent parking ticket will be an increase in the fine amount by double or even triple. After 5 or more are accumulated, the car may be booted or towed. Additionally, the fines incurred with these consequences will be added to the registration renewal fee for the car. 

How to fight your parking ticket

Commonly in California, a 3-step process is followed to contest a parking ticket. The first step is requesting an Initial Review within 21 days of the citation. If you are not happy with the result, a request for an Administrative Hearing must be submitted within 21 days of the review’s result. The final step is an appeal to the Superior Court, which must be made within 30 days of the result of the hearing. This decision is final. 

Avoiding Payment

The best way to get out of a parking ticket in Santa Monica is to jump through the hoops of the appeal process. Appearing in person when applicable and having an understanding of the relevant municipal code will also aid the likelihood of ticket forgiveness. 

How to pay your Santa Monica parking ticket

Making a payment for a parking ticket in Santa Monica can be done in person, over the phone, online, or by mail to the City of Santa Monica. Prompt payment will avoid the placement of liens on car registration renewal. 

Parking Tickets in Los Angeles

As a popular tourist destination, public parking can be difficult to find. Illegal parking in the city will surely result in a parking ticket.

What happens if you don’t pay up?

A delinquent parking ticket in Los Angeles will incur a sharp increase in the citation amount. With 5 or more delinquent citations, the car may be booted or towed. With less than 5, a lien may be placed on the registration renewal of the car until the balance is paid, or the individual’s income tax refund may be withheld until payment is made.

How to fight your parking ticket

To contest a parking ticket in Los Angeles, the 3-step appeal process must be followed. Within 21 days of the citation, a request for an Initial Review must be placed. If you are unhappy with the result of the review, a request for an Administrative Hearing must be submitted within 21 days of the review’s result. The final step, if necessary, is an appeal to the Superior Court, whose decision is final. The appeal must be submitted within 30 days of the hearing’s result. 

Avoiding payment

Requesting an Initial Review as quickly as possible is the best way to get out of a parking ticket in Los Angeles. All evidence must be provided with the submission of the request. Photographs and witness testimonies are a strong form of evidence to include.

How to pay your Los Angeles parking ticket

Payment may be submitted online with a credit or debit card, in person at 4 locations throughout the city, or by mail to the City of Los Angeles. If you do not intend to fight the ticket, paying it within 3 weeks will keep it out of delinquency.

Parking Tickets in San Francisco

 In most metro areas, legal parking is elusive and expensive. Breaking municipal code my lead to hefty parking tickets.

What happens if you don’t pay up?

If a parking ticket is not paid in San Francisco, the total amount due may double or even triple with time. Additionally, nonpayment may lead to a lien on the car’s registration renewal through the DMV. Multiple delinquent tickets may lead to boot placement or towing of the car in addition to liens.

How to fight your parking ticket

The city of San Francisco follows the common 3-step process for contesting a parking ticket. The first request, to be made within 21 days of the citation, is for an Initial Review. The next step is requesting an Administrative Hearing within 21 days of the review’s decision. Finally, an appeal to the Superior Court may be made within 30 days of the hearing’s decision. This decision is final.

Avoiding payment

Half of the parking tickets contested in San Francisco are forgiven, so going through the 3-step process is likely worth the time. Uniquely, the city offers a program that credits $15/hour for citizens willing to do community service to pay off their debt. The program requires a small enrollment fee and a commitment to a payoff timeline.

How to pay your San Francisco parking ticket

Payment of a parking ticket may be made over the phone, online, in person, or by mail to the SFMTA Customer Service Center. In some instances, the city offers a payment plan for people of low income. This city is one of the few that offers more flexible or alternative payment options to avoid further penalties. 

Parking Tickets in San Diego

Parking enforcement never rests in popular tourist destinations, which means that illegal parking will almost always lead to a citation.

What happens if you don’t pay up?

In San Diego, delinquent parking tickets will increase in amount steeply over time and may incur interest or be sent to a collection agency. Additionally, the state may place a lien on the car’s registration renewal through the DMV until the debts are paid. Multiple delinquent tickets often result in a boot in the car or the tow and impounding of the car. 

How to fight your parking ticket

The city of San Diego follows the common 3-step program for contesting parking tickets. A request for an Initial review must be made within 21 days of the original citation. The next step is requesting an Administrative Hearing within 21 days of the review’s decision. Finally, an appeal to the Superior Court may be made within 30 days of the hearing’s decision. This decision is final.

Avoiding payment

The best way to get out of paying a parking ticket in San Diego is to start the review process as quickly as possible. All evidence should be submitted with the first request. Knowledge of the municipal code may also allow for any inconsistencies in the citation to become apparent 

How to pay your San Diego parking ticket

Making a payment for a parking ticket in San Diego can be done online with the citation number, over the phone, in person, or by mail to the San Diego Superior Court. If you don’t have the will to contest, paying the ticket within 3 weeks is the best way to avoid further penalties.

Conclusion

We will be adding more cities and parking ticket information in the months to come. If you have any questions or comments about parking tickets, we’d love to hear from you.

Summary
Parking Tickets (2019 Complete Guide)
Article Name
Parking Tickets (2019 Complete Guide)
Description
We all have been there. You say you're only going to be 10 minutes and there's enough time on the meter, but when you get back to your car there's a parking ticket on your windshield. Now what? We've got answers if you received a ticket in New York City, Santa Monica, San Francisco, LA or Chicago.
Author
Publisher Name
Parking Access, LLC
Publisher Logo