Breaking Traffic News – Ticket Tips and Tricks, Part II

Los Angeles has been called the Gridlock Capital of America, but Get ready: because driving in California is about to get much better!

Our May newsletter brought you ticket tips and tricks, highlighting California’s ticketing problem, skyrocketing fines, and uncollected debts. Well, the State Supreme Court has taken notice as well with Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye calling for an emergency rule that allows drivers to appear in court to contest their tickets before requiring them to pay the fine. This would be a game changer for the entire system as in the majority of counties, motorists are forced to pay their tickets in full before being given the opportunity to contest them. Even other areas that don’t explicitly require drivers to pay in full before they can contest their citations require payment by deadlines that expire long before a court date can be secured – effectively reaching the same result.

If that practice looks and feels like a violation of due process, that’s because it is! So, while this new rule is a great first step at restoring fairness to the process for all drivers, it’s especially good news for low-income drivers who have been disproportionately affected by the high fines and restricted access to court.

The only thing standing in the way of this emergency rule is the Judicial Council of California, who must issue the rule in order for it to take effect. And the Council has already begun. The rule is expected to go into effect this week! Taken in conjunction with Governor Brown’s Traffic Amnesty Proposal and the number of State Senators’ related proposals we looked at in our last newsletter, California will have an overhaul in their ticketing system very soon.

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