My fix-it-ticket is now a failure to appear and a huge fine. What do I do?
November 5, 2012 6:32 PM   Subscribe

I got a fix it ticket in August that I promptly forgot about until I received a notice to appear on Friday. It says that I will be charged a 600 dollar bail unless I pay after this friday, in which case it is 900 dollars. I am able to do neither. What do I do?

I have corrected my blown taillight, I want to fix this as quickly as possible, but I'm getting some conflicting information.

My ticket is at the compton courthouse, which does not have a phone line I can call. I have looked at the next possible arraignment for my ticket, and it is not until June.

Please let me know what I have to do to clear this up. I plan on being at the courthouse an hour before they open on Wednesday. Hopefully you can tell me whom to see/what to say.
posted by punch_the_mayor to Law & Government (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I got a similar ticket once and jumped hoops to get it fixed on time. As I was dropping the envelope with my $10 check into the mailbox I noticed it said to send it registered mail. I dropped it in anyway. It was a $400 mistake.

In my case I was unwilling, or unable to go to the courthouse. That alone means your odds of doing better than I did just went up astronomically. My son who goes to court on these things all the time says put yourself at the mercy of the court pleading your case as accurately and honestly as possible. Confrontation doesn't work he says. Good luck. Wow, $900 bucks for a taillight. Something is wrong in River City. Compton too. I am in Glendale and got the ticket on the freeway from the highway patrol.
posted by snowjoe at 7:17 PM on November 5, 2012

Here's my situation form 2009, similar to yours. I think it was the Norwalk courthouse, if I remember correctly. It was resolved very well by just showing up with the repairs completed (see my last comment in the discussion). A bit of a pain to show up, but I waited my turn in line, explained what happened to the judge, and all the huge penalties were reversed to the amount of the original $25 fine. Paid on my way out the door.
posted by SpacemanStix at 10:35 PM on November 5, 2012 [2 favorites]

Tell the judge that you fixed it; present proof. Also bring your safety/emissions docs. I doubt the judge will screw you over if you're dressed nicely and you do that stuff.
posted by oceanjesse at 11:45 PM on November 5, 2012

Go to court, usually they're very nice and helpful.

I appeared and the policeman vouched for me saying "She was nice and respectful at the traffic stop, I think she's learned her lesson and she won't do it again."

I got no points and I only paid about half of what the ticket fine was.

If you show them that you fixed it, and you explain that you just forgot to send the documentation, and ask politely if there's any way they can reduce the fine as you're so broke you can't pay attention, usually the judge will be very cool.

Plus, traffic court is a freaking hoot. I especially love the arrogant guy who gets caught speeding in his cul-de-sac, and tries to say that the police officer couldn't have seen him. Complete with charts, graphs and a computer simulation. It never works and it's so fun to see a guy explode.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:09 AM on November 6, 2012

Did you get this resolved? Inquiring minds...
posted by vegartanipla at 8:33 AM on November 11, 2012

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