Taking Care of a Warrant from a Ticket I Never Received in California
Lessons learned. Reading up on California Vehicle Code (CVC) can assist
you in learning about valid points of a ticket and traffic violations.
Look at your ticket and Google the CV code and you will find information
about what the state must prove to find you guilty of the violation.
Fix-it tickets, like a taillight that has burnt out, speeding tickets,
and others should be avoided and taken care of with the court clerk as
soon as you are able to do it. Usually, a simple walk around the vehicle
with the lights on will alert you to any burnt out lights before you go.
But, if you do get a ticket, do not let them linger and turn into a problem as I did.
When you move, it is wise to
update your new address with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), so you will know when the
state has suspended your license.
Failure to Appear (FTA)
California law usually allows for you pay your fine or arrange to make
payments before or during your court appearance and/or due date on the
ticket. Although a new law went into effect 1 May 2017, which requires
the court to send you a courtesy notice or reminder about your court date,
it is your responsibility to appear or make arrangements before your court
date. If you FTA and you had a mandatory court appearance, the judge will
order a bench warrant. And, guess what? Your fine has most likely doubled
or tripled because of the bench warrant.
Delinquent fix-it tickets and speeding tickets are usually handled by notifying
the county's collection agency, but the DMV can suspend your license.
At this point, you will need legal representation to help you prove you
did not know about the ticket and therefore should not be given an additional
fine for FTA. Chances are the DMV has your returned ticket, if those were
undeliverable to your old address.
OK, suppose you knew about your ticket and made arrangements with the court
for installments and you stopped paying, what now? Well, first the court
will report it to a collection agency. You may be familiar with GC Services,
they are the collection agency used by the LA County Court to attempt
to collect unpaid fines and there are others in other counties.
Do not make the mistake of thinking that is all the court and DMV will
do is smirch your credit. Oh no, if you haven’t received one already,
you likely will receive a notice of suspension from the DMV, if you updated
your address. Driving with a suspended license is another ticket and another
fine unless the state cannot prove you knew your license was suspended
Call Bigger & Harman to Clear Your Bench Warrant and Good Name
Many lawyers deal with a variety of law cases and workloads, we exclusively
represent clients in traffic court. At Bigger & Harman, we work hard
for our clients in courtrooms in several counties across south-central
California, such as Kern, Inyo, Tulare, and Kings just to name a few.
We are familiar with the court clerks, the judges, and many of the police
officers. This is our business, these are people we meet on a near daily
basis, therefore when a question comes up, we can often get a reduced
charge or dismissal.
Your FTA decision could be very expensive and inconvenient; never just
take it upon yourself to fail to appear in court. Likewise, updating your
address with the DMV will save you a lot of headaches, money, and inconvenience.
Call us today for assistance clearing a delinquent ticket, FTA, or suspended
license, 661-349-9300. Or, send us an email:
En español, llame al 661-349-9755.