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What's Up With That?

crosswalkIf a tree falls in the woods and no one is around, does it make a sound? In a similar vein, if you get a traffic ticket that’s not issued by The State of California, do you really have to pay it?

Some visitors to the Santa Monica Mountains are getting tickets from something called the Mountains and Recreation Conservation Authority. The citations include language that the tickets won’t go on your record, aren’t reported to the insurance company, and weren’t issued “for any violation of any provision of the California Vehicle Code.” Nevertheless, this entity, and others like it, are legally authorized to assess fines and can report non-payers to collections agencies.

Jeff Maloney, the MRCA’s chief counsel, emphasized that a ticket “is a serious thing, but it’s not criminal.”

Federal Traffic Tickets

Many folks in Central California, especially places that are close to large swaths of federal property, like Mammoth Lakes and Bridgeport, encounter a similar dilemma when they receive federal traffic tickets. However, as one can imagine, a federal judge can do a lot worse than report a delinquent fine to a debt-buyer.

A monstrosity called the Central Violations Bureau handles all the traffic tickets issued in places like Death Valley National Park, the Sequoia National Forest, and the China Lake Naval Air Weapons Station. These tickets are challenging to deal with, to say the least.

First, there is the logistical angle. All CVB matters in Central California go to the federal courthouse in Bakersfield. The judge only hears traffic tickets once every month or two, and the court staff typically does not reschedule appearance dates for anything other than an extreme emergency, and a trip to Bakersfield is not on very many peoples’ to-do planners. Furthermore, traffic school is typically not an option in federal cases, and payment plans are usually not available either.

In most cases, an attorney can appear for you in federal court and dispose of your ticket in the most painless way possible.

Getting Legal Help

The aggressive attorneys at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call today at 661-349-9300 or email attorney@markbigger.com to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español, llame al 661-349-9755.