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Fighting a Ticket Due to a Vehicle Malfunction

If you receive a traffic violation in Mono County, California, or in any part of California and you were issued a "fix it" ticket, but you believe your violation was caused by a vehicle malfunction, you should know that there are two different procedures you can follow.

My Gas Pedal Stuck and I Got a Speeding Ticket

If you receive a speeding ticket, and you believe it was due to a vehicle malfunction, rather than driver error, you can dispute the ticket by pleading not guilty to the violation. Per the Judicial Branch of California Court's website, you can dispute the ticket without appearing in court by either visiting or mailing the court clerk's office. You can also dispute the ticket by appearing in court on the date indicated on your ticket and pleading not guilty. Disputing the ticket will set the matter for trial, where you will have the opportunity to present your case to a judge. Be warned, the “my gas pedal was stuck” excuse better be pretty convincing. It normally is not successful.

"Fix it" Ticket Procedures

Fix it tickets are given to motorists who have "correctable violations" due to a vehicle malfunction or damaged parts, not having a proof of insurance, license or registration in their possession or other violations that are usually caused by an oversight or damage. Damaged parts can include, but are not limited to, headlights, tail lights, mirrors, bumpers, mufflers, and other exhaust parts.

Once police issue a "fix it" ticket, the Court may send a courtesy notice to you stating whether the violation can be resolved by paying a fine or repairing the vehicle. As of 1 May 2017, courts are mandated by the CA legislature to send a notice; however, not receiving a notice is not an excuse not to appear in court or resolve the issue prior to the court date. You should fix the issue as soon as possible, say you did not have your proof of insurance and you were issued a citation. You should get your insurance paperwork, now even an electronic copy can be used as proof, and take it to the courthouse.

Once the issue is corrected, an authorized person must sign the "Certificate of Correction" part of the ticket. Authorized personnel include a police officer or officer of the court. You should then take the certificate of correction to the court clerk, and pay the dismissal fee (for no insurance in possession that will be $75 in Mono County but can vary) before the deadline listed on the ticket. At that point, the case will be dismissed and will not appear on the driver's record.

Mammoth Courthouse in Mono County, CA

The Mammoth Courthouse is located on 100 Thompson Way, Mammoth Lakes and the court clerk’s number is, (415) 865-4900. Due to budget cuts, the customer service window is only open half-days, on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm and Tuesday and Thursdays from 12 pm to 4 pm. You can also make payments online at e-Pay.com. However, we advise speaking to a local traffic ticket attorney before making the decision to just pay a fine for any moving violation, as traffic lawyers know the traffic court system and what tickets should be fought, not bought.

Hire a traffic lawyer who regularly practices in Mono County

95 percent of Californians never hire a lawyer or fight a traffic ticket; in fact, many do not even consult an attorney before paying their fine, perhaps wasting their hard-earned money. Bigger & Harman represent clients in Mono County in the Mammoth Lakes Courthouse, as well as at the Bridgeport Courthouse and other traffic courts across the Central Valley and some SoCal counties.

Call Bigger & Harman, 661-349-9300, email: attorney@markbigger.com or, use the website contact form when you receive a traffic ticket that you believe was caused by a vehicle malfunction. With their FREE phone consultation, you can get the advice and guidance you need to make an informed decision and perhaps save yourself from paying an unnecessary fine.

Read the write-up on Nolo.com or check their reviews on Yelp to discover what family, friends, and neighbors have said about Bigger & Harman, a Central Valley traffic ticket legal team.

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