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Can I Go to Jail For a Parking Ticket?

Can I Go to Jail For a Parking Ticket?

Parking tickets are usually among the least serious tickets you can get. While they’re still nothing to take lightly, it’s very unlikely that you’ll have to go to jail for a parking ticket. If you were, for instance, blocking the entryway to the ER thus putting people’s lives in jeopardy, then you might face criminal charges that would lead to the possibility of jail time. However, a parking ticket in and of itself isn’t likely to send you to the slammer. That being said, an accumulation of tickets or not paying them on time can eventually lead you into some trouble. Here’s the least you should know.

Getting a Ticket

Tickets usually have all the information you need right on them. You’ll be able to see how much you owe, where to pay it when you have to pay it by, and the information for the DMV and/or court. The county clerk’s information might also be on the ticket. It’s important to pay your ticket on time or appear in court when required. It’s also important to send your appeal to the right person or department. Be sure to follow all the instructions on your ticket, and if you have questions or you’re unsure about something, be sure to call the county clerk and ask.

If You Don’t Pay the Ticket

Your first strike is probably going to be an increase in the fee if you don’t pay within a certain time frame. For instance, some states have laws that impose an increase in the fee you owe if you don’t pay within six months. However, it very much depends on the state. If you still don’t pay your fines, you could be summoned to court. It’s important to show up when you’re asked to in order to have the best chance of having your side heard. It’s still advisable to take your traffic attorney with you to the meeting.

If You Don’t Show

If you’re summoned and you don’t show, the judge can issue a bench warrant for your arrest. At this point, yes, you could theoretically go to jail. However, it’s not the parking ticket itself that led you there, it was being in contempt of court. Any time you don’t show when you’re summoned or otherwise disobey the court, you’re likely going to face legal trouble that is unrelated to anything that came before it. If you miss your appeal date the same thing can happen, but at that point, you’ll likely just be found guilty by default. However, that still leaves you with the problem of not having paid the fines that you will now be court ordered to pay. If you ignore that, you could wind up in serious trouble.

Don’t Go it Alone

Hire a traffic attorney to help you through the process. Nobody should face the legal system by themselves. If you can’t afford to pay your fines or you’ve decided to fight your ticket, it’s important to hire an experienced legal professional. Some people find the prospect of hiring an attorney intimidating, but it shouldn’t have to be. Lawyers are there to help you fight for your rights, and we’re here to help you find the best attorney for the job.

At Ticket Void, we’ve worked for years with drivers just like you. We help pair you with a qualified attorney in your area who is vetted and capable of helping you with your specific case. By entering just a few pieces of information about your case, we can find and email you the information of an attorney near you who is best suited to help you with your case. The initial consultation is free, so what do you have to lose? Get started today, and exercise your right to fight.


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