Last Updated on March 31, 2015 by Lawrence Berezin
Beat a parking ticket by eliminating these 5 killer mistakes
What’s the difference between a simple, run-of-the-mill mistake and a killer mistake? A simple mistake is one that can be easily corrected and doesn’t cause a bunch of damages.
A killer mistake is a painful blunder that costs you a bunch of money.
Here are some killer mistakes to avoid to maximize your chances to beat a parking ticket.
1. Singing the blues
This is one heck of a mistake to make because you immediately end your chances of winning a dismissal. Ranting about the evils of the NYC parking rules and calling the warrior bad names will result in defeat. You may as well write your check when you submit your defense.
The tone of your defense certification matters. Stick to the facts and present your story in a reasonable voice.
2. Submitting a defense document that isn’t sworn to or certified
A parking ticket is considered the sworn testimony of a parking ticket warrior. She swears that the information entered in the tiny boxes is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
In order to level the playing field, present your testimony in the form of an affidavit or certification. Otherwise, a judge will assign little weight to your statement.
Here’s all you have to do:
Your name, of full age, being duly sworn, according to law, upon my oath, deposes and says:
Testimony, testimony, testimony, etc.
Sworn and Subscribed before me
on this __________ day of
I hereby certify as follows:
testimony, testimony, testimony
-I certify that my testimony is the truth to the best of my knowledge. I fully understand that if my testimony is willfully false, I am subject to punishment
-I certify that the photographs submitted are true and accurate reproductions of what they purport to represent and show the subject matter as it existed on the day the parking ticket was issued
3. Wishing you could cross-examine a parking ticket warrior
O.k. Johnny Cochran, you think your eloquent cross-examination will cause the warrior to confess to her sins on the witness stand and result in a dismissal of your parking ticket? Dream on.
In Parking Ticket Land, a warrior is not required to appear at a hearing. The parking ticket containing a treasure-trove of required elements is the “witness” against you. You’re fighting a piece of paper that can’t fight back. And, must be devoid of omitted, misdescribed, or illegible required elements. You can’t ask for a better chance to win.
If a warrior was required to testify against you, he won’t remember your special parking ticket. She’d simply testify that:
- She has no independent recollection of issuing your parking ticket
- Looking at the parking ticket will not refresh her recollection
- She issued the parking ticket in the regular course of her employment
- The information was entered at the time she observed your car parked illegally
- Was accurate at the time of entry
And, viola, the parking ticket would be admitted as a business record.
If all the required elements are entered accurately, the warrior establishes a “prima facie” case against you. Now, you can present testimony (in the form of an affidavit, certification, and exhibits) to refute the parking violation. You can attack the warrior’s credibility and present witness statements on your behalf.
A warrior must establish the parking violation by substantial credible evidence.
Further, according to the Young case, if your defense is not patently incredible, there must be sufficient information on the parking ticket to rebut your defense.
4. You give up if the original judge finds you guilty
You have a right to appeal the original judge’s decision and order within thirty days of the date it was entered (not the date you received the decision).
Read the decision carefully. There are some rogue judges that will not apply the law correctly, or misapply the facts to the law. For example, a judge made a mistake of law when he stated in his opinion that a warrior doesn’t have to accurately enter the Make or Model of an out-of-state chariot if it is not on the plate of windshield.
Bah, humbug. The NY appeals court held that make/model is one of the 5 essential required elements that must be entered accurately for NY or out-of-state registered vehicles. In addition, we presented evidence that the make of the vehicle was prominently displayed on the car itself (Smart car).
We won on appeal.
5. You appeal (yea!) but apply the wrong standard (boo!)
The standard of proof on appeal is to persuade an appeals panel that the original judge made a mistake of law or fact, based on the evidence you submitted for the original hearing. Simply regurgitating your original argument will result in the appeals panel affirming the decision.
Here are some tips:
- The original judge is required to state the why’s and wherefore’s to support her conclusion. Simply stating that he found the defense unpersuasive is arbitrary and shows a predisposition to find you guilty
- Don’t assume the original judge’s interpretation of the law is correct. Check it out
- If the original judge states the facts he is relying on to reach his decision, make sure the facts are accurate. Inaccurate facts cannot support a decision
- Start your appeal argument with: ” The original judge made a mistake of law or fact because”
- Don’t forget you cannot submit new evidence on appeal. That’s why it’s so important to carefully plan your original defense presentation with consideration given to the fact it may for the basis for your appeal
I applaud all of our wonderful friends that fight their parking tickets when they’re right. But, if you’re going to take your valuable time to fight, fight ’em right and win.