Last Updated on October 28, 2021 by Lawrence Berezin
Broken NYC Muni-Meters cause a whole lot of anxiety
Broken NYC Muni-Meters proved to be Joe’s downfall. Especially when he was running late for an important business meeting, and didn’t have the time to look for another parking space.
Sadly, when Joe returned to his “free” space, he found a bright orange parking ticket under his wiper.
“I thought I was allowed to park for free at a broken NYC Muni-Meter,” Joe said out loud to no one in particular.
Not so fast, Joe. There’s much more to parking for free than just parking.
Table of contents
The Broken NYC Muni-Meters Law
§ 19-167.1 Parking at broken or missing meters or muni-meters.
a. A person shall be allowed to park at a missing or broken meter up to the maximum amount of time otherwise lawfully permitted at such meter.
b. If all muni-meters in a parking field or on a block are missing or broken, a person shall be allowed to park in such parking field or on such block up to the maximum amount of time otherwise lawfully permitted by such muni-meters in such controlled parking field or block.
For the purposes of this subdivision, “muni-meter” shall mean an electronic parking meter that dispenses timed receipts that must be displayed in a conspicuous place on a vehicle’s dashboard.
Here are some tips to help you figure out how to work these diabolical machines.
But, here’s the current broken NYC Muni-Meter rule
4-08(5) Parking at broken or missing parking meters.
(i) Where parking is controlled by a parking meter and such parking meter is broken or
missing, the person seeking to purchase a parking receipt shall use a functional parking
meter in the same parking field or on the same side of the block, to purchase a parking
receipt in accordance with paragraph (1) of this subdivision.
(ii) If all parking meters in a parking field or on a block are missing or broken, a person shall
be allowed to park in the parking field or on the block up to the maximum amount of time
otherwise lawfully permitted by such parking meters in the controlled parking field or block.
Muni- Meter F.A.Q
Most likely, yes!
Yes, but it is challenging to secure the evidence needed to beat the ticket by raising the broken muni-meter defense.
You have to check all the muni-meters on both sides of the block and the next block and take photos of all the muni-meters screens showing that the muni-meters were broken. Lots of luck with that!
Yes, indeed. Here’s the comment found under “Parking at a broken or missing parking meter.”
“When a parking meter is out of service, it will flash a red light, and the display message will read “machine out of order.” You must use a functional parking meter on the same block or the next block to purchase a parking receipt. In a parking field, purchase a parking receipt from the nearest meter to the broken one.
If all parking meters on the block, on the next block, or in the parking field are all broken or missing, New York City law allows you to park for the maximum amount of time posted for that metered space. Make sure to document the date, time, and meter numbers in case you need to dispute a parking ticket.”
Tips to park safely at a broken muni-meter
If you stumble upon a broken muni-meter:
- Make sure the screen on the broken meter displays “Machine out-of-order”
- If not, move along little doggie
- Take photographs of the screen that displayed “Machine out-of-order,” and the identification number on the MM
- Search for a working MM machine on “the block,” and on the “next block” or in the same “parking field”
- If you find another broken machine, repeat the same process set forth above, and continue to search for a working MM machine
- If the search for a working MM machine proves to be futile, find another parking space
It is very challenging to figure out what you have to do to park at a broken meter safely, because:
- The law says one thing
- The rule says another thing
- And, the NYC 311 says a third thing
Suppose you are obsessed with parking for free at a broken meter. And, you have a bunch of free time to collect the evidence to fight the inevitable parking ticket; you should check all the meters on both sides of the block and the next block for a functioning meter. Meanwhile, be sure to take photos of the screens on each meter to prove they were broken.
In the same vein, I would rather cut off all my fingernails than go through this frustrating process.
Do you want to know some muni-meter secrets? Press very gently on this link, and you’ll find out.