Last Updated on April 28, 2015 by Lawrence Berezin
How to beat a NYC parking ticket because the parking rule was misdescribed
Diane, a wonderful member of our NYC parking ticket community, was issued a No parking violation. The warrior entered one of those mystical, pirate map descriptions of the parking space, as follows:
“ES 163rd Street, 70 feet N/ of Jamaica Avenue, Queens, NY”
I investigated and found:
- The parking rule displayed on the sign regulating the curb space at the place of occurrence was misdescribed
The challenge was to present the proper proof, properly to prove our case.
How to translate the cockamamie description of the place of occurrence
A warrior or cop has three options when entering the place of occurrence on a NYC parking ticket:
The warrior chose the cockamamie option and entered:
East side of 163rd Street, 70 feet north of Jamaica Avenue
- My first step was to check out Google Maps Street View to check out the location
- My second step was to search the text-based parking regulation tool furnished by the NYC DOT to learn the identity of the parking sign that lives on 163rd Street and regulates the curb space 70 feet from Jamaica Avenue
- The results revealed a No Standing sign, not a No Parking sign
- Confirm the results on the NYC DOT Parking Regulations Map.
- Results confirmed
Now, how to we prove it and win?
Here are the exhibits
It takes a bunch of exhibits to prove the parking rule was misdescribed. Some tips:
- I love Google Maps Street View but must keep in mind that the images are not current
- I use the text-based tool when the distance from the corner is significant. For example, if the distance is 10 feet, I prefer asking our client to snap a few photographs using a tape measure to show the distance from the corner. However, when it’s 70 feet, I find it too cumbersome and difficult to use and photograph the tape measure
- My preference is to combine Google Maps, the NYC DOT Parking Regulation Map (the one with the little red pins), and live photographs to prepare our exhibits
- Make it easy on the judge. Don’t state that she can call you if she has any questions. Don’t assume he will look up stuff you refer to. The judge isn’t going to base his decision on any evidence that you do not present, period
UPDATE- The original parking ticket judge found our client, Guilty. Why? Check out the next blog post to find out the answer to this mystery.
Mike Brown says
Hi Lawrence. Thanks for this great site! I got a parking ticket for blocking a hydrant. The traffic cop mistakenly wrote that my vehicle was located 5 feet South of the street I was on. In reality, there is no hydrant at that location. The hydrant is actually 5 feet North of that street. Can I get out of this ticket on that basis? Thanks!
Lawrence Berezin says
The place of occurrence is a required element.
In your case, it’s misdescribed. Your defense is a misdescribed required element.
The tricky part is presenting the proper proof properly.
You’ve got to persuade the judge that there is no fire hydrant within 15 feet of the place of occurrence entered on the parking ticket. It doesn’t matter where the real hydrant lives, it only matters that it does not live within 15 feet in either direction of the place of occurrence entered on the parking ticket.
You may want to check out some of the articles on winning fire hydrant cases to get an idea of how the proof should look.
Let us know the outcome of your good fight.
I was always wondering with these kind of described addresses, how do we know between which and which streets the traffic cop is trying to describe, as they are only describing an intersection and not the other cross street?
Lawrence Berezin says
These “detailed” descriptions are a pain in the neck and
take some time getting used to…But, can contain some
parking ticket gold because they are misdescribed.
Let’s take the one entered on the above parking ticket:
“ES 163rd Street, 70 feet North of Jamaica Avenue.”
1) The first step is to identify the intersection. In this example, it’s the intersection of 163rd Street and Jamaica Avenue.
2) The next step is to identify the East side of 163rd Street because that is the side and street the warrior claims you parked your chariot.
3) Next, mark off 70 feet North of the intersection of 163rd Street and Jamaica Avenue. X marks the spot. That’s the location of your car.
The “place of occurrence” on my parking ticket is inaccurate to where my car was actually parked. I have video proof to show that my car was in fact, not one but TWO buildings down. How do I win this appeal?
BTW my ticket was for “No Standing Bus Stop”.
Lawrence Berezin says
I am sad to report (after dedicating 6 years, and 7-days-per-week with two months off for my heart attack) that I will no longer be answering questions on Larry’s Blog. You’ll find a treasure trove of information in the 746 Blog Posts and growing, F.A.Q.’s, and comments.
If you need help, you may wish to check out of service offerings. Here’s a link