Last Updated on December 19, 2017 by Lawrence Berezin
Can you be right and wrong at the same time in NYC parking ticket land?
I received a telephone call last night from a wonderful member of our NYC driving community. Marlene (fictitious) was totally stressed out by her experience at a parking ticket appeals hearing. Here is Marlene’s parking ticket tale…
Marlene’s parking ticket story
Our heroine drives a pickup truck that is registered as a passenger vehicle with an unladen weight of 2,500 pounds. The unladen weight is clearly entered on Marlene’s official registration document. During the past several years, Marlene has been issued many parking violations for improper registration because her 2,500 pounds pick up truck is not capped (sad but true).
As we all know by now, a member of the driving community is perfectly within her rights to register a pickup truck, with an unladen weight of fewer than 5,500 pounds, as a passenger vehicle.
Marlene was totally frustrated by the chronic unjustified parking ticket pain and put the parking ticket in a safe place to deal with another day (First mistake). Almost 100 days later, Marlene remembered she had to file her defense for this unjustified parking ticket. Marlene prepared her defense and submitted it to the Evil Empire by regular mail (Second mistake).
As time goes by…
Marlene hears back from the Evil Empire that she was guilty as charged because she submitted her defense after 100 days, and judgment was entered against her and her chariot. Marlene was certain that her defense was received prior to the expiration of 100 days and filed an appeal.
Bad day at Black Rock for Marlene
Marlene entered the appeal hearing with the intent of making war against the three judges hearing her case (Third mistake). She had no intention of “kissing their a_ _.” Marlene engaged in verbal fisticuffs with all three judges, insisting all that mattered was that she was right. Her pick up truck was properly registered. The three judges directed their questioning about the absence of proof that her defense package was received by the Evil Empire within 100 days from issuance of the parking violation.
After the battle ended, and the judges were enraged, Marlene abruptly walked out of the hearing room without a word. Can you guess the unhappy ending? About two weeks later, Marlene received the appeal panel’s decision_Guilty as charged. The original decision affirmed.
Here’s what I’m hoping we all learn from Marlene’s sad tale and unhappy ending:
- Make your decision as soon as possible after receiving an evil parking ticket whether you’re right and can fight!
- Always, every time, without exception send your parking ticket defense package to the Evil Empire by certified mail, return receipt requested. You must be able to prove receipt (not mailing). Once your uncertified defense package goes to sleep on the pile of defense packages at the NYC Department of Finance Adjudication Unit, there’s no telling when it may be revived and sent for a hearing
- Marlene had every right to be frustrated, but you cannot take out your frustrations on the panel of judges assigned to your appeal. You will absolutely lose your appeal every time if you’re argumentative, or show a lack of respect.
- Marlene was totally right about her pick up truck. It does not have to be capped if its unladen weight is less than 5,500 pounds. Be sure to submit proof of your pick up truck’s unladen weight when fighting this ticket.
- A warrior is required to enter the reason she issued a parking ticket for improper registration. If not, your parking ticket will be dismissed upon application
- Once a judgment is entered (after 100 days from issuance of a parking ticket), you still have the option of disputing your orange epistle. But, you are required to file a “Request for Hearing after Judgment” Form. The proper proof is:
- Establishing excusable neglect for failing to file your defense within 100 days
- A meritorious defense
- This is a very difficult burden of proof to overcome!
What recommendation would you offer Marlene about how to avoid getting more NYC parking tickets for improper registration?