Beating a double parking ticket because the double parking rule was misapplied
Joe kept checking his watch because he was running late for church. And to make matters worse, the church’s sound engineer was sitting in the front seat of his car. Joe was trying to get her to the church on time.
Joe made a quick turn onto 91st Street, drove to the middle of the block, and stopped temporarily in the travel lane next to the bike lane to drop her off.
The sound engineer immediately jumped out of the car, and Joe was about to continue down the street when all of a sudden…
Joe was issued a ticket for double parking
91st Street has a parking lane alongside the curb. Immediately adjacent to the parking lane is a bike lane. Alongside the bike lane is a traffic lane.
Here’s what 91st Street looked like when Joe was issued a double parking ticket:
Larry applied his 10-point checklist
Larry (that’s me) followed his 10-Point Checklist in reviewing Joe’s parking ticket. Unfortunately, all required elements were entered correctly. But, while trying to formulate a substantive defense, I decided to argue that the double parking rule was misapplied:
Here’s a copy of the double parking ticket:
The double parking rule was intended to prohibit stopping, standing or parking a vehicle in the lane next to a vehicle occupying the curbside parking lane. If interpreted otherwise, a car legally parked on the opposite curb would be guilty of double parking.
As further evidence that I was not stopped alongside a vehicle parked at the curb:
• I probably would have been issued a parking ticket for stopping in a bicycle lane, as well as double parking
• The TEA probably would have entered a comment that I was stopped in a bike lane
Double parking is a no standing violation, and as such, a driver is permitted to stop temporarily and drop off a passenger, and go. I learned this from the Guide published by the NYC Department of Finance Adjudication Division on page 10 and page 14. (See, “Got Tickets? Your Guide to Parking Ticket Hearings”). An NYC driver should be able to rely on the information contained in a guide published by the Adjudication Division of the NYC Department of Finance.
Due to these circumstances, please dismiss this parking ticket.
The original judge issued a guilty verdict and wrote a dubious opinion. The decision failed to discuss the issues we raised about the misapplication of the double parking rule (the more boilerplate, inadequate, and arbitrary, the better your chances of winning on appeal).
We appealed the decision and the appeals panel reversed the decision of the original judge
Parking ticket dismissed!
- Follow Larry’s 10-point checklist
- Consider whether the parking rule was applied correctly when attempting to formulate a substantive defense
- Don’t give up the good fight if you get a bad decision from the original judge
- Read the original judge’s written decision carefully
- Your burden on appeal is to persuade the appeals panel that the original judge made a mistake of law or fact (technically, you can’t submit new evidence on appeal)
- Don’t overlook the status of the “Complainant’s Comments” because empty space or an inadequate comment can spell victory
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