Have you ever been ambushed by temporary parking restrictions?
Joe finished his second cup of coffee and headed to his car to drive to work. Joe parked overnight one-half block from his house on the opposite side of the street. When Joe arrived at last night’s parking space, his car was gone. Joe saw a temporary parking restrictions sign taped to a tree next to his empty parking space.
Has this ever happened to you?
How to beat a parking ticket for violating a temporary parking restriction
The first step is to take photographs of the paper parking sign, including:
- A close up of the paper sign so that the lettering is totally legible
- Photographs showing the location of the paper sign (either overlapping and/or with house numbers in the background)
- Photographs showing the street name
The next step is to compare the paper parking sign with your parking ticket:
- The identity of the authorizing agency is required to appear on the paper sign, if not you win
- Does the parking violation appearing on your parking ticket match the parking restriction appearing on the parking sign? If not, you win
How to use the parking law to win
New York City Administrative Code(NEW)
a. Following any permanent change in parking restrictions posted by the department, the department shall post a notice, in the affected areas, indicating the effective date of such change. An owner of a motor vehicle parked in the affected areas who receives a notice of a parking violation that occurred within five days of posting of the notice of the parking restriction change shall have an affirmative defense that the vehicle of the owner was parked in compliance with the applicable parking restriction that was in effect prior to such change. Within one business day of making a permanent change in parking restrictions, such change will be reflected on the website containing parking restrictions as required by section 19-175.1 of the code.
b. Before the department makes temporary parking restriction changes to conduct road repairs, it shall post notice of the effective date of such restrictions [as soon as practicable]. Such notice shall state that [no notice of violations shall be issued for violations of such temporary parking restrictions ] and that if an owner’s motor vehicle is missing from the affected streets, the motor vehicle may have been towed and the motor vehicle owner should contact the local police precinct for information about the location of such motor vehicle. (Emphasis added)
New York City Administrative Code(NEW)
a. The commissioner shall make available on a website information about parking restrictions implemented by the department in the city of New York. Such website shall be searchable by each city block.
b. Whenever there is a change in parking restrictions adopted by the department at any time after the department has completed such sign information system referred to in subdivision “a” of this section, and implemented by the department using conventional signage, defined as mounted metal signs, whether permanent or for construction, the commissioner shall update such website as soon as practicable to display the new parking restrictions.
c. No fee shall be charged for the use of the existing website or separately created website referred to in subdivision “a” in this section which has the parking restriction information required pursuant to
d. The commissioner is directed to place a notice on such website advising members of the public to check posted street signs for compliance with laws and rules.
I would refer to this section of the NYC Administrative Code (19-175.2) and argue that posting a temporary parking restriction sign on the morning of or evening before the restriction went into effect is not as soon as practicable unless it was an emergency repair.
I would argue that the law prohibits issuing parking tickets for violating temporary parking restrictions.
Here’s a link to our “Resources” page. Click on the first red button to be transported to the NYC DOT Parking Regulations Map referred to in this law.
Customer success story: The sweet smell of victory
Here are the exhibits I used to beat a client’s parking ticket for violating a temporary parking restriction for “NO STANDING.” You’ll notice that the temporary paper sign prohibited “PARKING” not standing.
These exhibits show how to present the proper proof, properly to authenticate the paper parking sign and its content and location (matches the place of occurrence on the parking ticket).
You park your chariot at night in a legal parking space, and wake up the next morning to find your car gone. This evil practice should be stopped (there is a bill pending before the city council requiring 24-hours notice of temporary changes in parking restrictions).
There are a number of ways to fight back against the Evil Empire’s unreasonable grab for your bucks by following the steps outlined in this article.
The challenge we face with this unconscionable practice is that the law permits towing your chariot. It simply states that information about its whereabouts has to be posted.
On the other hand, if you are illegally issued a parking violation, it may be better to fight the parking ticket; because, if you can formulate a winning defense you’re entitled to a refund of your tow charges (while if no parking violation is issued, you’re not entitled to a refund of tow charges).
I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Please share your thoughts and stories.
[Larry’s note: These principals apply equally to paper and metal temporary parking restrictions signs].