Apr. 20, 2014
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Traffic Division

 

             

Pay Traffic Fines

Look up your Ticket

 

Delinquent Fines:

For assistance in resolving your fine if it has been referred to the court's collection agency, AllianceOne, please contact them directly at 1-877-541-8420 or contact them online at AllianceOne. 

A representative is available Monday-Friday 8am-12pm and 1pm-4pm daily at 701 Ocean Street, Room A1, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (Located in the one story court building on the river side of the building).

 

 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    1. How do I pay my ticket and close my case?
    • If you choose to pay the bail on the ticket without going to trial, it is called bail forfeiture. The ticket is deemed paid, and the resulting conviction will be reported on your driving record if it is a DMV reportable violation.
    • For an automatic notification that your citation/ticket has been received and entered by the court, log onto https://www4.epay-it.com/scz/ and enter your email address along with your citation/ticket number for an email notification. Do not use any dashes or spaces when entering the citation/ticket number
    • For moving violations you may attend Traffic Violator School, if you meet certain requirements. See the section below on how to sign up for Traffic Violator School.
    • If there are any mechanical or insurance violations included in the ticket,"proof of correction" will be required before you can pay the reduced amount on your ticket.

    You have three options to pay your ticket:

    1. On Line - https://www4.epay-it.com/scz/ or go to the link located on this website under "pay my fine". For an automatic notification that your citation/ticket has been received and entered by the court, log into the above link and enter your email address along with your citation/ticket number for an email notification. Do not use any dashes or spaces when entering the citation/ticket number.

    2. By mail - Santa Cruz Superior Court, 701 Ocean Street, Room 120, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (Include your case or ticket number) do not mail in cash.

    3. In person - At the clerk’s office or by placing payment in a Drop Box at either the Santa Cruz or Watsonville Courthouse.

    IMPORTANT:

    • Some violations require mandatory court appearance and cannot simply be paid. Please refer to your courtesy notice for mandatory court appearance information.
    2. Do I pay my ticket if I want to Contest it?
    No. You have two options. Your first option is to set a trial date by posting the bail. You do not have to show up for an in-person arraignment. Your second option is to appear in court for an arraignment. This does not require you to post bail. Your court date will be set at your arraignment date.
    3. What is a Courtesy Notice?
    A courtesy notice is mailed to you at the address listed on the ticket within 30 days of the date the ticket was issued. Make sure to carefully review both sides of the courtesy notice. The notice contains general information about requirements and options available for resolving the ticket, which may include:

    IMPORTANT:

    • Amount of bail, based on the violations and your prior driving history
    • Proof of correction requirements for mechanical violations
    • Mandatory court appearance requirements
    • Traffic Violator School information
    • If you do not get a courtesy notice by the date written at the bottom of your ticket, you must contact the court by phone, in person, or by mail. Failure to appear or failure to comply on or before the appearance date may result in one or all of the following:

      • Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) hold being placed on your driver's license
      • Additional Failure to Appear charge
      • Civil assessment charge of $300.00
    4. What is a civil assessment charge?
    Failure to comply with the appearance date on your ticket or to pay your fines as directed will result in the court referring your case to a collections agency and adding an additional $300.00 fee pursuant to Penal Code section 1214.1.
    5. Is the date at the bottom of my ticket a court date?
    No, the date at the bottom of the ticket is a due date rather than a court date. If you were cited for an infraction and do not receive a courtesy notice by the date on your ticket, you need to contact the court. If you are unable to determine if your ticket is for an infraction or a misdemeanor, you will need to contact the court.
    6. How do I sign up for Traffic Violator School?
    Traffic Violator School is a program that allows certain moving violators to receive instruction in driving and traffic safety. Be advised that successful completion of Traffic Violator School will result in a confidential conviction on your DMV report. For more information regarding eligibility to attend Traffic Violator School, see California Rule of Court 4.104

    The following violations are NOT eligible for Traffic Violator School:

    For violations committed on or after July 1, 2011, the court will report successful completion of the Traffic Violator School to DMV as a “confidential conviction”, rather than a dismissal. In cases where Traffic Violator School is not completed or the defendant was not legally eligible for Traffic Violator School, the DMV will not show the conviction as confidential and the violation point will appear on the driver’s license report at DMV.

    To attend Traffic Violator School, a non-refundable Traffic Violator School fee equivalent to the citation bail amount, plus $52.00 must be paid to the court. You must pay the entire bail in addition to the $52.00 fee prior to attending Traffic Violator School. YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR A FINE REDUCTION, PAYMENT PLAN OR COMMUNITY SERVICE HOURS IF YOU ARE REQUESTING TRAFFIC VIOLATOR SCHOOL. You must have all mechanical or equipment violations corrected and dismissed by the court clerk prior to registering for Traffic Violator School with the court. The Traffic Violator School of your choice will charge you an additional fee to enroll.

    There are three ways to pay for your Traffic Violator School fees:

    1. Online with www4.epay-it.com/scz/ or go to the link located on this website under “pay my fine” (Do NOT use epay-it to sign up for Traffic Violator School if you have not received all mechanical or equipment violations corrected and dismissed by the court clerk.)

    2. By mail - Santa Cruz Superior Court, 701 Ocean Street, Room 120, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (Include your case or ticket number) do not mail in cash.

    3. In person - At the clerk’s office or by placing payment in a Drop Box at either the Santa Cruz or Watsonville Courthouses.

    IMPORTANT:

    NOTICE: If you are eligible and decide not to attend Traffic Violator School, your automobile insurance may be adversely affected. One conviction in any 18 month period will be held confidential and not show on your driving record if you complete a Traffic Violator School program.

    • You must currently possess a valid CA driver’s license. For violations incurred prior to January 1, 2013, you must have had a non commercial driver’s license. For tickets dated after January 1, 2013, possession of any class of California license is acceptable.
    • You must not have attended Traffic Violator School in California within the last 18 months calculated from violation date to violation date.
    • Your ticket must not have defaulted to a failure to appear.
    • The violation(s) on your ticket must be Traffic Violator School eligible.
    • The violation must have occurred in a non-commercial vehicle.
      • Any ticket that contains a violation that carries a negligent operator point count of more than one point.
      • Any speeding violation in which the speed cited is more than 25 miles per hour above the posted speed limit.
      • Seatbelt violations
      • Mechanical or equipment violations
      • Failure to have insurance
      • Registration violations
      • License violations
      • Alcohol related violations
      • You will be given 90 days to complete the Traffic Violator School course.
      • Failure to complete the Traffic Violator School in a timely manner will result in a conviction against your driving record and the non-refundable Traffic Violator School fee will be forfeited as payment in full.
      • Please be advised that there is NO extension or grace period provided with regard to your Traffic Violator School completion date. Additionally, there are no refunds of any type for any reason of fees paid by a defendant in order to register with the court for Traffic Violator School.
      • For Traffic Violator School programs visit:

      DMV - Occupational License Status Information System

    7. May I request one of the following: A payment plan, Community Service, Bicycle Safety School or a fine reduction with my plea of Guilty or No Contest to my infraction(s) in lieu of a court appearance?
    Yes. Complete this Plea Form and fax, mail or hand-deliver it to the court on or before your due date. The court will consider your request and you will be notified by mail of the Judicial Officer’s decision. A $30.00 administrative fee will be added to the total bail for all payment plans. The fee is mandatory and will not be waived once imposed. Fax to: 831 420-2263, or mail to: Superior Court, Traffic, 701 Ocean Street, Room 120, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 Note: If requesting a fine reduction, payment plan, or community service hours you are forfeiting your opportunity to attend Traffic Violator School for eligible violations.
    8. If I sign a payment plan, can I still set a court date and request my fine be reduced?
    No, by signing a payment plan you are admitting guilt to the charges and promising to pay the fine amount plus the $30.00 administrative fee.
    9. How do I obtain proof of correction?
    Corrections for most mechanical violations can be inspected and signed off by law enforcement officers or certain employees of the Department of Motor Vehicles. The inspecting officer will sign the back of your ticket or a copy of your courtesy notice. Once it has been signed off, submit the proof of correction to the Court. You must also pay a $25.00 transaction fee for each correctable violation per Vehicle Code section 40611(a). If you have lost your ticket contact the clerk of the court.

    Registration Violations If you were only cited with a registration violation and the issuing officer has indicated that proof of correction can be filed with the Court for a fine reduction, you may submit a copy of your current valid DMV registration in lieu of a sign-off, with the $25.00 fee to the court in order to receive a dismissal.

    If you are not able to show proof of current registration, but you have paid all DMV fees; or if you sold or junked the vehicle, you may submit a copy of the “Release of Liability” filed and date stamped by the DMV, please submit the proof with your $25.00 fee to the judicial officer accompanied by a plea form in order to request a dismissal.

    If you cannot provide any proof of correction for any of the correctable violations for the vehicle cited, you will be required to pay the bail associated with that violation, enter a plea of guilty and get a payment plan or community service, or appear in court.

    Some violations require a mandatory court appearance. If you have been cited for a violation which requires a mandatory court appearance, please contact the court.

    If submitting by drop box or mail, please include your ticket or case number on the check or any documents you are submitting. Cash is only accepted at the front counter.

    Insurance Violations If you did not have proof of financial responsibility (e.g. insurance) at the time the ticket was issued, you may pay the full bail for this violation, schedule a court date for an arraignment and/or purchase insurance for a possible reduction in bail.

    If you were insured at the time the ticket was issued, but were unable to provide proof of financial responsibility (insurance) to the officer who cited you, you may either:

    • Submit proof by mail, as described below, with the reduced bail amount, to the court pursuant to 40611(a ) VC or;
    • Set up a court appearance with the court clerk to see the judicial officer.

     

    Acceptable proof of financial responsibility must be in the form of a document issued by the insurer and MUST include the following information:

    • Name of the insurance carrier
    • The VIN number (vehicle identification number)
    • Policy number
    • Effective dates of coverage must cover the date the ticket was issued for dismissal of the charge
    • Name of the person who received the ticket AND the vehicle listed on the ticket

    If the proof does not show all of the information as listed above, the total bail amount must be paid or a court appearance is required. The clerk of the court does not have discretion to accept proof of financial responsibility that varies in content from what is specifically listed above.

     

    10. How do I contest my ticket?
    If you want to contest your ticket you must schedule a court trial. A court trial is a method of contesting your ticket with an appearance in court. At the trial, you and the officer will be given the opportunity to state your case and present evidence, witnesses or documents that support the case.

    You may request a court trial by doing one of the following:

    • Write a letter asking to be assigned a court date and enclose your full bail amount. Please indicate your case number on your check or money order. Doing this does not require you to show up for an in-person arraignment.
    • Schedule an in-person court arraignment. You may do this in person at the clerk’s office located at 701 Ocean Street, room 120 in Santa Cruz or 1 Second Street, room 300 in Watsonville This does not require you to pay your bail ahead of time. Your court date will be set at your arraignment date.
    • Request a Trial by Declaration. You must do this before your scheduled due date. See the section below to find out how to request this process.
    Questions about Court Trials

    How long will the trial take?

    Court trials are regularly scheduled in the mornings and afternoons. If your trial is scheduled in the morning, plan to be in court until 12:00 p.m. If your trial is scheduled in the afternoon, plan to be in court until 4:30 p.m.

    Should I bring my evidence?

    If you have photos, diagrams, reports, or any other exhibits, which you plan to present at the time of the trial, bring them with you on your trial date

    Should my witnesses appear?

    If you have witnesses that are necessary to your defense, you should have them subpoenaed to appear in court. Do this well in advance of your trial date. Complete the subpoena form, have the subpoena served, and file the subpoena with the proof of service with the Court on or before your trial date. You can obtain the subpoena form from the Clerk's Office, the Law Library or download the attached Judicial Council form.

    What happens when I go to court? The court will listen to the statements of the sworn witnesses against you and may question each witness. You may then present your case to the Court and question any witnesses. After both sides have presented their case, the Court will rule on the matter or take the matter under submission. If the Court takes the matter under submission, you will be notified by mail of the court's decision and if found guilty a sentence will be imposed.

    What if I am found not guilty? The violation will not appear on your record and, if reportable, will not be reported to the DMV. If you paid your bail, your payment will be returned by mail within sixty days. Make sure your current address is on file with the Court.

    What if I do not appear at the time of trial?

    Your trial can be heard in your absence. You may be found guilty and your payment will be applied to your fine and your driving record will show a conviction.

    What if I am late? If your case is called before you arrive, you are considered not to have appeared at your trial.

    Will the officer who issued the citation be in court? The officer will be subpoenaed to appear in court.

    What if the officer does not show up? The judicial officer may dismiss your case.

    Request for Postponement of a Traffic Court Trial.

    Requests for postponement of a traffic court trial should be filed at least 15 days prior to the hearing. The request must be in writing and must state TIME IS WAIVED, if you are submitting it 45 days beyond your arraignment date, and you must state the reason for the continuance. The original request must be filed with the court. You must mail or deliver a copy of your request to the arresting agency. Your original request will not be processed unless it indicates that you have mailed or delivered a copy to the arresting agency.

    Trial by Declaration

    If you request a written trial by declaration, you must waive your rights to appear, to testify in person, and to subpoena witnesses. The California Judicial Council provides instructions and a form (which is mandatory) for defendants to contest a citation in writing.

    • Instructions to Defendant
    • Request for Trial by Written Declaration

    Can anyone have a Trial by Written Declaration? No. You can ONLY have the Trial by Written Declaration if;

    • You were given a ticket for an infraction involving a moving violation.
    • The due date to take care of your ticket has not passed; and
    • Your courtesy notice does not state that you are required to appear in Court.

    What is an arraignment/additional information

    Contact Information

    Office Location:
    Superior Court of California,
    County of Santa Cruz
    701 Ocean Street, Room 120
    Santa Cruz, CA 95060
    Map

    Mailing Address:
    Superior Court of California,
    County of Santa Cruz
    Traffic Division
    701 Ocean Street, Room 120
    Santa Cruz, CA 95060

    (831) 420-2200 

    Filing Hours:

    Clerks Office:

    8:00 AM to 3:00 PM, Monday - Friday in Santa Cruz and Watsonville. A mail slot is provided for filings after 3:00 PM.

    Come in the morning and avoid the lines.

    Items must be received by 5:00 PM.

    Phones are answered from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM Monday - Friday.

    © 2014 Superior Court of Santa Cruz County