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Traffic Court

Overview of Process

Within a few weeks of getting a traffic citation, you should receive a Courtesy Notice indicating your fine amount or, if a mandatory appearance is required, your court appearance date and time.

You should receive the Courtesy Notice at least 10 days prior to the appearance date. Remember, should you fail to receive a Courtesy Notice, appear on or before the appearance date given on your citation.

The Courtesy Notice will indicate whether the violation(s) require a mandatory court appearance. The rest of the process is different depending on whether a mandatory court appearance is required.

     

    Manage Traffic Citations & Tickets

    Traffic Violator School

    Traffic Violator School (TVS) and Confidential Conviction (AB 2499)

    Effective July 1, 2011 , the courts will no longer be allowed to dismiss infractions after a driver completes traffic school. AB2499 requires all such infractions be recorded as a conviction with the DMV. The driver’s first conviction in an 18-month period will be confidential and will not reflect negative marks on his/her driving record. However, each additional violation within that 18-month period, because he/she is not eligible for TVS, will appear on the driver’s record and negative points will be assigned.

    Traffic Violations Processed by Other Agencies
    1. DUI (Driving Under the Influence) violations are handled by the Criminal Department.
    2. Parking tickets are not handled by the Traffic Division. For information on a parking ticket, contact the law enforcement agency listed on the ticket.
    3. Juvenile traffic misdemeanors are still handled by the Juvenile Court 2100 College Avenue, Bakersfield, California (near the County Health Dept. on College and Mt. Vernon.)
    4. Juvenile traffic infractions in the Metropolitan Division are now handled by the Traffic Division located at 3131 Arrow Street, Bakersfield, California 93308.
    5. Metropolitan Division Juvenile traffic court cases are heard every 1st and 3rd Wednesday afternoon of each month. Because the Juvenile Court calendar has limited space and fills quickly, it is advised you make arrangements with the Traffic Court as quickly as possible upon receipt of your courtesy notice but no later than the due date on your notice. This request must be made in person as noted above.
    6. Mandatory Appearance: If a juvenile is cited for a moving violation, it is an automatic mandatory violation. If you are not sure, you may call the Traffic Department for this one question. This will be the only question concerning your citation that may be answered. All other questions or requests must be made in person and you must have your parent/legal guardian with you.
    7. Each citation indicates at the bottom of the cite which court facility handles the citation.

    Financial Hardship and Inability to Pay

    (Traffic Citations Only)

    Ability to Pay Determination

    If you cannot pay the full amount owing on your citation due to financial hardship, you may request the court make a determination of your ability to pay and decide whether to approve a reduced bail amount, more time to pay or make installment payments. You may request an ability-to-pay determination at sentencing, or while the judgment remains unpaid, including when a case is delinquent or has been referred to a collection program.

     

    How do I petition the Court for an Ability to Pay Determination?

    1. Fill out and complete the Petition for Ability to Pay Determination and Order form. (SUP CRT TR 358)

    Provide Documentation you wish the court to consider in connection with the determination.

    The Judicial Officer has the discretion to conduct the review on the written petition or to order a hearing.

    2. File the Petition with supporting documentation, with the corresponding Court Location. See the Court location listed on the bottom of your citation or courtesy notice.

    3. Once filed, your petition will be referred to a Judicial Officer for decision.

    4. You will be notified of the Courts decision by mail or email.

    Traffic Night Court

    Requirements

    1. You must sign up with the Traffic Division no later than 4:00pm on the day of the night court session.
    2. You must be unable to attend day court (e.g., because you work or attend school)
    3. If you have multiple citations/cases, you may appear on only one.

    Location: 3131 Arrow St Bakersfield, CA 93308

    Time: Proceedings begin at exactly 5:00 P.M.; you must be in court prior to that time.

    Duration: Traffic Night Court is generally concluded by 7:30 PM.

    What to Bring: Your citation or courtesy notice.

    Payments: Be prepared to make your payment. If you are requesting a payment plan, have at least one payment in cash.

    Night Court Schedule

    • August 24, 2022

    • September 14, 2022

    • September 28, 2022

    • October 12, 2022

    • October 26, 2022

    • November 2, 2022

    • November 16, 2022

    • December 07, 2022

    • December 21, 2022

    Non-Mandatory Appearance

    If the courtesy notice indicates mandatory appearance for a misdemeanor violation, you must appear at your hearing or a warrant will be issued for failure to appear.

    If the Courtesy Notice does not indicate Mandatory Appearance, options are to:
    1. Pay the traffic ticket. If you select this option, the traffic ticket will remain on your driving record. Payment Fine Options
    2. If eligible, attend Traffic School.
    3. Appear in court

    Ticket Origination

    If your ticket originated in the Metropolitan area and you wish to appear in Court as a walk-in, come to the Clerk’s Office on or before the due date on your citation or Courtesy Notice.

    If the ticket originated outside the Metropolitan area, go to the court branch listed on your Courtesy Notice on the date indicated.

    Proof of Correction Violations

    Proof of correction violations (required under VC 40610(B)) will be dismissed once the following have occurred:
    1. The item is corrected (e.g., the taillight is fixed)
    2. An authorized representative signs the citation certifying that the problem was corrected. Authorized representatives include:
      1. Any station licensed to inspect and certify for the violation
      2. Department of Motor Vehicles (for registration)
      3. Police and California Highway Patrol agencies
    3. The signed-off citation is submitted with a $25.00 per correctable offense administrative fee, to the Court

     

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