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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Hi folks,

    I just got a toll roads ticket and since had never dealt with one, I could use some advise. I wonder how does the contest procedure work if I ask for one. I need to highlight that the ticket I have received doesn't have any evidence (picture, etc) to show this violation was indeed done by me. If you know what happens once you contest the toll ticket, I appreciate if you could share the details. Also, would I have a hearing at court too? How are the odds of dismissing a toll ticket after all?

    Thanks,
    H

    - - - Updated - - -

    Below is what toll road site says. I wonder if anyone has went trough this and has been able to dismiss the ticket. Also, how is the hearing?

    "You can dispute a violation by filling out the "Contest of Notice" portion of your "Notice of Toll Evasion." This notice is typically mailed to you within two weeks of the violation. Please include a written explanation for contesting the violation. We will investigate the circumstances and provide the results by mail.

    If you are not satisfied with the results of the initial investigation, you can request an administrative review within 15 days of the postmark date of the results of the initial investigation. If you are not satisfied with the results of the second review, then you can file an appeal with the municipal court. The procedures for administrative review and appeal are set forth in California Vehicle Code, Section 40255 and 40256."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    OH10
    Posts
    13,495

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Roads Ticket

    Google California Vehicle Code section 40255 and also 40256. It was easy. It does not need a picture to establish it was done by you.
    With enough thrust, pigs fly just fine.
    You may believe that you understood what you think I said. I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LA LA Land
    Posts
    9,175

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Quote Quoting hhamid
    View Post
    Hi folks,

    I just got a toll roads ticket and since had never dealt with one, I could use some advise. I wonder how does the contest procedure work if I ask for one. I need to highlight that the ticket I have received doesn't have any evidence (picture, etc) to show this violation was indeed done by me. If you know what happens once you contest the toll ticket, I appreciate if you could share the details. Also, would I have a hearing at court too? How are the odds of dismissing a toll ticket after all?

    Thanks,
    H

    - - - Updated - - -

    Below is what toll road site says. I wonder if anyone has went trough this and has been able to dismiss the ticket. Also, how is the hearing?

    "You can dispute a violation by filling out the "Contest of Notice" portion of your "Notice of Toll Evasion." This notice is typically mailed to you within two weeks of the violation. Please include a written explanation for contesting the violation. We will investigate the circumstances and provide the results by mail.

    If you are not satisfied with the results of the initial investigation, you can request an administrative review within 15 days of the postmark date of the results of the initial investigation. If you are not satisfied with the results of the second review, then you can file an appeal with the municipal court. The procedures for administrative review and appeal are set forth in California Vehicle Code, Section 40255 and 40256."
    While it is true that usually a toll evasion citation is issued based on photographic evidence, or visual observation of an officer, there is no requirement to provide with any photographs with the citation or after you contest it.

    This is from CVC 40255:

    The issuing agency shall not be required to produce any evidence other than the notice of toll evasion violation or copy thereof, information received from the department identifying the registered owner of the vehicle, and a statement from the officer or person authorized to issue a notice of toll evasion that the tolls or other charges and any applicable fee was not paid in accordance with the issuing agency's policies for pay-by-plate toll payment.


    But you can be sure they didn't just guess that you evaded the toll. Meaning they either have a a picture or a sworn statement from a witnessing officer as proof that someone driving a vehicle registered in your name did evade the toll.

    And the process is described in great detail in the two code sections you mentioned above, but you can also read 40254 as well so here are links to all 3 code sections:

    CVC 40254

    CVC 40255

    CVC 40256

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Thanks very much for your response. In this case, I believe what happened is that I was in a trip and was blindly following direction by my GPS which I had configured to route through non-toll roads. As such, I didn't notice passing through the FastTrack toll only just before I did it as I was not expecting a toll and it was late in the night. I don't know whether this is a valid legal argument but I was hoping I could at least ask for a discovery request and see if I can fight this ticket since it was not done deliberately. Sharing any experiences in fighting with a toll ticket is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    H

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    South-Central Cali
    Posts
    1,276

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    No, that's an excuse and not at all a legal argument (although you can certainly try to sue the GPS manufacturer and/or underlying map provider, perhaps in small claims court). I don't know if 40256 is handled as a criminal infraction (like speeding, etc.), or like parking tickets. If the former, you are entitled to discovery; if the latter, you can certainly try...

    I may be wrong, but I seem to recall The Toll Roads having a leniency policy for first-time violators at one time? Something like if you now get an account and purchase a FastTrak transponder, they forgive the fine?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Thanks quirky! How can we figure out if one is entitled for a discovery/evidence in case of toll ticket? What happens if I ask for contest? Am I going to be entitled for some extra fees or something if lose the case?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LA LA Land
    Posts
    9,175

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Quote Quoting quirkyquark
    View Post
    No, that's an excuse and not at all a legal argument (although you can certainly try to sue the GPS manufacturer and/or underlying map provider, perhaps in small claims court).
    Agreed 100% with both!

    Quote Quoting quirkyquark
    View Post
    I don't know if 40256 is handled as a criminal infraction (like speeding, etc.), or like parking tickets. If the former, you are entitled to discovery; if the latter, you can certainly try...
    There are no provisions suggesting that it will be handled as a criminal matter, or that the registered owner would then have any implied rights normally associated with a criminal matter. As for discovery and even if it were allowed, there really isn't much to discover. The short paragraph I cited from 40255 limits pretty much limits the evidence the agency must provide to that which supports their prima facie case. It does not include any photographic evidence and although 40256 states:

    [40256(a) ... the contents of the processing agency's file in the case on appeal shall be received in evidence. A copy of the notice of toll evasion violation shall be admitted into evidence as prima facie evidence of the facts stated therein.

    Quote Quoting quirkyquark
    View Post
    I may be wrong, but I seem to recall The Toll Roads having a leniency policy for first-time violators at one time? Something like if you now get an account and purchase a FastTrak transponder, they forgive the fine?
    It still does, FASTRACK up in the Bay area though...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Thanks for the note. Are you suggesting that they don't even need to provide a clear evident of the crime in this case? Because that rather seems unreasonable to me. Also, going back to my original question, I would like to see if anyone had been able to dismiss such a ticket and how was their experience.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LA LA Land
    Posts
    9,175

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Quote Quoting hhamid
    View Post
    Thanks for the note. Are you suggesting that they don't even need to provide a clear evident of the crime in this case? Because that rather seems unreasonable to me.
    One, there is no crime here. This is a civil matter and it is handled as such.

    Two, if you would have read the code sections I linked, and/or the paragraphs I copied and pasted you would have seen the following:

    The issuing agency shall not be required to produce any evidence other than the notice of toll evasion violation or copy thereof, information received from the department identifying the registered owner of the vehicle, and a statement from the officer or person authorized to issue a notice of toll evasion that the tolls or other charges and any applicable fee was not paid in accordance with the issuing agency's policies for pay-by-plate toll payment.


    An officer's statement that he/she witnessed or reviewed photos your vehicle being driven through without paying the toll or an officer's statement that he reviewed photos showing your vehicle doing the same, is evidence enough to justify the citation and to provide sufficient cause to believe that you will lose the first level appeal, the second level appeal as well as the court hearing. And by the way, the third level appeal will cost you an additional $25...


    Three, the code sections cited here are from the California Vehicle code, enacted by the state legislature and NOT written by the agency handling the toll collection and the issuing of citations, collecting the penalties... etc.

    And so with all of that, the only thing that is unreasonable is not only are you admitting to committing the violation, but you even describe how it happened, and yet you still want proof that it happened!

    Quote Quoting hhamid
    View Post
    Also, going back to my original question, I would like to see if anyone had been able to dismiss such a ticket and how was their experience.
    It is not unusual but rare that we get questions about toll violations... So you might not get this wish either! Sorry!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: How to Deal with a Toll Road Ticket

    Thanks indeed for the detailed information!

    Quote Quoting That Guy
    View Post
    ... And so with all of that, the only thing that is unreasonable is not only are you admitting to committing the violation, but you even describe how it happened, and yet you still want proof that it happened!
    We are living in a society where no one is a criminal unless proven. It doesn't matter if and what I know about this evidence. If I am getting fined for something, I should receive sufficient evidence of the crime along with the ticket. I think this is the minimum expectation to have and is very reasonable. I personally have in past dismissed tickets due to lack of evidence. If people are not given concerete proof before called criminal the law becomes rather a dictatorship. Only my 2 cents..

    Still hoping to hear from someone with similar experience!

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