Plattsburgh City Court
   

How to Resolve a Traffic Ticket

Review your ticket(s) to determine if you have been issued a ticket for a "misdemeanor" or "traffic infraction".

You can locate this information by looking approximately 2/3 down on the ticket on the right side of the ticket.

If the "misdemeanor" box is checked, you must appear in the City Court to be arraigned before a City Court Judge on the return date written on the ticket. You can not use these instructions.

If the "traffic infraction" box is checked, please read on for your options:

Most Motorists charged with Traffic Infractions in City Court can choose to plead guilty and pay fines, or plead not guilty and schedule trials, at the City Court Clerk's Office Monday-Friday, from 8:00 AM to 3:30 PM. Adjournments to contact the police officer to request charge reductions can also be made by the Court Clerks.

Each traffic ticket includes a date when the motorist is scheduled to appear in Court. To resolve the case through the Court Clerk's Office, you must go there on or before the appearance date written on the ticket. The back of the ticket also provides instructions for pleading guilty or not guilty by mail.

If the ticket is for DWAI or for a Misdemeanor instead of an Infraction, a Court appearance is necessary. The most common traffic misdemeanors are DWI, AUO 3rd (Aggravated Unlicensed Operation 3rd Degree) and Suspended Registration. You can tell whether you are charged with an Infraction or a Misdemeanor by seeing which box the officer checked on the ticket.

Allowing motorists to resolve their tickets in the Court Clerk's Office will save people from waiting in Court while that day's criminal cases are handled. This can take as long as two to three hours. Of course, anyone who prefers to appear in front of the Judge may still do so.

If you send your plea by mail, the Court will notify you, by mail, of the fines and mandatory surcharge, if any, assessed. If you return your plea of guilty in person to the City Court Clerk's office, the court will be able to assess your fine immediately. Effective January 29, 2002, New York State licensed drivers are no longer required to provide their conviction stub to the Court. However, you will be asked to affirm, under written oath and under penalty of perjury, if you have any traffic ticket infraction convictions in New York State within the past three (3) years.

If you have any questions regarding this procedure, you may contact the City Court Clerk's office.

Note:
Within 60 days of the issuance of the ticket, you MUST contact the Court directly in writing or appear in person and plead either guilty or not guilty to avoid suspension of your driver's license.

If you request a trial, you will receive written confirmation of the trial date from the Court. At the trial, the police officer must present evidence to the Court. You will have the right to cross-examine the witness(es) and, if you choose, to present evidence to the Court, which can include testimony from yourself or from other individuals. If you require a subpoena for witnesses, you can ask for a subpoena at the time you are notified of the trial date. At the conclusion of the trial, the Judge will either render a verdict (finding you guilty or not guilty) or reserve decision. If the court reserves decision, a written decision will be issued by the Judge, a copy of which will be sent to you at the address on file with the Court.

If the court finds you not guilty on all of the tickets, this will end the case.

If the court finds you guilty of one or more of the tickets, a fine and mandatory surcharge, if applicable, will be assessed.

You have the right to appeal a traffic infraction conviction. Click here for instructions on how to appeal.

If you have any questions regarding this procedure, you may contact the City Court Clerk's office.

Note:
Within 60 days of the issuance of the ticket, you MUST contact the Court directly, in writing, or appear in Court and plead either guilty or not guilty to avoid suspension of your driver's license.

Note:
Within 60 days of the issuance of the ticket, you MUST contact the Court directly, in writing, or appear in Court and plead either guilty or not guilty to avoid suspension of your driver's license.

If you are assessed a fine and mandatory surcharge:

You must make payment to the court as directed by the Court. If you submit a written plea of guilty, you will be mailed a fine letter indicating the amount of the fine and the date that the fine must be paid. Be sure that your current mailing address is on file with the Court.

If you appear in Court, the court will verbally advise you of the amount of the fine and the date that payment is due. If you forget the date that payment is due, you may contact the City Court.

The Court does not accept personal or business checks. Payment MUST be made in cash (do NOT send cash through the mail), money order or bank certified check made payable to the CITY COURT.

If you are paying in person, you should appear at the Court Clerk's office. If you are paying by mail, you should include a self-addressed stamped envelope for the return of your receipt.

Note:
Failure to pay your fines WILL result in suspension of your driver's license.
 

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