Ask The Parking Ticket Geek – 12/26/08
Dear Parking Ticket Geek,
I have received a lot of parking tickets on my car over the past year. My boyfriend told me that my insurance rates are going to go up because of all the parking tickets I’ve received this year. Is this true?
Upset In Uptown
I very much hope your boyfriend is sexy and handsome. Because, by what he told you, he’s not very well informed and perhaps not very bright.
The answer is a firm NO, your car insurance rates will NOT go up if you get parking tickets.
Now, speeding tickets or moving violations…that’s a different story. But parking tickets, a definitive no.
Just to be sure, I even talked to a few people I know who sell auto insurance.
The only thing that may affect your car insurance rates would be if you have over 10 unpaid parking tickets and the city gets the Illinois Secretary of State to suspend your driver’s license. This MAY affect your insurance rates. Just stay on top of your tickets and you should be ok.
Very truly yours,
The Parking Ticket Geek
Hello Parking Ticket Geek:
I recently borrowed a friend’s car to run some errands, and when parking it near my home, accidentally parked in front of a fire hydrant that I didn’t see. When I parked the car, it was in the middle of a snow storm, and the hydrant was covered in snow. Also, they hydrant isn’t located near the curb, as most hydrants are, instead it is on the other side of the sidewalk, elevated, in someone’s yard. Since I had no reason to drive the car again for a while, the car sat there long enough to acquire two parking tickets.
I was wondering if it would be rightful for me to contest the tickets under the grounds that the hydrant was not visible at the time my car was parked there. Or, since I was borrowing the car, and the owner of the car was not the one who parked the car, should the owner contest the ticket under the grounds that “the respondent was not the owner or lessee of the cited vehicle at the time of the violation.” Also, is it right that I received two tickets for the same violation? I’m really not familiar with parking rules in the city, as I don’t own a car…
I really appreciate any advice you have to offer! Thanks in advance for your help!
I think you have a decent defense here.
If the hydrant was covered or obscured by all the snow, and the yellow curb markings were covered with snow, how is a driver going to know NOT to park there?
Take a photo of the hydrant covered with snow. Also take photos of the closest street signs and perhaps a few building addresses to prove that’s the address of where you parked.
The photos are the most important element in your defense. But I would also clip a newspaper story from the date of the snow and include that with your letter or when you contest in person, just to remind the hearing officer how much damn snow fell that day.
You cannot make the argument that you are not the owner of the vehicle. Ultimately, your friend, the true owner of the vehicle will be made aware of these tickets. Unless you stole your friend’s car, the ownership issue is moot.
One last thing, you are going to need a signed and notarized affidavit from your friend, stating that they are the owner of the vehicle in question and that you were the driver at the time of the violation and that they give you permission to dispute the ticket.
Good luck. Keep the Geek posted.
Very truly yours,
The Parking Ticket Geek
I NEED TO KNOW HOW DO I FIND OUT ABOUT MY TICKETS HOW MUCH I OWE!
What’s with the all CAPS! Is something wrong with your keyboard? Or has your CAPS LOCK been super glued in place?
Look Linda, I’m the Parking Ticket Geek. Easy questions like this are kind of insulting to a maladjusted Chicago parking ticket “expert” like myself.
But here’s the answers anyways.
The city of Chicago, to their credit, gives you many ways to find out about what tickets you have and how much you owe.
1-You can call the City of Chicago Parking Ticket Help Line at 312-744-PARK (7275). Follow the prompts or talk to a live operator. Give them your license plate number and they can tell you what you owe.
2-Go to the Department of Revenue’s Parking Ticket Search website. You can search by license plate number, VIN #, driver’s license number or notice number.
3-You can go in person to five DOR payment locations:
*City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle
*Central Hearing Facility, 400 W. Superior
*2550 W. Addison
*4770 S. Kedzie
*2006 E. 95th Street
Ask The Parking Ticket Geek is a weekly parking ticket advise column here at The Expired Meter.
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