Ask The Parking Ticket Geek
I have an ethical question for you.
There is a car that has been parked on my block for over a month–they were doing street construction farther down the block so they seem to have skipped the street cleaning. I know that the law says one week max, but this is not about the law, it is about what is right.
I wouldn’t normally care in the summer but for the fact that the car is taking up two spaces instead of one–it is parked at the beginning of the block and is parked about a half a cars length behind the yellow line so that no car can park in front of it.
I feel like a cranky old man with this get off my lawn behavior, but parking is really a problem where I live and I have difficulty feeling sorry for someone who parks in such an inconsiderate manner. So, what are your thoughts?
Ethical question? No comprende “ethics” Brandon.
But, to your question, I have to fight off that cranky old man attitude a lot too.
When I was a kid, I promised myself I wouldn’t be that cantankerous coot in the neighborhood that all the kids hated. Most of the time I succeed, but once in a while Mr. Grouch invades my body and makes me start acting crabby.
On one hand, you don’t want to be a dick and report the car so it gets ticketed and potentially towed.
On the other hand, people should learn how to park correctly, right?
I’m with you, I hate when drivers are too dense to realize they’re taking up more than one space. This really drives me crazy when a bunch of goofs taking up more than one space, effectively keep a handful of other drivers from parking on the block. It’s seriously rude and inconsiderate. And, according to you, the car in question has been messing up parking on your street for a month.
Leave a big note on the windshield, written with a fat ass black marker. You should be nice about it, but act concerned. “PLEASE MOVE YOUR CAR.”
On the back, date the note and write “We’re worried this is an abandoned car. If it’s not moved in 7 days, we will report it to the police and it will be towed.”
Hopefully, the driver will get the message and do the right thing.
If nothing happens, call 311 and/or your alderman’s office and report the car.
Normally, a cop will come out, perhaps write a ticket and most likely slap an orange tow warning sticker on the vehicle giving the driver another seven days to move the car. After that week passes, the car will most likely be towed by Streets & Sanitation.
If you give the driver a heads up and they don’t respond, you shouldn’t feel bad about it. This seems like a fair way to approach it.
If I own more than one vehicle and I received tickets on only one of the vehicles, is the City of Chicago able to boot any of the other vehicles registered to me?
Yulsef, let’s say you own three vehicles all registered in your name.
If you have one unpaid ticket (in Final Determination status) on each car, it actually means you have a total of three tickets to your name.
And it means all three of your vehicles are boot eligible.
Most people with multiple vehicles registered in their name think if they only have one unpaid ticket on each car you own, you’re not eligible for the boot.
But au contraire! You actually may be, depending on how many total unpaid tickets you have.
Remember, you can be booted for three unpaid parking and/or red light tickets in Final Determination immediately, or two unpaid parking or red light tickets older than one year.
A good strategy may be to have cars registered in different names.
Perhaps one car registered in your name, another in your spouse’s name and maybe one registered to a “business” — if you catch my drift.
This strategy minimizes your exposure to the boot.
The Geek’s family just purchased a used El Camino and I’m trying to see if I an register it in my 7-year old’s pet hamster’s name.
I was pulled over last week by a Chicago Police officer and ticketed for the offense of “no or improperly displayed city sticker.”
Now I know that I was not deserving of this ticket because I am not currently a resident of Chicago. I have a Michigan driver’s license, my car is registered in Michigan, and my car and I have not been in the city for 30 consecutive days.
The ticketing officer, however, seemed hell-bent on nailing me.
After I had explained to him that I was staying in the city with a friend, he asked for the address of where I was staying, and then sneakily wrote that on the ticket as my Chicago residence!
I feel that I should have no problem getting out of this ticket, but my question for you is this: can you actually be pulled over for not having/displaying a city sticker? I’ve not found any indication that you can’t, but the language in the Chicago Municipal Code Section 9-64-125 seems to indicate that it only applies to parked or standing vehicles.
Also, to be sure, this was the ONLY thing I was stopped for.
Any insight you can give would be greatly appreciated!
I’ve never heard something like this happening before. Pulled over for a city sticker violation? What the…?
Are you sure this cop just wasn’t trying to hit on you and was trying to come up with whatever pathetic reason to pull over an attractive young lady to hassle and make himself feel like a man?
Look, you DEFINITELY need to fight this.
But, you seem to have this one already nailed down.
Make sure you present copies of your Michigan registration and driver’s license and perhaps some other pieces of mail corroborating the fact you DON’T RESIDE IN THE F@#KING CITY OF CHICAGO!!!!
I would also mention the parked/standing tidbit. Very weak defense, but include it to make the point some asshole cop pulled you over for some creepy and/or lame reason.
Finally, I would file a complaintagainst this cop. His star number should be on the ticket.
I think police have a tremendously tough job, and our city doesn’t really treat them as well as they should. So they deserve all the thanks and respect we can give them for putting their lives on the line.
However, douche bag cops like this reflects poorly on the vast majority of the good ones.
Ask The Parking Ticket Geek is a semi-regular parking ticket advice column.
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