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Contest a Citation

Contest a Citation

Plead Not Guilty

Court Trial

Individuals who wish to plead not guilty on a citation may schedule a court trial date by mail, the online traffic portal, or by appearing in the Traffic Clerk's Office on or before the due date on the citation. Under Vehicle Code section 40519 (a) and (b), an individual must pay the full bail before a trial date is assigned. The court places the bail in a trust account until after the court trial and the judicial officer has made a court ruling.

Contested Traffic Court Trials are currently conducted remotely via the Zoom app, unless otherwise notified. Click here for more information on how to participate in a Zoom hearing.

If the court finds the individual not guilty or the case gets dismissed, the bail is refunded within a few days after the trial. If the court finds the individual guilty, the bail held in trust gets applied to the fines and fees ordered by the judicial officer.

When requesting a court trial, an individual is assigned a trial date and the officer who issued the citation will be subpoenaed to appear at the trial.

The court authorizes a trial date to get reset one time only. The request must be received more than ten (10) calendar days before the trial date. Requests for second and subsequent resets of the trial date will not be approved.

Trial by Written Declaration

Individuals may plead not guilty and contest their citations without having to make a court appearance by submitting a written declaration by mail or in-person delivery to the court on or before the due date on the citation or courtesy notice. This type of trial gets the same consideration as any other trial heard in court.

Individuals are required to post the entire amount of bail when the Request for Trial by Written Declaration gets filed with the court. The court will direct the citing officer to submit a written declaration and give the officer a due date to return it. Once the judicial officer has reviewed both declarations, the court's decision gets issued by mail.

If the individual is found not guilty or if the charges get dismissed, the bail shall be promptly refunded.

Below are links to the required forms for requesting trials by written declarations:

TR-200 - Instructions to Defendant

TR-205 - Request for Trial by Written Declaration

TR-220 - Request for New Trial (Trial De Novo)

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