Parking Ticket Panic


by Stephanie Berenbaum – January 5, 2012

Avoid the Price of the Boot & Tow

It’s not even a week into the new year, and already our friend Samantha has broken one of her New Year’s resolutions!  2012 was the year she was finally going to get more organized, not let mail pile up, and stay on top of her bills.  She had the best of intentions, really…

But her optimistic outlook on 2012 was already totally threatened by January 3rd when she looked out her window to see a big orange BOOT being placed on her car!  To make matters worse, it turned out the boot was the least of her troubles.  Because, as the Los Angeles City employee told her, the tow company was on their way…

Beware of Unpaid Parking Tickets..

SERIOUSLY!  As Sam learned the hard way, the current rule in LA is if you have FIVE unpaid parking tickets, your car can be booted and towed – even if the ticket is just a month old.  If you know anything about driving and living in Los Angeles – getting parking tickets should be a budgeted cost of living in this town.  And it’s not just Los Angeles – if you live or work near any large city, chances are you’ve had to pay big bucks for a parking violation at some point or another.

What to Watch for…

So, it got us thinking, there are so many different types of parking violations that cities enforce because the profit margin for them is just so gigantic – what sort of parking rules and tips do you need to be aware of, aside from the obvious?  Of course each city has its own special violation nuances, but here are things to think about wherever you drive!

The Broken Parking Meter

I always assumed that a broken parking meter meant you get a free pass – I mean, it’s not your fault it’s broken, right?  But many of our friends have told tales of getting ticketed while parked at these broken meters!  What gives? While rules differ by city, one thing we learned is that even if a meter is broken, you still have to adhere to the time limits – so be careful not to overstay your welcome.

How Many Tickets Before You Get the Boot & Tow?

This was our friend Samantha’s downfall.  Apparently, many cities are reducing the number of unpaid tickets you’re allowed before you get towed.  As we mentioned, Los Angeles will now boot and tow you if you have 5 unpaid parking tickets – and there is a movement to reduce the number of tickets even lower.  SO – be sure to find out what your city’s limit is – and pay up before you hit it the limit!

How Many Days To Doubling?

If a ticket goes unpaid for a certain number of days – surprise – the fine DOUBLES.  But you may not be aware that many cities are also reducing the number of days you have to pay before the add another fine.  Make sure you know how quickly you need to pay in your town before your parking budget is completely busted!

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One Response to “Parking Ticket Panic”

  1. Melissa says:

    I always load up like an extra hour on my parking meters because I am so neurotic. When I do get a ticket, I pay it that day so I can forget it ever happened. My downfall is always street cleaning – got to read those parking signs! Poor Samantha…

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