How to Resolve a Traffic Ticket Infraction

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 1/3 down on the ticket on the left 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, you have the following options:

You can plead GUILTY

You can plead NOT GUILTY

You can contact the Assistant District Attorney to review special circumstances

 

You can plead GUILTY

You can plead guilty by following the instructions on the ticket. You need to fill out the right side of the ticket completely (including your current mailing address) and sign it. You can return your plea of guilty by mail to or in person at the City Court Clerk's Office or at Traffic Court pursuant to the court schedule. If you have lost your ticket, you should contact the City Court Clerk's office.

If you send your plea by mail, or in person, the Court will notify you, by mail, of the fines and mandatory surcharge, if any, assessed.

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 AND payment of additional fees to lift the license suspensions

 

You can plead NOT GUILTY

You can pleads NOT GUILTY by following the instructions on the ticket, filling out the right side the ticket, signing it, and mailing it to the Court within forty-eight (48) hours of receiving the ticket. Be sure to include your current mailing address. You can also plead not guilty by appearing in person in Court on the court date specified on your ticket.

You can request a Supporting Deposition by checking the appropriate box on the ticket. (A Supporting Deposition will provide you with additional information regarding the basis for the ticket). A Supporting Deposition request must be made in a timely manner; that is before the end of thirty (30) days following the return date appearing on the ticket. 

If timely requested, the Court will order the Supporting Deposition from the police officer who issued the ticket. The police officer will have 30 days from the date of your request to mail you the Supporting Deposition. Your case will then be scheduled for a non-jury trial; you will receive written confirmation of the trial date from the Court.

At the trial, the prosecutor must present evidence to the Court. You will have the right to cross-examine the prosecutor's 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 apply 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, fines will be assessed.

You have the right to appeal a traffic infraction conviction. 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 AND payment of additional fees to lift the license suspensions

 

You can contact the Ithaca City Prosecutor

You can contact the Ithaca City Prosecutor to review the circumstances of your ticket. For more information, go to https://www.cityofithaca.org/648/Traffic-Tickets

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.

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 ITHACA CITY COURT or by VISA, DISCOVER or MASTER CARD.

PAYMENT BY CREDIT CARD: You may pay by credit card at the City Court Clerk's office, or submit a credit card authorization form.

The credit card authorization form may be mailed or faxed to the City Court at 607-240-5821. The court must have the cardholder's original signature on file.

If the cardholder is NOT the defendant, the cardholder MUST submit photo identification (or 2 forms of non-photo identification) to the Court. If paying by mail, a copy of the identification MUST be included with the above information.

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

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 AND payment of additional fees to lift the license suspensions