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NYC allows drivers to fight parking tickets online

Bloomberg

Bloomberg Photo Credit: Office of the Mayor

What’s almost as bad as getting a parking ticket? How about the time-consuming trip it sometimes takes to fight it in court.

Trying to cut down on that frustration, city officials announced Monday that suspected scofflaws will now be able to dispute their tickets online.

“This new program will make it much easier and faster to contest a ticket — and save New Yorkers from having to take off work to do it,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement.

Similar to when a ticket is contested in person or by mail, the online method also allows drivers to plea bargain for a reduced fine.

The program isn’t just for parking or red light camera tickets but also includes many violations under the Environmental Control Board, including failure to recycle, improper disposal or having an unleashed dog.

City officials said opening up hearings online will make the entire process move faster. Out of the approximately 10 million parking tickets issued each year, about 1.2 million are fought in hearings, with about 500,000 getting dismissed.

The ECB gets about 250,000 tickets contested annually.

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How the program works

— To apply for an online hearing for a parking ticket, visit nycserv.nyc.gov. For an Environmental Control Board (ECB) ticket, visit www.nyc.gov/html/ecb.

— You’ll be allowed to write why you think the ticket should be dismissed and attach evidence that may help your case, such as a photograph or document.

— An administrative law judge reviews the claim.

— Expect an email response for a parking ticket in about 30 days. Judgment for an ECB ticket is sent by regular mail, also within a month.

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