Ticket Options

NEW! Online Traffic Ticket Review
No time for the line? Your traffic ticket may be eligible for a free online ticket review. The new online program allows defendants, police and judges to resolve minor traffic violations by submitting their position online. Click here to see if you are eligible.

Traffic Ticket Options
If you received a ticket, there are a number of options that you must take within 10 calendar days:
  1. Your traffic ticket may be eligible for a free online ticket review. The online program allows defendants, police and judges to resolve minor traffic violations by submitting their position online via the Online Traffic Ticket Review.
  2. Admit responsibility and pay the ticket in full.
  3. Admit responsibility with written explanation. You may admit responsibility with explanation if there are special circumstances you want the Judge to consider in determining the amount of your fine and costs. You will receive a written determination by the Judge that includes a judgment for the amount you owe. The judge cannot change the number of points assessed or take your ticket under advisement.

    To admit responsibility with a written explanation, complete the Admit Responsibility with Explanation form (PDF) (include your current address), sign and return your ticket:
    • By mail to:
      Traffic Division
      54B District Court
    • 101 Linden St.
      East Lansing, MI 48823
    • In person, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., to:
      101 Linden Street
      East Lansing, MI
    • In one of the 24-hour Drop Boxes
  4. Deny responsibility (fight the ticket). You cannot fight a ticket to change points or to ask for time to pay. To fight a ticket, you must have a defense that you can present in front of the Judge. If you do not show up for your hearing a default judgment will be entered against you. You may be ordered to pay additional court costs, such as witness fees. There are two types of hearings that you can request to fight a ticket:
    • Informal hearing: A hearing held by the judge involving the police officer or code enforcement officer, you and any witnesses. Attorneys are not allowed to represent either side at an informal hearing. Request the hearing by signing the back of your ticket where indicated or complete a Request for Informal Hearing form (PDF). You can also call the Traffic Division and request a hearing over the telephone (517) 351-4568. You must request an informal hearing within 10 days of receiving your ticket.
    • Formal hearing: A hearing held by the judge involving the police officer or code enforcement officer, you and any witnesses. A prosecuting attorney will be with the officer. You may have an attorney that you hire. Prior to the Formal Hearing, the scheduling clerk will set your matter for a Pretrial Formal Hearing where the prosecuting attorney will meet with you and/or your attorney. If your matter is not resolved at this hearing, you will be scheduled for a Formal Hearing at a future date. You must request a formal hearing within 10 days of receiving your ticket.
Default Judgments
If you fail to pay your ticket, appear at a hearing or abide by a Judge’s Order, a default judgment will be entered against you. If you believe a default judgment has been entered against you incorrectly, you must file a Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment (CIA04) no later than 14 calendar days of the default judgment date and post a bond with cash or credit card (only) for the full amount of your ticket, including the default fee. You will be scheduled for a hearing, where you must present a defense as to why the default should be set aside.

Request for Time to Pay
To request for time to pay, you must complete a Petition for Installment Payment (PDF). You may submit the form either in person or by mail. You must fill out the form completely, include at least a $25 down payment (it will be applied to your balance) or your form will not be processed. Court staff will process your request and submit it to the judge. You will be notified by email if you have one or in writing of the judge’s decision. If you are granted a payment plan or extension of time to pay and you do not follow the judge’s order, a warrant will be issued for your arrest.