Traffic Division & Other Infractions

An infraction is a violation of, or failure to comply with, certain provisions of the vehicle code, local ordinance or other law or statute. An infraction is not punishable by imprisonment; the maximum sentence on most infractions is a $250 fine (plus assessments and fees). You may not be sentenced to alternate jail time on an infraction and cannot have a trial by jury.

Infraction Options

Traffic infractions are enforced by the issuance of traffic tickets ("citations") by law enforcement. It is important to read the information on the front and back of the citation. The front side of the citation provides the following information:

  • Citation number
  • Date and time of the citation
  • Violations for which you were cited
  • Place and time by which you promised to appear

While it is not mandatory that the court send out notification, a reminder notice is generated and mailed to the address listed on the citation. If your address is different than the one listed on the citation, you should contact the court. This will ensure that you receive a reminder notice and help avoid paying additional penalties.

If you do not take care of your traffic citation in a timely manner, a civil assessment of $300.00 will be added to the bail amount currently due.

The court may authorize collection actions on the bail amount and the civil assessment, including wage garnishments, attachments of your bank accounts and personal property, and the filing of liens on your real property. 

Paying your fine and Traffic Violator School (TVS)

An option with most citations is to simply pay it and close your case. This is referred to as "forfeiting bail" and is considered a conviction. If the violation is reportable to the DMV, an abstract of conviction will be submitted to the DMV. Most moving violations, such as speeding tickets will stay on your driving record for 3 years and are 1 point.

If you are unable to pay the entire fine prior to the appearance date you may request a reduction in bail based on Ability to Pay or to pay in monthly installments. If you elect to pay your fine in monthly installments you must contact the clerk. The clerk will mail you an Agreement to Pay and Forfeit Bail in Installments. You must return the agreement with at least 10% of the total bail by the due date. Your monthly payment thereafter will be the greater of $50 or 1/12th of the balance of the total bail minus the initial payment. If you cannot pay your fine by your appearance date or pay 10% of the fine plus the minimum monthly payment required you must contact the court clerk to be placed on the traffic infraction arraignment calendar (a Monday at 9:00 a.m.) to request a payment schedule.

You may forfeit bail by mail, or online. Please make all checks payable to: Calaveras Superior Court.

Be sure to include your docket number in all correspondence with the court.

Mandatory Appearance: Some infraction citations require a mandatory appearance. Mandatory appearances include: "zero-tolerance" citations, county code ordinances involving damage to persons or property.

Traffic Violator School

If you would like to request Traffic Violator School via phone payment, please contact the clerk at (209) 754-9800 prior to submitting payment.  If requesting Traffic Violator School via on line payments and are eligible, you may make that selection and pay your total fine amount, including $52 TVS fee.

In accordance with California Rules of Court §4.104, you may be eligible to have a vehicle code infraction violation reported to DMV as a confidential conviction by attending traffic school if all of the following apply:

  1. You do not hold a Class A, Class B drivers license and/or you were not driving a commercial motor vehicle (as defined in VC15210(b)) at the time of the offense;
  2. You have not attended traffic school within the past 18 months from violation date to violation date;
  3. You did not exceed the speed limit by more than 25 miles per hour;
  4. The charge does not involve alcohol or drugs;
  5. The charge carries a negligent operator point count of 1.

If you choose to attend Traffic School, post and forfeit bail in full, you must submit the entire bail amount plus $52.00 for Traffic School Fee. Once payment is received you will have 90 days to complete Traffic School. You will not receive another notice. If you have attended Traffic School in the last 18 months you are not eligible to attend Traffic School.  One conviction in an 18-month period will be held confidential and not show on your driving record if you complete a traffic violators school program.  The 18-month eligibility period for a confidential conviction after completion of TVS is determined from violation date to violation date.

You may view the list of DMV approved traffic violator schools online.  The school you select will charge an additional fee. If you complete traffic school and pay the Traffic School Fee within the time allowed by the court, your citation will be reported to DMV as a confidential conviction. With the exception of a Court, the DMV will not disclose a confidential conviction to any third-party, including your insurance company.  No violation point count will be assessed if the conviction is confidential.

If you are eligible, but do not attend traffic school your automobile insurance may be adversely affected.

Approved traffic schools recognized by DMV  
This link will take you to the “Occupational License Status Information System” webpage > click on ‘Start'> ‘I agree' > 'Access the System’> from the drop down select ‘Traffic School List’ > ‘Continue’ > 'Get Traffic School List' > select from drop down ‘Classroom Course', 'Home Study Course', or 'Internet Course’ > Follow the directions to locate a Traffic School. 

Clerk Granted Extensions

Generally, the clerks may grant you a one time extension of your unresolved infraction at your request. You may contact the court at (209) 754-9800 for more information. If you have been granted an extension and still need more time, you must contact the court at (209) 754-9800 on or before your extended appearance date to be placed on the infraction calendar.

Note: Cases that have been referred to collections are not eligible to be calendared unless a formal motion has been filed. 

Correctable Citations

Proof of correction can be obtained by having an authorized representative of a law enforcement agency fill out the Certificate of Correction located on the reverse side of your citation. A Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) clerk may certify registration and/or driver's license violations.  There is a $25 proof of correction fee for each correctable violation that you must pay along with your proof of correction. 

Contesting your citation

You may contest your infraction citation by Court Trial or Trial by Written Declaration (vehicle code infractions only). You are not eligible for a jury trial (PC §19.6) or court appointed representation on infractions. To contest a citation you may appear on your arraignment date or you may post bail and request a court trial or trial by written declaration.

On contested citations you must submit your bail and indicate in writing your intent to receive a court trial or trail by written declaration for your matter. DO NOT post bail online or by phone. You must contact the court at (209) 754-9800.

Court Trial

A court trial is a trial before a judge where you appear in person to contest the validity of the charges filed against you. The officer who issued the citation will be subpoenaed to appear. Other witnesses may be subpoenaed to testify and you may subpoena witnesses to appear on your behalf. At the conclusion of the trial, the judge will issue a ruling. If you are dissatisfied with the ruling you may appeal the decision. You have the right to retain an attorney for these proceedings.

Court Trial by Written Declaration

A trial by written declaration is a procedure where you submit the defense to your citation in writing. The officer who issued the citation will be asked to submit their written declaration. A judge will review both declarations and issue a ruling.

A few things to know about a trial by written declaration
  • You must post bail. In the event you prevail, you will receive a refund by mail within a few weeks after the trial.
  • You waive your rights to appear, to testify in person, and to subpoena witnesses.
  • If you are dissatisfied with the result of the trial, you may request a new court trial (trial de novo)
  • The California Judicial Council provides instructions for defendants wishing to contest a citation in writing:
    • TR200-Instructions for Defendant
    • TR205-Request for Trial by Written Declaration 

Failure to Appear (FTA), Failure to Pay (FTP), Collections & DMV Hold Information

If you do not take care of your traffic citation in a timely manner, you may be convicted of the citation (pursuant to CVC §40903), and a civil assessment of $300.00 added to the amount currently due.

In addition to a civil assessment, the court may authorize collection actions on the amount due including, referral to a collection agency, CA Franchise Tax Board, wage garnishments, attachments of your bank accounts and personal property, and the filing of liens on your real property.

Collections cases are divided into two categories: Failure to Appear and Failure to Pay

When fine is paid in full on FTA or FTP, DMV hold will not be released for approximately 5 days.

FTA (Failure to Appear)

In most infraction cases, you may pay your bail and clear the FTA.  When fine is paid in full, DMV hold will not be released for approximately 5 days.

If you have a FTA from this court, you may appear on that citation to clear the FTA.  DMV hold will be released once you appear in court.

If a hold was placed on your license for failure to appear and there is no warrant, you may appear on Monday at 8:30 am. Check in the clerks office that morning to be placed on calendar. 

FTP (Failure to Pay)

If you fail to pay a matter after conviction, you are not eligible to appear in court. 

You will need to resolve the citation by payment in full, or contact the collection agency or Franchise Tax board where your wage garnishment, or lien may be placed. An application for hearing regarding may also be submitted for Judicial review and consideration.

Phone Numbers:

Court collection representative: (209) 754-5970.
GC Services (collection agency): (800) 333-8395.
Franchise Tax Board: (916) 845-4064.