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Traffic Cases

Traffic Violations

Traffic Violations are offenses that are punishable by a fine, but that are not punishable by a term of imprisonment. Violations include Traffic, Boating, Fish & Wildlife, State Parks, Animal Control, City and County Ordinances and are handled through the Violations Bureau.

The 1st Judicial District has established a Violations Bureau under ORS 153.800.  Any person who receives a traffic violation may appear before the Violations Bureau.  The Violations Bureau authorizes a violations clerk to accept a plea of no contest or not guilty on violations that do not require a mandatory court appearance.

​It is important to read your traffic summons, front and back as it contains important information such as:

  • If you have been charged with a CRIME or VIOLATION;
  • Where you MUST appear;
  • The type of offense(s) committed;
  • The presumptive fine amount imposed for each offense; and
  • Your court appearance Date, Time and Location.
If you are charged with a CRIME you must appear at the time and place set by the summons. If the charge is for a VIOLATION you must DO ONE (only one) of the following:
Option 1 - Enter a plea of No Contest and pay the presumptive fee by appearing personally or by telephone. You may appear any day after the citation has been received by the court. However, you must appear on or before the appearance date indicated on the citation. The traffic bureau is open to the public from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.* Monday through Friday.
* Telephones and Public Service Counters are available from 8 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Option 2 - Enter a plea of No Contest and send a letter of explanation. You must do all of the following before the day and time the citation requires you to appear in court. If you respond by mail, the mail must arrive at the court before you are required to appear.
  1. Send or take to the court the citation and the full amount of the presumptive fine; AND
  2. Attach a written statement explaining the circumstances of the violations(s) charged.
IMPORTANT: If you choose this option, you are entering a plea of No Contest by a written appearance and waive your right to trial. The court may consider your written statement when establishing the amount of the fine. The court cannot impose a fine that is less than the minimum fine amount. If the court finds you guilty, the court may keep all or part of the money you pay. The court will not fine you more without giving you notice to come to the court for a hearing.
Option 3 - Enter a plea of Not Guilty and request a trial by doing one of the following:
  1. Contact the court in person, or by telephone before the day and time written on the front of the citation to plead not guilty and request a trial; OR
  2. Submit a written request for a trial by doing all of the following before the day and time the citation requires you to appear in court. If you respond by mail, the mail must arrive at the court before you are required to appear.
    1. Include in your written statement your plea of Not Guilty and request a trial; AND
    2. Send the written statement to the court.
IMPORTANT: You have a right to a trial. The court will give you notice of the time and place when you MUST appear in person and may impose penalties if you do not appear. If the court finds at trial that you are guilty, the court cannot impose a fine that is less than the minimum fine amount. The court will not impose a fine if it finds you not guilty.
Option 4  - Enter a plea of Not Guilty and request a Trial by Declaration.  Anyone is eligible for a Trial by Declaration (written statement), however, you must request a Trial By Declaration. You will be notified by mail and be given a date by which your declaration must be received at the Court. You may then file your declaration explaining circumstances about the violation with which you were charged. The law enforcement officer who issued the citation will also have the opportunity to file a declaration in support of the charge. A judge will then make a decision based upon the written declarations.

You can find the amount of the fine for each charge listed on your citation. The fine amount is due at the time a judgment is entered and your case is closed. Payment arrangements may be requested.

The Traffic School Program is a Traffic Course that may, if eligible, result in the dismissal of minor traffic violations in lieu of a conviction on your record – court approval must be obtained. To determine eligibility contact the Jackson County Circuit Court at 541-776-7171​ Ext. 35028

Please note: as part of entering traffic school, you must pay the full presumptive fine at the time of entering traffic school.

(Citations cited into Jackson County Circuit Court only)
  • Eligibility is determined based on:
    • The type of violation you were cited for,
    • Prior moving violation convictions within the last 3 years, or 
    • Any prior participation in a traffic school program within the last 3 years.
  • Traffic School is not available for citations for:
    • Going 100mph or greater, 
    • Reckless driving, or 
    • Any other driving offenses including, but not limited to, Driving Under the Influence, Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver, Attempt to Elude and/or Driving While Suspended.
  • This program is not available to anyone possessing a Commercial Drivers License (CDL). 
  • Some violations will require further Judge approval prior to participation in this program.
  • Participation in any traffic school program without approval from this court will not be considered.

Make a Payment Now!

​All monies imposed in traffic judgments are due at the time of sentencing unless payment arrangements are made with the Court.  An additional fee will be imposed whenever any part of a judgment is left unpaid and has collection actions taken. Payment may be made in the following ways:

1.  In person at the Jackson County Justice Building. Payments are accepted Monday - Friday 8am-4pm, excluding holidays. We accept cash, check or money order payable to State of Oregon, or by Visa, Mastercard, or Discover (including debit). 

2. Payment by phone. Credit or debit payments can be made by phone at our call center. Please call 1-888-564-2828​ and have the case number and name available.

3. Payment on-line. Select the Make a Payment Now button or view the OJD Courts ePay page more information about paying on-line. Please include the case/citation number with the payment to ensure your account is properly credited, and a current address and phone number so a refund (if any) can be mailed to the correct location. 

​When you appear at the courthouse for your trial, you will need to be prepared to present your case at the time listed on your trial notice.

  • Shirts and shoes are required.
  • Caps and hats must be removed upon entering the courtroom.
  • Food and drinks are not allowed in the courtroom.
  • Weapons are not allowed in any area of the courthouse.
  • Pagers, cell phones and all other electronic devices which may disrupt the proceeding must be turned off.
  • Audio and tape recording is not permitted without prior approval of the court.

Jackson County Circuit Court allows a one time extension for the appearance date on the summons. If you are in need of an extension you may call the court at 541-776-7171​ ext. 35028 to request a two week extension. If you don’t request an extension, you must appear on or before the appearance date listed on the summons. 

  1. ​If you fail to follow the instructions on the summons, by entering a plea on or before the date to appear listed on your citation, a default judgment will be entered and your license may be sanctioned for failing to appear on a citation for a traffic offense.
  2. For traffic offenses, this record will be sent to the licensing authority of the state where you are licensed to drive to decide if a license suspension is appropriate.
  3. After a default judgment is entered, there may be additional fees assessed.

​An appeal from a judgment of this court must be filed with the Oregon Court of Appeals in Salem.  An appeal must be filed within 30 days of the date the judgment was entered into the trial court record.

Attn:  Records Section
Appellate Court Administrator
Supreme Court Building
1163 State Street
Salem, Oregon  97310

To download traffic violation appeal forms go to the Court of Appeals forms

​If you receive a letter from the Department of Motor Vehicles notifying you that your license is going to be suspended, you will need to contact the DMV for details regarding the suspension or restrictions.