Plead guilty with an explanation
To plead guilty with an explanation, submit a check or money order for the full bail amount
on the citation, and include a separate written explanation. You should include any documents you would like the judge to see. This must be received within 30 days from the issue date of the citation. Your explanation is a waiver of your right to a court hearing and consent to any judgment entered
. Explanations written on your payment, citation, or on the envelope will not be accepted. The court will consider your explanation and either refund or forfeit all or part your bail. Your explanation will not
be considered without payment for the full bail amount.
Please note: Due to continued budget cuts it can take anywhere from 6 to 12 months to process your explanation. You will only receive notice if there is a refund or a balance owing. You can track the progress of your case by doing an Online Records Search
Plead not guilty
If you do not feel you are guilty of the violation you are being charged with, the judge requires a court hearing to hear from both you and the issuing officer. To request a hearing you must post the full bail amount, and submit a separate written request for a hearing. Submit the request by mail, to the address listed above, OR by appearing at the Multnomah County Circuit Court within 30 days from the date your citation was issued. Once your request is received by the court your trial will be scheduled and a trial notice will be sent. This notice will have the date, time and courtroom of your trial. **If you do not receive this notice within 45 days of requesting the trial, contact the court to check the status of your request. If you are unable to appear for a trial but still want to plead not guilty, you have the option of a Trial by Declaration
; this is a sworn statement you present on your behalf.
Fine Reduction Request
If you received a citation for one of the qualifying violations listed below and you have a meter receipt that was valid at the time and location the citation was issued, you can submit a Request for Fine Reduction on Parking Citation Form. You must include the reduced fine amount listed on the form. The completed form and reduced fine must be received within 30 days of the date of the citation. (SLR 17.015(1)(b)) The violations qualifying for the Fine Reduction Request Form are:
- 16.20.445 Improper Display Parking Meter Receipt
- 16.20.430(A) No Meter Receipt
- 16.35.130 Upper NW No Meter Receipt
- 16.35.130(D) Upper NW Short-term Meter No Meter Receipt
Submitting this form is a waiver of the right to a court hearing.
If you are unable to provide the required documents you can still choose one of the options listed above to contest the citation.
Doubling of Parking Fine and/or Default Judgment
Fines will double after 30 days if not paid in full. If you do not submit payment the court may issue an order to tow the vehicle, enter a judgment against you, and impose a fine. This fine could be up to the maximum amount allowed by law, and sent to collections with additional fees. If you respond after 30 days, see Failure to Appear