Traffic Division Frequently Asked Questions
Oakland County, MichiganCourts48th District CourtTraffic Division Frequently Asked Questions

Traffic Division Frequently Asked Questions

​​​What tickets can I pay online?

Most tickets may be paid online, but some citations are "Court Mandatory" (CM). If you receive a Court Mandatory citation, a court date will appear on your citation.  If a court date is not shown on your citation, call the Court to schedule an appearance. The fine schedule applies to payments made prior to court appearance.​

  • To plead guilty or admit responsibility with an explanation and pay your fines and costs, determine the amount you owe by reviewing the fine schedule.  Often the fine amount appears on the front of the citation.  If you cannot determine the correct fine amount, contact the Traffic Division at 248-686-5150.
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  • To deny responsibility and schedule a court appearance, contact the Traffic Division at 248-686-5150.
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  • If your ticket is in default, call the court before using this service to determine your status and any late fees incurred.

What is a waivable​ ticket?

  • No Child Restraint  (257.710D only)
  • Defective Equipment
  • No Operator's License on Person  (partially waivable)
  • Registration violation
See Waivable Violations for more information.

What happens if you do not respond to a ticket within 14 days?

If a response is not made within 14 days of the issuance of the ticket, or if the defendant fails to appear for a scheduled hearing, a default judgment is entered. Once a default judgment is entered, a $45 default fee is added to the fines and costs.  Within 14 days of being notified of the default judgment, the defendant must either pay the fine plus a $45 default fee, or file a Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment and Order - CIA04.

If the defendant does not respond to the offense, the court will mail a 14 day notice that informs the defendant that the fines and costs remain outstanding and that the next action will be suspension of driving privileges and an added assessment of $45.

How do you file a Motion to Set Aside a Default Judgment?

Fill out the Motion to Set Aside Default Judgment and Order - CIA04 form with an explanation of why the court should set aside the default. A cash bond must be posted in the amount of the ticket, along with the $45 default fee and the CIA04 form.

If the magistrate grants the motion, either an informal hearing or a pre-hearing will be scheduled and a notice of the hearing date will be mailed within a few weeks. If the Magistrate denies the motion, the default will stand, the bond that was posted will be applied to the fines and costs and the case will be closed.

What is a Pre-Hearing?

A pre-hearing is a meeting with the city/township attorney or prosecutor with the intention of resolving the case without an appearance before a magistrate or judge. If the case is not resolved at this meeting, the case will be scheduled for either an informal or formal hearing.

What is an Informal Hearing?

An informal hearing is a proceeding held before a magistrate regarding a civil infraction offense.  Both the defendant and the police officer (plaintiff) are present. The defendant and the police officer may present testimony and call witnesses during an informal hearing, but neither may have an attorney represent them. The magistrate will determine whether or not the defendant is responsible for the infraction based on the testimony and evidence presented.

The plaintiff has the burden of proving the defendant is responsible by a preponderance of the evidence, or that it is more likely than not, that the defendant is responsible for the alleged offense.

If neither party is satisfied with the outcome of an informal hearing, the case may be appealed within seven days to a formal hearing before a judge.  If the defendant appeals the magistrate's decision at an informal hearing, he/she must also post bond in the amount of the fines and costs.  

What is a Pre-Formal Hearing?

A pre-formal hearing is a hearing assigned to a judge's docket. A defendant may retain an attorney. The defendant's attorney will meet with the city/township attorney or prosecutor and attempt to resolve the case without appearing before the judge. If the case is not resolved at this stage, the case will be scheduled for a formal hearing.

What is a Formal Hearing?

A formal hearing is held before a district court judge regarding a civil infraction offense with the defendant and the police officer (plaintiff) under oath.  At a formal hearing the prosecutor or city attorney will represent the plaintiff; the defendant may also be represented by an attorney at a formal hearing.

The plaintiff has the burden of proving the defendant is responsible by a preponderance of the evidence, or that it is more likely than not that the defendant is responsible for the alleged offense. The judge will make a determination as to the defendant's responsibility.
The outcome of a formal hearing may be appealed to the Oakland County Circuit Court within 21 days of the district court judge's decision.

 

FAQ page.​