Huffpost Chicago
THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

The Parking Ticket Geek Headshot

Ask The Parking Ticket Geek

Posted: Updated:

masked-geek_5-crop.jpg

Dear Parking Ticket Geek,

I currently share a Hertz rental car with a colleague from work. She and I both received parking tickets in June 2008 for $60. Hers was on 6/13/08, mine was 6/27/08.

The Administrative Officer denied my contestation and I went to pay the ticket; however I incorrectly paid for the one on 6/13/08. How likely will I be to get the City to cancel the payment I made? My colleague claims that she sent in an appeal for the 6/13/08 ticket but never heard back. I was NOT driving the rental car the time it was incurred.

Please advise. Thank you,

Paid for the Wrong Ticket

Dear Paid for the Wrong Ticket,

This was a new situation for me, so I asked the very helpful Ed Walsh, spokesperson from the Dept. of Revenue, what he would advise.

"Motorists can call 312.744.PARK, and request their payment be moved to the ticket they intended to pay," explained Mr. Walsh. "Depending on the timing of the payment, they may still have a right to a hearing on the ticket they paid by mistake. However, if the ticket paid by mistake was already in a status not allowing hearing rights when payment was remitted, a hearing will not be authorized."

Good advice. I would get on the phone right away. Make sure you talk to a live operator, explain the situation and see what they can do for you. Make sure you take down their name and operator number so you can reference your conversation if you should have any further problems in the future.

Very truly yours,

The Parking Ticket Geek

Dear Meter Geek:

2 tickets for same violation on 2 consecutive days. What to do?

Violation ordinance number on both tickets the same; (9-64-190}. One at 5:15 p.m., the other at 8:30 p.m. both have same badge number on the tickets. I think this cop is picking on me?

There is no meter number on either ticket so I am assuming that the ticket was written for spending too much time at that meter.

I have a current handicap placard on display on my windshield.

How can I beat this?

Ira

Ira-

Whomever is writing these tickets is just plain stupid.

You can beat this two different ways.

First, it's not a proper violation because if it's a meter violation, there is no meter number listed. A meter number MUST be listed on the ticket.

Second, your handicapped placard should give you parking carte blanche.

Check out the law.

9-64-010 Applicability - Exemptions

(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of the traffic code, any motor vehicle bearing handicapped or disabled veterans state registration plates or a handicapped parking decal or device issued pursuant to Section 3-616 or 11-1301.2 of the Illinois Vehicle Code...is hereby exempt from the payment of parking meter fees and exempt from any ordinance or regulation which imposes a time limitation for parking...The exemption granted under this subsection shall apply only when the motor vehicle is operated by or under the personal direction of the person for whom the handicapped or disabled veteran registration plates or handicapped parking decal or device was issued.

Dude! You are golden!

Anyone with a handicapped placard can park at a meter without paying and for as long as you want.

When you contest this, first point out there is no meter number listed.

Then, make sure you cite the law above to the hearing officer in your letter or in person, provide a photo(s) of the handicapped placard hanging from your rear-view mirror, provide a copy of your actual handicapped placard (or bring the actual placard to the hearing if you like) and if you have it, produce copies of any other documentation that demonstrates your handicapped status.

This should be a sure-fire winner.

Very truly yours,

The Parking Ticket Geek

Hi Parking Ticket Geek,

I recently moved here from Arizona, where of course my car had tinted front windows (if it didn't the passengers inside would bake in the AZ sun, but i digress)...

I have received 2 "parking" tickets now for having tinted windows, which the "meter maid" has hand written on the ticket. Each ticket is for $50.00.

Maybe my logic is messed up, but can I actually get a ticket for having a PARKED car with tinted windows? I mean, if I had a busted up tail light, but was not actually driving a car they would not give a ticket for that, right? Although I have been driving with the tint on my windows, what if I was parking the car and avoiding driving it until I had the time/money to remove the tint?

I am so frustrated with this, and while I am not surprised they would just make something up, I think this is very unfair. What should I do?

Lacey

Dear Lacey-

I have been getting a lot of questions about tinted windows recently. I have no idea why. Perhaps cops are writing more of these violations for some reason.

Now, in our subsequent e-mails, you tell me you bought your car from a dealer and that it came with factory glass. You also tell me you can see inside the car with no problem.

If your car has factory glass, it is very unlikely it is tinted. It may be lightly smoked, but tinted implies a film was applied to the glass.

I would encourage you to take photos with someone inside to show that you can plainly see through the glass, and present those photos at your hearing or in your letter.

I would also explain that you made no modifications to the glass and you bought it with the factory installed glass.

Also, you indicated to me that you received the tickets at night. Here's a question to bring up in your hearing. How the hell can you tell if glass is tinted when it's dark outside? I would guess you can't.

The reason this violation sucks so much is there is no objective way to measure tint. Do the cops carry a tint meter around with them to check to see if the glass is tinted or not? I'm sure they don't.

If you did have your glass tinted, I would encourage you to remove it. It costs between $20-$50 to have tint removed from your front driver and front passenger windows.

Very truly yours,

The Parking Ticket Geek

Every week, The Parking Ticket Geek doles out his insipid brand of Chicago parking ticket advice.

If you have a question for The Parking Ticket Geek, please e-mail the Geek at: askthegeek@theexpiredmeter.com

For more Chicago parking ticket advice, red light camera info and Chicago parking ticket news, check out The Expired Meter.