Getting a parking ticket in Toronto is common, and no one likes seeing a bright yellow ticket tucked under their windscreen wiper.
Whether you overstayed your time, parked too close to a fire hydrant, or got a parking ticket in Toronto for some other reason, the first thing that may come to your mind is how can you pay parking violation tickets?
And if you have been ticketed wrongly, you might be wondering how can you dispute it?
You may also wonder if it will affect your driving record or insurance premiums.
Continue reading to find out answers to these questions and more.
What to do when you get a parking ticket?
Imagine this scenario:
You are walking back to your car after a fun night in Downtown Toronto only to find that your permit has expired, you have parked the car in the wrong place, or you are guilty of some other similar offence.
Yikes, that can be a fun spoiler.
Parking tickets are a pain, but do not stress. If it is any consolation, you are not the only one; roughly 6,000 people receive parking tickets in Toronto in a day from the parking enforcement unit.
So, what is next?
The first thing is to take that yellow slip of paper out of the windshield and move your vehicle as quickly as possible. If you do not move the car away before the end of the grace period, you may incur additional penalties and fines.
Once you have parked in a safe place, you can choose to either pay the fine or dispute it.
Paying the parking ticket
You can pay for parking tickets online, in person, or by mail. You have 15 days to pay the parking violation ticket. From the day 16 onward, you incur additional fee and penalties.
Paying the ticket online
As you may guess, paying a parking ticket online is most convenient. All you have to do is provide the parking violation number listed on your ticket and the license plate number.
Paying the ticket in person
You can pay your parking ticket in person at a counter location. You can pay by cash, travellers cheque, money order, cheque, a credit card, or a debit card. If paying in person, do not forget to carry the parking violation with you.
Note: Paying for parking tickets in person has been currently suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic
Paying the ticket by mail
If you decide to pay by mail, then mail the cheque to the Treasurer, City of Toronto and list your parking violation number on the front of it. Keep in mind that you should not send cash by mail; only cheques are accepted. Since payments must be processed on or before the due date, you should mail the cheque several days before the last payment date.
Dispute the ticket
Do you think you have been falsely accused of a parking violation? If so, you can dispute it if you want. You must file a dispute within 15 days of receiving a yellow parking violation notice. If you missed the deadline, you have an extra 30 days to request an extension. If your request is granted, you must register a dispute within this period.
If you do decide to dispute the parking ticket, remember these two pointers:
- Gather as much evidence as possible to support your claim. This may include signed witness statements, photographs of the scene, a receipt for towed or repair services in case your car was disabled at the time the ticket for the parking ticket was issued, etc.
- Do not pay the Toronto parking ticket fine until a Screening Officer has reached a decision. If you do, your case will be declared resolved and the review will become void.
You can file a dispute a parking ticket online or in-person.
Filing a dispute online
Perhaps the most convenient way to request a review of your parking violation ticket is by filing a dispute online. You must provide any one of following:
- Name and the license plate
- Parking violation number
- Your Driver’s License
Explain the dispute in detail by including the following information in your online form:
- Why the ticket for the parking violation should be varied or cancelled
- Why any fees levied on you should be varied or cancelled
- Why do you need an extension to file a review request or pay for the parking ticket
Filing a dispute in person
You can file an in-person dispute at a City of Toronto Screening Office.
Note: Because of the COVID-19pandemic, in-person reviews have been currently suspended.
What if you are not happy with the screening officer’s decision?
If you do not agree with the decision, you can submit a request for a final review. Your case will go to an Administrative Penalty Tribunal Hearing Officer.
Now, let’s look at the most common parking tickets:
- Parking too close to a fire hydrant, an intersection, a crosswalk, or a sidewalk
- Parking on a footpath or a boulevard
- Obstructing a leeway or a driveway
- Parking in a no stopping or no standing zone
- Parking in a fire route, a bus stop area, or a bicycle route
- Parking for a more than three hours without a parking permit
What if you get too many parking tickets?
A parking ticket can be inconvenient and frustrating. But do they impact your car insurance or life insurance?
The answer is no. Car insurance and life insurance providers look at various factors while setting your rates, but how well you comply with parking restrictions is not one of them.
Parking infractions do not go on your driving record. That is because they are not regarded as moving violations. In other words, even if you receive 12 parking tickets in a year, your insurance carrier will never know.
What about demerit points? Will you get any for parking tickets?
Demerit points are assigned for traffic violations. Because parking violation tickets are not moving violations, they are not regarded as traffic violations. So, you will not collect any demerit points even if you rack up several tickets for a parking violation.
All the same, parking tickets are costly and inconvenient. No driver likes seeing a bright yellow ticket flapping under the windscreen wiper. The good news is that these simple strategies can significantly reduce your chances of getting one:
- Download a parking app.There are many apps that help you make safer and better parking choices.
- Heed signs. Always check for curb markings signs before leaving the car.
- Watch for ‘no stopping’ or ‘no standing’ signs. You can get a ticket for a parking violation even if you are in the car.
- Watch for fire hydrants and street corners.Parking in front of fire hydrants and at street corners is one of the most common parking tickets.
- Find a garage. Unless you have a parking pass, parking for more than 3 hours in Toronto is liable for ticketing. If you plan to leave your vehicle for an extended period of time, a better option is to park it in a close-by garage.
What if you do not pay your ticket?
Drivers who are not from Ontario may choose to not pay a parking ticket. The Toronto Parking Authority (TPA) will neither hire debt collectors nor track them down.
However, if you are from Ontario and do not pay, you will face unpleasant consequences.
You get 15 days for paying a ticket for a parking violation. From day 16, an additional fee of $12.24 will be levied. From day 31, the TPA will charge alate fee of $25.50. After 60 days, you will be charged an additional fee of$25.50. Plus, you will have to pay the ticket in person. The TPA does not allow paying parking tickets online after Day 60.
How To Avoid Parking Tickets
The best way to avoid a parking ticket is to look for free parking signs and find parking near these. Depending on the parking signs you may be allowed to park anywhere from a half hour to 24 hours. If you don't see any free parking signs, there are many paid parkings signs to follow. Although they cost more, they will always be less than a ticket. If you live in Toronto, there are also options to purchase monthly parking passes which are cheaper than one-day parking or see if you can purchase any Toronto parking tags.
Does a parking ticket go on your record?
No, parking tickets do not affect your record since they do not result from any dangerous driving.
You can receive parking tickets for any number of reasons. If you erred, it is best to pay the ticket promptly. That is because the consequences for not paying for an Ontario driver are rather displeasing.The easiest and most convenient way to pay for a ticket is online. If you did not commit any parking violation but still have received a ticket, you can dispute it online or in person. Toronto parking tickets, while costly and inconvenient, affects neither your driving record nor your insurance rates.