How to navigate to this Client FAQ page without using the link we provided on our email: From the regular FAQ page on our website, click on “Client FAQ” just below the “FAQ” logo.

Client FAQ

The information below will guide you through Ticket Ninja’s Two-Step process of getting your ticket dismissed!  Following through with the two-step process will allow you maximum chances of winning, and also allows you to be eligible for a full refund of the service fee if your ticket is not dismissed or reduced after going through the two-step process.

The information below is organized into roughly chronoligical order in which you will want to refer to the information below.

The best and most efficient way of communicating with Ticket Ninja

Replying back to the email titled: TBD(TR-205) from Ticket Ninja, with any questions you may still have is the best way.  This way we can keep track of all the communications on a single email thread and Ticket Ninja can quickly understand the context of your questions.  It is also an efficient(and sometimes the only way) for Ticket Ninja to send you the information that you need, in reply to your question.

Please make sure to check the FAQ’s relating to the stage you are in, before you communicate with us.  Most questions that our clients will have are fully answered here, and it should be easy to find, as they are grouped together under the stage that you are in within our two-step process.

Submitting the TR-205 form and Bail Payment to the court
1. Trial by declaration form(TR-205)

2. Bail amount

Please sign the TR-205 form, at the bottom of the second page. You do not need to add any other information to that form. We use the citation number for both the citation number and the case number.

Enclose your check for the correct bail amount and write “Not Guilty” on the check along with the citation number (you can write this in the Memo area of the check on the lower left part of the check).

Send out the package by Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested and make sure that the court will receive the package before the due date. Keep the Certified Mail receipt in a safe place. The address you should use is on the top of the first page of the TBD form that we have prepared for you. Make sure to not use a P.O. box address(their payment processing center) since you are sending this by certified mail with return receipt.

No, everything that needs to be filled out has been filled out for you. The document only needs your signature at the bottom of the second page!
Please use the court address that we have on top of page one of the trial by declaration form that we prepared for you. The other address is the payment processing center for people pleading guilty.l
Please make the check payable to: Clerk of the Court.

You can also use the name of the court following the instruction on the Courtesy Notice.

It does not matter which one you choose to use. Either one is fine.

No, the court will not accept temporary checks. Please use a money order or cashier’s check instead.

What is a Temporary Check? It is a personal check with your name and address NOT pre-printed on the check. The court will not accept such checks even if you write-in your name and address.

No.

However, if you insist on sending it, please make sure that it has “Trial by Declaration” option. If it does not allow you to choose “Trial by Declaration”, please ignore it and not send it out with the package.

Most Courtesy Notices from the court will deliberately not give you the “Trial by Declaration” option in order to discourage people from using this process! Or they will use confusing language to make you think that you are not eligible.

For all infraction traffic tickets, California law allows you to do Trial by Declarations!

No, that is for people pleading guilty and not contesting their case.
By Certified mail, return receipt requested.
Yes, it is okay to submit the TR-205 form and bail payment in person at the traffic court window. For most courts, you can also make a credit card payment at the window. Please do not make any credit card payment ONLINE at the Court Website. If you do, you will be pleading guilty.
NO!!

Please do not make any credit card payment ONLINE at the Court Website. If you do, you will be pleading GUILTY!

Yes, we do this delibrately. Many courts will also do this, and we have not had any problems with this.

If you want to put the case number, you can do it yourself or ask us to do it for you by replying back to our email.

Yes, the court will deposit the bail check into the court’s account right away. On the average, it seems to take about 1 to 2 weeks for you to see it on your end. This does not mean that you lost the case!
The Courtesy notice that shows the exact bail amount is usually received about three weeks from the citation date. If it has been more than three weeks and you still have not received the Courtesy notice from court, we suggest the following steps:

1. You may look up your ticket online at the court website for the exact bail amount.
2. You can look up the bail amount for your ticket on our website > About > California Traffic Ticket Amounts
3. Reply back to our email and ask us to estimate the bail amount for you.

How long do I have to wait to find out the status of my case?
On the average, it takes about 2 to 3 months. The courts have varying levels of work load and staff situations, so it is impossible to predict accurately.
You can check the status online at the court’s website by looking up your ticket. Please keep in mind that this system gives very limited information and is very difficult to understand.

If CASE STATUS shows as Court, and NEXT APPEARANCE DATE shows a future date, the case is still ongoing.

You may also contact the court by phone or in-person to get a status update on your case.

Please keep in mind, that we do not receive any communications from the court and we have no information regarding the status of your case.

Please keep in mind that the court takes, on the average about 2 to 3 monts to respond with a letter called Notice of Decision. The response time can be shorter, or longer than this average.

If you are worried that you might have missed the Notice of Decision letter from the court, you should contact the court and find out the status of your case. Please keep in mind, that we do not receive any communications from the court and we have no information regarding the status of your case.

No. Many courts are understaffed and deliberately do not answer their phone. Best way is to visit the traffic court window, or look up your ticket online at the court website.
You must contact the court and find out the status of your case. If you find out that you lost the Trial by declaration case, you must make sure that the court has a record (certificate of mailing signed by the court clerk) of mailing out the Notice of Decision to you. If they do not have such a record, you should reaise the isue that you never had a chance to request the New trial(which must be done within 20 days of the mailing of the notice), and make sure that the court allows you to request a New trial so that you can continue to contest the case.
What to do when I receive the Notice of Decision Letter (TR-215) from the court
No, there is nothing you need to do but to wait for the refund check, which should come in about 60 days.
No, there is no need to do traffic school since the whole ticket is GONE!
You can accept the result and decide to take traffic school(if your violation carries a moving violation point and you are eligible), or if you are not happy with the result, you can send in the New Trial Request. Please keep in mind that at the New Trial, the end result may be better or worse than the decision that you currently have.
If you are not happy with the result, you should definately consider requesting a New Trial.
In California, you are allowed to do traffic school once every 18 months to remove one moving violation point from your DMV records. If you have not taken traffic school in the last 18 months, you should be eligible.

If your ticket was for speeding for 26 mph or more, over the speed limit, then you are not eligible for traffic school.

No, if you do not contest your case in the New trial, you will not be eligible for a refund per our refund policy.
How to send out the New Trial Request (TR-220)
If you would like to continue to contest your citation, the next step is to send in the New Trial Request within 20 days of the date of the mailing of the court notice. If the court sent you that form, you can use it, or you can use the form that we included in our original email(second attachment). Once you get a new trial date, please send me an email and I will send you additional material that will help you to get ready for trial.

If you do not wish to continue to contest the ticket at this point, you can request traffic school(if you were eligible) by sending a simple letter to the court and asking them to send you the traffic school papers. A template for the traffic school letter can be found on this Client FAQ page.

How to fill-out the New trial request form:

First, fill-in name of the court and address, then your name in the Defendant section. Next, fill-in the Citation number and Case number which should be on the court’s letter.

For #1, put in the date the court clerk mailed out the Decision letter.
For #2, leave blank.
For #3, put the name of the violation(e.g. failure to stop at a red light) and/or the violation code(e.g. VC 21453 C) The violation code is written on the original ticket.

And, finally, mail out as soon as possible since the court must receive the New Trial Request within 20 days of the date on #1.

Below are some general helpful information relating to this topic:

Here is a link to our refund policy: http://www.ticketninjaca.com/refund-policy/

What are my chances of winning?: http://www.ticketninjaca.com/what-are-my-chances/

How to request a refund: https://ticketninjaca.com/how-to-request-a-refund/

No, there is not additional court fees for doing the New trial.
No, regular mail should be fine.

However, Ticket Ninja will not be responsible if the mail gets lost and you are unable to do the New Trial.

Generaly, you may be able to reschedule the trial date if you let the court know early enough.

However, there are a lot of discrepanies between the courts on how they operate, so you may not be succesful in getting the court date changed.

Yes! You must plan for being there in person. Ticket Ninja will not go to the New Trial for you or with you.
Yes, please let us know by email and we will go over your case again and send you a summary of your key defense points to help you get ready for trial.

Please keep in mind, that your defense does not change. Your new trial defense should be based on the defense used in your Trial by declaration.

It is up to the judge to allow it or not, however the judge usually will allow traffic school if you ask respectfully. The court makes a traffic school fee of $64 when they allow you to take traffic school.

If the judge states that he/she will not allow traffic school, if you request it AFTER you lose the trial, you should take that statement seriously.

Traffic school Questions
At the New Trial:

If after doing the pre-trial meeting with the officer, you decide to not go ahead with the new trial, you may ask the officer to let the court know that you will plead no-contest and request traffic school. You may also ask for a reduction in the fine amount at this time.

If you decide to do the new trial, and request traffic school after you lose the trial, it is up to the judge to allow it or not. In most cases, the judge will allow traffic school, since the court makes a $64 traffic school fee when they allow people to do traffic school.

What to do once the New Trial date is confirmed
Please let us know(by replying to our email thread)that you have a new trial date coming up. We will send you material to help you prepare for the New Trial.
The New Trial
If you contested your case at the New Trial and you did not win and your fine amount was not reduced, please let us know and make sure to attach a copy of the Minute Order or Court Docket to prove that you have contested the case at the new trial.

Some courts, like the Santa Monica Courthouse, will claim that they do not give out Minute Orders, however, they do have the Court Docket, which is the same thing. Please make sure to ask for it, before you leave the court.

If your fine amount was reduced by more than the service fee that you paid to us, there is no refund. If the fine amount was reduced by less than the service fee amount, then we will refund the difference.

Useful Links

How to send out Discovery Requests:  https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/free-books/beat-ticket-book/chapter9-3.html

Refund Policy

How to request a refund from Ticket Ninja

Online Traffic schools:  Please google:  California online traffic school.  The fees will typically range from $10 to $20.  Online traffic school is the easiest way to complete you traffic school.  You will save time and money by doing it this way.

Forms

Request for new trial form Editable

Traffic School Request Letter

Request for a different New Trial Date

Proof of Service Form