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Traffic Court

    Traffic court handles all adult traffic citations that were issued in Mendocino County. Juvenile traffic matters are handled in the Mendocino County Probation Department.  The Traffic division will handle all trial matters relating to traffic infractions.

    Court Clerk Information

    Ukiah Branch:
    100 North State Street, Room 108
    Ukiah, CA  95482
    Phone:  (707) 463-4660        Fax:  (707) 463-4655

    Ten Mile Branch:
    700 South Franklin Street, Room 144
    Fort Bragg, CA   95437
    Phone:  (707) 964-3192        Fax:  (707) 961-2611

    Clerks Offices are open 8:30am to 3:00pm Monday - Friday

    Telephone hours are 8:30am to 1:00pm Monday - Friday

    All Traffic Court information on this page applies to both Mendocino County locations, unless otherwise specified.


    Traffic Amnesty Program

    A one-time amnesty program for unpaid traffic and non-traffic infraction tickets is available, operated by the Mendocino County Collections Department.

    Contact the Collections Department in-person at 501 Low Gap Road, Room 1060, Ukiah, or call the Amnesty Hotline at (707) 234-6849.

    The following links provide information about the program:

    Mendocino County Collections Department
    Information from the Judicial Council website
    Judicial Council Press Release
    YouTube Video


    Traffic Court Calendar

    Hearings on Calendar - view on-line
    Hearings on Calendar - print version
    Calendar Plan


    Access to Courtrooms

    Department G (Traffic Courtroom) cannot be reached by elevator; this Department can only be accessed by using the stairs. If you have business with the Court and need accommodations for access, please contact the Court Clerk to make arrangements at your earliest convenience.


    Courtesy Notice

    After receiving a traffic citation, the court will mail a courtesy notice to the address on your citation. If you do not receive a courtesy notice, you must still appear at the clerk's office or settle your case by mail. You must contact the court if your address is incorrect.

    The courtesy notice will supply the information about how to take care of your situation. If you do not understand your options, you may come in person to the clerk's office or correspond by mail prior to your appearance date. The courtesy notice will state whether your situation requires a mandatory appearance.

    Courtesy notices are not processed immediately after you receive the citation.  It may take up to two (2) weeks prior to due date for processing.


    Clearing Correctable Violations

    Mechanical, Registration and License Violations

    Either proof of correction and a $25.00 dismissal fee or proof of correction and bail is required on each mechanical, registration and license violation.

    Proof of correction can be obtained by having an authorized representative of the issuing police agency complete the Certificate of Correction located on the reverse of the courtesy notice or citation. Registration and/or driver license violations may be certified by a Department of Motor Vehicles clerk.

    Submit the proof of correction and any required fee to the court by the due date.  For each item corrected, pay $25 instead of the amount due for that charge. 

    Insurance Violations

    If the vehicle was insured at the time you were cited, you may submit proof of insurance, along with a $25 proof of correction fee, and the violation will be dismissed.

    Proof of insurance may be a copy of an insurance card or insurance policy.  Proof submitted must show the policy number and the policy effective dates.  The insurance policy referenced must cover the vehicle listed on the citation. 

    Submit the proof of insurance and any required fee or bail to the court by the due date.

    Failure to Respond or Comply to Correctable Violation(s)

    Failure to respond or comply with proof of correction will result in one or more of the following:

    • The amount of bail being increased by a minimum of $345;
    • A warrant being issued for your arrest;
    • The Department of Motor Vehicles being notified to withhold renewal of your driver license (if you gave your written promise to appear on the traffic citation);
    • License suspension;
    • Referral to a Collection Agency

    Failure to comply with owner responsibility requirements on unsigned citations will result in a hold being placed on the vehicle registration.


    Clearing Non-Correctable Violations

    The courtesy notice mailed to your home will indicate the options for your situation. These options may include paying your traffic ticket, attending traffic school, mandatory appearance, requesting (by mail or in person) a court appearance, and/or requesting a court trial by declaration (written statement). The following sections will further explain these options, in the order given above.


    How to Take Care of Your Ticket

    You may choose to pay your ticket in person, by mail, or over the phone with a credit card.  If you visit the Ukiah Courthouse, please go to Room 108 to make your payment.

    ? Pay in Person:  Stop by either branch in Mendocino County and pay with cash, check, money order, MasterCard, or Visa, or set up an installment payment plan.  

    + Pay by Mail:  Write your docket or citation number on your check or money order, as well as any on correspondence you include.  Enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope with any correspondence requiring a response from the court, and mail your payment to the following address:

    Superior Court of Mendocino County
    Attn:  Traffic Division

    100 North State Street, Room 108

    Ukiah, CA   95482-4416

    ( Pay by Phone:  Call (707) 463-6872 to pay by MasterCard or Visa using our automated phone service.  You will need your case number, date of birth, and daytime phone number.

    Pay by the Internet:
      Click here to pay by MasterCard or Visa using our on-line payment system.  You will need your case number, date of birth, and daytime phone number.


    Please note:  When paying by credit card, there is a $7.50 convenience fee automatically added to the amount you enter as your payment.


    If you are paying and attending traffic school, add $52 to the total bail and you will have 90 days to complete the class. 


    Traffic School


    To be eligible for the Traffic Violator School Confidential Conviction Program, you must meet certain requirements (California Rules of Court 4.104). You may qualify if:

    1.                  You currently possess a valid driver license (Out of state residents see below)

    2.                  Your violation does not carry a negligent operator point count of more than one point under Vehicle Code section 12810 or one and one-half points or more under Vehicle Code section 12810.5(b)(2); 

    3.                  Your violation does not occur within 18 months after the date of a previous violation and the defendant either attended or elected to attend a traffic violator school for the previous violation (Vehicle Code section 1808.7);  

    4.                  Your citation is not for a violation of Vehicle Code section 22406.5 (tank vehicles); 

    5.                  Your citation is not related to alcohol use or possession or drug use or possession; 

    6.                  You have not failed to appear under Vehicle Code section 40508(a) unless the failure-to-appear charge has been adjudicated and any fine imposed has been paid; 

    7.                  You have not failed to appear under Penal Code section 1214.1 unless the civil monetary assessment has been paid; 

    8.                  The violation is a speeding violation in which the speed alleged is not more than 25 miles over a speed limit as stated in Chapter 7 (commencing with section 22348) of Division 11 of the Vehicle Code;

    9.                  The violation did not occur in a commercial vehicle as defined in Vehicle Code section 15210(b).

    NOTICE: If you are eligible and decide not to attend traffic school your automobile insurance may be adversely affected.

    Payment of Bail and Fees:

    Prior to attending traffic school, you must pay the non-refundable traffic school fee of $52.00 plus an amount equal to the bail on your case to the court by the due date either in person, by phone, through our website, or by mail.  The amount of this fee is printed on the front of your courtesy notice.  If you pay the $52.00 traffic school fee, and it is determined that you are ineligible to attend traffic school, this fee cannot be refunded. 

    Upon receipt of bail plus the $52.00 traffic school fee, your case will automatically be extended by the clerk to 90 days from the original due date to allow for the completion of traffic school. 

    Finding a Traffic Violator School:

    Traffic schools are private businesses and will charge an additional fee.  To find a DMV-licensed traffic violator school, use the On-line Locator service operated by DMV:

    DMV Occupational Licensing Status Information System

    You may also call the Department of Motor Vehicles, Business Licensing Unit at (916) 229-3126 and request a list of traffic violator schools be sent to you via mail or fax.

    The traffic school will need your Court Code, which is a five-digit number printed as part of the return address of your courtesy notice, along with the docket number printed on your courtesy notice. 

    Attending and Completing Traffic Violator School:

    You must complete traffic school no later than 90 days after your original due date.  The law does not allow us to give any further extensions. 

    The traffic school you attend will report completion to the DMV.  The court is notified of your completion the following day.  Upon notification of your completion of traffic school, the court will report a "confidential conviction" to DMV.

    Use the link below to confirm the court has received notification:

    Traffic School Completion Certificates Received

    Please allow up to 10 days after you complete traffic school for your case to appear on the list. 

    If you do not complete traffic school by the due date, the Court will order your Traffic School fee converted to bail.  The bail will be forfeited and the Court will order that no further proceedings shall be made on your case.  A bail forfeiture/fine is a conviction and will be reported to the Department of Motor Vehicles. 

    Out of State Residents:

    If you hold a valid driver license from a state other than California, you may complete a home study or Internet course for eligible offenses from a course provider licensed by the State of California DMV.  The steps to follow are the same as above, however you must submit the following three items to the Court by the due date shown on your citation in order to request approval to take a home study or Internet course:

    1.   A copy of your driving record from your state's Motor Vehicle Department

    2.  The required bail and fees, including the $52 non-refundable traffic school fee

    3.  Form TR-007, a declaration stating that you have not attended traffic school anywhere in the United States for a citation received within 18 months prior to your current citation.

    TR-007 - Declaration re: No Traffic School Attendance

    Once your request has been granted, you will have ninety (90) days from your original due date to complete the course.


    Mandatory Appearance

    Your courtesy notice will state if you are required to appear in court with the wording "Mandatory Appearance."  Your citation or courtesy notice will have the date, time, and location of the appearance.

    Extensions are not allowed on citations that require a mandatory court appearance. If you fail to appear in court as you have promised you may be subject to an additional "Failure to Appear" charge. This is a misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine, or jail, or both. The Department of Motor Vehicles may withhold the issuance or renewal of your driver license, and may revoke or suspend your driving privilege.


    Requesting a Trial in Person or by Mail

    Any person who has received a written Notice to Appear for an infraction may, prior to the time at which the person is required to appear, enter a plea of not guilty.

    Any person may enter a plea of not guilty in person in court at the arraignment.  Arraignments are scheduled by contacting the clerk of the court named in the Notice to Appear.  Deposit of bail is not required if you appear in person for arraignment to enter a plea of not guilty and request a court trial.

    Any person may plead not guilty and request a trial in writing in lieu of appearing in person for arraignment. The written plea can be prepared on local form MTR-140 - Advisement of Right and Plea of Not Guilty, which shall be directed to the court named in the Notice to Appear and shall be accompanied by a deposit consisting of the amount of bail listed on the courtesy notice for the offense(s) charged. Upon receipt of the plea and deposit, the case shall be set for arraignment/trial pursuant to California Vehicle Code section 40519(b).

    Any person using the written procedure set forth above shall be deemed to have given a written promise to appear at the time designated by the court for trial, and failure to appear may result in the trial going forward without an appearance.


    Requesting a Trial by Declaration (Written Statement)

    According to Local Court Rule 18.98, any person may elect to have a Trial by Declaration of any charged infraction.  You have the option to conduct some correspondence with the clerk and court by mail, but you must appear in court should the infraction require a mandatory appearance.  This Trial by Declaration should be requested on or before the due date shown on your ticket. Your case will be decided without requiring that you appear in court. You must post full bail prior to the trial date, and enter a plea of not guilty.  If you are found not guilty, or if the charges are otherwise dismissed, the amount of bail shall be promptly refunded.

    The Judicial Council forms that are needed can be downloaded using the links below:

    Form Number

    Instructions to Defendant


    Request for Trial by Written Declaration


    Request for New Trial (Trial de Novo)


    Local Form - Advisement of Rights and Plea of Not Guilty


    These forms may also be obtained in person at the clerk's office, photocopied from the Mendocino County Law Library, or by requesting the forms by mail. When requesting forms by mail, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope for us to mail the forms to you.  Send in the completed forms and any witness statements or exhibits with the full amount owed on your ticket, and a self-addressed, stamped envelope. You will be notified by mail of the judge's decision.

    The Trial by Declaration process is set forth in California Vehicle Code section 40902



    One 90-day extension may be obtained by mail, by phone or in person on moving violations. If corresponding with the Court by mail, you will need to include a self-addressed stamped envelope.  Extensions are not allowed once the due date has passed. Extensions are not allowed on citations that require a mandatory court appearance.  

    Please contact the Clerk's Office to discuss an extension on your citation.


    Uniform Bail and Penalty Schedule

    To achieve substantial uniformity of bail and penalties throughout the state in traffic, boating, fish and game, forestry, public utilities, parks and recreation, and business licensing cases, the trial court judges, the Judicial Council has established a policy of promulgating uniform bail and penalty schedules for certain offenses in order to achieve a standard of uniformity in the handling of these offenses. 

    In general, bail is used to ensure the presence of the defendant before the court. Under Vehicle Code sections 40512 and 13103, bail may also be forfeited and such forfeiture may be ordered without the necessity of any further court proceedings and treated as a conviction for specified Vehicle Code offenses. A penalty in the form of a monetary sum is a fine imposed as all or a portion of a sentence imposed.

    The following modified Uniform Bail and Penalty Schedule has been approved by the judges of the Superior Court.

    Uniform Bail and Penalty Schedule - Effective January 1, 2015


    DMV Holds and Past Due Citations

    The Collection Department handles payment transactions for DMV Holds and Past Due Citations.  You may visit their office at the Mendocino County Administration Center, 501 Low Gap Road, Room 1060, Ukiah, or phone them at (707)234-6850.


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Copyright © 2015 Superior Court of Mendocino County    All rights reserved      Last Updated: October 01, 2015