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Traffic

Traffic Division

Welcome to the Superior Court of California County of Merced, Traffic Division. The Merced Traffic Division has jurisdiction over vehicle code violations, some local municipal ordinances, infractions, and minor misdemeanors.

Traffic Citations

The Merced Traffic Division is responsible for filing citations from various law enforcement agencies in Merced County. If you have received a citation in Merced County you can pay your ticket online, sign-up for traffic school, or contact the Merced Superior Court Traffic Division located at the bottom of your citation for assistance.

Courtesy Notice

If you received a Courtesy Notice from Merced Superior Court, this is a reminder notice to you to appear or pay your citation. The courtesy notice also provides you with several options on how to take care of your citation.

If you received a Juvenile Traffic Courtesy Notice and it indicates that you are scheduled for a mandatory appearance, you will need to appear as indicated on your Juvenile Traffic Courtesy Notice.

If you received a Mandatory Traffic Courtesy Notice you are required to appear on your scheduled appearance date noted on the Merced Mandatory Traffic Courtesy notice and/or your citation.

Payment Locations

Payments can be made in person at the Merced Superior Court's Traffic Division located at 720 West 20th Street, Merced, CA 95340 or at the Merced Court's Los Banos Division located at 1159 G Street, Los Banos, CA 93635. 

The Court accepts Cash, Checks, Money Orders, Cashier’s Check and Credit Cards.

Traffic Citation - To Pay Online

You may pay your Traffic citation online. Payments are accepted online with a credit or debit card that have a Visa or Mastercard logo. You also have the option to pay with your checking account information. There is an additional processing fee that will be added to your credit card. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at the convenience of your own home.

This option is not available if you have a mandatory appearance. Please contact the Merced Court Traffic Division for further information.

Please click on the button below to check your traffic citation information and use your credit or debit card with our automated online payment system.

Access Now

Walk-Ins

You may appear in court as a walk-in. If your citation says to appear at the Merced Traffic Division located on 720 West 20th Street, the available walk-in dates are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday mornings between 7:30 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. and Thursday afternoons between 12:30 p.m. and 1:15 p.m.

If your citation says to appear at the Los Banos Traffic Division located on 1159 G Street, the available walk-in dates are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings between 7:45 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. We do not accept walk-ins on Wednesdays.

Please bring your citation, courtesy notice, or any other information you have pertaining to your case.

Please keep in mind that walk-in schedules are subject to change at any time. If you have any questions about the walk-in schedules, contact the court for further assistance.

 

More Information

You may attend traffic violator school (TVS) only if:

  • The citation was for a moving violation.
  • You have not taken a traffic school course within the past 18 months.
  • You do not have more than 3 infractions on your driving record.
  • You do not have a misdemeanor on your driving record.

This is an additional $70 fee to attend Traffic Violator School. 

A person who holds a class A, class B or commercial class C driver's license may request to attend TVS if the person was operating a vehicle requiring only a class C or class M license (non-commercial vehicle). The Court may not order that the record of conviction be kept confidential. However, the conviction shall not contain a violation point count. A commercially licensed driver operating a commercial vehicle is prohibited from attending TVS.

Notice: If you are eligible and decide not to attend TVS your automobile insurance may be adversely affected. One conviction in any 18-month period will be held confidential and not show on your driving record if you complete a TVS program (non-commercially licensed driver only).

You may pay your traffic ticket online by using our automated online payment system with your Credit or Debit card bearing a Visa or MasterCard logo.

To request traffic school by mail:

  • Select option #4 on your courtesy notice or mail a written request to the court.
  • Enclose a check or money order, in US funds, for the full amount of the bail as listed on your Courtesy Notice payable to Merced Superior Court.
  • Please include the additional $70 Fee for the Traffic Violator School Fee.

Please be certain to write the case and/or citation number on all correspondence and payments.

Once your request has been authorized you will be provided a list of approved traffic schools and a completion due date. You may only attend traffic violator schools approved by the California Department of Motor Vehicles. To locate more information about the schools approved by DMV select the link below:

California DMV List of Traffic Schools

You may also obtain a list of schools in your area at the CTSI website. There is an additional fee that will need to be paid to the traffic violator school of your choice.

You can contact the traffic school representative directly by dialing:

Merced Traffic Division
Tel: (209) 725-4189

Los Banos Traffic Division
Tel: (209) 725-4212

Proof of correction of most mechanical and equipment violations can be obtained by visiting a law enforcement agency. Correct the violation and have a Law Enforcement Officer complete the Certificate of Correction that is located on the back side of your citation.

Once the violation(s) are corrected, submit the signed citation to the Merced Traffic Division for a charge reduction of $25.00 for each Proof of Correction violation, pursuant to VC 40611.

If you were cited for an expired vehicle registration, have a DMV agent or Law Enforcement Officer sign your citation to verify the correction was made. Submit a copy of your proof of registration and/or the signed citation to the Court with the $25 Proof of Correction fee.

If you were cited for driving without proof of insurance, and you were insured on the day of your citation, submit a copy of the proof of insurance with the $25 Proof of Correction fee.

If proof of correction and the appropriate fees for each correctible violation are received by the due date the case will be dismissed.

Please write your citation number and/or case number on your check, money order or cashier’s check when making your payment.

If you did not have current insurance on the vehicle on the date the citation was issued, you will need to speak with a court clerk for additional information or pay the bail (fine) amount due by the due date.

If you did not have current insurance on the vehicle on the date the citation was issued, you will need to speak with a court clerk for additional information or pay the bail (fine) amount due by the due date.

If you are unable to pay the required fines and fees in full, you may request a payment plan arrangement. The Payment Plan is a program which allows you to make monthly payments on your citation.

If you are interested, you must appear in Court on or before your arraignment date to request a payment plan or download the form.

If you choose to use the online form, please mail the signed completed form to the address located on your courtesy notice and provide a self-addressed stamped envelope with your written request.  Once the court receives your request, the court will set your case up with the installment plan and mail you a copy of your monthly payment plan schedule. Payment plans are set-up for completion of payments to occur within 12 months or may be negotiated based on your ability to pay.

Payment Plan Responsibilities and Requirements

It is your responsibility to make payments as agreed. The Court does not mail monthly statements. If payments are not made by the agreed date, there may be further penalties added in the amount of $100.00 or more per case.

The court does offer a Payment Plan Text Reminder in which you can sign up to receive monthly payment reminders on your cell phone. If you are interested, please contact the court for assistance.

It is your responsibility to notify the Court if you have a change of address, financial status or if you cannot make your payment by the agreed upon date.

Options for Paying Monthly Payment Plan Payments

In Person:   You can pay in person at the Traffic Court Clerk’s office (see hours of operation and location at the top of this page). Methods of payment include cash, check, money order, cashier’s check, and credit card (Visa or MasterCard). 

Drop Box:   You can pay using the Drop Box at our Traffic Court Clerk’s office (see hours of operation and location at the top of this page). Payments received after 3:00 p.m. will be processed on the next business day.  Payments must be by check, money order or cashier's check. Please do not place cash in the Drop Box.

Online:   You can pay online at the automated online payment system, by Visa or MasterCard or online check. A small fee applies for online payment.

Mail:   You can pay by check, money order or cashier’s check, payable to Superior Court of California or Merced Superior Court by mailing payment to the Traffic Division at the location listed above.  Please include your case number(s) that so we can apply your payment properly.

If your case has gone to collections and/or if you now have an order of suspension on your license, then you need to speak directly to the Collection Agency listed on the notice you received.

Merced Court Collections
Tel: (209)725-4220
Fax: (209) 725-4116
Email Court Collections at Collections@mercedcourt.org
Pay Online: Make Payments

G.C. Services
Tel: (English) 1-800-333-8395
Tel: (Spanish) 1-800-616-6007
Pay Online: https://courtpay.gcserv.com

Franchise Tax Board
Tel: (916) 845-4064
Web: http://ftb.ca.gov
Payment Options: FTB tips on payment options

If you have a financial hardship that prevents you from paying, you may request a reduction of your fine amount, request additional time to pay, set an affordable monthly payment, or convert your fine to community service. You will be asked to provide financial documentation in support of your request. If you qualify, the court may reduce the amount you owe.

Your options are listed below per the California Rules of Court. You have the right to request one or all the following, depending on the status of your case:

  1. Petition to Reduce or Vacate Civil Assessment – California Rules of Court, Rule 4.106
    • If you received a notice that a civil assessment was added to your citation, you may petition the court to reduce or vacate the assessment.
    • A petition to reduce or vacate an assessment does not stay (stop) any order requiring payment of bail, fines, penalties, fees, or assessments unless specifically ordered by a judicial officer.
    • If you do not establish good cause as to why you didn’t appear or did not pay, the court can still impose the civil assessment.
    • The court may consider such factors as your due diligence in appearing or paying after notice of the assessment has been given.
  2. Petition for Ability-to-Pay Determination – California Rules of Court, Rule 4.335
    • You may request an ability-to-pay determination at sentencing if you are currently on an installment plan, or while your judgment remains unpaid, including when your case is delinquent or in collections.
    • You have the right to a review by a judicial officer. When you submit your request in writing, include any information you want the court to consider, including any attachment(s) that would help support your request.
    • The court will decide based on the information and supporting documentation that you provide in your written request. Specific documentation as to your financial status will be required for the court to decide.
    • If an ability-to-pay determination has already occurred, a subsequent ability-to-pay determination can be requested only in the event of a change in your financial circumstances. The change in circumstances must be supported (proof provided) with written documentation for the court to consider your request.
    • Form is located below: TR-320 Can’t Afford to Pay Fine: Traffic and Other Infractions – click here

Please mail your form and any supporting documentations to the following address:

Merced Superior Court – Collections
P.O. Box 3769
Merced, CA 95344

You may contest your citation by posting the fine in full as listed on your Courtesy Notices with a check, money order or cashier’s check and request a Court Trial or Trial by Declaration. Your request may be done by mail by following the directions on your Courtesy Notices or you can visit us at either court locations.

If you wish to file an Appeal on an Infraction or Misdemeanor case the Appeal Forms can be located at the Judicial Council Online Forms . The Appeal Forms packets may also be purchased at the Court.

Once linked to the Judicial Council Online Forms, scroll down the list of forms until to see the forms indicated below.

Infraction Appeal forms needed:

CR-141-INFO Information on Appeal Procedures for Infractions
CR-142 Notice of Appeal and Record of Oral Proceedings (Infraction)
CR-143 Proposed Statement on Appeal (Infraction)
CR-145 Abandonment of Appeal (Infraction)

Misdemeanor Appeal forms needed:

CR-131-INFO Information on Appeal Procedures for Misdemeanors
CR-132 Notice of Appeal (Misdemeanor)
CR-133 Request for Court-Appointed Lawyer in Misdemeanor Appeal
CR-134 Notice Regarding Record of Oral Proceedings (Misdemeanor)
CR-135 Proposed Statement on Appeal (Misdemeanor)
CR-137 Abandonment of Appeal (Misdemeanor)

For case search information, please visit the Records Search page.

Traffic FAQs

To pay your traffic ticket online and view information about your traffic citation, please visit the court's online traffic payment system.

You can find out the amount of your traffic fine from the on-line traffic payment system without going through the payment portion.

You will be receiving a courtesy notice at the address listed on the citation. Read the Courtesy Notice carefully and follow the instructions. If you have not received a courtesy notice and it has been at least three weeks since your citation was issued, please contact our office for information. Please do not ignore your traffic citation. Not receiving your Courtesy Notice is not a legal excuse for failing to take care of your citation by the given appearance date located at the bottom of your citation.

When you received your traffic citation, the officer wrote your date to appear (the due date) underneath your signature on the citation. This is the due date for resolving your citation and you must either pay to resolve your citation or you must appear in Court by the due date on your citation. Do not ignore your citation. When you received the citation from the law enforcement officer, you signed your name and made a promise to appear for Court.

If you fail to appear as directed, additional penalties will be imposed for your failure to appear, and your license may be suspended. Failure to resolve your citation on or before the date listed at the bottom of your citation may also result in additional penalties, which may include an additional $300.00 civil assessment.  It's important to contact the Court to avoid additional penalties if you are unable to appear at the scheduled appearance date listed on your citation.  An extension can be requested if it's on or before your promise to appear date.

If your citation involves a mandatory appearance you must appear in Court.   Mandatory appearances will be noted on your Courtesy Notice.   If you do not have a mandatory appearance noted and you do not want to appear, you may pay the full bail amount to the Court and do nothing further. The bail will then be accepted as a guilty plea, a conviction will be reported to DMV in certain violations, and the case will be closed.

If your vehicle was towed at the request of the Law Enforcement officer, please call the arresting agency or the towing company.

Yes, Spanish interpreters are available daily. Any other languages required, please contact the court for further assistance.

For traffic citations with the appearance location in Merced, you may appear as a walk-in on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between 7:30 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. on Thursday afternoons.

For traffic citations with the appearance location in Los Banos, you may appear as a walk-in on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday between 7:45 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. There are no available walk-in schedules on Wednesday.

You may attend traffic school only if:
  • The citation was for a moving violation.
  • You have not taken a traffic school course within the past 18 months.
  • You do not have more than 3 infractions on your driving record.
  • You do not have a misdemeanor on your driving record.
  • You did not exceed the speed limit by more than 25mph.

If you were cited while driving a commercial vehicle or if you are a driver with commercial license, you are not eligible for traffic school effective September 20, 2005.

If you do not attend traffic school, your auto insurance may be adversely affected because the conviction will be reported to the DMV.

To request traffic school by mail:
  • Select option #4 on your courtesy notice or mail a written request to the court.
  • Enclose a check or money order for the full amount of the bail as listed on your Courtesy Notice payable to Merced Superior Court plus the additional $70 for the Traffic Violator School.

Please be certain to write the case and/or citation number on all correspondence and payments.

Once your request has been authorized you will be provided a list of approved traffic schools and a completion due date. You may only attend traffic schools approved by Merced Superior Court.

You may also obtain a list of schools in your area at the CTSI website.

You can contact the traffic school representative directly by dialing:

Merced Traffic Division
Tel: (209) 725-4189

Los Banos Traffic Division
Tel: (209) 725-4212

Visit the California Courts Traffic School page for more information.

If your case has gone to collections and/or if you now have an order of suspension on your license, you need to speak directly to the Collection Agency listed on the notice you received.

You may email the Court Collections division for assistance at Collections@mercedcourt.org.

Merced Court Collections
Tel: (209) 725-4220
Fax: (209) 725-4116
Pay Online: Merced Court Portal

G.C. Services
Tel: (English) 1-800-333-8395
Tel: (Spanish) 1-800-616-6007
Pay Online: https://courtpay.gcserv.com

Franchise Tax Board
Tel: (916) 845-4064
Web: http://ftb.ca.gov
Payment Options: http://ftb.ca.gov/online/payment_choices.shtml

If you were cited for an expired vehicle registration, have a DMV agent or Peace Officer sign your citation to verify the correction was made. You may submit a copy of your proof of registration or the signed citation to the Court with the $25 fee.

If you were cited for driving without proof of insurance, and were insured on the day of the citation, submit a copy of the proof of insurance with the $25 fee.

If proof of correction and the appropriate fees for each correctible violation are postmarked by the due date, then the case will be dismissed.

Please write the citation number and/or case number on your check, money order or cashiers check.

If you did not have current insurance on the vehicle on the date the citation was issued, you will need to speak with a court clerk for additional information or pay the bail (fine) amount due by the due date.

An extension is a postponement of the original due date or appearance date on your citation. The Clerk’s office may give you an extension to post bail or appear on your citation.  To see if you are eligible, you may contact the court by telephone or come in person at any of the court locations for assistance.

If your case requires a mandatory appearance, you cannot pay your fine without first appearing in court for arraignment. You can appear on or before your appearance date at any of the listed court locations. Your courtesy notice will indicate MANDATORY court appearance.

The following infractions are examples of charges requiring a mandatory appearance:

  • 22348(b) VC: Speed greater than 100 mph
  • 23140(a) VC: Person under 21 years old driving with a blood alcohol content of .05 or more

Fix It - Proof of Correction

Correct (fix) the violation and then contact any law enforcement agency to arrange for an officer to verify and sign off on the correction. You can mail or bring the signed verification to the Merced Traffic Division along with the state mandated fee of $25 (40611 CVC) no later than the due date shown on your courtesy notice, to clear the violation.

Registration - Proof of Correction

If you are charged with expired registration, you can mail a copy of your current registration, or bring your current registration to the Merced Traffic Division by the due date shown on your courtesy notice along with the state mandated fee of $25 (40611 CVC).

Driver's License - Proof of Correction

For driver's license violations, you can mail a copy of your driver's license and the signed citation/courtesy notice by DMV or bring your driver's license to the Merced Traffic Division by the due date shown on your courtesy notice along with the state mandated fee of $25 (40611 CVC). If you obtained a valid driver’s license after the date on your citation, please contact the court for further directions.

Insurance - Proof of Correction

If you are charged with no proof of insurance, you can mail a copy or bring proof that you were insured on the date of the violation to the Merced Traffic Division counter by the due date shown on your courtesy notice along with the state mandated fee of $25 (40611 CVC). If you obtained a valid insurance policy after the date on your citation the Proof of Insurance, please contact the court for further directions.

Valid proof of insurance may be any one of the following:

  • A photocopy of the official card issued by an insurance company showing name of the insurance company
  • Policy number
  • Effective (beginning and ending) dates of the policy (policy must be in effect at the time of the violation)
  • Name of defendant or vehicle information (must match person or vehicle listed on the citation)
  • A photocopy of the actual insurance policy providing all the above information
  • A statement on insurance company letterhead providing all the above information

Notice to Correct (CHP 281)

This citation is issued by the California Highway Patrol for certain types of correctable violations. You are required to submit proof of correction(s) directly to the CHP within 30 days. Failure to comply will result in the citation being referred to the court.

Pursuant to California Rule of Court 4.105(b), you have the option to appear in court for arraignment and trial without posting bail.  Under rule of Court 4.105(c), bail is required to be deposited if you elect to proceed with trial by written declaration without appearing in court (VC 40902) and/or written not guilty plea (VC40519(a-b)) or elect to pay bail and not contest the citation or appear in court (VC 40510 and 40521).

To contest your citation, you must appear for your arraignment or contact the court to schedule a future Court Trial date. Bail may be posted to schedule a future Court Trial date.

To contest your citation and request a Court Trial by mail, remove the top portion of your courtesy notice and circle your request. This is option number 2 of your courtesy notice. Then mail your request to the address located at the top right of your courtesy notice.

At the arraignment, if you plead "Not Guilty," your case will be continued or scheduled for a Court Trial date.

If your violation is an Infraction, you may also contest a citation without appearing in court simply by requesting a trial by written declaration on or before the due date on your courtesy notice. Bail must be posted.

Arraignment and Court Trial without Posting Bail

Pursuant to California Rule of Court 4.105 you may request a court trial without the deposit of bail. Two court appearances are required if you wish to contest the violation(s) without posting bail. You must appear first in Walk-in Court for arraignment and enter a plea of Not Guilty on or before the due date on your courtesy notice. A future court date will be scheduled at that time. Information about Walk-in Court schedules and locations can be found below:

Merced Traffic Court Location – 720 West 20th Street, Merced CA 95340 or

Los Banos Court Location – 1159 G Street, Los Banos CA 93635

Arraignment and Court Trial with Posting Bail

Pursuant to California Vehicle Code Section 40519 (a) and (b) you may choose to have your arraignment and court trial in the same hearing by submitting your signed request and posting the total bail amount on or before the due date on your courtesy notice. Bail must be posted in person or by mail in full. The court will mail your scheduled court date to you upon receipt of your request.

Court Trial Process

The examination of facts and law will be presided over by a judge (or another magistrate such as a commissioner or judge pro tem). The officer(s) will be subpoenaed to present any factual evidence. At this time, you must also be prepared to produce all evidence, documents, or witnesses to support your case. You have the right to bring witnesses or have a lawyer present. The Court will not provide an attorney.

If you do not appear at the time of your trial, your trial can be heard without your presence (in absentia). If you are found guilty, any bail will be forfeited, and your driving record will show a conviction.

You may request for a continuance. Requests for continuance of a court trial should be filed in writing at least 10 days prior to the court trial hearing date. The request will be submitted to the Judicial Officer for approval. You will be notified by mail, or you may contact the court for the status of your request. If you wait too long to submit your request for continuance, it will not be submitted to the Judicial Officer for consideration until the day of your currently scheduled court trial hearing.

Pursuant to California Vehicle Code Section 40902 you may request a Trial by Written Declaration by mail and no court appearance is required. The Trial by Declaration procedure allows you to plead not guilty by submitting your signed request or completed TR-205 forms and the total bail amount to the Court on or before the due date on your courtesy notice. Bail must be posted in person or by mail in full. To locate a copy of the Trial by Written Declaration form follow the link here. http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/tr205.pdf

This procedure is not available for misdemeanors, accidents, mandatory court appearances, or non-traffic local ordinance violations.

To select a Trial by Written Declaration by mail, remove the top portion of your courtesy notice and circle your request. This is option number 3 of your courtesy notice. Then mail your request to the address located at the top right of your courtesy notice.

If you choose this option, you will need to mail to the Court a written statement on a Trial by Written Declaration form explaining, outlining the facts, and events of your case. You may include any documentary evidence that could help your case. The Court will subpoena a written report from the citing officer. The Judicial Officer will review all documentation and the ruling will be issued by mail. If you are dissatisfied with the judgment, you may request a new trial if you do so within 20 days of the mailing of the notice of judgment.

The following conditions must be met to qualify for a Trial by Written Declaration:

  • Full bail must be paid in advance.
  • Violation(s) must be vehicle code infractions only.
  • No accident involved.
  • No failure to appear or failure to pay fine on the case.
  • No prior failure to appear on the case.

Enter a "not guilty" plea in writing.

Please mail your Trial by Declaration Request to one of the following addresses:

Merced Traffic Court Location – 720 West 20th Street, Merced CA 95340 or

Los Banos Court Location – 1159 G Street, Los Banos CA 93635

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