How to Check Traffic Tickets Online

By Tiffany Ross
Drivers in New York City have access to online ticket payment.
driving 4 image by Andrzej Borowicz from Fotolia.com

The flash of a camera as you pass through a light may become a traffic ticket in your mailbox. You ran a red light, made an illegal turn or you were caught committing the most prevalent of traffic violations, speeding.You can verify if that flash of light has become a traffic ticket using online databases. Not every state has an online traffic ticket program, but those that do offer a convenient service to drivers.

Visit your city or state's traffic court website: for example, nycserv.nyc.gov for New York City and e.courts.michigan.gov for Michigan. In most cases the website will have a link leading to online traffic ticket payment forms. If you do not find a link, use the search tool; type "online ticket payment" and click "Search."

Fill in the information form. Formats vary depending on the state: New York requires the ticket number or your license plate number, and Michigan courts have four search options: last name with date of birth, driver's license number, license plate number or last name with the ticket number. Click on "Search" and allow the system to scan its database for your ticket. This may take a few minutes.

Review your ticket information. Check the information for accuracy, including your name, license plate and driver's license. Print a copy of the ticket for your records. This will be important if you choose to contest the ticket. Contesting a ticket requires a trip to court with the appropriate paperwork. You have the option of attending traffic school for most violations, and that will save you money and a point on your license.

Pay your ticket. Enter your credit or debit card information and click "Pay Now." Print out a receipt to keep with a copy of the ticket in your records. Keep a record of your payment for at least six months. Allow a few days for the transaction to process with your bank.

About the Author

Tiffany Ross is a writer and actress who has been working in Chicago since 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting and is completing her Master of Science in Oriental medicine. Ross is a world traveler with experience working overseas.