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The City of Chicago first installed cameras in 2003 to issue red light and speeding tickets. There are now over 300 intersections with the cameras. Plus, many other towns and municipalities now have cameras installed.
These camera systems can snap photos, record video, and measure speed with radar. Often times you do not even realize they are watching until you receive the violation in the mail.
The Good News
These tickets are administrative violations. They are not moving violations. They will not negatively affect your driver’s license or insurance if you pay them.
The Bad News
These tickets double if you do not pay them. Please refer to your ticket or the City of Chicago website to determine exactly when they double.
Once you’ve received a Notice of Final Determination, you can no longer challenge these tickets, unless the City did not give proper notice.
If you have unpaid tickets, the City can seize your vehicle by booting or towing it.
Finally, the Illinois Secretary of State can and will suspend your driver’s license for failing to pay.
When the Illinois Secretary of State places a hold (suspension) on your license, you are not permitted to drive. Doing so is a criminal offense in Illinois and nearly every other state.
In other words, you cannot run or hide from these tickets.
What To Do
We hate these tickets. They’re terrible. But, right now, they’re the law.
Over the years we have challenged many of these tickets. Unfortunately, due to the video and photos, they’re very difficult to win.
For this reason, we do not recommend hiring a lawyer to fight your red light tickets. We will not represent you in defending or fighting these tickets. Instead, we recommend using that money to pay these tickets or fight them yourself.