New York Now Allows Drivers Facing Hefty Ticket Fines to Keep Their Licenses
By Yehudit Garmaise
While paying off their debts, New Yorkers who had accrued hefty traffic fines used to lose their driver’s licenses, along with their ability to get to work, get groceries, or go to the doctor.
Today, state lawmakers approved, by a vote of 91 to 51, new legislation that allows New Yorkers who are facing heavy traffic fines to keep their driver’s licenses while simultaneously, paying off their debts.
The legislation aims to help people to get back on their feet by creating payment plans for people facing outsize traffic tickets, and the new law also ends license suspensions for people who miss court appearances related to traffic tickets.
The goal is to provide people who owe money a way to get to work or court, Assemblywoman Pamela Hunter, D-Syracuse, has said. That way, they can start paying off their debts instead of watching the system pile on more fines and fees, she has said.
Under the new law, drivers fined for traffic violations will be allowed to pay monthly installments of no more than 2% of their net monthly income or $10 per month: whichever is greater.
The bill also allows judges to reduce or waive the mandatory surcharges and fees.
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