2005 Driving-Without-Insurance Charge, Appealed in 2006/7, Now Suddenly Reinstated

sanman
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2005 Driving-Without-Insurance Charge, Appealed in 2006/7, Now Suddenly Reinstated

by: sanman on
Thu May 02, 2019 1:28 am

In September 2005, while driving near the Humber College campus here in Ontario, I was stopped at a police speed trap and charged with Driving Without Insurance. At my January 2006 court date I was sentenced to a fine of $6000. Within a few months, I filed for an Appeal requesting for the fine to be removed/reduced, pleading for leniency because it was my first offence. That Appeal process was allowed to proceed, culminating in a Court session in Summer 2007. In that Court session, the judge told me my request was successfully granted and that the fine was removed. I was given some papers to take to an office on another floor in the same building, which I then did. I was then told I was done, and could go. I was very thankful at the outcome, and never looked back. I was able to renew my license, etc and was driving again. I'm currently insured and have been for many years.

In Summer of 2017, I was sent a letter by Court Services, telling me I owed $5 for some clerical fee, and that if I didn't pay, that I could be sent to Collections. Not wanting to be put into Collections, I immediately went down to Court Services with this letter and paid the amount. The clerk looked surprised to see me, but then handed me a sealed enveloped and sternly told me to take it to an office in the basement of the Old Courthouse. I did so, and the clerks there then told me I'd been booked for a Court date in December. I was stunned, and immediately asked why I was being booked for a Court date. They told me it was in regards to completing the Appeal process of 2007. I was horrified, and immediately told them that I'd carried out my Appeal back in 2007, and that it had successfully concluded in my favour. They told me it had not been completed, and that I was now required to show up in Court. When I told them what the judge had said to me in 2007, they replied that I had to prove it, and sent me to the Court Records office to get the official transcripts from 2007. When I asked the Court Records office for the transcript, they looked at me like I was crazy, and said they don't keep records beyond 5 years. I went back to the previous clerks who'd booked me for the Court date, and told them those 2007 Court records didn't exist anymore, and they told me I'd have to state that in Court.

I then showed up for that December 2017 Court date, and told the judge exactly what had happened to me. She declared the Court hearing to be an error, and I was told I could go. Now suddenly, for the past few days (April 2019), I'm receiving daily calls from a Collections Agency telling me I owe $6000 and that my Driver's License was suspended until it gets paid. I'm stunned and horrified - please, I badly need help - what should I do?
whaddyaknow
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by: whaddyaknow on
Fri May 03, 2019 10:52 am

I held off answering as I certainly don't have much to help you with but I do feel badly for you.

If it were me, I would wonder if somebody found out about your situation and is trying to scam you. I suspect that a visit to the court clerk might help to understand what exactly is going on.

Call ServiceOntario and make sure that the MTO has your correct updated address on file, also have them validate the status of your driver's license and if it is suspended then absolutely do not drive until this is resolved.

You may need to purchase a transcript from your 2017 hearing to prove that you don't owe money. Be advised that if, in fact, the government has sent something to collections only they can stop that process, no direct communication between you and the agency will help.

If you don't make any progress from the above, you may need to retain professional help.
sanman
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by: sanman on
Fri May 03, 2019 3:18 pm

Hi, thank you for your reply.

So I used the MTO's website to check my Driver's License status, and found that it has indeed been suspended. And meanwhile, I'm also in collections for $6000.

I feel like this "justice system" is really very predatory (ie. it's not a justice system at all).

I'm unemployed and money is very tight right now, so I'm really worried about the cost of a lawyer. I went to the local Legal Aid clinic and they turned me away, saying they don't deal with these types of problems, regardless of my poor financial circumstances.
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