I received a ticket the other day because the officer determined that my window tint was too dark - in his opinion. I asked him to measure it and he advised that he didn't have to. He did have me roll my window up and down so that he could confirm his initial assessment. He didn't change his mind. Has anyone else ever received a ticket for such a vague law? The law states that you cannot apply a tint that substantially obscures the interior when viewed from outside. My tint is 30% and I believe that this tint moderately obscures, but does not substantially obscure, the interior when viewed from outside. That is what I purchased 6 years ago when I had it applied. I've contacted several companies to price removal of the tint and they all feel that 30% should not be considered as violating the law. I guess my question is, do courts care about my opinion or is it only the police officers opinion that matters. Does it matter that the officer was looking through tinted sunglasses? Most importantly, is there a definition for "substantially obscures".
The officer was correct in that they don't have to measure your tint. There aren't tint percentage guidelines in Ontario for what i'm assuming are your driver left and right windows.
There are two ways to look at it.
One, it's up to the officers discretion.
Two, the Highway Traffic Act doesn't exactly say that any tint is legal on driver side windows either.
In this case, "substantially" would probably be whatever the officer deems affects their ability to do their job.
A tint installer will install whatever you want. Anything they do will be "off-road use only."
Thanks, I appreciate the response. I'm still struggling with this. I have found references in the Highway Traffic Act where something is at the Minister's discretion or the Court's discretion and even the Police Officer's discretion. This isn't one of them. I feel like it's my responsibility to ensure that my vehicle meets the legal requirements and I feel I did that when I purchased the tint initially - notwithstanding how non-specific the requirement is. With 5,800 OPP officers in the province, I'm not sure it's reasonable to leave it to their individual discretion. I think I'll have the tint removed and then, If I'm wrong, I guess I'll just pay the fine. Quick question: If I go to court, are there court expenses that I'd have to pay in addition to the fine? Thanks again,
Here's my take on it...and as a LEO I write a ton of these.
If I have trouble seeing you so do others including anyone who wants to complain about your driving or perhaps a pedestrian / cyclist who's trying to ensure they've been seen by making eye contact.
No one wants an officer to miss seeing someone texting resulting in serious collision that could have been avoided.
In reviewing the act it doesn't state time of day or atmospheric conditions, so really, any tint makes a huge difference come dusk or night time.
The law was written with police / public safety in mind I gather.
I understand you aren't a fan of officer discretion, but almost everything officers do involves a degree of discretion. Do you charge the speeder? Do you give them a reduction etc.
You are unlikely to have much success in court IMHO.
Take it to a tint shop, have it removed or reduced to 35/50% light transmission and move forward.
Just my 2 cents.
Well, I had my pre-court interview with the prosecutor this morning and the charge has been withdrawn. Not certain if it was my argument or if he did me a favour or it was considered just a waste of time going to court.
Congrats, that's good to know, I think the tint I have is also 30%.
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