Ticket in Gatineau for expired Ontatio plate -service date?

ottdriver22
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Ticket in Gatineau for expired Ontatio plate -service date?

by: ottdriver22 on
Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:43 am

Got a ticket for an expired sticker while skiing in Gatineau Park. No warning, just 451$ in the mail 3 weeks after the incident.
I understand this is common, and frustrating. Had the sticker in the car, am ready to go to court to explain and was going to send back the notice yesterday to request a date, when I noticed that the "Service Date" is missing on the ticket. We are supposed to reply within 30 days of the Service Date as per the back of the ticket *Issued by les Collines de L'Outaouis*

Does this mean the ticket has not been entered in the system? How are they going to know the date by which I need to reply. Is there a way out of this?

I feel like this ticket is wrong for so many reasons, the main being that in Ontario, you get a warning, or 110$ fine. 451$ is just outrageous...I just want to deal with it.

Anyone with this same experience?


tdottopcop
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by: tdottopcop on
Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:29 pm

This board generally only deals with the Ontario Traffic Act, and it's pretty rare someone with knowledge of the Quebec legislation provides any advice...

good luck
No, I am not the chief of Toronto Police.
No, I do not work for Toronto Police...
... it is just a name folks :)


hecubus
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by: hecubus on
Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:24 pm

ottdriver22 wrote: Anyone with this same experience?
Yes! I received the same ticket in the regular mail about 3 weeks after parking in a Camp Fortune parking lot. As you mentioned, I discovered this was a regular practice, i.e. for the Gatienau/Chelsea police to scour parking lots for expired Ontario plates (and apparently unlocked car doors!).

After some digging it became clear that the Quebec provincial offences "system" (for lack of a better term) is much more onerous than the Ontario system. For example there is an $85 court fee, as opposed to $5 in Ontario, if convicted, and a $25 "change of plea" fee. Furthermore, there is no "Option 2", i.e. request to meet with the prosecutor for early resolution (aka "First Attendance Meeting"). Given that I was clearly guilty and there was no chance to at least explain to a prosecutor the extenuating circumstances that led to the lapse of the validation sticker, I ended up coughing up the $451.

In your case, you had a valid sticker in the car (as opposed to affixed to the license plate) and meeting with a prosecutor in Ontario would likely result in the charges being dropped. In Quebec, you would need to take it all the way to trial to explain the situation to a judge/JP; I have no idea of your chances of success.

On the bright side, from what I understand, given that the offence occurred while the car was parked, the ticket is issued against the registered owner of the vehicle as opposed to a specific driver. Thus there shouldn't be any insurance impacts due to the conviction. I checked this with my insurance agent and she concurred.


hecubus
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by: hecubus on
Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:55 pm

ottdriver22 wrote:when I noticed that the "Service Date" is missing on the ticket. We are supposed to reply within 30 days of the Service Date as per the back of the ticket *Issued by les Collines de L'Outaouis*
Forgot to address the above point in the previous reply. Indeed the "Service Date" was also blank on my offence notice. Given that the notice was sent by regular mail there is no way to establish when you actually received/read the offence notice, hence the blank "Service Date". From what I understand, a series of escalating actions are performed in an attempt to serve notice. I cannot recall the next step (perhaps sending a certified letter?) but I do recall that one of the latter actions (perhaps the final action?) is to publish a notice in a local news paper, e.g. Le Bulletin d'Aylmer. Given that everyone in the Ottawa-Gatineau regions reads every line in the local newspapers, one is deemed to have been served notice at that point. :x


hecubus
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by: hecubus on
Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:11 pm

hecubus wrote:Furthermore, there is no "Option 2", i.e. request to meet with the prosecutor for early resolution (aka "First Attendance Meeting")
I should point out that my offence was being handled by the Chelsea court, but I assume the same pair of options exist throughout Quebec ("plea guilty" or "plea not guilty"). Of course there is the option to "plea not guilty" and once a court date has been received contact a prosecutor by phone to negotiate "something"; but what would that "something" be? In other words, for example, a 20 km/h over speeding offence could be negotiated down to 10 km/hr over. But how would one negotiate down an expired licence validation sticker charge?








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