As you’re scooting through traffic, you see a flash out of the corner of your eye. You curse as you realize you’ve been caught by a traffic camera.

Lots of communities are adding photo radars. It’s a huge source of revenue. At around $200 a ticket, that’s quite the racket.

Most of us pay because, well, we’re guilty. Besides, if you don’t pay the ticket, you have a bench warrant put out on you, right?

Actually, no.

Some states, including Arizona, say that all traffic tickets must be properly served in person. Going through the U.S. postal service doesn’t cut it. So there’s a chance you should ignore that letter with its oh-so-flattering picture of you.


Talk about signing away your rights!

At the bottom of every ticket is some fine print that we tend to glance over and/or ignore. But when you sign and return the document, you’re waiving your right to proper service.

Legally, your ticket isn’t valid until a police officer or an officer of the court hands you a ticket. If you just sign and pay, you’re saying it’s okay to let the government cut legal corners.

If a server is required, then, by golly, I will be waiting until a server comes to me. If one does come, I’ll accept it as a consequence of my actions. My leadfoot not withstanding, I’m a big believer in following the law.

But if I have to follow the law, so does the government. If a ticket isn’t legit until someone (besides my mailman) serves me, I’m not paying until it’s done properly.

I don’t feel obligated to help the state break its own laws — especially when private corporations (the photo radar “vendors”) are essentially being put in charge of enforcing them.


You’re not home free yet

Just tossing the ticket doesn’t mean the matter is closed. A process server may be dispatched to serve you properly. You should know your rights when it comes to when, where and how you can be served.

If the server catches up with you, Arizona adds $25 to your ticket, for the cost of the server. Still, it’s hardly a deterrent: You’re risking $25 to potentially save $200.

So how long does this cat-and-mouse game last? Here, it’s 120 days after the violation. After that — be sure to count carefully, folks — the case is dismissed.


Does your state work like Arizona?

There are a few states with similar laws, though the only one I could confirm was California. Nevertheless, a few quick Internet searches should get you an answer.

If your state isn’t as contradictory as mine, you may still have options. Your best chance is checking for signs. Cities are supposed to post signs within 300 feet of the radar, but many are sloppy about it. In that case, you may convince a judge to throw out your case.

Oh, and if you’re feeling ethically squeamish about ignoring tickets, remember this: The law doesn’t apply evenly. Corporate cars that speed may incite a letter, but sometimes not even that. Why? Corporations, while given all the rights of individuals, are not actual people and cannot be properly served. So, once again, businesses get special treatment under the law.

If that’s not enough to make you crumple up that ticket, nothing will.

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1 dogatemyfinances May 24, 2010 at 5:09 am

Corporate tickets are different because a speeding ticket can make you lose a commericial license, not exactly your problem. You are just supposed to pay your ticket like everybody else.

I just don't get this post at all. You did it right? It's on tape, right? You think it excuses your actions just because a cop wasn't there and just because a cop hasn't found you yet?

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Uh, corporate tickets are different because no one has to worry about ever getting served. They can essentially speed with impunity. There's no worry about losing a commercial license unless the business is one of the few that will turn in its drivers.

Just so I get this right: You're saying it's not okay to speed and not pay a fine even if a cop isn't there. So I assume that you pay a fine every time you break the speed limit? Because a cop isn't there but you're speeding. No photo is issued, but plenty of drivers see you. And that's just as good, right?

I will happily — well, not happily but you get my meaning — pay a ticket when the government follows its own laws and has a person serve me the papers: police officer, process server, whoever. (Incidentally, I found out about this too late for my own use and did pay my speeding ticket caught by photo radar.)

Oh and "pay [my] ticket like everyone else" is completely misrepresenting things. About half of the people here in Arizona know the law and toss their tickets. Essentially, we are getting dinged by a private corporation who happens to report us to the government. I don't particularly agree with that, and not just for financial reasons.

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Goober Reply:

You are a real putz. The reason deadbeats like Obama get elected. Just let everyone trample over you and what few rights you have left. What a dunce! You are probably OK with government tapping your phone, too. Enough said, I won't "cast my pearls before swine," so to speak.

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robert Reply:

Well the constitution of the united states of America disagrees. I know that you are smarter then our founding fathers but they said that people had to be given due process of the law. They said that the government could not take life liberty or property without due process of the law. Due process of the law requires that the government prove that you actually committed the crimie that you are alleged to have committed. Yes I suppose we could follow your advice and say the hell with constitution. But I have had too many relatives risk their lives in the WWII, the Civil War, and the American Revolution to say that we should just say the hell with it. We deserve Taxation without Representation… lets just become Communist China. For those good souls that have come before me and for my grandchildren and great-grandchildren I must insist that our government serve our nation for the people and by the people.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Uh, corporate tickets are different because no one has to worry about ever getting served. They can essentially speed with impunity. There's no worry about losing a commercial license unless the business is one of the few that will turn in its drivers.

Just so I get this right: You're saying it's not okay to speed and not pay a fine even if a cop isn't there. So I assume that you pay a fine every time you break the speed limit? Because a cop isn't there but you're speeding. No photo is issued, but plenty of drivers see you. And that's just as good, right?

I will happily — well, not happily but you get my meaning — pay a ticket when the government follows its own laws and has a person serve me the papers: police officer, process server, whoever. (Incidentally, I found out about this too late for my own use and did pay my speeding ticket caught by photo radar.)

Oh and "pay [my] ticket like everyone else" is completely misrepresenting things. About half of the people here in Arizona know the law and toss their tickets. Essentially, we are getting dinged by a private corporation who happens to report us to the government. I don't particularly agree with that, and not just for financial reasons.

[Reply]

Goober Reply:

You are a real putz. The reason deadbeats like Obama get elected. Just let everyone trample over you and what few rights you have left. What a dunce! You are probably OK with government tapping your phone, too. Enough said, I won't "cast my pearls before swine," so to speak.

[Reply]

robert Reply:

Well the constitution of the united states of America disagrees. I know that you are smarter then our founding fathers but they said that people had to be given due process of the law. They said that the government could not take life liberty or property without due process of the law. Due process of the law requires that the government prove that you actually committed the crimie that you are alleged to have committed. Yes I suppose we could follow your advice and say the hell with constitution. But I have had too many relatives risk their lives in the WWII, the Civil War, and the American Revolution to say that we should just say the hell with it. We deserve Taxation without Representation… lets just become Communist China. For those good souls that have come before me and for my grandchildren and great-grandchildren I must insist that our government serve our nation for the people and by the people.

[Reply]

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2 Deedee May 24, 2010 at 9:12 am

So you are thinking your state should use more of the taxpayers' money to send someone out to your house and serve the ticket to you? Or use more of the taxpayers' money to hire more traffic cops? Or just let everyone drive whatever speed they think works for them and run red lights if they feel like it and not spend any taxpayers' money on enforcing the traffic laws?

You say that half of the people in Arizona "know the law" and toss their tickets. If they "know the law" so well, why were speeding or running a red light?

Sorry, don't mean to give you a hard time. That is your decision and none of my business. (except for the fact that you put it out on the blog – giving people the right to comment on it LOL). For me, I sleep better at night and feel a lot better about myself if I just deal with the consequences of my actions and move on. If half the people in my state know they can get away with not paying traffic fines, whatever….it might peeve me a bit for lost revenue to my state, but that is their business not mine. But that just doesn't work for me (I know, I'm weird- too honest for my own good). Anyway, maybe the state needs to change the law about those photo tickets?

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

DeeDee,

I do believe in consequences for your actions. And I do feel a little weird about avoiding the tickets, but I also want my government to be accountable for its own actions. I don't think it should try to issue tickets in a way that isn't legitimate.

Oh, and I can't let this one go because I'm mean like that: "If they 'know the law' so well, why were they speeding" Deedee, does this mean you have never, ever in your life gone over the posted speed limit? (Like I said, I'm mean.)

Also, yes, I do believe the state should spend money to enforce its laws the correct way. If that means hiring a process server, especially if I end up paying for that charge, then it should absolutely spend the money. Or, better, as you pointed out: Hire more police officers. Don't contract out to private companies and then use sub-legal methods to "serve" me with the results.

If it's okay to just take a picture of a violation and have that be enough — no correct procedure allowed — then that logic dictates that police could skip Miranda rights if the person were caught on tape committing a crime. Because you know you're guilty and there's proof of it. Why does it matter how you're arrested? Or do you even have to be arrested? Should they just mail you a picture of you robbing the store, and you go turn yourself in? (Yes, that is an extreme example, but it follows the same logic and the good ole slippery slope argument is valid here.)

[Reply]

Deedee Reply:

Well we are certainly in agreement about the traffic cameras and disapproval of contracting out to private companies. I'm with you 100% about that. When a person gets one of those picture-tickets in the mail, do they get a chance to appear in court and dispute it? How do they prove your speed, is it recorded on a machine? Because it seems like you could go to court and put the burden of proof on them that the machine was working correctly when it recorded your speed. Maybe it recorded the speed of the car next to you? Or something. It just seems very iffy.

My only experience with these cameras is in SoCal where they use them in intersections for people who run red lights. Which I am kind of OK with. Because before they had those cameras as many as seven or eight cars would turn left after the light was red, which slowed down the people who had a green light so then eight or so people would run that red light, etc. Traffic flow has greatly improved since those cameras went in. But again, the legality of how they are serving people with those tickets? I have no idea. But I am not going to run a red light to find out!

And, no, I really didn't think you were mean in your response to my rather snarky comment about knowing the law! I will answer that *of course*, on a rare occasion, I have driven faster than the posted speed limit. Usually for a reason and knowing full well that there is a chance I will get caught. But actually, about 99.9% of the time I do drive the speed limit. It's usually fast enough for me. But, when I am in SoCal visiting relatives I think I am a menace on the roads. I sometimes think I am the only person in the entire state driving the speed limit! I swear, those California drivers drive 60+ in a 45 zone. Or faster. All of them! I usually have someone else drive me around when I visit.

And (last thing – a bit unrelated) if anyone has traveled the highways in California in the past year or so … I guess due to budget problems they have about a gazillion and ten CHP officers out there just ambushing speeders. So – no cameras – but I definitely recommend not speeding there. In one trip up Interstate 5 from LA to Sacramento last November I must have seen over 50 CHP. No exaggeration. They sit by the side of the road in groups of 3,4 or 5 and just pick the speeders off. But since I never speed ;o} no problemo for me!!

[Reply]

Deedee Reply:

Well we are certainly in agreement about the traffic cameras and disapproval of contracting out to private companies. I'm with you 100% about that. When a person gets one of those picture-tickets in the mail, do they get a chance to appear in court and dispute it? How do they prove your speed, is it recorded on a machine? Because it seems like you could go to court and put the burden of proof on them that the machine was working correctly when it recorded your speed. Maybe it recorded the speed of the car next to you? Or something. It just seems very iffy.

My only experience with these cameras is in SoCal where they use them in intersections for people who run red lights. Which I am kind of OK with. Because before they had those cameras as many as seven or eight cars would turn left after the light was red, which slowed down the people who had a green light so then eight or so people would run that red light, etc. Traffic flow has greatly improved since those cameras went in. But again, the legality of how they are serving people with those tickets? I have no idea. But I am not going to run a red light to find out!

And, no, I really didn't think you were mean in your response to my rather snarky comment about knowing the law! I will answer that *of course*, on a rare occasion, I have driven faster than the posted speed limit. Usually for a reason and knowing full well that there is a chance I will get caught. But actually, about 99.9% of the time I do drive the speed limit. It's usually fast enough for me. But, when I am in SoCal visiting relatives I think I am a menace on the roads. I sometimes think I am the only person in the entire state driving the speed limit! I swear, those California drivers drive 60+ in a 45 zone. Or faster. All of them! I usually have someone else drive me around when I visit.

And (last thing – a bit unrelated) if anyone has traveled the highways in California in the past year or so … I guess due to budget problems they have about a gazillion and ten CHP officers out there just ambushing speeders. So – no cameras – but I definitely recommend not speeding there. In one trip up Interstate 5 from LA to Sacramento last November I must have seen over 50 CHP. No exaggeration. They sit by the side of the road in groups of 3,4 or 5 and just pick the speeders off. But since I never speed ;o} no problemo for me!!

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

DeeDee,

I do believe in consequences for your actions. And I do feel a little weird about avoiding the tickets, but I also want my government to be accountable for its own actions. I don't think it should try to issue tickets in a way that isn't legitimate.

Oh, and I can't let this one go because I'm mean like that: "If they 'know the law' so well, why were they speeding" Deedee, does this mean you have never, ever in your life gone over the posted speed limit? (Like I said, I'm mean.)

Also, yes, I do believe the state should spend money to enforce its laws the correct way. If that means hiring a process server, especially if I end up paying for that charge, then it should absolutely spend the money. Or, better, as you pointed out: Hire more police officers. Don't contract out to private companies and then use sub-legal methods to "serve" me with the results.

If it's okay to just take a picture of a violation and have that be enough — no correct procedure allowed — then that logic dictates that police could skip Miranda rights if the person were caught on tape committing a crime. Because you know you're guilty and there's proof of it. Why does it matter how you're arrested? Or do you even have to be arrested? Should they just mail you a picture of you robbing the store, and you go turn yourself in? (Yes, that is an extreme example, but it follows the same logic and the good ole slippery slope argument is valid here.)

[Reply]

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3 Christina May 24, 2010 at 4:18 pm

This is a lovely idea, and probably works out just like you said for a lot of people. Unfortunately for my sister, she was not one of them.
She ignored her camera ticket, was never served in person, but a bench warrant was issued for her without her knowledge. Six months later she was pulled over and when they ran her info she was arrested for the pending warrant.
The courts said that they HAD served her, although her information was correct and she never got it. Her lawyer told her that often they can 'serve' the mailman, neighbors, someone walking by…etc. if they claim to have reason to believe that the person will pass the paperwork along. She doesn't know if this was the case or not, but it didn't matter much.
She fought it in court, lost, and owed around $3K for the ordeal.
Not something I would chance, but I choose to drive within the speed limit, especially here in Arizona where the other drivers are terrifying.
Although the speed camera laws are debatable, it is still a fact that you (figuratively) broke the actual speed limit, which is a legitimate crime. Just because you were caught by someone else doesn't make it right.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Christina,

A cautionary tale to be sure. And since my own speeding case, I do try to stay in the speed limit — the actual one, not just the speed limit plus five. It sounds like your sister got quite a strict judge, given that legally the process servers are only supposed to be able to leave the proof with an adult member of the household.

And I'm not claiming that breaking the law is right. Quite the opposite, actually.

I'm saying that if I'm breaking the law, I will accept the consequences of my actions, so long as the government is willing to accept the consequences of its own.

It is breaking the law by "serving" me through the mail. So I say we should get to follow the letter of the law and make it follow the rules that IT SET.

If I am caught speeding, I will pay my ticket, as soon as the government follows the law and serves me correctly. Up until that point, however, I see no need to abet the government in breaking procedure and, frankly, the law.

If it wants to get me for a crime, it has to do so within the laws that it set out. The government shouldn't be able to set out laws and then break them at will, especially when they involve citing citizens for breaking the law. It's a rather large double standard!

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Christina,

A cautionary tale to be sure. And since my own speeding case, I do try to stay in the speed limit — the actual one, not just the speed limit plus five. It sounds like your sister got quite a strict judge, given that legally the process servers are only supposed to be able to leave the proof with an adult member of the household.

And I'm not claiming that breaking the law is right. Quite the opposite, actually.

I'm saying that if I'm breaking the law, I will accept the consequences of my actions, so long as the government is willing to accept the consequences of its own.

It is breaking the law by "serving" me through the mail. So I say we should get to follow the letter of the law and make it follow the rules that IT SET.

If I am caught speeding, I will pay my ticket, as soon as the government follows the law and serves me correctly. Up until that point, however, I see no need to abet the government in breaking procedure and, frankly, the law.

If it wants to get me for a crime, it has to do so within the laws that it set out. The government shouldn't be able to set out laws and then break them at will, especially when they involve citing citizens for breaking the law. It's a rather large double standard!

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4 Laura May 24, 2010 at 5:41 pm

It's not about the law, it's about the money. Most of the money goes to the Australian corporation that owns the cameras. When our governor, Janet Napolitano, had them installed, the plan was that the income from the tickets would add millions to the state's coffers annually. The plan failed so spectacularly that the state is going to turn off the cameras on July 1, except for Phoenix. These tickets are not reported to the MVD, and there are no points against your insurance. I agree wholeheartedly that it would be much safer if the good citizens didn't fly in their cars, but Abigail's right–if we are to be law abiding, with which I agree–the the government should be also.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Thanks Laura!

And everyone is right: We (okay, I) need to ease off the gas pedal. But, as my logo states, this blog takes a look at things in an imperfect world.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

Thanks Laura!

And everyone is right: We (okay, I) need to ease off the gas pedal. But, as my logo states, this blog takes a look at things in an imperfect world.

[Reply]

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5 Abigail May 24, 2010 at 6:41 pm

Yeesh, yeah I'm iffy about letting people run red lights. They're pretty terrible about it here. Three or four cars will go once the lights turned red. (Not as bad as CA, then again all AZ drivers swear up and down that the bad drivers are mainly Californians.Riiight.)

I am trying to scale back down to speed limits, which are usually plenty fast. I blame both nurture and nature, as my mom is a bit of a leadfoot too. Really, I need to calm the hell down and start leaving earlier. I think most of us speed because we're running late.

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6 Deedee May 24, 2010 at 6:54 pm

I agree with all! And this is definitely a great topic for things in an imperfect world.

Couldn't help but think your post was re-written since I first read it?? I think it is a better post upon re-reading. ; >)

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7 Greg May 24, 2010 at 10:05 pm

In New Mexico, they installed some red light cameras in Las Cruces, then about a year
later (I think it was about a year) decommissioned them, despite the fact they were working
and making money. Makes me wonder how many politicians and lawyers and cops were
caught running red lights :P

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8 dogatemyfinances May 25, 2010 at 1:16 am

If Wal-Mart recorded me stealing or punching someone or whatever, you bet the cops would go forward. I don't really see what the difference is because a corporation recorded it. It either happened and you did it and it's on tape, or it didn't happen.

Then again, I'd rather pay this than have it hanging over me. It's just not worth the risk to me, especially when you know you're guilty.

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9 Elizabeth May 25, 2010 at 1:49 am

Way to read the fine print! I agree with your post – following the law applies to everyone, including the government.
Unfortunately, Illinois is not one of those states that requires proper service for those camera tickets…but they are "only" $100 here…which I still think is crazy steep, and I've never gotten one (knock on wood). The cameras actually aren't all that accurate, so the compromise in IL is that the camera violations don't go on your record.
As an aside, there have been recent studies at particular intersections here that show the presence of cameras actually resulted in *more* accidents – through people slamming on brakes, rear-ending, etc, etc. Some more-honest suburbs, after commissioning the studies, realized the camera tickets are mostly about money-making and actually stopped using them. It'll be interesting to see what their future is.

[Reply]

Deedee Reply:

They installed those intersection cameras in the city I live in (in Montana) but then never activated them. They got too much flack from the citizens about privacy issues and they could not figure out how to work that method of ticketing offenders in with the existing laws I guess? Anyway, the cameras are set up and ready to go sometime (hopefully never). Hope those cameras didn't cost too much money!

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Deedee Reply:

They installed those intersection cameras in the city I live in (in Montana) but then never activated them. They got too much flack from the citizens about privacy issues and they could not figure out how to work that method of ticketing offenders in with the existing laws I guess? Anyway, the cameras are set up and ready to go sometime (hopefully never). Hope those cameras didn't cost too much money!

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10 John Galt May 25, 2010 at 4:14 am

"o you are thinking your state should use more of the taxpayers' money to send someone out to your house and serve the ticket to you? Or use more of the taxpayers' money to hire more traffic cops? Or just let everyone drive whatever speed they think works for them and run red lights if they feel like it and not spend any taxpayers' money on enforcing the traffic laws? "

Of course that's acceptable. The taxpayers are already footing the bill for the rest of her existence. Why should this be any different?

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Abigail Reply:

John,

How, exactly, are the taxpayers footing the bill for the rest of my existence?

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Abigail Reply:

John,

How, exactly, are the taxpayers footing the bill for the rest of my existence?

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11 Donna Freedman May 25, 2010 at 4:05 pm

John Galt: I second that question.
I'd also like to point out that "the taxpayers" support one another. Unless, that is, a person has never driven on a state or federal highway, drunk city water, eaten food or taken medication whose safety was overseen by the FDA (and yeah, I know that it doesn't always work), called 911 in an emergency, sent a child to school, borrowed a book from the library, ridden a bus….The list goes on and on.

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12 John Galt May 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm

Yes, I as a taxpayer do benefit from work done and services provided by tax money. But, I am a *taxpayer*. I am gainfully employed and my income is taxed. That tax money paves roads that I drive on and buys books at the local library. It also apparently pays your bills, because you're "disabled" and your significant other is also unemployable.
Enjoy your disability, your vet bills, and your disdain for those who make your "lifestyle" possible.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

John,

I paid my taxes just like you. Except I had the misfortune of having a serious illness at 19. Since then, every bit of work I've done has been taxed.

And starting in July, now that I was able to find work I can do full-time, I will be off the government disability checks. Something I plan to celebrate, incidentally.

I sincerely hope you never have to experience the humiliation and sense of defeat that comes when you can't work.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

John,

I paid my taxes just like you. Except I had the misfortune of having a serious illness at 19. Since then, every bit of work I've done has been taxed.

And starting in July, now that I was able to find work I can do full-time, I will be off the government disability checks. Something I plan to celebrate, incidentally.

I sincerely hope you never have to experience the humiliation and sense of defeat that comes when you can't work.

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13 Guest May 25, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Wow John, if it wasn't for your name I'd assume you were on the rag with the pure venom of your replies.

[Reply]

John Galt Reply:

Perhaps if you were more well read, you would understand the reference to John Galt.
But you probably also think that menstruation is a “disability.”

I have a spine composed mainly of titanium, a rod in my collar bone, screws holding my arm together and was on antidepressants for a long time to deal with my physical losses. But I work 40+ hours per week, take care of my dependents, and don’t panic because I can’t “find the time” to make dinner – thus requiring an expensive purchase of nutrisystem meals. I will be so glad to know that’s what my tax money is funding. Really, you should be so proud.

[Reply]

Abigail Reply:

John,

I am glad that you are able to work and have been the whole time. But you're not bipolar and you've never dealt with the kind of crippling fatigue I do, where brain fog swamps your ability to think enough to finish a single sentence.

I have spent every day of my disability, from the time I applied until about a month ago, trying to find a way to earn enough money to get off and away from disability. If you think I wanted to live on $764 a month, you're nuttier than Ms. Rand.

The nutrisystem is a huge extravagance, I admit it. It is something I went back and forth on for quite awhile, but my fatigue makes it difficult to exercise enough to lose weight – yet my health was deteriorating. Don't worry: My new job paid for it, not your tax dollars.

But, golly, I'm excited that now that I'm able to work, I can judge utter strangers' lives without having experienced the same thing. Even though I have been paying taxes most of my life, I never realized we got that perk!

[Reply]

John Galt Reply:

You're right, sorry. Your fatigue is far greater than mine. You're apparently as judgmental as you think I am – and also apparently a medical professional.

Terrific google skills, by the way. Good to see you don't have the energy for earning your keep, but you do have the energy to make an ass of yourself online. Way to go! You use the free internet at the library right?

John Galt Reply:

You're right, sorry. Your fatigue is far greater than mine. You're apparently as judgmental as you think I am – and also apparently a medical professional.

Terrific google skills, by the way. Good to see you don't have the energy for earning your keep, but you do have the energy to make an ass of yourself online. Way to go! You use the free internet at the library right?

Funny about Money Reply:

Jeez, John… Something isn't working for you! Maybe you should go back to your doc and see if you can get a prescription for civility pills.

[Reply]

John Galt Reply:

If you put something on the web, be prepared for the positive AND the negative. It's life. And that seems to be something our dear blogger is totally unprepared for.

John Galt Reply:

If you put something on the web, be prepared for the positive AND the negative. It's life. And that seems to be something our dear blogger is totally unprepared for.

Abigail Reply:

John,

I am glad that you are able to work and have been the whole time. But you're not bipolar and you've never dealt with the kind of crippling fatigue I do, where brain fog swamps your ability to think enough to finish a single sentence.

I have spent every day of my disability, from the time I applied until about a month ago, trying to find a way to earn enough money to get off and away from disability. If you think I wanted to live on $764 a month, you're nuttier than Ms. Rand.

The nutrisystem is a huge extravagance, I admit it. It is something I went back and forth on for quite awhile, but my fatigue makes it difficult to exercise enough to lose weight – yet my health was deteriorating. Don't worry: My new job paid for it, not your tax dollars.

But, golly, I'm excited that now that I'm able to work, I can judge utter strangers' lives without having experienced the same thing. Even though I have been paying taxes most of my life, I never realized we got that perk!

[Reply]

Funny about Money Reply:

Jeez, John… Something isn't working for you! Maybe you should go back to your doc and see if you can get a prescription for civility pills.

[Reply]

John Galt Reply:

Perhaps if you were more well read, you would understand the reference to John Galt.
But you probably also think that menstruation is a “disability.”

I have a spine composed mainly of titanium, a rod in my collar bone, screws holding my arm together and was on antidepressants for a long time to deal with my physical losses. But I work 40+ hours per week, take care of my dependents, and don’t panic because I can’t “find the time” to make dinner – thus requiring an expensive purchase of nutrisystem meals. I will be so glad to know that’s what my tax money is funding. Really, you should be so proud.

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14 Donna Freedman May 26, 2010 at 3:29 am

Mr. Galt: What makes you think that Abigail doesn't pay taxes? Perhaps you haven't been a regular reader but she does, in fact, work part-time and pay taxes. Until her husband became unemployed, he worked and paid taxes, too.
And suppose someone couldn't be "gainfully employed." Why do you get to show disdain to them?
Remember: You are just one slip-and-fall, one hit-and-run, one high fever away from disability. Imagine how it would feel to have someone sniff at your lack of "contribution" to society, to be ready to assume the worst about you.

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John Galt Reply:

It's clever that you have deleted the comment which would make your trite "one slip and fall" statement look silly. I've had that slip-and-fall and am physically impaired beyond most people's wildest dreams. But I make a choice each and every day to get up and go to work and be productive. I do not choose to sit around and bemoan my circumstances on someone else's dime. Heck, I know a schizophrenic who holds down a job. It's not his dream job, but it pays his bills and does wonders for his self-esteem.
As I said before (and it too was deleted – good job on the dialogue, don't discuss just delete), if you put yourself out on the internet, you are allowing critique.

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John Galt Reply:

Ok, I apologize for assume you had deleted comments. Obviously I am in error on that point. I'm not as familiar with blogs and their intricacies as you people are.

I will not, however, apologize for being stupefied by your feelings of entitlement. Have a nice evening. Those of us with real lives and problems beyond expensive lotion will be a bit busier. :)

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John Galt Reply:

Ok, I apologize for assume you had deleted comments. Obviously I am in error on that point. I'm not as familiar with blogs and their intricacies as you people are.

I will not, however, apologize for being stupefied by your feelings of entitlement. Have a nice evening. Those of us with real lives and problems beyond expensive lotion will be a bit busier. :)

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John Galt Reply:

It's clever that you have deleted the comment which would make your trite "one slip and fall" statement look silly. I've had that slip-and-fall and am physically impaired beyond most people's wildest dreams. But I make a choice each and every day to get up and go to work and be productive. I do not choose to sit around and bemoan my circumstances on someone else's dime. Heck, I know a schizophrenic who holds down a job. It's not his dream job, but it pays his bills and does wonders for his self-esteem.
As I said before (and it too was deleted – good job on the dialogue, don't discuss just delete), if you put yourself out on the internet, you are allowing critique.

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15 Ross May 28, 2012 at 4:31 am

Way to read the fine print! I agree with your message – after the law applies to everyone, including the government. Unfortunately, Illinois is not one of those States which requires appropriate service for those tickets camera … But they are "only" $ 100 here … Which I still think is crazy steep, and I have not got one (knock on wood). The cameras are actually not all that accurate, so the compromise is that the IL in camera violations do not go on your record. As an aside, there have been recent studies at intersections, especially here that show the presence of cameras have already created in accidents * more – through the erosion of people on the brakes, rear ends, etc., etc. Some of the suburbs more, honest, after commissioning studies, he realized Tickets camera is mostly about making money, and stopped actually use. It will be interesting to see what is their future.

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16 grass carp June 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm

I usually do not leave a response, however I looked at some of the
responses on Can you toss your traffic tickets?. I do have some questions for you if it’s okay. Is it only me or does it look like like some of the comments look as if they are written by brain dead folks? :-P And, if you are writing at additional sites, I’d like to follow anything new you have to post. Would you make a list of every one of all your social networking pages like your Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

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17 lOU July 22, 2012 at 3:44 am

ONE WORD. ONE SOLUTION… RESOURCE BASED ECONOMY.

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18 craig August 13, 2012 at 12:38 pm

I'm living in Arizona for a few months and i got a camera ticket although it went back to my CT address under my dads name because he owns the car, does it work the same if i don't pay the ticket will someone in CT be dispatched ti give him the ticket?

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Abigail Reply:

Craig,

I don’t believe they have the authority to send someone in a different state. As I mentioned in this post, if you *are* served, it’s an extra $10 or $15. Then again, your dad may not be so anxious to roll the dice when it’s in his name.

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Abigail Reply:

Craig,

I don’t believe they have the authority to send someone in a different state. As I mentioned in this post, if you *are* served, it’s an extra $10 or $15. Then again, your dad may not be so anxious to roll the dice when it’s in his name.

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19 Leyva93 August 20, 2012 at 10:21 pm

So I received my ticket in the mail today I was doing 46 on a 35 zone out in mesa AZ I’m not too sure if I should pay it or wait till a process server comes out to me and personally hands me some documents? J

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Abigail Reply:

Well, it’s a personal call, really. It’s only a little bit more to have them actually serve you.

My main issue (besides the cost of the ticket) is that this isn’t the government. It’s a private company, which gets most of the cost of the ticket.

If a police officer wants to write me out a ticket, fine. Well, actually, damn! But it’s the government issuing me a citation for breaking the law, not a private company.

In the end, it’s up to you whether you pay it. There is, I’m sure, peace of mind in doing so. On the other hand, if you wait and see if you’re served — because you may not be — you could save a chunk of change.

We never heard any more about the ticket. I can’t guarantee that outcome for anyone else, though.

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Abigail Reply:

Well, it’s a personal call, really. It’s only a little bit more to have them actually serve you.

My main issue (besides the cost of the ticket) is that this isn’t the government. It’s a private company, which gets most of the cost of the ticket.

If a police officer wants to write me out a ticket, fine. Well, actually, damn! But it’s the government issuing me a citation for breaking the law, not a private company.

In the end, it’s up to you whether you pay it. There is, I’m sure, peace of mind in doing so. On the other hand, if you wait and see if you’re served — because you may not be — you could save a chunk of change.

We never heard any more about the ticket. I can’t guarantee that outcome for anyone else, though.

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20 Bayley October 12, 2012 at 10:24 am

I received a camera ticket for turning right at a red light (Perfectly legal). The ticket says I was going 16m/h but over 1.1 seconds I only moved about 8 feet instead of the 25 I would have gone had I actually been going 16m/h. I got a ticket in the mail and though my parents were pestering me to send it in I ignored it because I know the law (though they kept telling me the internet can't actually tell me the law) and told them I wanted to be personally served. And I was…sort of. I was in Mexico on Sunday when my parents were served at the house. I plan to send in the hearing request, but I was just wondering, was that legal service? I always thought "personal" service meant they had to actually serve the person whose ticket it was, not friends/family who just happen to be home.

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Abigail Reply:

Eesh, I couldn’t begin to say if it’s legal. Since it sounds like you all live in the same house, maybe? But I thought they had to serve you personally. Then again, I’ve yet to be served.

Here’s the best answer I can find, but you might ask if any of your friends have friends who are lawyers… http://nevercoldcall.typepad.com/scottsdale_sucks/2007/02/only_idiots_pay.html

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Abigail Reply:

Eesh, I couldn’t begin to say if it’s legal. Since it sounds like you all live in the same house, maybe? But I thought they had to serve you personally. Then again, I’ve yet to be served.

Here’s the best answer I can find, but you might ask if any of your friends have friends who are lawyers… http://nevercoldcall.typepad.com/scottsdale_sucks/2007/02/only_idiots_pay.html

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27 http://rbkwebb.wordpress.com December 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm

I seldom leave a response, but i did some searching and wound up here
Caught by a traffic camera? Throw away that ticket! | I Pick Up Pennies.
And I do have 2 questions for you if you don’t mind. Is it just me or does it appear like some of these remarks look like left by brain dead individuals? :-P And, if you are posting on other sites, I’d like to keep up with anything fresh you have to post.
Would you make a list of the complete urls of all your social pages like your Facebook
page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

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28 Guest 75 January 10, 2013 at 3:51 pm

My husband was working in AZ and we live OR; he got 2 speeding tickets captured on camera. Now the truck in in my name. So when the ticket came to me it was in my name and of course that was not me driving the truck, so I filled out the info stating who the driver was; because I didn't want to be looking over my shoulder forever or wondering what would happen when my license comes up for renewal or have a warrant for my arrest. And on the original ticket says something to the effect that you can be prosecuted for not telling the truth.
My husband told me that no one in AZ pays the ticks. But the truck being in my name I did not want to take any chances, I don't like trouble. So, believe me this did cause a rif.
So has received the ticks in his name. He will be going back to AZ in a few weeks to work. He is abated to get another camera tick or even get pulled over. I don't want him to end up with a warrant or have points put on his DMV or insurance go up.
I have paid the first one, but he is insistent not to pay the second one, which actually would be to sign up for the online traffic class.
Really want are the chances that nothing will become of the second tick that he was going 16 over speed limit. Is it really a law that after 120 days they can not serve you and you have passed the statue of limitation???????? Cuz I am all for paying for it, but he is not…………….I am more of a law abiding citizen and he is more of a rebel

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31 vehicle surveillance January 29, 2013 at 1:35 am

First of all I think we need to follow traffic rules. Traffic cameras are installed to mean reduce road accidents and crazy driving. And if anyone found guilty through traffic cameras they should pay me price. Thanks.

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32 TamarackAttack February 4, 2013 at 4:17 pm

So I have a question for Mr. Knowledgeable, what idf the cop comes to your door to serve you and you just … Don’t Answer. He technically didn’t serve me right … or wrong? How much trouble can you get in for playing duck and dodge with the cop before it gets dismissed.

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Abigail Reply:

Actually, this can get you into quite a bit of trouble. There was a local case where they found the woman was leaving her apartment by the back to avoid being served. It got her into huge trouble.

If you decide not to pay and they do come to you, then you need to just accept it and pay.

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Abigail Reply:

Actually, this can get you into quite a bit of trouble. There was a local case where they found the woman was leaving her apartment by the back to avoid being served. It got her into huge trouble.

If you decide not to pay and they do come to you, then you need to just accept it and pay.

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34 Not served March 15, 2013 at 4:48 pm

They have to serve YOU. IN PERSON, not a roommate, parents or anything else. It must be YOU. If they give it to a roommate, it negates their laws.

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35 Andy April 6, 2013 at 8:51 pm

Abigail-

I received two of these in the mail. I live in Utah but frequent Arizona quite a bit. Got one in Tucson and the other in Phoenix. Haven't paid either and certainly DIDN'T sign anything. I did a search of the Arizona Courts at: http://apps.supremecourt.az.gov/publicaccess/

The search didn't return a thing!

Andy S.

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38 ir illuminators May 18, 2013 at 9:59 pm

These cameras are becoming a nice little money-spinner for local governments and the companies that make and operate the cameras. Thanks Abigail

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39 bob knoll May 30, 2013 at 2:51 pm

i just received a speeding ticket in the mail from Prescott AZ i live in calif it was like o where did the flash come from and i was jut slowing down any ways like 5 over maby they call it a speed greater than reasonable and prudent no number to tell you realy how fast you were going is this some kind of side talk they are saying so shall i just ignore it seance i dont think they will send someone to calif to serve me they want $223.00 thanks for any help

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40 Surveillance systems June 1, 2013 at 1:44 am

First of all I think we need to follow traffic rules. Traffic cameras are installed to mean reduce road accidents and crazy driving. And if anyone found guilty through traffic cameras they should pay me price. Thanks.

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41 The Real Truth June 7, 2013 at 3:53 pm

I called an AZ lawyer over my husband's camera snap. He said throw it in the trash! And all you women out there who are so rabid for following man's law–if you gave just half that respect and fear to God and His Law you'd all be anointed as prophets. You hypocrites! And that stupid, stupid woman who turned in her own husband and identified him–what a pathetic creature indeed. Et tu wife! Traffic lights are suggestions. When the suggestion is a poor one, I make a better one. That's called THINKING FOR YOURSELF PEOPLE. Try it sometimes – it's liberating and confidence building. Leave it to woman to destroy any society….don't even get me started.

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warden Reply:

OMG always put driver unknown in AZ. That's the end of the ticket. +1 —> The Real Truth………well said.

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warden Reply:

OMG always put driver unknown in AZ. That's the end of the ticket. +1 —> The Real Truth………well said.

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43 anonymous May 14, 2014 at 4:52 pm

I think it is pretty sleazy to make a driver have to deal with a ticket that is questionable. Be it a ticket for a yellow that went red but your wheels were 1 ft short of the rule they use. Or a right on red when a light turns red as you are making it through a yellow / red. Especially after waiting for a pedestrian to make it safely on the sidewalk (while chatting on a phone)

A person has to go argue a ticket that is basically the Olympics of driving timed to the .003 of a second whether you are guilty or not. All wile ignoring the NTSA rules of yellow lights time lengths.
IGE: 40 MPH should be 6 seconds not 3. Considering it takes 1 second to react so leaves two seconds at 40-45 MPH whatever the flow is to stop.

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