NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Parking tickets can cost big bucks and cause a lot of headaches – especially if you think the ticket was unfair.
The city has a Parking Summons Advocate whose job is to help you get through all the red tape.
It’s the little piece of orange paper no one wants.
“You get home from work, you see a parking ticket, and it’s like ‘Oh well, there’s my days wages gone,” said motorist James Benner.
It’s best to pay up if you’re in the wrong, but if you think you’re in the right Jean Wesh may be able to help.
He’s been a lawyer for more than 20 years, and the New York City Department of Finance hired him this year to help people fight parking tickets.
But that’s after you’ve gone through the regular process of fighting the ticket on your own.
“They’ve tried, they’ve tried and they still can’t get a resolution. That would be prime for my office,” Wesh told CBS2’s Cindy Hsu.
Wesh says a big part of his job will be educating people about their rights, and how to get good evidence to dispute an unfair parking ticket.
He says taking lots of pictures is key.
“If they’re taking pictures, they have to take pictures from corner to corner, take pictures of all the signs,” Wesh said.
Some tips from Wesh: If your ticket mentions distances, measure them. Talk to witnesses and get their contact information and ask if they’d be willing to make a notarized statement on your behalf. If you transfer your car, whether you sell it or give it away, make sure you remove the registration sticker.
“If they don’t remove the registration sticker, tickets could be amassed under the old owner’s name and then it becomes a big headache,” Wesh said.
It’s a violation if you’re within 15 feet of a fire hydrant. If any part of your car touches a crosswalk, you can be ticketed.
The Parking Summons Advocate and his team will work out of the Manhattan business center, but they’ll visit different boroughs each week.
You can contact the Parking Summons Advocate by calling 311.
The office will not handle cases where lawyers or brokers have been hired.