Contesting & Paying a Citation

Any registered owner or person in control of a vehicle has the right to contest the issuance of a City of Lakewood parking citation. If you believe a citation issued to your vehicle is invalid, you may request an administrative review. Please adhere to time limits and use the official forms.

How Long Do I Have?

You have 21 days from the date of issuance to contest a citation. If nothing is received, the registered owner is then sent a Notice of Illegal Parking allowing an additional fourteen (14) days to request an Administrative Review. Late submissions will not be processed. This time frame is regulated by the State of California, CVC 40215.

How Do I Contest the Citation?

in order and initiated within strict timeframes. No step can be skipped in favor of jumping to another step.

Step One – Administrative Review

To contest a parking citation, you may:

The citation is reviewed by City of Lakewood Parking Administration staff for validity of the citation. Based on the written information you provide, the City will determine if there is sufficient proof that: the violation did not occur, the registered owner/vehicle driver was not responsible, or extenuating circumstances prevented you from complying.

The appeal must be submitted within 21 calendar days of the issue date of your citation. There is no fee to contest your citation at this level. You will be notified of the results of the initial review in writing via mail within 3-6 weeks.

Make sure you include a return address. The results cannot be mailed without a complete and correct address (include suite number, apartment, zip code, etc). If the citation is dismissed, you may consider the matter resolved. If the citation is upheld, the fine must be paid in order to request an administrative hearing.

Step Two – Administrative Hearing

The administrative hearing is an independent hearing before a certified hearing examiner. You can provide a written declaration to the hearing officer, or you may attend the hearing in person. In either case, you must first pay the penalty before the hearing is scheduled and within 21 calendar days of receiving the results of the administrative review (Step One). If you are found not liable for the citation, the penalty will be refunded to you.

To request a hearing, you may come in person to City Hall, or contact the Parking Division at 562-866-9771, extension 2621.

Full payment in the amount of the citation must accompany your request. Include any written material you wish to present. This material must be received by our office within 21 calendar days after you have received the results of the administrative review (Step One). An administrative hearing will be held within 90 calendar days following the receipt of a request for an administrative hearing. Hearings are scheduled on the fourth Thursday of the month. You will be notified by mail of the date and time of the hearing. If the citation is upheld at the administrative hearing, you may move on to the third and final step, Civil Court.

Step Three – Los Angeles Superior Court Traffic Division

If you are still not satisfied with the ruling at the administrative hearing, you may appeal the decision to Los Angeles Superior Court, 111 North Hill St, Los Angeles CA 90012. You, as the appellant, are responsible for paying the $25.00 filing fee to the Superior Court which will be refunded to you, along with the penalty, should you be found not liable.

What Information Should Be Included on My Form?

Using the form provided it the link above, fill out each field at the top of the form. Under Circumstances for Review, state the facts that establish a defense. Also enclose any supporting documentation. Documentation can include, but is not limited to: photographs, receipts, vehicle registration, disabled placard, or official police vehicle theft and/or recovery reports. Make sure the documents are legible and complete. You may want to send copies, as supporting documentation will not be returned.

Do I Have to Pay First?

No, the results of the Administrative Review will be mailed to the address provided on the submitted form. If the citation is upheld with a balance due, payment will be due within 21 days. If the citation is dismissed, no amount will be due.

What if I Don’t Agree With the Results of the Review?

Should you wish to contest the decision, you may request a mail-in or in person review by our hearing examiner. Full payment in the amount of the citation must accompany your request, per CVC 40215.

Administrative Reviews are only scheduled on the fourth Thursday of each month, between 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., and shall be held within 90 calendar days following the receipt of a request.

Please note that the parking control officer will not appear at the hearing, per CVC 40215.

How Do I Pay for a Citation?

  • Online
  • By Mail
    Please make your check or money order payable to the City of Lakewood and include the citation number. Mail the check to
    City of Lakewood Parking Citations
    PO Box 220
    Lakewood, CA 90714
  • In Person
    Appear at Lakewood City Hall between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Please note that City Hall is closed alternating Fridays

A payment plan is available to low-income customers, if a request for indigence determination is submitted within 60 days of issuance of this citation or ten days after a hearing determination, whichever is later. For more information, call 562-866-9771, extension 2621.

For questions regarding contesting or paying for a parking citation, contact the City of Lakewood at 562-866-9771, extension 2621.