Empowerment Through Education and Employment

The Amnesty Program Deadline is Looming

01/09/2017 | Share this:
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Get your driver’s license restored by March 31, 2017

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After experiencing a historical election year, and witnessing many laws, bills and measures being approved in California, I realized that many of these laws will directly impact my community both positively and negatively. Positive aspects include funds being allocated for programs aimed at addressing specific needs. It is our duty to stay informed on the funds and or resources available within our communities and utilize them! The Amnesty Program has helped over 100,000 individuals restore their Driver’s License, with plans to extend Amnesty past its scheduled deadline will require us to spread the word and help as many people as possible utilize monies that were allocated just for them!

by Kentara Gaines, MSW, IPO Program and Case Manager

 


A little bit about the program

 

Purpose and Background of Program

Millions of people in California have been living in a cycle of debt due to numerous court fees after receiving a traffic ticket. To address this concern, Governor Brown’s 2015-16
Budget Agreement authorized an 18-month traffic amnesty program for delinquent debt on Drivers Licenses (Senate bill 881). This Amnesty Program is meant to help people get out of this cycle by reducing their total amount of debt and reinstating their driver’s licenses. The Amnesty Program is available October 1, 2015 – March 31, 2017. It is imperative that communities impacted by this barrier become informed of the program and its eligibility requirements. California Attorney General Kamala Harris warns Californians about debt collectors giving consumers inaccurate information about the Amnesty Program for unpaid traffic and non-traffic infraction tickets. Here is some information that will serve as your guide as you navigate the Amnesty Program process.

Understanding Eligibility

First, you will need to identify if your ticket(s) are eligible for Amnesty and which county debt is owed.

How do you do that?

Obtain your DMV H6 form (10-year Driver Record) by visiting DMV and completing the H6 Request Form (Pay $5 fee) or H6 Forms can also be obtained online at

https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/detail/online/dr you will need a credit card to make a $5 payment to DMV.

images-duckduckgo-comUnderstanding the H6 form

The H6 contains a lot of information, not all of which pertains to the amnesty. We are interested in the list of Failure to Appear (FTA) and Failure to Pay (FTP). For each violation, the following information is provided:

  • Violation Date
  • Withhold Date (W/H Date)
  • Code Violated
  • Court ID Number
  • Docket Number

What to do next?

Each county has its own rules related to the Amnesty Program, so contact the Superior Courts in the counties where you have tickets.

What types of tickets are eligible/ineligible for amnesty?

images-duckduckgo-com Both traffic and non-traffic infractions are potentially eligible for the program, as long as they are handled by traffic court. Tickets that are NOT eligible are:

  • Criminal court
  • Parking tickets
  • DUIs
  • Reckless driving
  • Outstanding warrants
  • ***You are not eligible if you owe victim restitution

 


The 2 categories of ticket amnesty

Once you have determined that your tickets are eligible, there will be two groups of people that will benefit from this program.

Group 1 (before Jan 1, 2013)

People who received tickets prior to January 1, 2013 may be eligible for
reductions from to 50%-80% (based on income) as long as no payments
have been made on the previous debt. Please note that after payments are
made, you become disqualified for the 80% reduction.

Group 2 (after Jan 1, 2013)

Tickets received after January 1, 2013 may be ineligible for the Amnesty
Program but eligible for an affordable payment plan (based on income,
minimum amount of $25.00 per month). NOT eligible for a reduction,
but eligible for License Reinstatement.

Comparison of each group

Group 1
(pre-January 1,2013 and not making payments)

Group 2
(making payment OR post-January 1, 2013)

YES Reduction
YES Driver’s License Reinstatement

NO Reduction
YES Driver’s License Reinstatement


The application process

How to apply

You can be determined eligible over the phone, and you can also even begin making payments instantly, however, you will not be able to get the 80% debt reduction if you have already begun making payments. You must submit the application via mail and wait (at least 30 days) for Amnesty to review your application.

Mail-in process

  • Fill out the Amnesty application form, and mail it in to Alliance One.
  • Alliance One should call the applicant to let them know about eligibility, and to have them sign up for a payment plan.
  • Complete the Amnesty Application and mail it to them. Alliance One should call the applicant, however if they do not, the applicant should call them. Once a payment plan has been made, and the $50 Enrollment Fee, (automatically assessed on all seeking amnesty) has been paid to the Court, the Court will tell the DMV to lift the hold on the license.

Cost and fees to enroll in Amnesty Program

  • $50 County Administrative Fee (for enrollment)
  • $55 DMV Driver’s License Reinstatement fee.
  • $33 DMV Driver’s License Renewal fee (if the person’s license expired while it was suspended).
  • $25 payment towards debt
  • Total fees are roughly $163.You can make a payment over the phone and by mail.

 

If you are determined to be eligible yet do not have the funds right away, there is still time left to budget and come up with an efficient plan to ensure your success. Please contact Success Center staff member Kentara Gaines at kgaines@successcentersf.org if you would like assistance with applying for the Amnesty Program.

Still need help? Here are some more websites

 

http://oewd.org/ticket

http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/15-16/bill/sen/sb_0851-0900/sb_881_cfa_20160831_161056_sen_floor.html

http://www.courts.ca.gov/trafficamnesty.htm

Tags: amnesty | San Francisco | scsf | success center sf | traffic amnesty | western addition career center | western addition neighborhood access point.


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