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Parking Tickets in Virginia

Virginia parking tickets are issued by the assigned authority in cities and other municipalities. Parking citations may be issued any time you park in a zone where no parking is allowed or commit other related violations. After receiving a parking ticket, you will need to take action by paying it or contesting the ticket. Most drivers choose to pay parking tickets, as this is often the easiest option. However, making the payment counts as an admission of guilt to the violation you were charged for. If you believe that you were issued a citation in error or you have any other reason to disagree with your ticket, then you may choose to contest the ticket instead. Contesting parking tickets can be more time consuming, but you may avoid receiving the penalties associated with your ticket. Regardless of whether you choose to pay your parking ticket or contest it with the local parking authority, it is important to take action right away. In the sections below, learn everything you need to know about parking tickets in VA, methods for paying your tickets and options for contesting a ticket you do not wish to pay.

Types of Parking Violations in Virginia

Virginia parking violations can vary from one city to the next. Each local parking authority has different rules relating to parking. In order to avoid receiving a parking citation, it is best to familiarize yourself with the parking laws in different areas where you travel frequently. What counts as a parking violation in one area may not be illegal in other areas you visit in Virginia. However, certain parking violations will be issued no matter where you are. Parking tickets in Virginia are commonly issued for:

  • Parking in a permit-only area when you do not have the proper credentials.
  • Parking in one area for too long or letting your parking meter expire.
  • Parking your vehicle in a loading zone or fire lane, even for a minute.
  • Parking overnight when overnight parking is not permitted.
  • Parking your car in any manner that blocks traffic.

Virginia Parking Ticket Penalties

When you commit a parking violation in Virginia, you may receive a variety of penalties. Usually, parking violations simply result in a ticket. However, your car may be towed immediately if you park in a dangerous manner or block traffic. Note that you can receive multiple citations at once if you are committing more than one violation at a time. Additionally, be aware that parking ticket penalties usually become more severe the longer you wait to pay your ticket or take other actions. When you commit a parking violation or fail to pay your ticket on time, penalties may include the following:

  • A fine payable to the local parking authority in your city or municipality
  • A fine that increases daily or weekly once it becomes overdue
  • A boot, or vehicle immobilization, if you accumulate too many unpaid tickets
  • Towing of your vehicle if you commit certain violations or abandon your vehicle

Virginia parking fines are categorized as civil penalties, meaning that you will not receive criminal penalties for such a violation. However, the penalties for parking violations in VA can still be severe and should always be taken seriously.

Paying a Parking Ticket in Virginia

To pay parking tickets in Virginia, you usually have several options. The payment methods will vary by city. You can usually pay a parking citation online, by mail or in person. Some localities may allow you to pay over the phone as well. To pay parking tickets in Virginia, you will need to have your citation in hand. Acceptable payments usually include cash, checks, credit card payments and debit card payments. Due to the varying payment options available by city, always check before submitting a payment. Remember to pay your parking ticket on time in order to avoid late fees.

How to Contest Parking Citations in Virginia

Parking tickets can usually be contested no matter where you live, but the methods for contesting parking citations in Virginia may vary by city. To contest a parking ticket, you will need to have evidence that the ticket was issued in error or be able to argue a different reason why you believe that the parking citation is invalid. Your options for contesting VA parking citations usually include requesting an administrative review of the ticket or taking your complaint to a local court. You cannot contest a ticket by ignoring it. Instead, you must make a request for the ticket to be reviewed.