Failure to Appear for a Traffic Ticket

What is Failure to Appear?

When you receive a traffic citation, you are required to respond to the court within 15 calendar days from the date of the infraction.

If you do not respond to your Traffic Citation in a timely manner a Fail to Appear (FTA) will be added to your court file.

FTA Can Cause a License Suspension.

According to RCW 46.20.289.The Washington State Department of Licensing can suspend all driving privileges if they receive notice from the court that a person has:

  • Failed to respond to a traffic citation.

  • Failed to appear at a hearing.

  • Violated a written promise to appear in court for the infraction.

How Long is my License Suspended or Revoked?

Your license can be suspended until you pay the fine or comply with the requirement to appear in court.

Steps to Reinstate Your License.

  1. Once your failure to appear has been cleared with the court, they will issue a certificate of adjudication.

  2. After the court notifies DOL that your failure to appear has been cleared, DOL will update your driving record to show your license is not suspended or revoked any more.

  3. You will need to apply for a new license. You may need to pay a:

    • $75 reissue fee plus your licensing fees if the original charge wasn't drug or alcohol related, or

    • $150 reissue fee plus your licensing fees if the original charge was drug or alcohol related.

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