When you’ve been issued a violation ticket for a bylaw infraction, it’s your decision to plead guilty or not guilty to the offence. Tickets for bylaw infractions are issued by Bylaw enforcement and peace officers. They do not include traffic or parking tickets.
Regardless of your plea, you must take care of your ticket on or before the appearance date noted on the front. If you don’t, you may be convicted in your absence or a warrant for your arrest may be issued.
Where should I go?
Bylaw tickets are paid at Traffic Court on the 2nd floor of the Calgary Courts Centre.
Calgary Court Centre
601 Fifth St. SW
Hours: 8:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Justice of the Peace Counter (other services hours of operations vary).
IMPORTANT: While the youth Justice of the Peace Counter is available five days a week, the youth first appearance crown is only available on the FIRST Thursday of the month.
Pleading guilty - payment information
If you plead guilty, you have two options:
- Pay the voluntary payment amount on or before the court appearance date indicated on the ticket.
On-line - You can pay online by going to www.alberta.ca/online-fine-payment.aspx
By mail - Do not send cash through the mail. Mail your payment to the address on your ticket with enough time to get to the court before your appearance date.
In person - Go to the cashier line at Traffic Court; make sure you bring your ticket.
- Appear before a Justice at the appearance address indicated on the ticket.
I think I'm guilty but I have an explanation
If you think you have a reasonable explanation for getting the ticket, ask to speak to a First Appearance Prosecutor. Tell your side of the story to the Prosecutor and he/she will give you choices as to what you can do.
I'm guilty, but don't have enough money to pay my ticket
Ask the Justice of the Peace what your options are.
- If you need extra time to pay, ask the Justice of the Peace for an extension.
- Ask to see a First Appearance Prosecutor and explain your financial circumstances.
I lost my ticket and/or I might have more tickets I forgot about
If you want to pay your ticket(s), complete a Search Form and give it to the cashier. If you want to talk to someone about your ticket(s), complete a Search Form and give it to the Justice of the Peace.
Disputing a ticket
I'm not guilty
If you plead not guilty, you have two options:
Plead not guilty by sending the signed violation ticket (by registered mail) to the address on the ticket. The signed ticket must be received on or before the appearance date indicated on the ticket. Note: Make sure you keep your post office receipt as proof of mailing.
You will be notified of the trial date by regular mail sent to the address you indicated on the ticket. If you do not receive a notice of the trial date by regular mail, you must contact the Court office by calling toll-free 310-0000 or by contacting Alberta Courts to obtain the trial date.
- You may appear before a Justice at the appearance address and date indicated on the ticket. If you plead not guilty, a trial date will be set. Note: If you do not attend your trial date, you may be convicted in absence or a warrant for your arrest may be issued.
I have a mental illness and I need some help
Go to the Justice of the Peace and ask to see a First Appearance Prosecutor. They will provide you with information about the Calgary Diversion Services Program for people with mental health illnesses. If you are eligible, you may decide to participate in the program.
I can't decide what to do
You will still need to answer to your ticket on time, however, you can ask the Justice of the Peace to have your plea reserved to give you time to think.
If you are still unsure what to do, or you need more information before you decide, contact Calgary Legal Guidance 403-234-9266
or Student Legal Assistance