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Boot Hearings

To Schedule a Boot Hearing After Immobilization

We understand your frustration when you return to your parked vehicle only to find that your vehicle has been  booted. If you believe that your vehicle has been improperly booted, you have the right to a same day in-person hearing at the SFMTA Customer Service Center at 11 S. Van Ness Avenue (CSC), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Call 415-646-2020 to schedule a phone or video hearing with an independent administrative hearing officer or contact the CSC for in-person scheduling.   A request for a boot hearing may also be submitted by email at hearingsgeneral@sfmta.com.

The SFMTA records all delinquent tickets that have been issued to vehicles cited in San Francisco.  A citation becomes delinquent if it remains unpaid for at least 41 days following the date of its issuance.  If your vehicle is found to have incurred five (5) or more delinquent tickets, it may be booted, or alternatively, it may legally be towed.  

At the Administrative Hearing

An administrative boot hearing is limited to determining whether five (5) or more tickets have become delinquent, that is, whether the SFMTA Enforcement was justified in immobilizing your vehicle based upon our parking violation records confirming the delinquencies  

If our records confirm that at least five tickets had become delinquent by the time of the boot, the boot will be deemed to have been properly installed, and your protest of the boot will be denied.  The hearing officer who adjudicates your boot protest will not be able to consider arguments concerning the validity of the underlying tickets, including whether delinquent notices were sent to an outdated address. All drivers in California are responsible for updating their current addresses with the State DMV. 

 

Defenses to Booting

Paying Tickets Following Their Issuance

If you pay your tickets within 41 days following their issuance, the tickets will not become delinquent, and you will not risk being booted later. Sometimes drivers do not realize that their vehicles have been cited for parking violations.  The SFMTA recommends that drivers should regularly check on our website for tickets that may have been issued to their license plates or VIN. 

Disputing the Tickets

When it comes to parking tickets issued by the SFMTA, paying the fine or risking getting your car booted or towed are not the only options. If you dispute your parking ticket on a timely basis, you may be able to have it dismissed, if you have some evidence that the ticket was improperly issued. Tickets that have been formally disputed and that are currently under “Administrative Review” do not qualify as delinquent tickets.  And protested tickets assigned to the second level administrative hearing process also do not qualify as delinquent.   Previous payment of one or more delinquent tickets at a DMV office may invalidate a boot, provided you have a receipt of the payment that identifies which tickets have been paid.

Setting Up a Payment Plan

If you have accrued a number of parking tickets in San Francisco (whether currently delinquent or not) that you are not able to pay, you can avoid immobilization or towing by arranging for a monthly installment payment plan which removes those risks as long as your payment plan remains active and current.  You can arrange for such a plan at the CSC.  

No Appeals for Boot Denials

The Superior Court traffic commissioners who hear appeals of parking citation cases will not consider appeals of the SFMTA’s administrative denial of any boot protest.