88-2 District Court Traffic Division

Civil Infraction Tickets

Civil Infraction Tickets Traffic tickets are processed by the traffic division of the District Court. Defendants may either admit responsibility and pay the fine; admit responsibility with an explanation in writing to the Magistrate, or may deny responsibility and request a hearing. The defendant may request an Informal Hearing with the Magistrate where no attorneys are allowed or a Formal Hearing before the Judge where the Prosecutor will represent the police officer and the defendant may also have an attorney. If the defendant elects to pay the ticket, payment must be made with either a money order, cash, credit/debit cards in person or through within 10 days of the issuance of the ticket unless the defendant requests an extension from the Court. NO PERSONAL CHECKS OR BUSINESS CHECKS. Upon payment of the ticket, the information regarding the traffic violation is reported to the Secretary of State which then posts the ticket to the defendant's driving record and assesses the points. A driver in the State of Michigan can receive up to 12 points within two years before having his driving privileges suspended by the Secretary of State. Admitting responsibility with an explanation must be presented in writing to the Magistrate. Upon receipt of the explanation, the Magistrate will make a determination of the appropriate disposition or set the matter for an Informal Hearing. The Magistrate may adjust the fine but has no authority over the assessing of points.

Having Points Withheld from your Driving Record

The 88th District Court does not take points "under advisement." At hearing (formal or informal), you are found responsible or not responsible. We have no authority to withhold points from your driving record. However, effective December 31, 2010, the Basic Driver Improvement Course program permits eligible drivers to take a driver improvement course, either online or in a classroom setting. For more information, click on the link to Secretary of State website here.


An Informal Hearing consists of the Magistrate, the defendant and the police officer who issued the ticket. Attorneys are not allowed to participate in an informal hearing. On the date of the hearing, the defendant may elect to admit responsibility or admit responsibility with an explanation or request a full hearing. If a full hearing is requested, all parties are placed under oath, and testimony is taken by the Magistrate. The burden of proving the defendant responsible is on the police officer who is also called the Plaintiff. The Plaintiff must prove by a preponderance of the evidence, or it is more likely than not that the defendant is responsible for the alleged traffic violation. The defendant is also entitled to testify, including having witnesses testify on his behalf. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Magistrate will make a determination of responsible or not responsible. If either party is not satisfied with the outcome, the case may be appealed within seven days of the hearing to a Formal Hearing before a District Judge. If the decision is appealed by the Defendant, a bond must be posted in the amount of the fine. At the Formal Hearing, the defendant may be represented by an attorney, and the Prosecutor will represent the Plaintiff's case.

Default Judgments

If a denial of responsibility is not made within ten (10) days of the issuance of the ticket or if the defendant fails to appear for a scheduled hearing, a Default Judgment is entered. Once a Default Judgment is entered, the Defendant may file a motion to set aside the Default Judgment. Such a motion must be filed within fourteen (14) days of the date the Court notifies the Defendant of the Default. At the time of filing, the Defendant must post the amount of the fines and costs assessed by the Default as a bond. If the District Court Judge grants the motion, a hearing will be scheduled. If the Judge denies the motion, the money that has been posted will be applied to the ticket and the case will be closed.

Credit Card Payments

Visa, MasterCard or Discover credit card payments can be made with in the District Court Office by Clicking HERE
or by calling the District Court at (989) 785-8035. There is a 3% fee for all credit card transactions.
Please have your case/ticket number and payment amount available.