New York City

NYC Unveils New App That Allows Drivers to Dispute Parking Tickets

The app allows drivers to explain why their disputed ticket should be dropped, and even allows users to add photos as evidence

What once required a visit to a judge, you can now handle on your phone by scanning or entering — now there's a free app that allows drivers to dispute tickets.

NYC Pay or Dispute, New York City's new mobile app, makes paying or disputing a parking, red light, or speed camera violation ticket a whole lot easier. It's available to both Apple and Android users, and has been in the works since 2014.

Each month, the city issues close to 500,000 of these kinds of tickets. The city's leaders see the app as the latest way of doing business. Department of Finance Chief of Information Seb Formoso says the objective is to make New Yorkers' interactions with the agency as seamless and easy as possible.

"It makes it much easier and less time consuming to do that," he said. "Because you can do that within minutes after you receive the ticket and before you drive away."

For people like Adir who want to dispute a ticket, the app allows drivers to write a summary of why they disagree and even add a couple dozen photos if they'd like to prove a point. That information then goes to a judge.

"I feel like a lot of people get tickets when they shouldn't," said Adir.

 The ability to add photos will be game changer; 50 percent of disputed tickets normally get dropped, the city says.

Some drivers in the city are excited about the app, like Yvonne, who says it's "awesome." Driver Mark Agger agrees and says the app is part of evolving technology.

"Sounds like an awesome thing to do, if you think you're right," he said. "That's part of our lifestyle, everyone has a smartphone."

However, not everyone is sold on the new upgrade; Vincent says he's fine with doing things the old-fashioned way and won't download. 

"I'm very happy wih this," he said. "I don't know anything about these computers or nothing else. I don't even know how to turn a computer on."

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