CRIMINAL RULE 12: TRAFFIC DIVISION - TRIAL BY DECLARATION
The Court adopts the trial by declaration process defined in Vehicle Code § 40902. Additionally, pursuant to Vehicle Code § 40903, any person who fails to appear as provided by law may be deemed to have elected to have a trial by written declaration upon any alleged infraction, as charged by the citing officer, involving a violation of the Vehicle Code or any local ordinance adopted pursuant to the code. In eligible cases the Court will conduct the trial in absentia and it will be adjudicated on the basis of the notice to appear issued pursuant to Vehicle Code § 40500 and any business record or receipt, sworn declaration of the arresting officer, or written statement or letter signed by the defendant that is in the file at the time the trial by declaration is conducted.
If there is a guilty finding, the conviction shall be reported to the DMV and the defendant notified of the disposition of the case, the amount of imposed fines, and fees, and the defendant’s right to request a trial de novo within a specified period of time. If there is no timely request for a trial de novo and the fines and fees are not paid by the due date, the case will proceed to civil assessment pursuant to Penal Code § 1214.1. Additionally, the DMV will be notified of the failure to pay pursuant to Vehicle Code § 40509.5(b), which can result in a suspension of the defendant’s driver’s license pursuant to Vehicle Code § 13365(a)(2) until all obligations to the Court are satisfied.