If you wish to contest a citation issued in a county other than Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, and Washington County, please contact the local court
Information about Hearing Officer Appointments in Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, and Washington counties
If you wish to contest a citation issued in Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, or Washington county, staff at the MN Court Payment Center (CPC) are available to discuss the appointment options for meeting with a Hearing Officer.
A Hearing Officer is authorized by the Court to hear citation cases and provide options. Depending on the facts of your case and your violation history, some of the options they may be able to offer include:
- plead guilty with an explanation,
- a reduced fine amount,
- a payment plan to pay the citation over time,
- a continuance for dismissal with payment of prosecution costs,
- set your case for arraignment.
If a case does not settle with a Hearing Officer, you have the right to ask for a court hearing if your citation is for a misdemeanor offense
. If the citation is for a petty misdemeanor
, this right is waived if the defendant does not appear within 30 days as provided in Minn. Stat. § 169.91
What to expect at a Hearing Officer Appointment
The Hearing Officer (not a judge) will review the citation(s), defendant’s violation history, court history, driving record and other information relevant to the citation(s) being contested, and will listen to the defendant's explanation of the circumstances. The Hearing Officer will explain the consequences of the violation(s), including fines. It is not possible to have a trial with evidence at this meeting because a trial can only take place in court with a judge.
The Hearing Officer will explain the guidelines for settling the citation(s) and will determine what options the defendant may have with their case. The defendant may ask questions about the options, but the Hearing Officer cannot give opinions or advice about the defendant’s decision. A plan is then made for the defendant to meet the terms of the agreed upon settlement, and when all of the terms are completed, the citation matter is settled.
Canceling or rescheduling a Hearing Officer appointment
You may cancel your appointment any time before your scheduled time.
You may reschedule, also known as a continuance, by calling the CPC
Appealing a decision made by a Hearing Officer
A Hearing Officer is authorized by the Court to hear citation cases and provide options. If you do not like the options that apply to you, you may ask that the case be set for court, unless you waived your right to a court hearing under Minn. Stat. § 169.91
. That statute says that if you fail to appear for a petty misdemeanor
, you have waived your right to a trial and plead guilty to the charge.
If you have received a payable citation in Dakota County, you may schedule a hearing officer appointment that uses remote technology by calling the CPC
If you have received a payable citation in Hennepin County, you may schedule a hearing officer appointment that uses remote technology by calling the CPC
If you have received a payable citation in Ramsey County, you may schedule a hearing officer appointment that uses remote technology by calling the CPC
If you have received a payable citation in Washington County, you may schedule a hearing officer appointment that uses remote technology by calling the CPC
Defendants living 50 or more miles from the Washington County Government Center are allowed hearings by mail to resolve payable citations. The defendant should mail or fax a letter to the Hearing Officer office and include the following information:
- A copy of the citation,
- Legible copy of the driver's license,
- An internet mapping documentation (e.g. MapQuest, Google Maps) confirming defendant's residence is 50+ miles from the Washington County Government Center,
- An explanation of the circumstances surrounding the offense(s).
Attn: Hearing Officer Mail
14949 62nd Street North
P.O. Box 3802
Stillwater, MN 55082
Fax: (651) 430-6300
The Hearing Officer will review the above and, if approved, will mail a letter outlining options and appropriate court document(s) will be sent to the defendant for signature. The defendant will then sign, have their signature notarized, and mail the completed document(s) to the Hearing Officer with a check/money order, if required.
For questions regarding this procedure, call (651) 430-6279.
Learn more from the Hearing Officer Brochure