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What are New Mexico Traffic Tickets?

Traffic tickets are official notices issued to drivers and other road users when they commit a traffic violation in New Mexico. These tickets typically contain information regarding the driver, the vehicle involved, the specific offenses, details of its severity, and associated penalties. Generally, the Motor Vehicle Division enforces penalties on traffic tickets under the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Code. Also, the division creates, maintains, and disseminates publicly-available driving records to interested requesters.

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching less complicated, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for a specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
  • The location or assumed location of the record of the person involved. This includes information such as the city, county, or state that the person resides in or where the offense occurred.

Third-party sites are not affiliated with government sources nor sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on these websites may vary.

What Does a Traffic Citation Mean in New Mexico?

A traffic citation, or ticket, is an official document that indicates that the recipient has violated traffic laws in New Mexico. Depending on the severity of the offense, getting a citation or ticket typically requires that the violator appears in court or pays stipulated fines.

How Do I Pay a Traffic Ticket in New Mexico?

Upon receiving a ticket in New Mexico, the offender must respond by paying the fines (penalty assessment) or appearing in court, as indicated on the ticket. Regardless, a traffic violator must respond to a traffic ticket within 15 days from the issue date. Nevertheless, bear in mind that choosing to pay a traffic ticket is equivalent to an admission of guilt and that the recipient has opted to waive their right to challenge the traffic ticket in court.

Depending on where the violation happened, a District, Municipal, or Magistrate Court will hear a traffic case. Fines are paid to the court in person, by phone, mail, or online, and the offender must contact the court to determine which of these methods is available. Most courts offer in-person payment options during business hours. For example, to pay a traffic ticket in Raton City in person or by mail, the violator must direct the cashier’s check or money order to:

The Clerk’s Office

Raton Municipal Court

224 Savage Avenue, P. O. Box 65

Raton, NM 87740

Phone: (575) 445–8077

If the violator is unable to pay the full fine at once, the court may set up a payment plan. However, the offender must contact the court to find out if this option is available. Furthermore, paying a ticket may attract additional penalties, such as the addition of points to the offender’s driving record. The addition of pints to a record leads to increased auto insurance rates for the offending driver.

Can You Pay New Mexico Traffic Tickets Online?

Yes, the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division maintains a centralized payment portal for traffic tickets in all counties in New Mexico. However, specific traffic tickets must be paid in person at the local courthouse. Besides, certain third-party service providers resolve or dispute tickets on behalf of clients. Typically, this service is subscription-based, and users have to provide relevant information to find and settle or contest the ticket. In either case, the details required often include the full name of the violator, the jurisdiction of the violation, the citation number on the ticket, case number, court date, date of offense, and the driver’s license number.

How do I Pay a Ticket online in New Mexico?

To pay a traffic ticket on the portal maintained by the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division, visit the payment portal. The individual must possess the traffic ticket or information contained in the ticket at the time of payment. Individuals must provide the traffic citation number, date of birth, driver’s license number, credit or debit card, and email address.

What is the New Mexico Traffic Ticketing System?

The Motor Vehicle Division uses a point system to track and determine penalties for various traffic violations in New Mexico. Typically, the division issues a warning when a driver accumulates six points within one year and awards penalties to drivers who accumulate 7 - 10 points within one year. Collecting seven or more points within one year attracts the suspension of the driver’s license for 90 days. Accumulating more points within 12 months results in lengthier suspension of the driver’s license.

Points on a driver’s record expire after two years, but the offense remains on the violator’s record. The Motor Vehicle Division may also issue a temporary or permanent revocation of a driver’s license if the violation is a serious offense such as a DUI or vehicular manslaughter. The reinstatement requirements for a suspended or revoked driver’s license differ with the circumstances surrounding the violation. Nevertheless, most violators may have to:

  • Serve the entire suspension
  • Complete a driver improvement course
  • Provide a certificate of insurance
  • Pay a reinstatement fee
  • Retake a driver’s license exam

How Do I Know if I Have a Traffic Ticket in New Mexico?

Usually, New Mexico drivers who have been issued a ticket will be served in person or by mail. However, if an offender misses this mail or ignores it, the court shall issue a supplemental summons or warrant. To know if you have a pending ticket, you must obtain your driving record from the Motor Vehicle Division on this webpage.

A typical driving record will contain your complete driving history, including crash reports, DUIs, and citation history. Typically, the requester must provide the driver’s date of birth, license number, and other required information. The payment of the necessary fee validates a request or the order will not be processed.

In-person and mail driving record requests may be made by visiting the closest MVD office in New Mexico. The Motor Vehicle Division maintains a directory of all local offices on this web page. Likewise, independent service providers allow interested parties to know the status of any traffic ticket on a driver’s record. This option is especially useful when searching for multiple traffic tickets in different jurisdictions.

How Can I Find a Lost Traffic Ticket in New Mexico?

Interested individuals may find lost traffic tickets by contacting the District Court in the jurisdiction where the violation occurred. Generally, the requester must provide a traffic ticket number, court docket number, or subject’s full name to facilitate the search. Thus, offenders must memorize or make personal records of the citation number, presiding court, the issuing officer’s name, and the specific violations or charges.

How Long Does a Traffic Ticket Stay on Your Record in New Mexico?

Points from a traffic ticket remain valid on a driver’s record for 12 months. However, the traffic conviction remains on the individual’s driving record for life.

Is a Summon Worse Than a Ticket in New Mexico?

It depends. A court summons often requires that the recipient appears at a local court while a ticket can be resolved by making a payment online, through the mail, or in-person. Summons are usually issued after the violator has been issued multiple tickets or fails to respond to a ticket. Nevertheless, traffic offenders must take summons and tickets seriously as both may result in unsavory penalties.

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