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Late penalties, license suspensions, collections resume

Late penalties and drivers’ license suspensions for unresolved citations and collections referrals for past-due payment are set to resume under an administrative order issued by the state court administrator, according to a press release. The automated processes were temporarily suspended in March because of COVID-19.

“Restarting these processes is an important step forward in our ongoing effort to restore normal court operations after limiting in-person courthouse operations earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jeff Shorba, state court administrator.

Automated processes that refer court-ordered fines, fees and other financial obligations to the Minnesota Department of Revenue for collections will resume Thursday.

Automated processes for unresolved citations will resume Dec. 1. When a person fails to appear or pay a fine instead of appearing in court, the automated processes send late notices, assess late penalties, add guilty pleas and convictions in petty misdemeanors cases, request the Department of Vehicle Services and the Department of Natural Resources to suspend licenses and send cases with past-due amounts to the Department of Revenue for collections.

Individuals will have the opportunity to resolve their citations before additional consequences are imposed. In October, people with unresolved citations will receive a notice via U.S. mail stating that within 30 days of the date of the notice, they must pay the related fine, set up a payment plan, or schedule a hearing or hearing officer appointment to contest their citation. Beginning Dec. 1, people who fail to pay the fine or schedule an appearance will receive a late penalty and face additional consequences depending on their individual circumstances.

To pay a fine for unresolved citations:

• Online at www.mncourts.gov/fines.

• By phone at 651-281-3219 in the metro area or 800-657-3611 outside of the metro area.

• By mail by making a check or money order payable to Court Administration. Send to Minnesota Court Payment Center, P.O. Box 898, Willmar, MN 56201. Include a copy of the citation or indicate the citation number on the check or money order.

• In person by paying fines in the county listed at the top of the citation. Access www.mncourts.gov/fines and go to “Find Courts” to find the location of the courthouse in that county.

To schedule a hearing for unresolved citations, call 651-281-3219 in the metro or 800-657-3611 outside of the metro area.