Understanding Class C Warrants for Unpaid Tickets
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q. What is a capias and why do I have one in my file?
A. A capias is a warrant or order for arrest of a person, typically issued by a judge. You have already been charged and entered a plea for an offense but the court shows that you have not yet completed your community service, paid your fine, etc. Once a capias has been issued, you must either pay your fine or go to jail.
Q. How long are tickets good for? Is there a statute of limitations?
A. There is no statute of limitation on tickets. If you don't clear your record, a warrant can be issued which adds additional fees over and above your fine. Filed tickets may be many years old when they are processed for warrant roundups. Any unpaid ticket can keep you from renewing your driver's license until it is taken care of.
Q. I received a ticket but the court didn't notify me of when and where I was supposed to appear, shouldn't I have heard something?
A. Whenever you sign a ticket you are obligated to appear before the judge of the specified court within 30 days. That information is listed on the bottom of your ticket. You do not receive a notice in the mail or reminder call. It is up to you to make sure that you follow up.
Q. Can I pay for my Class C warrants on a payment plan?
A. Precinct Five is not allowed to accept partial payment on warrants. However, you can pay off warrants one at a time or charge them to your credit card (a 3% convenience fee applies). Until they are all paid off, you risk being arrested if you are stopped by law enforcement.
Q. Trying to park downtown is a hassle, is there any way I can pay my Class C tickets so that it's convenient for me?
A. Precinct Five's Class C officers will meet you at your home, business or other location in the city of Austin to receive your payment (cash, money or credit card). Officers wear business casual and drive unmarked cars. They'll give you a receipt on the spot. Just call 512-854-5557 to schedule a time.
Q. Is there a way to pay my tickets over the Internet?
A. The county now has an on-line payment portal where you can pay your JP5 fines and fees 24/7. Please read all the instructions before proceeding to the link.
Q. If I don't have the money to pay the fine for my ticket, can I just go to jail?
A. You can go to jail but there is no guarantee of how much credit will be given towards paying off your obligations. Also, do you really want a jail record to show up in a background check when applying for a job? If you can't pay now, the best solution is to save some money each week and set it aside until you have enough to pay your fine(s).
Q. I live in another state now, why should I be concerned about a ticket I received in Travis County?
A. Today government agencies have computer databases that cross state boundaries. An old offense in Austin could show up on you record in New York and you may not be able to renew your driver's license there until it is paid.