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Ask 2: UPDATED: Am I still obligated to appear in court for a traffic ticket even though there will probably be more than 10 people present at one time?

Street view of the Houston Municipal Courthouse located at 1400 Lubbock St.
Street view of the Houston Municipal Courthouse located at 1400 Lubbock St. (Google Maps)

HOUSTONAt KPRC 2, we’re dedicated to keeping Houstonians informed. As part of our new Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston.

The original question: Am I still obligated to appear in court for a traffic ticket when there will probably be more than 10 people present at one time in court?

The short answer: Not until May 4, when you have the option to reset your court date. You also have the option to pay for a traffic fine online or by mail.

The long answer: According to The City of Houston Municipal Courts Department as of March 25 through Friday, May 1, no court proceedings will be scheduled.

If you are a defendant scheduled for court during this period, you do not have to appear. You must reschedule your setting in person no later than Friday, May 15 at 9 p.m. to receive a new court date.

All court functions will resume on Monday, May 4 unless further notification is provided. It is important to note that if an individual fails to reset their case during the reset period (May 4-15) an arrest warrant may be issued.

This is an update from an announcement made on March 15, saying that individuals who are scheduled for arraignments, trials by judge, parking adjudication hearings and all other proceedings are expected to appear in court.

There will also be no parking adjudication hearing. You may contest your parking citation online.

A representative from the City of Houston told us over the phone that the municipal courts are still open, fully staffed, and running as normal as big crowds are normally not expected in those court settings.

To avoid the spread of COVID-19 in court, the City of Houston is taking precautions by social distancing and having extra cleaning crews, but if you are still hesitant to appear in court, you do have the option to pay for traffic fines on their website or by mail.

For additional announcements and information, you can call the City of Houston helpline at 3-1-1 or (713) 837-0311.

Do you have a burning H-Town-related question? Send it our way, and we will try to hunt down an answer.

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