How long does it take to get a traffic ticket?

When you are a driver, you have to take certain risks. Being aware of them does not mean that one is irresponsible. Because let’s be honest, within that age segment that already has a few years on their driving license, how many have not received one? traffic ticket? The truth is that not even the most cautious driver is exempt from the risk of being penalized, since any distraction can end with an infraction, even if it is minor.

Especially for those who spend more hours on the road and who have the vehicle as their second home, we are going to talk about the time it takes to arrive a fine. Before it was very simple because the infractions were known at the time and the driver went home with the bulletin. Now times have changed and digitization has also been applied to this aspect of life. Therefore, fines will most likely surprise you some time after the violation has been registered.

Is there a fine or not?

Nobody likes to be fined, since it deeply affects both our morals and our pockets, and in both cases it is always painful; Anyone who says otherwise is lying. So let’s see how long it takes Traffic in managing a violation and that it arrives at your home. Whether you are guilty or not, if you have been caught committing some irregularity on the road, you will rarely be able to escape a penalty. The DGT Administration, like the Treasury, is extremely cautious with deadlines.

If you have already verified that you have a fine in your name, the first thing you have to find out is the when the violation was reported. Those that are due to speeding are not usually notified instantly, since they are first managed electronically after detection by radar. However, there are other reasons why we may be treated by law enforcement against our will, such as a drug or alcohol test.

But how long does it take for that fine to arrive? It depends on the crime that has been committed. Most penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs are notified instantly, since it is in full direct contact when the meritorious agent verifies the condition of the vehicle and the driver, and delivers the fine to the latter if necessary. From that moment on, you can pay the penalty to benefit from a discount or to file allegations.

How long does it take to receive a fine?

According to article 76 of the Traffic Lawthere are four reasons why a fine can reach the offender’s home via certified postal mail:

  1. If the stopping of the vehicle could pose a danger to traffic.
  2. If a vehicle is parked incorrectly and the driver is not present.
  3. If the violation is detected through electronic systems, such as speeding by a radar or the use of a mobile phone by a camera.
  4. If officers are unable to stop or pursue a vehicle.

In either case, the notification time usually varies. In fact, it can take several weeks from the violation until one receives the notification in the mailbox at home (or on the door itself). In that sense, there is a period of three to six months to notify the violation. Fines for speeding, for example, usually take from one to three weeks, a period that can be extended if the radar that detected the speeding is mobile or if the violation is serious.

If the complaint is notified immediately, signing the bulletin does not imply agreement with the facts reported, but it does confirm that you have received a copy of the complaint and the Administration will not have to notify you of anything else. Here you can now pay or appeal the fine, as you see. If you are not notified of the complaint immediately, the sanctioning body will have different deadlines from the date on which the infraction was committed to notify the complaint, or it could prescribe.

Do fines expire?

In this sense, if the violation has been notified after six months of having committed it, there is no capacity to sanction the driver, since in this case the fine would have expired. If the crime has been minor and in three months you have not received any Traffic letter, you can forget about it.

However, if the sanction does not reach the home but is published on the Edictal Board of Traffic Sanctions (TESTRA), the prescription period is interrupted.

  • Minor violations: three months from the date of the violation. When it reaches us, we can pay the fine in a voluntary period or appeal it. The monetary amount is up to 100 euros.
  • Serious/very serious infractions: six months from the date of the violation. When it reaches us, we can pay in a voluntary period or appeal the fine. The monetary amount exceeds 500 euros and carries from loss to prison sentences.

Nor should we forget a small detail: if delivery has not been possible or the offender has not been identified, the sanction will be notified in the Official Bulletin of the Province (BOP) corresponding, being considered notified the day after its publication. If you want to know if you have any pending notifications, you can always sign up at the Road Electronic Address (DEV). In any case, Correos also works hand in hand so that you do not escape fines.

Because if one has been processed, it will arrive by certified postal mail. Even so, the sanction can also be notified through the road electronic address, by email or SMS, as long as we are registered in the aforementioned service. On a personal note, if you are really interested in knowing if you have a fine on your record and you don’t want to receive it at your home (or associated electronic accounts), you can also go to one of the Traffic Fine Information and Processing Offices.

Is there a discount for prompt payment of the fine?

As with practically all fines that you may receive from the government, you always have the option to appeal if you are convinced that it was not your fault. It is not usually the most attractive alternative, since it involves more paperwork, more time and more bile secreted with the wonderful judicial system that dominates our country. Traffic contemplates a period of 20 calendar days to pay the fine by taking advantage of the 50% bonus for prompt payment.

There are various ways to proceed with the payment of the fine, either through a transfer through the same bank, a Traffic office, a Post Office, online on the DGT website, by calling 060 or, If you are in front of an agent of the Civil Guard, you can also pay instantly with your corresponding credit or debit card. He thinks that money is rarely rejected.

According to Pere Navarro, the current general director of Traffic, the 20 days of time for notification of fines has allowed us to get closer “to the desired immediacy between the infraction and the sanction.” And the previously existing period was even much longer if we take into account the time it takes to withdraw the points (in case the infraction carries that sanction) from the moment the crime is committed; before it was 90 days the usual ones to receive a Traffic notification.

(NOTE: Article originally published on 9/29/2022, corrected and expanded)

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