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How to deal with pesky parking tickets in Portland

Resolving parking citations in the City of Roses will always be a bummer, but hopefully our guide makes it less confusing.

A person pays for parking at a meter in Portland.

Make sure to note the time limits when paying for parking — it could save you a major headache.

Photo via PBOT

On the list of “things that can ruin a day,” walking back to your car to find a yellow envelope tucked under the windshield wiper has to rank pretty high.

So you got a parking ticket in Portland — now what?

Well, from the date of your citation, a 30-day countdown begins. If the ticket is not resolved within that window, Multnomah County will consider that ticket delinquent, meaning the fine will increase, and your vehicle may be immobilized or even impounded. Ouch.

To pay the fee, you can do so by mail, over the phone at (971) 274-0590, or online. Depending on the transgression, the amount can range from $44 (improper display of parking meter receipt) to $215 (blocking an ADA access ramp).

You can also contest the parking ticket in one of two ways. With a written explanation, you can present your case with supporting documents and any pertinent context to the offense, possibly reducing your fine.

An officer with Portland Bureau of Transportation puts a reminder for Leaf Day under a car's windshield wiper.

In the fall, be aware of the Leaf Day schedule so your car isn’t towed.

Photo via PBOT

Note: Writing a letter waives your right to a court hearing, which is your last last option. To make an in-person appearance, you can request a hearing by mailing back the original citation envelope, or by visiting the customer service area on the second floor of the Multnomah County Central Courthouse (1200 SW First Ave.).

Just remember, you’re not alone — in 2022, the city issued 102,308 parking tickets.

Pro tip: With the Parking Kitty app, you can extend your stay remotely, saving you troublesome trips back to the meter and having to remember your license plate number.