Late penalties, drivers' license suspensions set to return in Minnesota

Late penalties, drivers’ license suspensions for unresolved citations, and other automated processes are returning after they were halted due to COVID-19 back in March, state officials announced Tuesday.

Automated processes that refer court-ordered fines, fees and other financial obligations to the Minnesota Department of Revenue for collections will resume Oct.1 under an administrative order issued by the State Court Administrator. Additionally, 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. 

According to the Minnesota Judicial Branch, residents 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, 2020, 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: 
  • By Phone: Call (651) 281-3219 in the metro area or (800) 657-3611 outside of the metro area. 
  • By Mail: Make check or money order payable to Court Administration. Send to: Minnesota Court Payment Center, PO Box 898, Willmar, MN 56201. Include a copy of your citation or indicate the citation number on the check or money order.
  • In Person: Pay your fine in person in the county listed at the top of your citation. Access 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.