If you have received a citation from a law enforcement agency in Racine County, the court date noted on your citation is the initial appearance date for the citation.
At your initial appearance, you are required to enter a plea of “not guilty”, “guilty”’ or “no contest” to the citation. When you arrive at Court for your initial appearance, you will meet with the Racine County District Attorney’s office to discuss the citation. At that meeting, if you have negotiated a plea agreement with the District Attorney’s office you will sign a stipulation resolving the citation.
PLEASE BE ADVISED, the court session will last 1-2 hours depending on the number of people who appear. The Court schedules approximately 500 cases for initial appearance, and each case is heard individually. The cases are called on a first come, first served basis. You must check in with the Bailiff and then wait for your number to be called to meet with the District Attorney’s office.
If you want to contest the citation but do not wish to appear and it is not required, you may send in a “Not Guilty” plea by mail to:
Racine County Traffic Court
730 Wisconsin Ave.
Racine, WI 53403.
The letter should contain the file number or citation number, your name and current address. A pretrial notice to appear will be sent by mail after the Initial Appearance date to notify you of the next court date.
If your violation involves an equipment violation, your vehicle registration, insurance, or the suspension/revocation of your driving privileges and you have now fixed the equipment violation, have properly insured or registered your vehicle or have obtained a valid driver’s license, you should bring the proof of repair, insurance, registration or license certificate with you to court.
IF YOU DECIDE TO PLEAD “GUILTY” OR "NO CONTEST" AND YOU WILL NOT BE APPEARING IN COURT, YOU ARE REQUIRED to pay the deposit amount prior to the Initial Appearance hearing.
IF YOU DECIDE TO PLEAD "NOT GUILTY" you should appear in person or follow the procedure above for mailing in a “not guilty” plea. If your case is not settled at the initial appearance, you will receive a scheduling notice advising you of your next court date which will be a Pretrial hearing with the District Attorney.
COURT TRIAL OR JURY TRIAL: If you enter a plea of "NOT GUILTY", a trial to the Court will be scheduled if no resolution occurs at the Pretrial hearing. If you wish to have a Jury Trial, you must pay a non-refundable jury fee of thirty-six dollars ($36.00). The jury fee MUST be received by the Clerk of Circuit Court no later than ten (10) days after your Initial Appearance hearing.
IF YOU FAIL TO APPEAR ON A CITATION: If you fail to appear on a citation, the court official will consider your nonappearance and nonpayment a plea of no contest, make a finding that you are guilty as charged and impose the maximum penalties. You will receive written notification of the conviction approximately ten (10) working days after the Initial Appearance. The penalty will be due within (60) sixty days. Partial payments will be accepted immediately, if the full balance cannot be paid within (60) sixty days.
Please note that speeding violations of 25 or more miles per hour over the posted Speed Limit of 55, 65 or 70 speed limit carries a required fifteen (15) day driver license suspension under Wisconsin Stats. 343.30(1n).
You may pay with cash, check or money order, MasterCard or Visa. There will be a nominal fee charged for credit card payments. If you want a payment plan, you may request a payment plan prior to the due date specified for your payment. A nominal fee of fifteen dollars ($15) is charged for all payment plans. For any questions regarding payments, please stop at the Traffic Window, in the Law Enforcement Center, 717 Wisconsin Ave., Racine.