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yamar2001

Italy October 2015 Traffic Ticket - now in collections?

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I'm an American citizen. I went to Italy in October of 2015 and rented a car.

 

About a year after our trip, I received a letter stating I owed money for a traffic violation. It was from the city of Firenze (Florence) I paid the fine, I believe it was about $125 Euro.

 

Fast forward to today and I receive a call stating I owe $427.24 for a traffic ticket from Italy. The collections agency stated they had mailed several documents trying to collect this debt. Sounds like it started out as a $140 fine and its now gone all the way up to $427.24

 

I asked them to email me (or snail mail) the documentation from the traffic ticket. He emailed it to me and it looks like the documents were being sent to my old address.

 

I notified the gentleman on the phone that I had previously paid off a traffic ticket from Italy, but I wasn't 100% sure if this was the same ticket. He said I can look for the payment on my credit card and then call back with the dollar amount, and from there he can verify if its the same ticket.

 

He emailed the paperwork and so I saw a user ID and PW to log onto "European Municipality Outsourcing" website to view information about the traffic ticket...I tried logging on and the ID is not working, perhaps it expired.

 

In any case, what is my best course of action here?

 

I've worked my flowers off to get myself into a good spot credit wise... I'm currently sitting at a 748 according to my Capital One credit monitoring. Upon quick glance I do not see anything regarding this ticket on my report?

 

Any help is appreciated.

Edited by yamar2001

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oh I probably should have included this piece of information:

 

the ticket is from a street camera that allegedly viewed me driving in a restricted area without authorization. In my research these fines are legally binding in Europe.... with the courts ruling in "almost 100% favor of the police" when presented with the evidence.

 

The collection agency attempting to collect is Cedar Financial...he said he was calling from California (USA)

 

Lastly, the guy on the phone said the country of Italy is legally required to show me documentation of the fine within 360 days of receiving my personal information...he said they were in compliance because it took them a long time to get my information from the car rental company.

Edited by yamar2001

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Traffic fines cannot be reported on your CR.

 

There is a thread with the info about it somewhere.

 

thank you for the reply. I'll look around. If someone else has the link handy, I'd appreciate that.

 

So what do I do about the CA calling me? Just tell him I can't pay it? Ignore them?

 

If what you say is true its probably in my best interest to send them a letter stating the laws preventing traffic tickets from showing up on CR, and ask that they stop contacting me....right?

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Traffic fines cannot be reported on your CR.

 

There is a thread with the info about it somewhere.

Possibly in the future. They can still be reported.

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sounds like in 2016, all three CA's agreed they won't accept traffic fines or other debts that “did not arise from any contract or agreement to pay"

 

https://www.thecreditbureau.com/credit-report/credit-agencies-stop-reporting-unpaid-tickets/

 

Hopefully this is a good source?

 

Here's another source...about half way down

 

http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/new-credit-reporting-protections-the-national-consumer-assistance-plan.html

Edited by yamar2001

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Who do they claim owns the debt?

Are they trying to collect for the city, or did the rental car company pay the fine and they're now trying to collect from you?

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Who do they claim owns the debt?

 

Are they trying to collect for the city, or did the rental car company pay the fine and they're now trying to collect from you?

As far as I know the rental company did not pay the fine.

 

Is this something I should put in writing to ask them?

 

It sounds like the general consensus is I don't have to pay this, but I'd like to be sure of it.

 

 

Italy? As long as you don't plan on going back there any time soon, I say you tell them to baci il tuo culo. :grin:

 

No plans of going back to Italy but I don't want this thing hanging over my head either.

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Who do they claim owns the debt?

 

Are they trying to collect for the city, or did the rental car company pay the fine and they're now trying to collect from you?

As far as I know the rental company did not pay the fine.

 

Is this something I should put in writing to ask them?

 

It sounds like the general consensus is I don't have to pay this, but I'd like to be sure of it.

 

 

Italy? As long as you don't plan on going back there any time soon, I say you tell them to baci il tuo culo. :grin:

 

No plans of going back to Italy but I don't want this thing hanging over my head either.

 

 

If they can't report to the CRAs, and you are in the USA, what can they do? It's not like they're going to extradite you to Italy over a traffic ticket.

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There is no effective way to domestically enforce a traffic citation from another Nation-State issued to you. If you were a "wanted" criminal suspect, an Italian Court of Record would have to prepare legal paperwork and have it served, through the US State Department, onto your resident County Court of Record. Your County Court of Record would have to research the claim, grant the motion, then have you served or arrested with a Federal "Hold" on your person to await extradition to Italy.

An Italian Court sending that to American collections is hoping someone might simply cough up the cash. As long as you never plan on going back to Italy, they can't effectively do a darn thing.

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This is actually pretty comical - They can't even collect on a ticket that you get in Canada.. much less in Europe..

The CA has some issues here.. There is no way that they can sue you, collect it, or make it show up on your CR...

 

Also, it's not as if they can suspend your DL either.. That just is not possible either

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Italy is on my no travel list as well but I do love San Marino and considered retirement there. The downside is you have to visit Italy to get to San Marino which is the big black mark on retiring there.

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There is no effective way to domestically enforce a traffic citation from another Nation-State issued to you. If you were a "wanted" criminal suspect, an Italian Court of Record would have to prepare legal paperwork and have it served, through the US State Department, onto your resident County Court of Record. Your County Court of Record would have to research the claim, grant the motion, then have you served or arrested with a Federal "Hold" on your person to await extradition to Italy.

 

An Italian Court sending that to American collections is hoping someone might simply cough up the cash. As long as you never plan on going back to Italy, they can't effectively do a darn thing.

 

More likely, a CA owner got a traffic ticket while on vacation in Europe and he suddenly realized an untapped market :glare:

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There is no effective way to domestically enforce a traffic citation from another Nation-State issued to you. If you were a "wanted" criminal suspect, an Italian Court of Record would have to prepare legal paperwork and have it served, through the US State Department, onto your resident County Court of Record. Your County Court of Record would have to research the claim, grant the motion, then have you served or arrested with a Federal "Hold" on your person to await extradition to Italy.

 

An Italian Court sending that to American collections is hoping someone might simply cough up the cash. As long as you never plan on going back to Italy, they can't effectively do a darn thing.

 

More likely, a CA owner got a traffic ticket while on vacation in Europe and he suddenly realized an untapped market :glare:

 

 

 

You're probably right, Jeff.

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they continue to call me.

 

Whats my course of action in making them do one of the following:

 

a.) realize I'm not going to pay

 

b.) stop calling

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1. Does your state require debt collectors to be licensed or bonded? Check your state and see if Cedar Financial meets the requirements.

2. They are regulated by the FDCPA, so send a cease and desist letter (via certified mail, return receipt) - instructing them not to call you about the debt.

 

FYI:

http://www.agrussconsumerlaw.com/stop-cedar-financial-harassment/

Edited by tmcgill

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I would send a letter to the collection agency and tell them to cease and desist all contact with you.

 

There is no recourse for them to put it on your credit files and they cannot do anything to affect your USA drivers license. Tell them to FOAD.

 

Don't even worry about a future trip to Italy.

Just use a different rental car company on your next trip and you will have no issues.

 

They are just hoping someone pays them.

They have no options to enforce this against you.

Edited by RocketGoBoom

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This exact thing happened to me, also in Florence, also Oct. of 2015

When I got the initial ticket I research it and found that the Rental Car Place (pretty sure it was Hertz) is right in the middle

of the "restricted zone". Just pulling the car out of the lot gets you photoed and a ticket issued.

After I received my ticket, I asked others about it, and was told to ignore it, as it was just a cash generating thing for Florence.

So I ignored it.

 

Just yesterday I received a letter from the same collection agency (Cedar Business Services) for $400.61

 

I plan to ignore this also.

 

I do see that their physical address is only 20 mins. from my house....maybe I should pay them a visit and tell them where

they can put their billing notice.

 

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Something that also needs to be kept in mind is that the non-payment COULD impact the ability to rent again through Hertz (or whoever the rental was through).  For some, this is not a big deal.  For others, however, this would be a very significant consideration. 

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