On Clarifying the State’s Use of Electronic Traffic Citations

The Akron Legal News last Friday had article on clarifying the state’s use of electronic traffic citations which the Ohio Supreme Court issued in two amendments to Traffic Rule 3, effective Jan. 1, 2014. (Text of Amendments)

“Electronic traffic citations, while allowable under Ohio law, are only available to a very small number of police departments,” the Legal News’ article stated, and, centering its discussion around Summit County, which has those capabilities, that “to understand electronic ticketing is to understand its history.

“Ohio law enforcement agencies have been allowed by rule and law to issue citations electronically since Division F was added to the traffic rules, back in February 2002. Since then, several amendments have been added to the traffic rules to clarify the process of electronic ticketing.

“That original addition to the law as generated from a study by the Digital Signatures Committee of the Ohio Judicial Conference, and authorized, ‘the use of traffic tickets that are produced by computer or other electronic means and the adoption of local rules relative to the electronic filing of traffic tickets.’

“The section was further refined by amendments in 2006 and now in 2014, with the latest amendments doing  two things to the current law: eliminate the need for the defendant to sign the e-ticket, but, at the same time, require the citing officer to sign the citation as a means of certifying it.”