Fine or Other Penalty

For offenses under G.L. c.148A , assessments determined jointly by State Fire Marshal, Public Safety Commissioner, District Court Chief Justice, and Housing Court Chief Justice.

Procedure

Locally-issued citation
You must either pay the ticket or request a hearing from the city or town within 21 days. The hearing by the municipal hearing officer is informal and the formal rules of evidence do not apply. If you request a hearing and are unhappy with the result, you may appeal the decision within 10 days to the Clerk-Magistrate of the Housing Court. If there is no housing court for your community, you may appeal to the District Court.

State-issued citation
You must either pay the ticket or request a hearing from the Housing Court Clerk-Magistrate within 21 days. If there is no housing court for your community, the request for a hearing should go to the District Court. The hearing by the clerk magistrate is informal and the formal rules of evidence do not apply. If you request a hearing and are unhappy with the result, you may appeal the decision within 10 days to a single justice of the court.

What happens if I don’t pay?

If you don’t pay the fine or attend a hearing, the enforcing agency will file a criminal complaint application, and the Clerk-Magistrate will conduct a “show cause” hearing. The fact that you didn’t pay the fine or attend a hearing will be considered prima facie evidence of your guilt.