Home  /  Inside City Hall  /  About City of Federal Way  /  FAQ


Photo Enforcement Information

What are the fines?

By law, fines cannot “exceed the amount of a fine issued for other parking infractions within the jurisdiction.” Parking fines in Federal Way can be as much as $250, with an additional $200 assessment. However, the fine for red light violations is only $124; the same amount charged if the citation was issued by an officer in your presence.

The fines in Federal Way for photo violations in school zones range from $210 to no more than $250 (excluding late fees). School zone violations issued by a police officer in your presence start at $210 and can be as high as $784.

Can a photo enforcement ticket be deferred?

Defendants desiring to keep violations off their driving record request deferred findings. There is no reason to defer a photo enforcement ticket because the violation will never appear on your driving record.

What are my hearing options?

If you decide not to pay the fine, you can request a mitigation hearing or a contested hearing. The hearings can be in person or by mail. Please follow the directions on the information provided to you by the court in requesting a hearing.

Simply put, you should request a mitigation hearing if you do not contest the issuance of the ticket against you and want the fine reduced or waived. You should request a contested hearing if you do not believe you violated the law. Please note that you waive your right to appeal if you request a contested hearing by mail. Also, the judge typically does not reduce the fine if the judge determines that you committed the infraction.
Photo Enforcement SMD Certificates

Where do I send my request for hearing?

Do not send your request for hearing directly to the court and do not drop it off at the court. Please send your request for hearing to the following address (do not send your payment to this address):

Federal Way Municipal Court
Photo Enforcement Program
P.O. Box 22091
Tempe, AZ 85285-2091

Who do I contact if I have any further questions?

Call the ATS customer service number at 866.790.4111.

What is the law at intersections regarding red lights?

If you are turning right, you must come to a complete stop before the stop line and you can then proceed with your turn if traffic is clear. A stop is defined as a “complete cessation from movement.” In other words, your vehicle cannot be moving at all. You must yield to other vehicles entering the intersection on a green light and vehicles making U-turns. If you are travelling straight through the intersection or turning left then you cannot pass the stop line after the light turns red.

Why am I being cited as the registered owner of the vehicle?

The law provides a rebuttable presumption that the registered owner was the driver at the time the alleged violation occurred. Unlike some other states, Washington law prohibits a photograph of the driver. The type of presumption used in photo enforcement violations is the same type of presumption that has been used for parking violations for a number of years.

Surface Water Management

How do I find out information about harmful algae blooms in lakes?

Contact the Washington Department of Health at 360-236-3330 or visit their webpage at www.doh.wa.gov/algae