Deadline nears for $39M red light settlement claims

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Crusader Staff Report

Time is running out for those seeking a piece of the $38.75 million red light settlement that the city of Chicago approved last summer to resolve a class-action lawsuit.

The deadline to file a claim is Monday, December 11. More than $1.2 million drivers could receive a half refund on fines from red light ticket violations. Many eligible applicants received letters in the mail, telling them how to collect their settlement. Drivers who received tickets between 2010 to 2015, may be eligible for settlement.

Those who are unsure of whether they qualify for the settlement can enter their ticket number on online to https://www.cityofchicago.org/ city/en/sites/settlement/home.html.

The settlement came after a class-action lawsuit was filed in 2015, claiming the city violated its own rules by failing to send a second notice of violation before drivers were deemed guilty. The complaint also said the city doubled the fine for late payments sooner than allowed. Several months later, the city changed the ordinance to eliminate the requirement of a second notice. In 2016, the city passed an ordinance to allow those who did not receive second notices to request an administrative hearing to contest their tickets. The city’s lawyers argued the move brought them into compliance.

Under the settlement drivers who received tickets from 2010 to 2015 will be paid out of a $26.75 million pot. The city will also forgive an additional $12 million in unpaid tickets. As part of the settlement, the city agreed not to count the tickets toward violations that could get cars booted or licenses suspended.

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