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I need help before going to court. Where can I find "Administrators' Requirements" in Maryland ? - TA 13 410 e2

Rockville, MD |

Sometime ago I have received a ticket because the tabs were attached to front plate of a vehicle (my wife's vehicle) which I was driving.

I opted to go to trial and dispute it.

Searched the Section 13-410 and have read it all (including subsection 2e) but I can't find a single reference as to on which plate the tabs should be attached.
It only says "(2) The tab shall be displayed on the plates of the vehicle in the manner that the Administrator requires." but does not specify as to what exactly Administrators' requirement in this regard is.

Where can I find Administrators' Requirements?

Where does it specifically state that tabs are required to be attached to rear plate as opposed to front?

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

I'm not entirely sure where the administrator's requirements would be if not in the statute. However, another place to do research is Maryland COMAR, Title 11 Department of Transportation. The MVA has a lot of code there. -- http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/subtitle_chapters/11_Chapters.aspx#Subtitle15 -- good luck.

www.mdappeals.com - This is not legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. This is for education and informational purposes only. It is always recommended that you contact an attorney with any concerns as each individual case is unique.

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Asker

Posted

Thank you for the link. I looked it up but was unable to find anything related to placement of tabs on a license plate. Moreover, on the linked database they keep referring to administration requirements not specifying what those are (for ex. section 11.15.16.01 regarding registrations http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/getfile.aspx?file=11.15.16.01.htm has a phrase : shall apply to the Administration for the registration of the vehicle in the manner that the Administration requires. ). Where can I find what the Administration Requirement is ?

Asker

Posted

I just found it here : http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/getfile.aspx?file=11.15.16.02.htm It is under Section 11.15.16.02, subsection B (1) , in case if anyone needs to know. Thank you, Bennett Wills, the link was helpful !

Bennett James Wills

Bennett James Wills

Posted

Glad you found it. Good luck to you in court.

Asker

Posted

Thanks!

Posted

State administrative agencies are empowered by the legislature in their enabling statutes to issue regulations in order to carry out their mandate under the statute which created them. Details like where a registration sticker is supposed to be placed are left to the MVA and not included in the statute. All state agencies must publish their regulations in the Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR for short). The regulation pertaining to registration stickers (the content of which is included as an instruction for where to affix the stickers when mailed to you by the MVA), is as follows:
"Registration plates shall be affixed to the vehicle and validation stickers shall be displayed on the rear registration plate on or before the expiration date of the registration ...."
COMAR, 11.15.16.02 (B)(1). Link: http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/getfile.aspx?file=11.15.16.02.htm

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Posted

Thank you, I was able to locate Section 11.15.16.02 (B) 1 and included the link to the code in my second, "Thank you!" reply to Attorney Bennett Wills. I would like to make some clarifications: MVA never mailed me the stickers or plates. They were mailed to a car dealer where my wife leased her vehicle. Dealer had FedExed stickers to us (along with the plates) and I can't recall any sort of instructions telling where to affix the stickers. If I was able to search the MD Statutes and find upon a prompt a link within COMAR to 11.15.16.02 (b) 1, surely I would be able to read the instructions that came with the sticker, if I had one. It would make no difference (in time or effort spent) whether I attached stickers to a front or rear plate of my wife's' vehicle. Nor would I hesitate to correct it if I saw proper instructions after installing the plates: in fact It took me less than 5 minutes to switch the plates after I received the ticket. This Cop was just out to ticket me and needed any pretext to write me up and couldn't find any other fault AFTER deciding to penalize me. He was following me at too close distance on Rockville Pike: when traffic light turned yellow I obviously slowed down and stopped, but because he didn't keep a distance (was tailgating me) he almost rear ended me and avoided collision by swerving to the right and stood to the right of my vehicle as we both waited for traffic light to turn green. He then kept following me into Old Georgetown Pike (I assume he was running my plates) and after a while changed his line and seemingly stopped following me, but then suddenly changed his line and resumed following me this time turning sirens on and pulling me over. I can't read anyone's mind, but from what I observed it seemed like when he ran my plates he couldn't find any infractions so he had no choice but to leave me alone, but then it struck him that rear plate didn't have stickers so he chose to use it as an excuse to pull me over. The entire episode is entirely improper, almost illegal: it seems he was pissed off because of his own failure to follow the rules (tailgating other driver and almost rear ending) and then decided to get his ire at me by fishing for any excuse to ticket me. I sure will follow with the letter to his superintendent, supervisor and even our State legislature. I lived in a different State for 10 years, never had any such incident there and , overall, I have spotless driving record with over 20 years of driving experience.

Mark William Oakley

Mark William Oakley

Posted

Unfortunately, traffic laws are strict liability--they do not require intent or awareness that you are violating them to be cited and found guilty. The best you are likely to do--if the officer shows up at court--is to get the judge to grant you a "probation without entry of judgment" which would keep the offense off of your driver's record. This is not a moving violation, by the way, so it does not carry points and would not be a basis to raise your insurance premium (if you were worried about that). Mandatory court costs will have to be assessed if you go to court and plead or are found guilty, on top of any fine the judge imposes. Your other option is to just pay the ticket before court.

Asker

Posted

Strictly speaking, I was not driving my own vehicle, I was driving one which is owned by the Financing Company and leased to my wife. I was merely authorized to operate it. It is possible that if trained technician opens a hood he discovers some unknown yet defect that goes back to assembly point in the plant, would I still be strictly liable for it? Or am I strictly liable to inspect each and every car I have authorization to operate and match it to large database of COMAR, to make sure nothing on vehicle violates anything that could possible be found on COMAR? That's as far as strict liability goes. But the main point is not that the vehicle had some sort of a defect and I got cited for it. The main reason I will take it to court is that I do not believe the officer acted in good faith. I was tailgated at first, almost pushing me to go over yellow/red light (had I been intimidated by being closely followed and crossed yellow/red light instead of slowing down and stopping then surely I would be dealt a "crossed a red light" ticket, not mere stickers violation). BECAUSE I followed the rules (stopped on yellow/red) he nearly rear ended me. And from that point he doggedly pursued me, but seemed to have no choice except to let me go (perhaps ran my plates and didn't find any infraction) so he changed his line and started to recede on rear view mirror, THEN changed his line and started to follow me AGAIN, this time pulling me over ( looks like he finally realized there was something he could pull me over for). This is just UNLAWFUL, if you argue it very seriously and comprehensively (which I can't do, because matter is too small and not justifying it) , UNLAWFUL because you can't first get upset and decide to penalize someone and then start to fish for evidence of infraction to pull them over and cite them. You just can't do that, you must have probable cause or suspicion first , not get irritated first and then start to fish for a reason to cite or penalize someone. Strictly speaking, what officer did is unlawful.

Posted

I defer to my Maryland colleagues- but I believe statute refers to putting tab on rear. License plate.

Andrew Roberts (818) 597-0633/ (805) 496-7777

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