Collections: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

General FAQ

    Although the judge ordered the defendant to pay you restitution, you will only receive your money if the defendant has the ability to pay.The defendant's ability to pay is dependent upon whether he/she is working, or has other sources of income.

    DTACbills the defendant each month. If the defendant fails to pay on a regular basis, the collector assigned to the account will contact the defendant to determine why payment has not been received.If the defendant is working, but refuses to pay, our office will obtain a court order to garnish his/her wages.

    If the defendant is not working and has no assets, the account will be referred back to the probation officer or the court for issuance of a court order to have the defendant appear before the judge and explain why payment has not been made.

    When the defendant is ordered to pay restitution, state law mandates that a judgment be entered against the defendant.If the court or DTAC is not successful in securing payment, you have the right to pursue the defendant in a civil law suit.You can also file a lien against the defendant by obtaining a copy of the judgment from the court and filing an abstract with the Clerk-Recorder's Office.In addition, you may qualify for reimbursement from the California State Victim Restitution Fund.

    DTAC has an agreement with the State of California Franchise Tax Board to recover any past due amounts owed to Santa Clara County. If you received a notice from the state thatit hasintercepted your state tax refund or attached your bank account, that would mean that DTAC has submitted your name to the state because you have not paid a debt that was owed to DTAC.

    There could be a number of reasons why this occurs. Often times, a defendant will only hear in courtthat he/she owes a fine. State law requires that for every fine imposed for criminal, vehicle or local ordinance offenses, that a penalty assessment of up to 310% be added. For example, this means that if you are fined $100, a penalty assessment of $310 is added for a total amount owed of $410. In addition, the court may order program fees if you are placed on probation. There may also be fees imposed for programs such as Weekend Work, Public Defender, State Restitution, Victim Restitution, drug program fees, diversion program fees and an accounts receivable fee. If you are unclear about your debt, contact your account representative for a more detailed explanation ofall the charges.

    It is the responsibility of the debtor to pay regardless of receipt of a statement or a notice. Send your payment in a regular envelope with the account or the case number to:

    County of Santa Clara
    Department ofTax and Collections
    P O Box 1897
    San Jose CA 95109

    No, Parking tickets are paid to various private businesses thatprovide parking processing services for each issuing agency. Generally, the ticketing agency will provide a payment envelope with the contact information on the ticket. If you lost the ticket, the parking vendor is required by law to provide a notice to you with payment and contact information, as well as the procedure to appeal the ticket. If you do not have any of this information, you need to contact the agency that issued the ticket. If you received a ticket from any of the following County of Santa Clara agencies: Facilities and Fleet Department (FAF), Social Services Agency (SSA), Santa Clara Valley Health and Hospital System (VMC), Parks and Recreation Department (PRK), Office of the Sheriff (SHO) or Stanford University (STN), California Highway Patrol (CHP), the telephone number to call is 1-800-281-7275.

    Learn about parking options at County offices

    Justice Accounts FAQ

      A packet is the grouping of DTAC Justice accounts owed by the same person.

      DTAC Justice Packets include criminal cases identified as formal or summary probation cases, realignment cases with or without mandatory supervision, and charges incurred by minor(s) where the parent(s) was/were deemed to be responsible. Traffic cases are NOT included in a Justice packet.

      You owe Victim Restitution if you have been ordered by the Court to pay an amount to a person/business/government entity for losses that you caused related to your involvement in a crime, and you have not paid those losses in full. Please contact your DTAC representative for additional details. Contact information is provided on your statement and on this website under Contact DTAC and Justice Accounts page.

      The DTAC account that you intended to pay will indicate that the payment was applied to another account. For additional details, contact your DTAC representative. Contact information is provided on your statement and on this website under Contact DTAC and Justice Accounts page.

      If you have a criminal civil assessment case that you want to pay off so that you can reinstate your drivers license, but you owe other Justice accounts, then you will need to pay your Victim Restitution first. If you have no Victim Restitution owing, then your payment will be applied to that account, and the Court will be notified to contact DMV for the release which may take 3-5 business days.

      You can contact your DTAC representative for details related to your accounts. Your representative will give you the amount you owe on a specific account, or the total amount owed, if you have a packet (all accounts owed by you).

      Payment and Billing FAQ

        • Must be registered with your name and address and activated before use.
        • Billing address reported to DTAC and card registered address must match.
        • If you use the card before the funds may be on hold (by the bank that issued your card) for 7-15 days before they can be accessed again.

        DTAC accepts Visa, Master Card, Discover, American Express, and Diner's credit cards. Debit cards with the Star, NYCE or Pulse logo are also accepted.

        If paying by E-Check, please be sure to authorize your bank to allow Electronic Funds Transfer (EFTs) from County of Santa Clara County or Santa Clara County with Company ID T946000533; otherwise your e-check payment may be declined by your financial institution.

        IMPORTANT: Accounts paid in full by debit card or eCheck will incur a 15 day hold period before notification of your account being paid in full is provided to the Court which in turn will authorize DMV to release a drivers license hold. It is the cardholders responsibility to know whether they are paying using a credit card or debit card.

        DTAC offers a variety of payment methods and alternatives to make a payment on your account. Please click on the link below for more detailed information or to make a payment. Make a Payment Online.

        The monthly bills were probably being printed and your payment had not posted yet. You can obtain the information relative to your last payment amount and date posted through DTAC's Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system.

        The number for the IVR system is:

        • Justice, Medical, and General Collections
          (877) 729-4773
        • Public Assistance Collections
          (877) 472-9772

        You can also contact your account representative and ask to check your payment status.

        Wage garnishments are issued by DTAC, as well as by the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) Court Ordered Debt Program (COD) for accounts DTAC has sent for collection enforcement.

        Wage garnishments issued by DTAC are collected by the sheriff of the respective county in which the garnishment is filed. Wage garnishments issued by COD are collected by COD. Your employer has 7 days to forward the garnished money to the respective sheriff or COD. Once the sheriff or COD receives the garnishment, it willhold your payment for at least 30 days before forwarding the payment to DTAC. DTAC posts these payments within 48 hours of receipt. Typically, wage garnishment payments take 6-8 weeks to appear onthe debtors account.  Neither the sheriff nor COD has the ability to provide payment notification to DTAC any sooner.

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