Lost Traffic Ticket in Wisconsin

Conduct your traffic ticket search with the presiding municipal court or circuit court. Be sure to ask about your violation type, any required court date, acceptable payment methods, and your deadline to respond so you can decide how to plead to your WI traffic ticket.

Find Your Wisconsin Traffic Court

The traffic court presiding over your citation depends on factors such as where you allegedly committed the violation and the type of officer who issued the ticket.

Generally, municipal courts handle traffic tickets on a city level (perhaps issued by a city police officer), while circuit courts handle citations on a county level (generally issued by officers of the county's sheriff's department or Wisconsin State Patrol).

Tips for finding your presiding traffic court include:

  • Thinking of the type of officer who pulled you over.
    • Again, generally city officers work with municipal courts and county or state officers work with circuit courts.
  • Contacting the municipal court and/or circuit court in your home city or county, as this is where you probably do the most driving.
    • If neither can help you find your lost traffic ticket, start branching out to neighboring cities and counties—especially those where you drive the most.
  • Asking any passengers if they remember where you were pulled over or the type of officer who issued the ticket.
  • Remembering where you were headed when you received the ticket. Your destination's location can help you narrow your options.
  • Picturing any notable landmarks in the area. These also can help you narrow your possibilities.

Request Your WI Traffic Ticket Information

You have either a:

  • Deadline to respond to your traffic ticket.
    • Either plead “guilty" and pay your fine or plead "not guilty" and schedule a traffic court hearing.
  • Required court appearance.
    • If your citation is marked “Mandatory Appearance" you must appear in court before you can enter your plea.
    • Consider contacting a traffic ticket attorney; violations that require court appearance usually are serious—and carry serious penalties if you're found guilty.

Once you ask the court clerk about these details, find out:

  • Your specific traffic ticket information, including:
    • The exact violation. This will help you decide how you want to plead.
    • The citation number. Most often, you need this if you're eligible to pay online, by mail, or by phone.
    • The ticketing officer's name and his or her law enforcement agency. This information can help you if you choose to challenge your violation in court.
  • Your traffic ticket fine details, including:
    • The fine amount, and any extra fees or surcharges.
    • Payment options and methods your court accepts.
    • Your deadline to pay.

Plead to Your Traffic Ticket in WI

You can plead "guilty" or "not guilty" to your violation. Both options bring advantages and disadvantages, and we explain them—as well as the processes to plead—in our Pay Traffic Ticket and Fight Traffic Ticket sections.

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