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Summary:

A new app lets you fight parking tickets right from your iPhone.

Fixed ticket photo

Tired of paying for questionable parking tickets? Believe it or not, there is now an app for that. Fixed, a new iOS app for fighting parking tickets, is available today from Apple’s App Store. Simply take a photo of your ticket and let Fixed do the rest.

The app was inspired by the number of parking tickets its co-founder David Hegarty was getting. “I have a car in San Francisco, and I can’t tell you how many times I personally got parking tickets that were completely bogus,” Hegarty said. “Either the signs were missing, or the street paint had worn off. Dealing with parking tickets is a complete pain, and so what happens is people end up paying even if they know they were not at fault.”

Fixed ticket photo

So how does it work? All you have to do is download the app, take a photo of your parking ticket, and submit it to Fixed. Fixed will show you the likelihood of beating the ticket, and how much money you’ll save if you do. If you decide to contest the ticket, Fixed will take care of the rest from there.

The company has worked with a team of legal researchers and lawyers to pore over the parking regulations and find the most common types of errors. Fixed says it can increase your chance of beating a ticket from one-third to over fifty percent.

The app and service are completely free to use, and if you lose, you don’t owe Fixed anything. If you win, you agree to pay Fixed 25 percent of your parking ticket. So if you were just planning to pay your parking ticket to get it over with, you really have nothing to lose. And you also don’t need to take a day off from work to appear in court.

Fixed percentage

Fixed isn’t about beating the system, says Hegarty, but making it better. “If people park illegally they should get tickets, but it is then the city’s responsibility to make clear and accurate signs and keep them up-to-date. Think of Fixed as fixing your parking tickets, but also fixing the system.”

The app is only able to fight tickets in San Francisco to start, but Hegarty plans to expand to additional major cities soon.

“We’re going to launch our second city in April,” Hegarty said. “We’ll decide which city based on the number of downloads by city. Right now, it’s a dead heat between NYC, LA and Chicago.”

Fixed contest

After launching the first two cities, Hegarty hopes to tackle the top 100 cities in the U.S. It might start at the rate of roughly one city per month, but he hopes for it to grow quicker from there. Traffic tickets and moving violations might also be included over time. And plans for an Android app are in the works, which Hegarty estimates is about two months out.

As a Brooklyn resident without a license, Fixed likely isn’t an app I’ll need to use any time soon. But it does seem like a pretty great alternative to paying for a parking ticket you know you didn’t deserve. As it rolls out to more locations, I’m sure many of my Zipcar-driving friends will soon be able to breathe a sigh of relief.

  1. A great idea, but you must also factor in the time you’ll spend fighting. Seattle’s Capitol Hill, with all its hospitals, is a big ticket money-maker for the city. I was ticketed once there despite taking great care to comply with the area’s complicated signage. Unfortunately, the sign that applied to my location, while it was there, was installed facing into a tree a mere foot away, a tree large enough it must have been there for at least twenty years.

    Yes, if I had taken pictures of that scam, I might have won in front of a judge, but the city has that covered. Before going to court, I’d have to go for mediation downtown (not over the phone). I knew enough about the city to know there wasn’t much chance of winning there. If there had been, that sign would have been moved long before.

    So that meant two trips downtown, with accompanying waits for buses and for my time before the bureaucracy. The bother wasn’t worth it, which was precisely their purpose. Oh, and in the three or four minutes it took me to drive off Capitol Hill after that ticket I saw FOUR meters maids on the prowl. Greed, greed, greed, and all targeting people visiting sick family members.

    Instead, that item went on to my already long list of why Seattle is badly governed. That list includes far worse schemes like huge, costly and wasteful construction boondoggles like the current Viaduct replacement. (The tunneling machine being used to bore a tunnel will be stuck, not moving, for some nine months.) Seattle, I told friends, is headed down that same foolish path as Detroit. It even voted of Obama.

    And in August I moved to a college town that’s consistently rated among the best 25 small towns in America.

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  2. According to comments on iTunes, there are literally tens of thousands of people “in line” for someone at Fixed to take a look at their ticket. Not so promising.

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