Citations Help Center

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How can I avoid getting a citation while visiting UW-Madison?

Here are some tips to help you avoid getting a parking ticket while visiting campus.

  • Park in an unreserved (unsigned) parking space in a ramp or garage where visitor parking is available.
  • In surface lots, refer to parking lot signs located at the lot entrance for specific hours of enforcement, and specific stall signs for additional restrictions.
  • When parked in a timed stall, pay for your session with ParkMobile and make sure you leave the space when the time limit expires.
  • Be aware that parking spaces along campus streets, i.e., Walnut Street and Observatory Drive, are actually parking lots and are enforced accordingly.
  • Check the events calendar to find out if a lot has been reserved for special events parking only.
  • Do not park in lots with stall signs indicating that UW permits are required at all times.
  • Do not park in stalls painted with blue lines.
  • Do not park in spaces reserved for departments, service/vendor vehicles, loading zones, UW-Disabled parking, or other specially-marked stalls unless you have the proper permit. These spaces are marked with signs.
  • Never park in a fire lane, in a construction zone, or on the grass.

Please note these are common reasons why visitors receive parking tickets, and is not an exhaustive list. For a full list of potential violations, go to citations and fines.

For more information about citations, go to the citation information page.

I'm a UW permit holder. How can I avoid getting a citation?

UW permit holders must follow the parking rules, too. Here are some tips to help you avoid getting ticketed while parking on campus as a permit holder.

  • Make sure your permit is displayed properly, either hung from the rearview mirror or in a clear plastic sleeve on the lower-left hand corner of the windshield. In either case, the photo side of the permit should face the windshield.
  • If your assigned lot is full, relocate to the nearest surface lot and complete the Lot Full Form.
  • If you must relocate to run an errand or attend a meeting across campus, make sure you are in paid status by (a) paying for visitor (hourly) parking in a garage; (b) paying for parking in a timed parking stall; or (3) displaying a valid UW Service permit while parked in a marked service/vendor stall.
  • Pay attention to event parking notices from parkingpermits@fpm.wisc.edu and follow any relocation instructions due to special events or construction.
  • Do not park in spaces reserved for departments, service/vendor vehicles, loading zones, UW-Disabled parking, or other specially-marked stalls unless you have the proper permit. These spaces are marked with signs.
  • Do not park anywhere on campus for more than 72 hours.
  • Never park in a fire lane, in a construction zone, or on the grass.

Please note these are common reasons why permit holders receive parking tickets, and is not an exhaustive list. For a full list of potential violations, go to citations and fines.

For more information about citations, go to the citation information page.

How do I appeal a citation?

There is a formal process for appealing parking citations. You must appeal or pay a citation within 10 calendar days to avoid penalties such as late fees, suspension fees, suspension of license plates, and referral to a debt collection agency.

Visitors have a slightly different appeal process from those directly affiliated with the university. If you do not have a valid NetID or UW Health ID, a bond in the amount of the citation must be submitted along with the appeal. If the citation is dismissed through the appeals process, the bond payment will be refunded. If the citation is upheld, the bond will be forfeited.

If you have a valid NetID or UW Health ID, you are not required to submit a bond payment for a first-level appeal. If your citation is upheld or reduced, you will be required to pay the adjudicated amount.

It takes up to 30 days (four weeks) for an appeal to be processed. Appeal results will be emailed to the address provided on the appeal form.

For auditing purposes, Transportation Services staff are not permitted to discuss the specific details of your appeal over the phone or in person.

When appealing a citation, keep in mind that leaving a note is not a valid way to avoid a citation, and does not count as a reason why the citation should be appealed.

For more information about the citation appeal process, go to the citation information page.

How do I pay a citation?

There are three options to pay a citation.

You can pay online in the Transportation Services eBusiness portal.

  • Login with NetID or UW Health login credentials, or create a “guest” account.
  • Credit/debit payments accepted from MasterCard, Visa, Amex, and Discover.

Or, you can pay in person by visiting a Transportation Services office location.

Or, mail a check or money order made out to “UW Transportation Services” to:

University of Wisconsin – Madison
Transportation Services
610 Walnut Street
Room 124
Madison, WI 53726

For more information about the citation appeal process, go to the citation information page.

Why do I have to display my permit? Don’t you have my license plate on file?

Our enforcement program is based on the visible display of a permit. It is not based on license plates. This is because there are multiple types of permits – such as service permits and department permits – that may be transferred among multiple vehicles and are not associated with a specific vehicle. As long as these permit types are used, we cannot enforce based on license plate numbers.