UPDATE – 3/25/19 – Includes new location in David, online info options, and more.
Did you get a traffic ticket in Panama?
It isn’t hard to pay a ticket.
But it can be inconvenient since it must be paid in person.
However, you can have someone pay it for you. We have done that for people with no issues.
Timeframe To Pay Your Ticket
For most traffic tickets, you have 30 days to pay it before you start accruing late fines. Thankfully, the initial fines are pretty reasonable (10%). But they do continue to go up over time.
However, some traffic violations, such as using a cellular phone while driving, must be paid within 48 hours. It should say on the ticket how long you have to pay.
Where in Panama To Pay Your Traffic Ticket
You pay all traffic tickets at one of Panama’s ATTT or Sertracen offices. Sometimes ATTT and Sertracen share the same location. (Sertracen is Panama’s DMV and ATTT stands for Autoridad del Transito y Transporte Terrestre).
You should pay the ticket in the province in which it was issued.
- Payment locations for each province are printed on the back of the ticket you receive.
- For Sertracen office locations, check their website here.
- For ATTT locations, check their website.
Keep in mind, the websites are not always updated. For instance, the ATTT website still lists the Chiriqui Mall as David’s ATTT location. But they are likely more up-to-date than the information on the back of the ticket.
Where to Pay in David
To pay any traffic ticket you get in the Chiriqui Province, go to the Plaza Mas La Riviera in David (see map).
Plaza Mas La Riviera is a new shopping complex. It is home to a large Cochez building supply store (with it’s bright yellow sign), a large Romeros supermarket, a Dominos pizza, an expansive parking lot, and more.
(NOTE: David’s ATTT office is no longer at Chiriqui Mall, you must go to the new location at Plaza Mas La Rivera)
Your best bet is to use WAZE (or other GPS app) to find your way to Plaza Mas La Riviera in David.
It is not located on one of the more commonly driven roads. Although, I think with this and other developments on the way, it is sure to be more frequently traveled.
To give you a sense of where it is located in David, I have posted an annotated Google Map above.
How To Pay Your Ticket
Regardless of the location at which you pay your ticket, the procedures are basically the same.
What to Bring With You
- Your ID (passport or cedula)
- Traffic ticket
- Cash to pay the ticket.
They won’t always ask for your ID, but they might. Plus they will require your passport or cedula if the citation number is illegible.
If you are paying someone’s ticket for them, a photocopy or photo on your phone of the person’s ID will suffice.
Once you are at the ATTT or Sertracen office, hand your ticket to one of the women behind the counter. (Yes, 99% of the time it is a woman).
(Note: all photos in this post are of the former David location in Chiriqui Mall.)
She will stamp it and handed you a payment coupon.
With this coupon in hand, go to the payment window (Caja). Pay the ticket in cash.
Now your ticket is paid! Congrats.
Make sure you get a receipt showing your payment.
I recommend keeping your receipt for a while in case there is any problem with your payment being recorded.
Check on Ticket Status
If you have a Panamanian Driver’s License, you can check online to see if you have an outstanding ticket.
You can also make sure any payment was correctly recorded.
To find out about your past and current tickets, go to ATTT’s site at www.licencia.com.pa/historial/.
Once on that page, select your ID type (cedula or passporte), put in that ID’s number, and finally your “Número de control ” which is printed vertically on the right-hand edge of your driver’s license.
Your ticket info, past and current, will come up immediately. It also displays how many points, if any, your license currently has.
Protesting Your Ticket
You can protest your ticket.
A while ago, my husband got a speeding ticket, however, he was positive he had not been speeding.
He decided to protest it.
The long line to pay the ticket may have influenced his decision to protest it.
It must have been right after payday. Because it seemed like everyone and their brother was in the office paying tickets that day. (The photos on this page are NOT from that busy day)
My husband didn’t have to leave the office to register his protest. He had to talk to a different person in the office and fill out some paperwork describing the incident.
It was supposed to take 1 month to get a resolution. However, he was told that it was his responsibility to check back. There was no guarantee the office would contact him.
He had to pay the ticket within, I think, 5 days once the decision was made.
My husband went back 2 months later to check on its status. No decision had been made.
My husband decided to pay the ticket while he was in the office. The ticket was $50.
He determined that it wasn’t worth coming back to check on the status of his protest, especially since he would be fined if he didn’t pay within 5 days a decision. (Assuming, of course, that he would lose his protest.)
Something to consider before you decide to protest a ticket. Of course, that was before you could check online about the status of your ticket. Being able to check online definitely makes it easier.
Summary & More Info
- Tickets are reasonably priced. At this time, speeding tickets are $50 regardless of how much over the speed limit you were going. Tickets for not wearing a seatbelt are $75. (Note: only people in the front seat are required to wear a seatbelt). However, if you get a drunk driving ticket your fine can be up to $2,400 and your car could be impounded.
- Tickets must be paid in cash and in person (This may be changing)
- Discover if you have unpaid tickets. Go to licencia.com.pa/historial/
This was very helpful. However, we encountered one additional snag – we arrived early this morning to pay our ticket and were not allowed in. There is a dress code that requires long pants, closed shoes and shirts with sleeves. Luckily my husband had shoes and a shirt at the hotel, and was able to borrow a pair of pants from a buddy. But now the lineup is 30 people ahead of us.
Thanks for pointing out that not being able to check with them within 5 days is just as fine because it takes a while. But I think I would still want to finish this process already because it’s a hassle in my hectic schedule. I just got a ticket because I was not familiar with the area that is why I went into a one-way lane. I guess I would hire an attorney to make it fast.