Usually ignore your traffic maps

How do I pay for a German traffic ticket in the USA?

I recently received a letter from Europcar informing me of a traffic violation in Rastatt while driving the rental car. According to German law, they were obliged to give the German law enforcement authorities my name and address. Presumably I will receive a similar offense from Germany as the one you showed.

I took the liberty of translating the relevant text from the back of page 1 using Google Translate:

To avoid legal disadvantages, please pay careful attention!

  1. You will be warned and fined for the offense (56.56 dfes of administrative offenses). The warning will only take effect if you agree to it and, on the other hand, pay the warning amount on time. The violation can then no longer be punished as an administrative offense. If you agree to the warning, please pay the agreed warning fee within one week of receipt of this letter with the attached payment receipt.
  2. If you do not agree with the warning, you are given the opportunity to comment on the allegation in accordance with Section 55 of the Code of Administrative Violations. It is up to you to comment or not to testify. If you comment on the allegation, you will be judged on the basis of your information whether the procedure will be decided or waived without further explanation from the authorities, a fine will be associated with costs. Even if you have not committed the offense, you are in any case obliged to correct and complete incorrect or incomplete information about yourself using a questionnaire (by filling in the field under "Personal Information"). 111 OWiG threatens violations of this obligation with a fine.
  3. If you did not commit the crime yourself, please inform the authority named overleaf about the responsible person. Although you are not obliged to do so, you must expect, among other things, that you can be seen as a witness for those responsible during the proceedings. As a witness, you can only refuse to testify (52, 55 of the Code of Criminal Procedure) if the person responsible is a dependent (e.g. spouse, eldest, children, fiancée) and is at risk of persecution if exposed.
  4. If you, as the owner of the motor vehicle, involve stopping or a parking crime, the costs of the procedure can be charged if the driver cannot be determined (25 a StVG). You have the option to volunteer within one week of receiving this letter.
  5. If, in the case of an irregular road traffic offense, it cannot be determined who was driving the vehicle at the time of the offense, the owner of the motor vehicle may also be asked to keep a log book in accordance with 31a of the Law Regulations for the Authorization of Road Traffic.
  6. Warnings are not entered in the central vehicle register.
  7. Your data will be saved in an automated file until the process is complete.

Personal information (only complete if the information on the front page is incorrect or incomplete) First name / Surname / Nationality Post code / City / Telephone (optional) / Date of birth Street / House number / Place of birth

Information on the legal representative (voluntary information for persons up to 18 years of age) Name of the law. Representative / father-mother-guardian (tick if necessary) Post code / city / street / house no.

Information on this topic (voluntary information) Will the traffic violation be added? Yes-No (tick if necessary) (If no, please explain below - if necessary, separate sheet) Place / date / signature / reference: (please always state when answering)

Well, I don't see any difference between your case and mine, a traffic violation has occurred and the local authorities in a German city will be expecting a payment.

I can only hope that this doesn't affect my ability to drive in Germany in the years to come. Europcar's letter did not seem to rule out the possibility of a re-rental and as someone else mentioned in their reply, the statue of the minor infringement restrictions does appear to be very short indeed.

If you are concerned about entering Germany on a future trip and see your entry blocked due to minor violations, then this is not a problem if you are entering the EU from a different point of entry. I found out last year when I flew from the US to Germany via Iceland - my "entry point" was Iceland, and when I left the Iceland flight in Germany, arrivals were treated as locals, there was NO customs checkpoint for flights arriving directly from the USA. Alternatively, you can choose a place like Paris as your EU entry point and take a bus or train to Germany. There are no borders in the EU (except in Switzerland!).

Hope this helps someone else in the future!


Oh the joys of automated translation ... "Will the traffic violation be added?" *G*