Your goal is to convince the court to take the fine out of collections. You can also ask the court to:
waive all collection fees and interest
let you set up a payment plan on the fine only
or work it off through community service
Bring proof of your financial situation. If you cannot pay the fine in full, bring proof that you get public assistance, rent or mortgage bills, utility bills, pay stubs, tax forms, debts, and so on. Examples of public assistance include food assistance, ABD, TANF, and SSI/SSDI.
Have an explanation ready for your underlying ticket and/or driving record. The judge may ask you to explain your ticket and/or driving record.
This is especially true if:
you have gotten many traffic tickets recently
you have gotten more than one ticket for the same thing
you were driving without a license or insurance
Bring proof of valid license, insurance, or tabs. If the underlying ticket was for driving without a license, insurance, or current tabs, you should bring proof that you now have or at the time you got the ticket had a license, insurance, or tabs.