Woman holding up parking tickets she has recieved;Ticket fine because of parking violation on the windshield

@sophiarosekellly/TikTok tommaso79/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘Do not do what I did’: Woman finds out she owes $13,000 in parking tickets

'I would simply move out of state and start over.'


Stacy Fernandez


Posted on Sep 4, 2023

In a viral TikTok, a Los Angeles woman shared how she ended up paying $13,000 on her recent trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles—aka the notorious DMV.

In the video, Sophia Rose Kelly films from inside of her parked car. She says that she wasn’t initially going to make a video about her parking ticket ordeal “because it’s so bad,” but she felt it was her “duty” to share and hopefully help others avoid the situation she was in.

“It’s almost like a PSA,” Kelly says.

She explains that she went to the DMV to re-register her car. In California, cars need to be registered with the state each year and the money goes to a variety of sources including road upkeep and highway patrol.

When it was finally Kelly’s turn at the DMV, the attendant looked straight at her and told Kelly she owed money on 74 parking tickets, which she wrote out by hand for Kelly, the creator says. In total the tickets cost Kelly $13,000, but closer to $14,000 after fees.

“When you drive on a smooth road, no potholes, think of me, because that’s where my money went. They should name a freeway after me,” Kelly says.

Kelly then addresses viewers who may be letting their tickets pile up.

“But if this is a lesson to anyone, maybe this will show up on your algorithm. If you have a parking ticket, pay it. Don’t let it linger, because you will get f*cked,” she concludes.

The video has more than 40,000 views and over 200 comments as of Monday.


pay ur parking tickets &lt3

♬ original sound – sophia

“Pay ur parking tickets <3,” the caption reads.

Kelly is an L.A.-based influencer who appears to mainly post lifestyle content. She has about 47,000 followers on TikTok and over 3.1 million views on the app.

While one person in the comments questioned how Kelly was so calm about the situation, she replied saying that she was able to recount the story calmly because it had been two weeks since she had to pay the tickets.

According to the California State University San Marcos, parking tickets in the state range from $65 to $825, depending on the violation. A quick calculation estimates that Kelly’s tickets averaged out to $175 each.

Several commenters said that if they were in her situation they wouldn’t be able to pay off the tickets that easily.

“Ma’am they would of had to just arrest me cause my bank account consists of $40 atm,” a top comment read.

“The fact that you had $14,000 in your bank account I need to do what you do lol,” a person said.

“GIRL THATS MORE THAN I HAVE IN SAVINGS….,” a commenter wrote.

One person offered a creative, if not drastic, solution.

“I would simply move out of state and start over,” they commented.

The Daily Dot reached out to Kelly for comment via email.

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*First Published: Sep 4, 2023, 1:48 pm CDT