I am dealing with the animal control in Lake Elsinore California. They sent me a letter 30 days after payment was due for me to renew my dog license. They charge a late fee after the 30 days. In their letter they indicate that it is the owners responsibility to remember to pay on time every year. Isn't there a law that indicates they must send out proper notice a certain amount of days before payment is due, before charging me a late fee?
Response: Unfortunately, there is no such Statute. In any event, this is not a Statute that you are dealing with. It is an Ordinance, a local rule established by each Town or City. In this City, there is no such rule giving residents additional notice to renew their dog and cat licenses before the late fees are imposed. See Ordinance Title 6 Chapter 6.04 Section 6.04.030:
"6.04.030 Dog and cat licensing.
A. It is unlawful for any person to own, harbor or keep any dog or cat four months of age or older within the City for a period longer than 30 days, unless there is attached to such dog or cat a valid license tag obtained from the City of Lake Elsinore. A license will be issued for each dog or cat upon payment of a license fee established pursuant to LEMC 6.04.020.
Said license shall be valid for a period of one year following issuance and shall be renewed within 30 days after such period termination.
B. If an application for a license is made more than 30 days after the date such license is required, the applicant shall pay a penalty established pursuant to LEMC 6.04.020. If a valid license tag is lost or destroyed, a duplicate thereof may be procured from the Animal Control Department upon submission of proof of loss and payment of the fee established pursuant to LEMC 6.04.020.
C. Any dog or cat owned by a person moving into Lake Elsinore that has a current license issued in the County of Riverside will be honored for up to one year. A Lake Elsinore license must be issued, however, to ensure that the dog or cat is vaccinated against rabies and to ensure proper information is on file regarding the owner and the animal.
D. No fee shall be required for a license for any dog being reared, possessed and under the control of a blind person, hearing-impaired person, or other certified dogs that are trained to assist the handicapped or police dogs used in the course and scope of their employment by peace officers."
I am sorry that I do not have better news for you.