What is Scofflaw?

The Texas Scofflaw Program is a section of the Texas transportation Code, designed to help county and municipal governments hold law breakers accountable, by allowing a Tax Assessor-Collector of a county to reject vehicle registrations for customers with outstanding fines, fees, taxes, or who have failed to appear in a municipal or county court.
Vehicle Registration Denied
In a brief form it helps counties to increase collections of justice of the peace, county court of law, county clerk, property taxes and municipal court fines and fees. (Texas Scofflaw)

Municipal Court Scofflaw Program

The City of Brownsville has entered into an inter-local agreement with Cameron County relating to the motor vehicle registration refusal pursuant to the Texas Transportation Code. The object of this is to increase compliance in the Court's judgments Without this there would be no faith in the government to enforce laws nor the money to fund a sufficient number of law enforcement personnel. Thus, many counties and municipalities have enacted a "Scofflaw." Scofflaws are designed to enforce payment of outstanding obligations though intergovernmental cooperation. Simply put, if you owe money for a citation, a block will be put on your vehicle registration. Thus, not allowing you to register your vehicle until all unpaid citations have been paid in full.

When a Vehicle Registration is Denied

The Brownsville Municipal Court will send the Cameron County Tax Assessor-Collector a list of individuals who have outstanding fines. The Tax Assessor's Office will match those records to TXDOT vehicle database and flag the matching vehicle records with a Scofflaw flag. Any vehicles registered to someone with Scofflaw flag will no longer be allowed to be registered until all unpaid fines have been paid in full. No payment arrangements, plans or extensions will be granted without express approval by a judge.

Procedure for Removing the Registration Block

The only option to have the registration block removed from the Tax Assessor-Collector's records is payment in full of all outstanding fines. Make sure to present your driver's license when you pay your citations to make sure all violations are paid, sometimes your name may be inputted differently by our data entry clerks. The Tax Assessor's Office has no information about what is owed nor can they answer any questions related to what violation(s) led to the blocked record. Information or inquiries on registration block must be made to the Brownsville Municipal Court or by calling the Court's main number at 956-548-7181 between 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Once all outstanding fines have been paid in full, the Court will remove your name from the Scofflaw list and will reflect on the Scofflaw list at the Tax Assessor-Collector's as soon as it is updated. Once the block has been removed, the Tax Assessor's office will proceed with registering your vehicle.

Who This Affects

This program will only affect those with persistent, outstanding obligations to the governmental entities participating in this program. In order to be removed from the Scofflaw list, for outstanding obligations to the Brownsville Municipal Court, you must settle the balance in full. You can ask the Judge for accommodations, however, discretion is ultimately with the Judge. If you want to avoid being on the Scofflaw list and you have outstanding balances with the Court please call us at 956-574-6632.