Cobb County Government

False Alarm Appeal Guidelines

The Cobb County False Alarm Ordinance, Section 70-27 defines a “false alarm” as an activation of an alarm system to summon law enforcement personnel which occurs as a result of mechanical or electronic failure, malfunction, improper installation, or the negligence of the alarm user or his employees or agents,

unless the law enforcement response was cancelled by the alarm user or his agent before law enforcement personnel arrive at the alarm location. An alarm is false when, upon determination by the responding officer, no unauthorized entry, robbery, or other crime was committed or attempted in or on the premises which would have activated a properly functioning alarm system.

Circumstances not considered a legitimate reason to excuse a false alarm.

  1. Failure to register an alarm system
  2. Faulty, defective, or malfunctioning equipment
  3. Improper installation or maintenance
  4. Improper monitoring by the alarm business
  5. Mistakes made by contractors, maids, realtor, etc.
  6. Items which cause motion detectors to activate (balloons, curtains, etc.)
  7. Activations due to loud noises
  8. Loose fitting doors and windows
  9. Pets, rodents, or any other animal or insect
  10. Weather related incidents, including power outages of less than four hours

This list is intended as a guide to assist you in deciding whether to appeal a false alarm or contact your alarm company. This list is not intended to cover every situation for which an appeal may be denied.

Appeals process. Assessments of civil penalties and other enforcement decisions made under this article may be appealed by filing a written notice of appeal to the Cobb County Police Department within 30 days after the date of notification of the assessment of civil penalties or other enforcement decision. The failure to give notice of appeal within this time period shall constitute a waiver of the right to contest the assessment of penalties or other enforcement decision. Appeals shall be heard through an administrative process established by the Cobb County Police Department.

The hearing officer shall review an appeal from the assessment of civil penalties or other enforcement decisions using a preponderance of the evidence standard. Notwithstanding a determination that the preponderance of the evidence supports the assessment of civil penalties or other enforcement decision, the hearing officer shall have the discretion to dismiss or reduce civil penalties or reverse any other enforcement decision where warranted.

Appeals should be mailed to:

Cobb County Police Department
False Alarm Reduction Unit
P.O. Box 743626
Atlanta, GA 30374

Be sure to include your name, the alarm location, date of the false alarm, your permit number, reasons for the appeal, and any supporting evidence.

False Alarm Reduction Unit: 770-528-3819