THE OTHER WAY How did Daniele Gates owe E-ZPass $80k? Is her license suspended?

90 Day Fiance The Other Way Daniele Gates bankruptcy E-ZPass

Starcasm was the first to report that 90 Day Fiance: The Other Way star Daniele Gates declared bankruptcy in 2022.

In the filing, personal finance guru Daniele listed $224,584.42 in liabilities and stated her monthly income was $1,300 less than her monthly expenses. Among the liabilities listed was $36,000 owed for rent on an apartment in Yonkers, $60,000 in student loan debt, $4,600 in “parking tickets and penalties,” and varying amounts owed to numerous credit card companies.

However, Daniele’s largest liability was the $80,000 she owed to New York toll company E-ZPass. That amount seems staggeringly high, and inspired some astonished responses on social media.

How is it possible that Daniele was able to rack up $80,000 in tolls? I spoke with an E-ZPass supervisor who said that the amount is not that crazy — especially if someone was using the tollways daily for years without paying.

The reason the amount can increase so quickly isn’t the tolls themselves, but the late fees if they go unpaid. For example, a $1 toll might incur a fee of $50 or even $100 if not paid. The fees are actually a hot topic in New York City as many motorists are getting blindsided by them.

A March, 2023 The City article about “a new attempt by the New York state legislature to pass the oft-vetoed Toll Payer Protection Act (TPPA)” highlights the story of Bronx resident Krystina Valinotti:

Valinotti purchased a car in March 2019 because her then-partner needed to drive between Connecticut, Queens and Brooklyn for work.

Valinotti doesn’t have a license, so she never drove the car, and says she was unaware of two years’ worth of tolls that racked up.

In June 2022 she discovered that as the car’s owner, she owed around $700 to the Port Authority, over $1,000 to the Thruway Authority, and a staggering $100,000 — the cost of 117 pages’ worth of violations — to the MTA.

“I didn’t know that there were three different types of tolls or other businesses that you had to pay through,” she said.

That confusion is common. The state-run MTA and Thruway Authority, as well as the Port Authority of NY and NJ all handle E-ZPass tolls in the area — and 16 other states also use the system.

Do I think that Daniele was an innocent victim blindsided by toll fees? Not at all! I just wanted to use that recent example to explain how it isn’t that crazy for someone to rack up tens of thousands of dollars in debt to a toll company in a relatively short amount of time.

Is Daniele Gates’ driver’s license suspended?

In addition to preaching to Yohan about her wisdom when it comes to personal finance, Daniele is also quick to boast about her masterful driving skills. But, can she even drive legally? Surely someone who has that many unpaid tolls has her license suspended, right?

States like Florida will suspend someone’s driver’s license for unpaid tolls, but the E-ZPass rep I spoke with revealed that New York is different. They have the ability to suspend the registration of a vehicle, but not the license of the driver. I assume this is what results in a boot being placed on a vehicle?

I have no idea what someone like Daniele would do if her vehicle got booted when owing SO MUCH money! Depending on the value of the car and your ability to pay the debt, it could make more sense to just let it go?

Toll debt affecting registration might help explain why Daniele conveniently forgot to turn her license plates in when she left the US.

Daniele’s bankruptcy hasn’t come up on 90 Day Fiance: The Other Way this season. It will be interesting to see if it gets brought up on the Couples Tell All special.

We broke the story on February 5, which was before the Tell All was filmed, so it would have been public knowledge at the time. What a potentially dramatic thing for another cast member to bring up, right? I suppose we will all have to tune in to find out if that happens!

Asa Hawks is a writer and editor for Starcasm. You can contact Asa via Twitter, Facebook, or email at starcasmtips(at)

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