What is Court Fine Arrears?
The magistrates’ court may order you to pay a fine, for example, for a driving offence, for not having a TV licence or for some other offence.
If you have been ordered to pay a fine by the magistrates’ court, you must make sure that you include this in your budget and that you do not fall behind with the payments.
If you have already fallen behind with a magistrates’ court fine, the court has strong powers to recover the fine. This is a priority debt.
If you have a magistrates’ court fine, it is important that you get advice and don’t ignore it. We have a fact sheet that might be helpful.
This fact sheet tells you how you can get a fine from the magistrates’ court and how to deal with it. It also describes what the magistrates’ court can do to recover the money you owe on the fine if you do not deal with it, or miss agreed on payments.
How to handle magistrate debt:
Find out what the magistrates’ court can do to recover the money owed on a fine;
Help you to negotiate with the court if you cannot afford to pay the fine straight away;
Find out how to deal with bailiffs if the court uses them to recover the fine;
Find out about the amount taken out of wages to pay for a fine;
Help you to prepare for a hearing at the magistrates’ court; and
Understand when the magistrates can and cannot send a person to prison if they do not pay the fine.
Lawsuits are filed to collect these debts:
In the case of outstanding rent, the creditor/owed party may have the right to file a lawsuit against the consumer to force payment of the debt through a judgment.
The lawsuit must be served upon the debtor according to the service of process rules of the state in which the consumer resides. Then, the consumer can defend the lawsuit by asserting various defences such as fraud in the creation of the account, or that the amount sought after is incorrect or has been paid, to name just a few.
If the case is not properly defended, then the creditor will obtain a judgment in its favour. When the creditor has a judgment, it may seek involuntary means to force payment such as wage garnishment, asset attachment or on the property.
How debt review can help those with court fine debt
Using a Debt counsellors like ezDebt we will formally review your finances and develop a suitable monthly budget by negotiating with your creditors on your behalf
- Enables clients to make one monthly debt repayment
- Stops creditors from hassling you
- Decreases judgements against you
- Prevents you from declaring bankruptcy
- Maps out the path towards becoming debt free
If you’ve fallen behind with your rent payments, you should take action quickly to deal with the situation.