What happens if you can’t pay a fine before your court date?

UPDATED: Aug 1, 2012

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What happens if you can’t pay a fine before your court date?

My friend has been charged with drunk and disorderly, a seat-belt ticket and 2 other misdemeanors. He doesn’t have a job right now and has no means to pay the fines before the court date, which is in just under a month. Is there any way he can set up payments or does he absolutely have to pay them before the court date? If he has to pay before the court date and can’t, what could his sentence be? Also, do court fees have to be paid on the court date? As I said, he has no means to pay anything as of now, so a lawyer is out of the question.

Asked on August 1, 2012 under Criminal Law, North Carolina


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If one cannot pay the assessed fine before the court date of a criminal matter, it is best that one show up at the hearing to see if a payment plan can be established in that many people are slowly recovering from the recession that this country has been going through for years.

If you have not plead out to the charges against you, I suggest that you consult with a criminal defense attorney before doing so.

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