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I want to start out by saying this court fine refers back to an offence I was arrested and charged for in late 2012,

Back then I was up my head in debt and i was gambling every penny I had.

 

 

Step forward to 2016, I am now a gambler in recovery after attending rehab

and back on the straight and narrow working as a Web Developer.

 

Several years back when I was given my fine by oxford magistrates court

I was also given 50 hours worth of unpaid work which I had no intention of doing,

was breached and sent to 6 Months as Her Majesty's Pleasure,

 

 

While inside I managed to apply for a space in a rehab at the other side of a country

and when I was released I went directly to the residential rehab

and undergo treatment to get to me where i am today.

 

From the legal advice at the time I was advised that the court would be wiped when I was re-sentenced

and that was the last I heard of the fine until the 4th Jan this year.

 

I had received a letter from Marson's Group letting me know that I had until the 14th to either pay in full

or sign up onto there payment plan and with their fee's - the debt was now £4015.57

 

Given no choice I signed up to their (ONLY) payment plan

which consisted of a first payment of £1204.57

then 6 WEEKLY not monthly WEEKLY payments of £468.51,

 

 

I tried to get some advice and everything I was told was to pay it as quick as i could

and I needed to get it under the £1500 mark as they threatened to add £235 + 7.5% in fees

 

 

 

there is currently £1370 left to pay

the final payment on the 16th of feb which will turn out to be £430

i cannot afford until I next get paid on the last day of the month.

 

 

I've tried speaking to marstons regarding this and they tell me that if i don't keep to the plan

that they will move it to the enforcement stage and add fees,

 

 

I can't help but think these guys just want me to fail so they are able to collect more money off me.

 

I have no clue what to do or where I stand / how i can get an extra 10 days

between when my last payment is due and i can pay it.

 

Help me please CAG

Edited by JustM4TT

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It is clear beyond any doubt that you are not refusing to pay and have made astonishing progress in paying back such a huge fine. In my opinion it would be a gross injustice for your account to be referred to an enforcement agent for a personal visit (and with it the debt increasing by £235.

 

I will approach one of the moderators later today to get a message to you with details of a person at Marston Group who should be able to accept your revised payment proposal.

 

Once again, well done for managing to pay such a large fine and turning your life around.

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You could have had the fined lodged against you whilst serving the sentence, this would have wiped it out. This should have been picked up at your sentencing hearing.

 

 

Have you been to your local Court to get this mess sorted out? It may pay you to do so asap.

 

 

Keep up your good work well done to you...


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It is clear beyond any doubt that you are not refusing to pay and have made astonishing progress in paying back such a huge fine. In my opinion it would be a gross injustice for your account to be referred to an enforcement agent for a personal visit (and with it the debt increasing by £235.

 

I will approach one of the moderators later today to get a message to you with details of a person at Marston Group who should be able to accept your revised payment proposal.

 

Once again, well done for managing to pay such a large fine and turning your life around.

 

Thank-you very much i will look forward to the message this is greatly appreciated :)

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I want to start out by saying this court fine refers back to an offence I was arrested and charged for in late 2012, Back then I was up my head in debt and i was gambling every penny I had. Step forward to 2016, I am now a gambler in recovery after attending rehab and back on the straight and narrow working as a Web Developer.

 

Several years back when I was given my fine by oxford magistrates court I was also given 50 hours worth of unpaid work which I had no intention of doing, was breached and sent to 6 Months as Her Majesty's Pleasure, While inside I managed to apply for a space in a rehab at the other side of a country and when I was released I went directly to the residential rehab and undergo treatment to get to me where i am today.

 

From the legal advice at the time I was advised that the court would we wiped when I was re-sentenced and that was the last I heard of the fine until the 4th Jan this year.

 

Many people consider that a custodial sentence (in relation to non payment of a court fine) is an 'either or' sentence (either you go to prison or you pay the fine....but not both).

 

As far as I am aware, the position is that a prison sentence is a punishment for not paying the fine, and the period of imprisonment is set for a specific period of time (as outlined in Schedule 4 of the Magistrates Courts Act 1980) that the court consider will likely result in payment being made.

 

If payment is made before the prison terms ends, the individual will be released.

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Many people consider that a custodial sentence (in relation to non payment of a court fine) is an 'either or' sentence (either you go to prison or you pay the fine....but not both).*

 

You actually get sent to prison for non payment of the fine. You are given x amount of days in lieu of payment. As you say you can buy yourself out by paying what remains of the balance outstanding. So in your speak what you said is not quite right. But accurate. You get the time AND the option to be released early by paying the fine off so you get BOTH not either or but both...

 

In this case the person in this thread was already serving a sentence for a breach. (Criminal) or he could have been re sentenced for the original offence.

 

Either way HMP should have asked if they had any fines outstanding and had them lodged whilst serving THAT sentence. .. But this does not help in this case. They could still apply to the Court and ask to be placed in front of the bench. It's not a punishment but a way for you to either serve the time or pay in full. Either way the debt is expunged.


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Many people consider that a custodial sentence (in relation to non payment of a court fine) is an 'either or' sentence (either you go to prison or you pay the fine....but not both).

 

As far as I am aware, the position is that a prison sentence is a punishment for not paying the fine, and the period of imprisonment is set for a specific period of time (as outlined in Schedule 4 of the Magistrates Courts Act 1980) that the court consider will likely result in payment being made.

 

If payment is made before the prison terms ends, the individual will be released.

 

I would like to say a huge thank you to Bailiff Advice for what she has done for me, I am so grateful that somebody would go out of there way to do this for me. I spoke to marstons many times speaking to superiors and managers and I was assured that there was nobody in the whole company who could change a payment date, and when I was first speaking to them I was in tears on the phone when they wouldn't give me until the end of Feb to pay as I knew exactly what was going to happen come mid Feb when I didn't have the money to pay.

 

But a huge huge thank you to Bailiff Advice, please let me know if there is anything I can do to repay you.

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Your kind words are very much appreciated.

 

As I said yesterday, you are cleary not trying to evade payment and to escalate the debt to a personal visit would have been most unfair.

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Many people consider that a custodial sentence (in relation to non payment of a court fine) is an 'either or' sentence (either you go to prison or you pay the fine....but not both).

 

As far as I am aware, the position is that a prison sentence is a punishment for not paying the fine, and the period of imprisonment is set for a specific period of time (as outlined in Schedule 4 of the Magistrates Courts Act 1980) that the court consider will likely result in payment being made.

 

If payment is made before the prison terms ends, the individual will be released.

 

A Custodial Sentence can replace the fine, but that is down to and done by an individual Magistrate on the day - facing an addict with either no or little income, who's offence carries a £200 fine for example, the Mag, if decent may well order the Addict be kept in the Court's Cells till close of business, and that replaces having to pay the fine. But actually being sent to prison afaik does not wipe out the fine, it is in addition to it, and presumably continued non payment once released could see you sent back AGAIN for a custodial.


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The debt is expunged.


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The debt is expunged.

 

It is not a subject that I know a great deal about. Can you let us have a link for further details MM.

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Sure BA the link is here. https://www.nationaldebtline.org/EW/factsheets/Pages/13%20EW%20Magistrates'%20court%20fines/Page-08.aspx

 

If you read this you will also see that if the debtor has RECENTLY served a sentence and did not have the fine 'lodged' they can apply to the bench to have this done afterwards if it was not done when in custody...


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Personally I would approach the Court and asked them to remit the fine. You may even be able to ask for the monies paid thus far back, by using this argument. Nothing to lose everything to gain...


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Sure BA the link is here. https://www.nationaldebtline.org/EW/factsheets/Pages/13%20EW%20Magistrates'%20court%20fines/Page-08.aspx

 

If you read this you will also see that if the debtor has RECENTLY served a sentence and did not have the fine 'lodged' they can apply to the bench to have this done afterwards if it was not done when in custody...

 

In the case of the poster here, his fine was in 2012 and he was sent to prison a short while after. He did not make an application to have the fine remitted at the time, and given that he is now (over 3 years later) in paid employment (as a Web Developer) I would not consider that the court would be wiling to grant a requested to remit the fine. That is not to say that he cannot try.

 

Also, the debt has not been 'expunged'. That would require an application to court (which has not been made).

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This is why it is important to a poster to give as much information as possible in the initial post. But saying that other readers new to CAG can now see this information and may help them. Thx for the update..


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BA is correct there are a variety of cases where a fine is imposed by the criminal courts, assault, car insurance etc.

 

if a fine is the given judgement then a fine is what is due under that judgement, not incarceration.

 

If the fine is not paid the person will have or appear in court again, where he will be asked why he did not pay, This is a separate matter to the earlier proceedings.

 

In this hearing there will be assessment of the person ability to pay as per the magistrates court act.

The court will then only issue a custodial sentence if it is found that he is purposefully withholding payment.

At the end of this period of incarceration the debt will be expunged as said.

 

Some info here

 

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/Documents/Advice%20factsheets/Debt/d-court-fines.pdf


DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES TO COLD CALLERS PROMISING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS

DO NOT PAY UPFRONT FEES FOR COSTLY TELEPHONE CONSULTATIONS WITH SO CALLED "EXPERTS" THEY INVARIABLY ARE NOTHING OF THE SORT

BEWARE OF QUICK FIX DEBT SOLUTIONS, IF IT LOOKS LIKE IT IS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT INVARIABLY IS

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