Legal Question in Traffic Law in North Carolina

I plead guilty to a traffic violation in NC and the judge gave me 30 days to pay the fine, is there a way I can get an extension. My husband's boss committed suicide so he's out of work and my check is just disability.

Asked on 5/12/17, 5:05 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

You can go to court and waste more of your time to ask and while it is possible a Judge would give you more time its not likely. Here's why - if other people see you getting more time then they will likely want more time too and a Judge who has given more time in one case is sort of obligated to give more time in other cases to be fair - well if enough people start getting more time it becomes a problem, so Judges are reluctant to give additional time especially to give more time a second time - this is why you should have hired an attorney. So many people especially low or fixed income people, mistakenly and to their own detriment think hiring a traffic attorney to handle a ticket is just too expensive and / or not worth it but that is not true (as you are now finding out). If you shop around, often hiring an attorney works out cheaper than going to court yourself or paying the ticket off. Even in cases where it is slightly more expensive to hire an attorney, the biggest benefit is that most traffic attorneys can get you at least 3 to 4 months or more of time to get your money together. As you have seen, the Court is less generous with people who represent themselves. While this won't help you much this time - in the future if you get a ticket, shop around, hire an attorney with reasonable flat rate fees who will work with you regarding payments so the cost of the ticket isn't so much coming out of your budget all at once. If you do end up going to court yourself to beg for more time here's a tip - even if it is true, do not give that sob story about your husband's boss committing suicide. Just straight up say things are tight and you don't have the money and give the Judge a reasonable and realistic time frame for when you can have it. Remember the fine is suppose to be a punishment so it is suppose to pinch you a little so it is better to tell the Judge how you intend to do without something in order to pay the fine than to give a lame excuse as to why you can't pay the fine. If the Judge doesn't give you more time and you don't or can't pay the fine, DMV will suspend you which will add more fees and cost and just be another in a long list of reasons why not hiring an attorney in the first place was a really really really bad idea. Best of luck!

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Answered on 5/12/17, 5:38 am

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