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Originally posted by Ex_CT2
reply to post by ArchPlayer
I had one of these debts and didn't even know it. I called the DMV about renewing my license and found out that not only was my license suspended, but that I owed $580 (on a traffic ticket of originally $28) and there was a bench warrant for my arrest. I searched around and found a receipt for having paid the ticket, but the case had been closed months before and gone to collection. There was no recourse; the case had been closed, so it didn't matter that it was paid. And $300 of the amount was a "civil fee" that was out for collection by the Franchise Tax Board!
ETA: This is in California, by the way....
edit on 4/24/2012 by Ex_CT2 because: (no reason given)
Originally posted by Magnum007
people need to take responsibility for their bad choices...
For that reason, he kept handy a 2003 document showing he had paid a court-imposed fine stemming from a traffic offense, just in case.
It did not seem to help.
In March 2005, Mr. Florence was in the passenger seat of his BMW when a state trooper pulled it over for speeding. His wife, April, was driving. His 4-year-old son, Shamar, was in the back.
The trooper ran a records search, and he found an outstanding warrant based on the supposedly unpaid fine. Mr. Florence showed the trooper the document, but he was arrested anyway.
A failure to pay a fine is not a crime. It is, rather, what New Jersey law calls a nonindictable offense. Mr. Florence was nonetheless held for eight days in two counties on a charge of civil contempt before matters were sorted out.
In the process, he was strip-searched twice.
Originally posted by Forevever
I think its more serious than "debtor's prison"
Under the law, debtors aren't arrested for nonpayment, but rather for failing to respond to court hearings, pay legal fines, or otherwise showing "contempt of court" in connection with a creditor lawsuit. That loophole has lawmakers in the Illinois House of Representatives concerned enough to pass a bill in March that would make it illegal to send residents of the state to jail if they can't pay a debt. The measure awaits action in the senate.
There is no such thing as debtor's prison no matter what the headline says. She was brought in on a bench warrant for not responding to a court hearing of some sort - it says so right there.
Meanwhile, I think thats a bigger issue that needs addressing.
I have TONS OF CONTEMPT for a LOT OF courts and their laws. And I should have the right to be in contempt of them without being punished. If I "plead the 5th" I can be found in contempt and do jailtime (however short or long), which is complete and utter BS. Why do we even have a 5th ammendment if I can't invoke it?
As long as I'm abiding by their stupid laws, I should have every right to feel contempt towards them.
Contempt is a secondary emotion (not among the original six emotions) and is a mix of the primary emotions disgust and anger.