Covid-19 - Important Message about Fine Collection and Enforcement Services
The decision taken by the wider Northern Courts and Tribunals Service to reduce services is unprecedented and in line with government guidance on social distancing. To that end we have had to significantly reduce the services we provide to essential services only. This decision has not been taken lightly and we accept that there will be an impact, safeguarding and protection of both our staff and the wider public to avoid unnecessary exposure to COVID-19 is paramount at this time.
We are continuing to review enforcement services and I am able to update you on the provision of essential enforcement business in context with the COVID-19 situation. Any further updates to Fine Collection and Enforcement Servces will appear here.
On line payment facilities continue unaffected. The service can be found here - https://www.justice-ni.gov.uk/articles/online-services.
IT Support: If you have experience any on-line issues, you can contact the office at 079170264614 - between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. However, please remember that IT support services are limited too, and we would ask that you are patient if issues are experienced and we will endeavour to deal with it as urgently as we can. Don't forget that the you can contact the NICTS Webmaster for any minor on line user account issues at email@example.com
We will continue to process payments made via credit transfers or Bacs to the NICTS Third Party Bank Account.
We will process any cheque payment sent to the office.
Mailboxes: our general mailboxes remain open, but note they are not monitored daily. However, we aim to provide a limited service and we shall endeavour to deal with any customer contacting us about financial hardship first as well as customers seeking to top up prepaid accounts. We ask you to be patient for responses to be made.
A new Fine Collection and Enforcement Service (FCS) within NI Courts & Tribunals Service will come into operation on 1 June 2018. It will see the introduction of dedicated collection officers to provide advice to debtors and to collect and enforce outstanding financial penalties imposed (or registered) by a criminal court where a collection order has been made
New collection and enforcement arrangements will apply to court imposed fines, compensation orders, offender levy, costs imposed by court, fixed penalties and penalty notices, fines transferred from other jurisdictions and juror fines. They will not apply to confiscation orders.
New powers for the collection and enforcement of financial penalties are enabled through new legislative provisions contained in:
- Part 1 of the Justice Act (NI) 2016
- The Enforcement of Fines and Other Penalties Regulations (NI) 2018
- The Social Security (Fines) (Deductions from Benefits) Regulations (NI) 2018
- Magistrates’ Court (Amendment No. 2) Rules (NI) 2018
Fine Collection and Enforcement Statutory Guidance
Statutory guidance has been produced in accordance with section 26 of the Justice Act (NI) 2016. This guidance explains the collection order and its operation, the role of the collection officer, what penalties are included, the collection and enforcement orders, court powers, offences and appeals. Collection officer must have regard to this guidance when carrying out their duties.
New powers include
- provision for criminal courts to make a collection order when imposing (or registering) a financial penalty
- provision for improved access to benefit, income and vehicle ownership information for the purposes of collection and enforcement
- ability for collection officers to agree instalment orders or additional time to pay with debtors
- deduction of payments from a debtors income from either earnings or relevant welfare benefits
- powers to access bank accounts andseize vehicles of wilful defaulters
- power for courts to issue an arrest warrant for non-attendance at a referral hearing
- provisions for courts to order referral hearing costs to be paid by the debtor
- children will not be committed to custody solely for fine default
- revised powers to use supervised activity orders (SAO) to allow debtors to complete unpaid work in the community to clear a financial penalty
- the removal of sentence remission for those who end up in custody for fine default
How to pay your fine?
When making payment you will need your case reference number and your online account number
Payments can be made online using a debit or credit card at
or via telephone using a debit or credit card by calling 0300 200 7812
or alternatively send a crossed cheque including your case reference and name made payable to 'NI Courts and Tribunals Service toCustomer Service Centre
PO Box 256
Difficulty making payment
If you are having difficulty in paying the outstanding financial penalty or have any questions about making payments you should contact the Fine Collection and Enforcement Service immediately as per contact below.
If you are requesting additional time to pay or payment via instalments you should complete a means enquiry form and return this form to the Fine Collection and Enforcement Service for consideration as per contact below.
Contact Fine Collection and Enforcement Service
23-27 Oxford Street
Telephone: 028 9072 8802