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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default Proof of Fine Payment After 18 Years

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Vermont

    I live in Virginia. I received a speeding ticket in Vermont in 1990 (18 years ago). I was guilty of speeding. I paid the fine ($50) on time. I just received a bill from a collection agency (with the Vermont Judicial Bureau listed as a client) for $88.43. I am assuming that my payment was lost in the mail (possibly) or lost in their system (after 18 years that seems to be a reasonable assumption). I have received no correspondence from the State of Vermont (or other).

    How do I prove that I paid the fine, and paid it on time? After 18 years, I have no longer kept records of my banking statements or cancelled checks. I still live in Virginia but have a different address from 1990 (moved 2x), different bank accounts, etc. I wouldn't even begin to remember my bank account number or check number from any 1990 payments - which my bank has indicated it would need to even start to find such a needle in a haystack.

    I realize that there is no SOL on such things as unpaid speeding tickets. And as far as payment is concerned, I presume it is my word against some collection system that took 18 years to identify incorrectly that a payment was missing to begin with. What legal position do I have after all this time and against the real (and highly perceived) inadequacies of this collection system/process?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    1,126

    Default Re: Proof of Fine Payment After 18 Years

    I don't know that you have a legal position when your own statements say that the payment may have been lost in the mail - which means that the money never made it out of your bank account to pay the fine.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Proof of Fine Payment After 18 Years

    I presume that there is more than one possible reason for why I have received a collection notice after 18 years. I don't know what that reason is (or are). If I say I made the payment 18 years ago and the collector now tells me that they have no record of receiving it, the payment being lost in the mail is one of several possibilities - none of which I can prove. Mail being lost or misplaced does happen and so it is one of several reasonable assumptions a person can make within a presumptive context. However, it does not excuse me from the payment if that indeed happened. But if you think it weakens my legal position, I won't make that assumption.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    between here and there, but you can't here from there
    Posts
    547

    Default Re: Proof of Fine Payment After 18 Years

    Is it possible the court clerk's office might have documentation of payment? Just it could have gotten lost in the mail, the bill could have been accidently sent in for collection even though the payment was made.

    I would go to the court, not call, and have them go over every payment made during that time.

    About 20 years ago, I was caught in the same trap. My license was suspended for not paying the fine, but I showed the reciept and the clerk's office showed the reciept on paper, but not in the system. The money was never sent in to the state and it turned out the court clerk was stealing fine money. My money was part of it. GO TO the court and search for proof of payment.

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