Statesville, N.C. – Iredell County citizens are now paying court related costs, fines and fees online using their credit / debit card with the launch of Online Collections and Payments (OCAP). Paying online offers 24/7 convenience to payers that have a major credit card, know their case file number, and the county that issued the charge. As the first component of Chief Justice Mark Martin’s vision for eCourts, OCAP was implemented to reduce foot traffic in courthouses across the state, while allowing the public a fast, convenient way to pay costs, fines, and fees online.
“Offering online payment services to pay court related cost, fines and fees is a win-win for the public and our courts,” said Iredell County Clerk of Superior Court Jim Mixson. “Citizens are able to take care of their fines and court costs online without having to wait in line, while reducing courthouse traffic.” In the first year, Mixson reports his office has processed over 1000 such request.
The online payments system provides immediate benefits to citizens, as well as to court officials and staff. While it provides a more convenient payment option for citizens, the system also means less paperwork, less traffic in the courthouse, and shorter lines at the cashier window. Prior to OCAP, citizens had to pay costs, fines, and fees at the courthouse or by mail.
“OCAP is easy to use, more convenient for the public, and more efficient for the state,” said Judge Marion Warren, director of the N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts (NCAOC). “It is a great online tool that is part of the larger ongoing initiative to modernize the North Carolina court system.”
“Although the scope of the initial release was limited to probation payments for supervised and unsupervised offenses, the system was later enhanced to support payment for almost all disposed criminal and infractions cases”, reports Clerk of Court Mixson.
A convenience fee is charged at the time of each credit / debit card payment and is remitted to a third-party company. Except for the convenience fee, most monies received do not stay with the courts but instead go to other state and local government agencies. Continuing on the technology success of NCAOC’s payNCticket program since 2010, the online payments system is another convenient epay technology making it easier for citizens to do business with the courts.
The system is available in all 100 counties statewide. The public can access OCAP at: onlineservices.NCcourts.org.
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