Watauga to begin ticket e-pay May 6
by Melanie Marshall
The North Carolina court system is implementing an e-pay
system for traffic tickets. Watauga County is among the first wave of counties
to go live, beginning on May 6.
More than 600,000 traffic tickets were paid last year in
North Carolina, which currently must be done through the county clerk's office
with a certified check, money order or cash in person or by mail. Debit or
credit cards are not accepted.
The payNCticket online program is in currently in effect in
Wilson and Cumberland Counties as part of the pilot program. Watauga clerk of
court Wanda Howell requested Watauga to be among the first wave of counties to
initiate the program as it goes statewide by the end of the year.
The e-pay is available only for waiverable offenses, such as
a seat belt violation, stop sign and light violations and speeding less than
nine miles over. Other offenses, such as speeding 10 miles or more over the
limit, require a court appearance.
When an officer is writing a ticket, the driver of the
vehicle will be provided information to determine if the offense qualifies for
A person is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court
of law. Paying a citation online translates to a waiver of the constitutional
right to a trial or hearing in open court, to confrontation of the witnesses
against the defendant and to representation by a lawyer. Paying online is a
plea of guilty, or responsible, for the offense, and the person will be charged
the fine and costs.
There will be an additional fee for the e-pay processing
vendor. This additional fee will be calculated based on the amount owed for the
citation. The defendant will have the opportunity to review the final amount to
be charged prior to finalizing the payment.
To pay a ticket, follow the links from http://www.nccourts.org.