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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 100571
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I was involved in a incident at Walmart back in January. I

Customer Question

I was involved in a incident at Walmart back in January. I went to court and was given a 500 dollar fine, along with a conditional dismissal. I just got a second notice from a Michael IRA Asen PC demanding that I pay a $150.00 dollar to satisfy there civil claim within 10 days. Should I pay this fine?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation. NJ allows shoplifters to be civilly sued for shoplifting. Because someone in your situation plead guilty for a conditional dismissal, that guilty plea may be used in civil court. So if the firm sues you, it would be an open/shut case. Whether or not someone in your situation pays that money or not is up to you, but the firm is likely to move forward with the suit due to an almost guarantee of a judgment, so it may not be a bad idea to simply make the payment to have this go away. Otherwise, they can sue, tag on attorney fees, and ruin your credit in judgment.

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Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I was told that if you pay the fine it would ruin your credit...is that true? Also by paying the fine your name is ***** ***** a retail theft database and is kept there for 7 years. The issue that I am having is that I wasn't the one to actually take any items, I was involved in someone else's bad decision(stupidly taking blame along with them). I wasn't aware that she had taken any items until LP stop her at the door. I am a pharmacy tech at CVS/currently and I have really great credit. After I explained to the judge he give me the conditional dismissal(one year probation), because I hadn't had any prior records. I just want to make sure that paying the fine isn't going to do more harm then good.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I spoke to a lawyer before he original said I shouldn't pay the fine, since I did have to go to court/was arrested (given a fine and put on probation), and the items were returned undamaged. He didn't understand why they would still send me the letter. Then two weeks later I called him back, he then said I should pay it, but never really said why. So I am just confused.
Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.

1) At this point, this is only a demand letter and not a lawsuit - if I understand correctly. If so, then whatever payment is made, is made privately. It is not "recorded" anywhere. However one may wish to ask for a release in return, so that they cannot sue afterwards. This is standard.

2) The database is here: http://www.theftdatabase.com. However your name may be on it already due to the criminal matter where you plead guilty. This database is viewed by subscribers only.

So normally, nipping this in the bud is better. Also, one may wish to ask that in exchange of payment, not only would they not sue too, but also agree not to place one's name into the database. They may agree.

Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.

Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.
Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!

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