Failure to return rental property

I failed to return rental property, the company filed charges and i was never served, I paid company the entire amount due, they went to magistrates office to have charges dismissed and was told that we have to go to court. I went up to courthouse to get a court date and told them that I paid the company also and they just said you have to go to court. If I paid and the company told them I paid, why do I have to go to court?

Asked on March 3, 2016 under Criminal Law, North Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You have to go to court because once charges are filed, the company is no longer in charge of the case--the prosecutor's office is; and also because if a crime was committed, it's still a crime even if you later returned the property or  paid what you owe for it. (E.g. if you stole someone's car, it's still car theft even if you bought them a new car.) Repaying the amount will definitely help you in court, and the prosecutor or judge may choose to dismiss the charges *if* they believe that you ddid not commit a crime (e.g. intend to steal) but simply made a mistake, which you later made good--but you'll almost certainly have to go to court and speak to the prosecutor to see if he'll recommend dismissal.

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