Lawyer in Turkey: Paying Criminal Fines in Turkey as a foreigner

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Paying Criminal Fines in Turkey as a foreigner

What are the following actions after a criminal fine? How can you, as a  foreigner pay a fine? Where you have to pay? Can you travel to Turkey if you are convicted to pay a fine? Can you pay in terms? How do you know if the court decision is not disputed,  or in other words if it will be executed?

The chance that you will be sentenced to pay a fine after getting involved with the Turkish judicial system is very high. Any Turkish juridical decision to pay a fine will be notified to the person in question on the (foreign) residence address. But what happens afterwards? You will be groping in the dark as a foreigner. You will not be explained about the execution proceedings of the decision.

Due to international agreements with foreign authorities, the Turkish decision will be served personally to the convicted person at his/her residence address. Hereafter the appeal period of 7 days is starting to operate. In exception a public prosecutor will appeal within the 7 days. The expiry of 7 days will lead to an irrevocably determined decision. 

Once the judicial decision has been declared irrevocable, within 2 to 3 months it will be forwarded to the concerning department for the enforcement of the fine. It is not possible to pay the fine, as long as the court has not forwarded the decision to the authority who is  responsible for the enforcement of it.

The executing authority will serve a payment order c.q. notice to the address of the convicted. The serving procedure of the payment order will also take at least 3 to 4 months.

After the payment order has been served to the convicted, there is a period of 30 days to pay the fine. This is possible by paying off the total amount or in terms payment. If the fine is not paid off within the prescribed period, the fine can still be converted into a community service sentence or a custodial sentence.

You are able to do the payment in person or by an authorized lawyer at the responsible authority for the execution of the fine (mentioned in the payment order). This authority will  draw up a document submitted to the tax office. With this submitted document you have to go to the cash desk of the Turkish tax authority in order to pay the fine. You can do this by paying off the total amount or make an agreement for terms payment.  In sequel the payment receipt must be notified to the department of execution in order that the payment is entered in their system. 

It is not (yet) possible to pay off the payment from abroad or transfer it to an account of the Turkish tax authorities.

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