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Prayer for Judgment Continued (PJC) in North Carolina

A Prayer for Judgment Continued, or PJC, is a misunderstood term in the North Carolina Court system. After a conviction or guilty plea, a Judge may “continue judgment” so that no finding of guilt is entered into the Court record. This means that you must either plead guilty, or be found guilty, before a PJC can even be granted.

Upon the Judge’s granting of the PJC, you are still responsible for Court costs, the same as if you were not granted a PJC although you would be liable for any fines imposed as well. Only a Judge can grant a PJC, not the District Attorney. However, the District Attorney can oppose your request to be granted a PJC .

Be careful you fully understand the consequences of asking for a PJC which can be devastating for insurance purposes. Most of the time, there are more appropriate options to resolving your case to “save” the PJC if you should even have one available to “use.”

For insurance purposes, only one (1) PJC can be granted PER INSURANCE POLICY, per three (3) year period. This means that if you go to court for a traffic ticket and “waste” your PJC on a plea that would not cost you a dime more in insurance and then you, your spouse, child, or other household are charged with an offense where a PJC would actually be appropriate it cannot be used it again. This could cost you thousands of excess insurance charges over the next three years.

There are some situations where a PJC cannot be used at all such as: a DWI conviction, speeding in excess of 25 m.p.h. over the speed limit, and for any offense where the driver holds a Commercial Driver’s License.

A Prayer for Judgment is not a one-size-fits-all outcome for traffic tickets in North Carolina. Take a few minutes to consult with an attorney before you make a mistake that could cost you unnecessary insurance premiums or even your license.

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