What happens if you refuse to pay a fine for breaking the Covid rules in Norway

What happens if you refuse to pay a fine for breaking the Covid rules in Norway
What happens if you refuse to pay the fine. Photo by Sora Shimazaki from Pexels
If you are caught breaking the Covid-19 rules in Norway, then you most likely have to pay a fine, but what happens if you refuse? 

Two women have fines increased after refusing to pay

On Wednesday, two women who refused to pay fines issued to them by the police after they were caught having a party in Bergen have had their fines increased by the district court in the city. 

The two women aged 28 and 34, who have not been named, refused to pay the original fines because they said the rules at the time were unclear. 

Their fines have been increased to 6,000 kroner for one woman who was simply in attendance and 12,000 kroner for the woman responsible for organizing the event. 

The pair’s lawyer have said they will appeal the punishment. 

How do the Covid rules work in Norway and what happens if you break them 

In Norway, Covid-19 measures are applied at both the national and local levels. All municipalities in the country must adhere to the national rules and recommendations that have been implemented. Additionally, they can also introduce and enforce their own rules that apply for the municipality, such as curfews, face masks, and alcohol bans.

Both local and national rules are legally enforceable. If someone breaks the Covid rules, it is up to the local prosecution authorities of that area to decide how to deal with them.

READ MORE: What happens if you get caught breaking the Covid-19 rules in Norway? 

The most likely outcome of breaking the rules in Norway is that you will either receive a fine or a warning. 

What happens if I refuse to pay? 

For whatever reason, if you refuse to pay the fine then the case will go to a district court, and you can be prosecuted for a violation of the Communicable Diseases Act. 

Several scenarios could play out in court after you refuse to pay the fine. 

First of all, the court could decide to drop or reduce the fine if they deemed the punishment too harsh or if the rules at the time were unclear. 

The district court could also choose to raise the fine too; this is the most common punishment for people who refuse to pay the initial penalty. 

Finally, the size of the fine could be upheld, and you could be ordered to pay it. 

After the court’s decision, you can decide whether you will lodge an appeal or accept the punishment. 

If you continue to refuse to pay, then you will be sent to prison instead. There isn’t a fixed prison sentence, but the higher prosecuting authority recommends 15 days. 

If you decide to accept the fine at any point, the money will be collected by the Norwegian Central Collection Agency, which manages penalties on behalf of the police in Norway. 

The fine can be paid in instalments, upfront or deducted from your salary. You can also defer scheduled payments if you wish to. 

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