MARCH: Woman avoids prison sentence after paying off council tax arrears

PUBLISHED: 10:33 19 January 2009 | UPDATED: 08:50 02 June 2010

JOANNA BLAIR

JOANNA BLAIR

JOANNA Blair avoided a trip to prison for non-payment of council tax, after agreeing to borrow the money she needed to pay off her arrears 24 hours before a court hearing. Blair, 33, of High School Close, March, was given a suspended sentence in November

JOANNA Blair avoided a trip to prison for non-payment of council tax, after agreeing to borrow the money she needed to pay off her arrears 24 hours before a court hearing.

Blair, 33, of High School Close, March, was given a suspended sentence in November for non-payment and defaulted on payments of £18 per week, Fenland magistrates heard.

But David Chapple, mitigating for Blair, told magistrates she managed to raise the money needed to wipe out her arrears 24 hours before Friday's hearing.

He added: "She paid £350 and the arrears were £332.95. Her balance outstanding is £1,815.57.

"There is still a problem because Mrs Blair has also very recently lost her job. She was receiving working tax credit and I am not sure what her financial position is going to be."

Magistrates agreed to adjourn Blair's case until February 13 to give her a chance to rectify her income position. Her monthly payments leading up to the hearing were adjusted from £18 per week to £5.


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