What is an Infraction in North Carolina?

An infraction is a non-criminal offense, always very minor in nature. If convicted of an infraction, you can’t be sentenced to jail – a fine of less than $100 (plus court costs) is the maximum punishment allowable for an infraction.

An infraction doesn’t count as a criminal record. Because an infraction is so minor, many people represent themselves on infractions. However, sometimes it makes sense to hire a lawyer if you don’t want to appear in court, and you just want to get the fine paid and done with.

Here’s the statute:

14-3.1. Infraction defined; sanctions.
(a) An infraction is a noncriminal violation of law not punishable by
imprisonment. Unless otherwise provided by law, the sanction for a person found responsible for an infraction is a penalty of not more than one hundred dollars ($100.00).

The proceeds of penalties for infractions are payable to the county in which the infraction occurred for the use of the public schools.

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Damon Chetson

Damon Chetson is a Board Certified Specialist in State and Federal Criminal Law. He represents people charged with serious and minor offenses in Raleigh, Wake County, and the Eastern District of North Carolina. Call (919) 352-9411.