BASICS: CRIME AND PUNISHMENT - An Overview - #00035
A crime is a crime is a crime
In Elite Dangerous, you will find a crime and punishment system which will irritate you at times and confuse you at other times.
You will find several other essays about what-to-do-if in the 'BASICS' chapter, but for a start you should consult the following information:
Crime and Punishment (without powerplay activities) is based on three factors:
You will be fined for all non violent offenses and even for some of lesser violence. Basically, everything you do wrong without destroying a ship is good for a fine.
Be it firing in a no fire zone, ramming ships above 100m/s near a station (without destroying them directly or in the minutes afterwards by them colliding with structures or by crappy flying on their side), carrying stolen or illegal goods, loitering at docking pads or the station's entrance, dumping cargo near a station, entering (or staying in) a station without clearance or firing at clean ships (without destroying them).
All this is stuff that gives you a fine - which in turn is not a catastrophy. Simply pay it at the station that belongs to the fine's issuing minor faction.
Open your left window in ship. Check your fine and memorize who gave it to you. If you don't know about a station near you that belongs to this minor faction, open
EDDB.IO, select "minor factions" and enter the minor faction's name in the search field. Fly to a station of this minor faction, open contacts, then authority contacts and pay that sum.
A fine is not visible to other CMDRs. It will not become a bounty (anymore). It's just a general nuisance that will be put upon a possible bounty if you do something really bad. Nonetheless: Pay it.
If you are far from the station that issued your fine, you can pay it at an INTERSTELLAR FACTOR. This is a 'contact' function at some stations, mostly 'independent'ly aligned ones with low security.
A fast track to find an interstellar factor is using Inara.cz's 'nearest' function for finding station features
Keep in mind: A fine is put on your SHIP not on you as a person. Changing ships -> no fine.
... read more on page 2