Q. Is taking things on term by Courts or Standards etc. incurring riba or does the danger of riba come if you default and they put on interest to your payment?
A. If you purchase items and pay on an installment basis, then you are incurring Riba, and hence, it will not be permissible to enter such transactions.
Besides the interest that would come about due to your default (and late payments or missed payments), the total amount that is given as the final price of the item, based on an installment purchase is made up of the interest that they charge for giving you the facility of paying on credit. So, an installment payment package already has interest added to it, even before default can occur.
Cash transactions at these stores are free from Riba.
And Allah Knows best.
Mufti Waseem Khan