This short documentary film tells the story of two St. Louis women who were unjustly incarcerated because of failure to pay their fines and fees.
Broadly speaking, the Act streamlines, standardizes, and reduces court fees in order to facilitate a sliding scale fee waiver for defendants who cannot afford to pay. (Without these changes, the sliding scale would have been severely limited.)
This statute would require the Commissioner of Minnesota’s Department of Public Safety to report annually on driver’s license suspensions and revocations to the legislature and the public. The report must …
This article, part of the Vera Institute’s In Our Backyard Stories series, documents the incarceration practices in the small upstate city of Amsterdam, New York.
The Mecklenburg County working group requested the assistance of Harvard Law School’s Criminal Justice Policy Program, which helped the group develop two bench cards. One bench card provides guidance for judges when imposing fines and fees; the other outlines a process for sanctioning defendants who fail to pay fines and fees.
This report is a culmination of a year of research that involved interviews conducted with 380 people who made contact with systems of justice in eight states and were assessed fines and fees.
This issue brief discusses how fines and fees harm communities and puts forward several strategies that prosecutors can use to mitigate these harms.
This case study of municipal courts in Colorado is based on a multi-year ACLU investigation which revealed that despite a bipartisan reform effort in the state legislature, many of Colorado’s municipal courts persistently ignore both constitutional standards and state law and continue to employ practices that punish defendants for their poverty.
The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights issued a landmark report detailing the disproportionate harms that communities of color suffer from fines and fees.
Sanghee Park uses data gathered from California counties over an 11-year period to investigate how local economic conditions affect a jurisdiction’s reliance on fines and fees. Park argues that local governments attempt to generate revenue through fines and fees more often when their budgets suffer due to a lack of property, sales, and income tax revenue.