As budgets tighten, municipalities have turned to fines and fees to fill empty coffers. The result is that the rich may walk away, while the poor must pay or stay.
This case challenged the City of El Paso’s payment policy for Class C misdemeanors – usually parking tickets.
This Act modifies provisions related to driver’s license suspensions. Specifically, it (1) terminates suspensions imposed because of a person’s failure to appear on a criminal traffic offense charged before July 1, 1990.
This report is the result of a collaborative research project from 20 community-based organizations that studied the costs of incarceration on families across 14 states.
California's statewide traffic and misdemeanor amnesty program led to the reinstatement of 246,000 driver's licenses and $45M in new revenue.
This 2015 report provides a comprehensive overview of how California’s approach to the enforcement of fines and fees for traffic violations creates a two-tiered justice system—those who can afford to pay escape the system, while those who are too poor to pay are trapped.
In this video, John Oliver details the devastating impacts that low-income Americans suffer due to fines and fees and the involvement of private probation companies.
After Michael Brown was shot by a member of the Ferguson Police Department, the Department of Justice’s investigation uncovered a pattern of racially discriminatory practices by the Ferguson Police Department which were primarily rooted in the city’s dependence on the criminal justice system to raise revenue. The publication of the Ferguson report is widely viewed as the start of the movement to reform fines and fees in the U.S.
Stearns examines the imposition and enforcement of Legal Financial Obligations (LFOs) in Washington State on people unable to pay them and argues that the resulting disparities impact the ability of the criminal justice system to impose fair and meaningful penalties that hold people accountable and reduce recidivism.
This guide by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators discusses how suspending driver’s licenses for non-safety related reasons is ineffective and counter-productive: it diminishes the deterrent effect and perceived legitimacy of license suspension, as well as the efficacy of law enforcement, prosecutors, courts, and motor vehicle agencies.