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Federal Probation, Halfway House and Community Supervision This forum is dedicated to information & discussions relating to U.S. Federal Probation & Community Supervision, including half-way houses.

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  #1  
Old 07-29-2004, 12:49 PM
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Default Federal Restitution - In a nutshell

For all of those facing restitution -

I know many of you are looking at large amounts of restitution that you are being ordered to pay and thinking -"I will never be able to pay this off in a hundred million years" You are right, you won't.

But the federal government knows that too, and they don't expect that it will all be paid back. They will though try to get as much of it for the victim as they can.

When you are released you will be asked to fill out a number of forms disclosing assets, income (including income from spouse and dependants living at home) etc.

You will be asked to fill them out for both the Federal Litigation Unit in your state and for your probation officer. Your restitution payment will be based on your answers here. It is important for you to be honest when filling out these forms as it is "under oath" and states that on the forms. There is no asset worth going back to prison for.

List all living expenses and leave nothing out, include a grocery/per month estimate, a clothing estimate, if a member of the family has ongoing medical expenses, include the deductible that you know you will be paying. These are real expenses and are not unreasonable, do not overinflate them to huge amounts that are not believeable..(allowing for a mink coat wouldn't fly..lol)
The FLU/Feds will consider all of these expenses but will deduct what they think are unnessary luxuries ie cable movie channels. If you have a lot of assets even if they are not in your own name (for instance if spouse has 6 cars in his/her name) they will not force him/her to necessarily sell them but they will be considered that they are available asssets that "could reasonably be sold to pay household expenses. This does not mean that you go out and put them in someone elses name...ILLEGAL under the circumstances.

When all is said and done what is left over is disposable income and from that comes your restitution payment.

As many of you have seen in my posts, I have chosen not to disclose my income and have not yet seen a reprecussion from it and do not think that I will. We did though list all assets. As far as garnishing from wages, they can garnish your states maximum amount and will IF YOU DO NOT PAY your required amount. They will give you that chance first though.

Just because on your judgement and commitment order there is an oredered amount "during time of probation or supervised release" does not release you from the liability when it is over. They just can't throw you back in prison anymore. They can and will try to collect. The FLU has the power to try to collect for 20 years and can renew for another 20 if they so choose.

You will no doubt have liens on your home even if it is in your spouses name, they will in the event of a sale take your share of the equity, your spouse has the right to his/hers.

In a nutshell, the government will allow you enough money to live, not extravagatnly, but you will not starve. Many will have to change their lifestyles somewhat, but you will survive this too. We have just gone through all of this and I am actually happy with the outcome, we are not vacationing and spending money all over the place, but we are comfortable and not suffering in any way.

Those that have not even surrendered yet, do not worry about this right now..it doesn't matter and it like everything else is one more hurdle that you will get through when the time comes. Enjoy your time with your families while you have it and know that at some point this will really all be overwith.
"This too will pass"

If you have any questions, let me know.
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  #2  
Old 07-29-2004, 01:15 PM
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I was told they will only collect while i was on probation. Also My wifewants to purchase a home. In her name as she has perfect credit and i do not. They will be able to put a lien on the home? Have you ever heard of anyone filing bankrupt after probation? And what about moving out of the country after probation? Thanks...
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Old 07-29-2004, 01:19 PM
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There is no bankruptcy on restitution and they can and will collect after probation.
They will NOT put a lien on a house in her name only...only if in both of your names. If it was yours alone they would have taken it already.
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Old 07-29-2004, 01:28 PM
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My wifes dad is giving here 50k to put down on a house. So if she buys it and its in her name alone they can not touch it or touch the equity if she ever decides to sell it? Or would it be wise to file for divorce and continue to be together. Is there anyway around it legally? Because i would not want to jepordize my freedom.
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Old 07-29-2004, 01:35 PM
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If the house is in her name only, you should have no problem..filing for divorce was an idea I had too, but was advised against it by an attorney who specializes in this area.
It could be construed as hiding assets. They cannot touch it if she later decides to sell.

Be forward also on your restitution..the victim can at anytime also put a civil judgement against you or any property YOU own along with the governments.

Our victim chose not to at this time, but I guarantee if the payments stop or when his probation is over, it will probably be there.
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Old 07-29-2004, 01:53 PM
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You are a god send!!

Fellah and I are not married, but will be living together. I am going to be his release address in the state of Washington. Would the situation be the same as a married couple? I know that is bordering on a legal question, and will take it as advise only.

Thank you.

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Old 07-29-2004, 02:15 PM
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No, it would not be the same..your income cannot be included on anything, you are not a dependent...here you would be wise to charge him "rent" in the amount of his share of the bills..again you would need to be realistic here and the bills need to be proven. No assets or property of yours will be considered for anything at all.
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Old 07-29-2004, 02:21 PM
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Inboundtrain,

The idea about moving out of country sounds like a good idea except I don't think we convicted felons can travel much of anywhere! As far as bankruptcy goes you can file for bankruptcy but you are still obligated to pay the Feds. You might get out of paying everyone one else though My attorney stated to me that after probation there is something that can be filed with the court asking them to release you from your restitution. I'm not sure what it is called or how you do it, but it's worth asking about.
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Old 07-29-2004, 02:23 PM
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Cinammo, you are able to travel to some countries as a convicted felon. Lots of people on supervised release travel out of the country.
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Old 07-29-2004, 02:27 PM
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Can you move for good? Because if I can, I'm moving to New Zealand!
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Old 07-29-2004, 02:35 PM
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LOL, I don't know if you can move for good! Nice thought though, I think I'd move to Switzerland. Or maybe to Paris, so I can go visit Phil a lot!!!
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Old 07-29-2004, 03:11 PM
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Thank goodness my Sweetie doesn't owe any restitution...He only had a $100 fine and it's already been paid. Whew...at least we won't have to worry about that...but I'm sure something else will come up.
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Old 07-29-2004, 03:43 PM
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We finally just decided to look at it for what it really is.....a $188,000 no interest loan payable over 100 years!!! what bank could you get that deal at!
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Old 07-29-2004, 03:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jft
We finally just decided to look at it for what it really is.....a $188,000 no interest loan payable over 100 years!!! what bank could you get that deal at!
If the restitution was 300k and you only got 40k then your really hurtin lol
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Old 07-29-2004, 04:02 PM
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arrghhhh!!!!
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Old 07-29-2004, 07:02 PM
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I was told to pay 10% of earned income. I have not had any earned income since 12/31/2003 and will not until I have served my time [4 months] and obtain a job. My attorney told me that I would never get it repaid in my life time - I am 56 and in poor health.

How does community property states effect the restitution repayment?
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Old 07-29-2004, 07:10 PM
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Keep receipts on anyhing you do pay. I paid my sons restitution and every 6 months or so they send another bill, and anything he has in his account is taken. I make a few phone calls, get things taken care of but in the mean time he can't get anything from the commissary. Then it takes 3 months to get his money back (with not interest). They are worse than the IRS!
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Old 07-29-2004, 07:12 PM
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community property states affect assets that may be in the spouses name for instance if your home is in your spouses name, it is still up for grabs by the government because the spouse still may have an equal holding in it.
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Old 07-29-2004, 07:15 PM
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to TXGrannie, after your sentence you can have your restitution amount re-looked at upon release...you can't pay what you don't have...and obviously if you don't have a job you won't be able to pay the 10%.
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Old 11-30-2004, 03:41 AM
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Good info JFT. My sentencing is Thursday and I am expecting 3-4 years. All my assets except a car and household items have been surrendered for restitution and most of it has been paid. However, I will still owe 250K. I haven't worked since 6/30/03. A big hole but I'll dig my way out one day at a time.
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Old 12-02-2004, 03:00 PM
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My husband's restitution is completely unreasonable - it's in millions and I am really worried about how that will turn out upon his release. he was also ordered to pay 80% of his income!!! The feds did put a lien on our house, but I was able to hire a lawyer to fight that off.. well partially, without having to give away all 50% (we agreed on about 20%), but the house will no longer be on his or my names, I'll rent it.

But other than that... 80% of income is really scary. I am curious to find out what can be done to change that (the % not the amount)
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Old 12-06-2004, 06:50 AM
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Does it read that way in his J&C???, about the 80% I mean.

If not, payment will be set up by the federal litigation unit who does the collecting. They can't take what you don't have and you have to be allowed enough to live?
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Old 12-06-2004, 07:12 AM
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Yes, it's been set to 80% at sentencing! I am wondering if there is a way to change that...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jft
Does it read that way in his J&C???, about the 80% I mean.

If not, payment will be set up by the federal litigation unit who does the collecting. They can't take what you don't have and you have to be allowed enough to live?
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Old 01-05-2005, 08:22 AM
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JFT, this info is really helpful, but I'm curious how restitution works on the state level, paricularly in Nevada. I will be buying my own house within the next month or so. My sweetheart and I want to get married when he makes parole, hopefully in '06. Will my house be considered one of his assets if it's titled "sole and separate property"? My income being considered doesn't really bother me, but I want to protect the house. I have NO doubt that he will be 100% good on making his payments, but just don't want any surprises.
Also, he has been told that once his sentence expires so does the restitution. I find that hard to believe in light of your original post, but maybe it's different on a state level?
Thanks for any info!
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:19 PM
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What is the differnce from restitution and a judgement against someone and also what is the difference from a state charge and a federal charge im new to this and i am so scared i dont know where to go or what to do i havent been charged with anything its been since oct that the bank called and told me that the check i got was a counterfeact check from nigeria so i dont know if im going to be charged with reciveing it or not being able to pay the bank back can anyone help me with these questions
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