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  #1  
Old 01-25-2012, 01:23 AM
overindictedOH overindictedOH is offline
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Default Court costs, fines and restitution.

Today, I went to pay off what I thought was going to be half of my 1,200 dollar balance, only to be told by the clerk that my balance is actually 3,200. I was found guilty of lesser included offense of agg. assault(f4) and ordered to pay restitution, court costs and a thousand dollar fine. I did 79 days in prison then let out on judicial; initially on intensive supervision, but now on medium, once a month reporting.

The big issue I have is that I only just now got a shitty minimum wage job(with a 4 year degree, might I add) and absolutely will not be able to pay off 3,000 in the next year and 3 months. If worse came to worse, and I don't pay off these bullshit fees/fine, but I have paid off all the restitution, what is the likelihood that they would send me back over the court costs/fine alone? Or, would those be sent to a collection agency, and treated like any other debt? Is there a way to try to talk to my PO and/or judge into changing the fine to community service. Because I am absolutely indigent and should not have been given such exorbitant fees.

What happened to the state paying for the legal process? Isn't the threat of imprisonment over not paying these court costs, etc, the same as threatening us with debtor's prison?
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:34 AM
26thncaliswag 26thncaliswag is offline
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Sorry. You did the crime. The state nor it's taxpayers want to be responsible for your voluntary debt. Imay suck to have it over your head, but why should the state pay for decision?

In my case, we don't collect your fines and costs. We are only responsible for your reporting fees and restitution. We will violate you for failure to pay those. We also have a sliding fee scale for indigent or low income clients.

For fines and costs, we let the court know that your balance is outstanding and allow them to decide whether they want to violate and terminate you unsatifactory, continue for fine payments only, convert you over to community service, credit you for jail time, take your bond, or whatever options you still have left on the table.
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Old 01-25-2012, 07:34 AM
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Court costs in VA are dealt with the same way. We only report if costs are outstanding, but fines and restitution are part of probation. Failure to pay costs are reported to DMV here, and you will not get a license if they are outstanding.
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Old 01-25-2012, 09:08 AM
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Some of those costs maybe imposed by law and the Court has no other choice but to impose the fines.

Pay what you can and pay on a monthly basis, as it looks better for you to the Court/PO.
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Old 02-07-2012, 07:36 AM
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Honestly?

We've been unemployed for *two years* - yep, both my husband and I- living on unemployment (that recently ran out), after (again both of us) having worked regularly since the age of 16.

My husband is a Chemical Engineer, who has *two* four year degrees. We have two kids.

Know what? We still had to pay the damned fees or be violated. Since we were both on probation, those fees and fines ended up being a lot. A LOT.

End result? We scraped, we scrimped, we busted our ass and made more than the minimum payments. We threw our tax returns at it. We *borrowed money from family*, which is something we've never done. WE sold our decent car and now have a 30 year old piece of junk that just happens to run.

You screwed up. Paying those fines is a big part of what it takes to not be sitting in jail. And, really, no matter how much you complain about your shitty minimum wage job - you've got a job, and you're not in jail. You go to bed at night in a room, not a cell.

Don't complain. Just do whatever it takes to pay those fines, and whatever you do, *whatever* you do, don't blow them off.
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Old 02-10-2012, 06:46 AM
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Pretty impressive. You commit a crime, and then look to taxpayers and victims to pay it off, and have an attitude about an employer not jumping through hoops to get someone with an anger issue into their company.

I honestly do wish you the best of luck, but you need to deal with the mess you made and not look to lay your issues on everyone else. We all have our own issues to deal with.

Best of luck
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Old 02-10-2012, 06:51 AM
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This came back to the front of my list when Straight replied.

3,000 in 15 months?

That's 200/month, 50.00 a week.

Trust me, there is some way you can make that work. Or at least that's not so far beyond the possible that the court is going to cut you much slack with it. Nor should they.
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:49 PM
overindictedOH overindictedOH is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Straight View Post
Pretty impressive. You commit a crime, and then look to taxpayers and victims to pay it off, and have an attitude about an employer not jumping through hoops to get someone with an anger issue into their company.

I honestly do wish you the best of luck, but you need to deal with the mess you made and not look to lay your issues on everyone else. We all have our own issues to deal with.

Best of luck
You sound pretty conservative; a bit too conservative to be perusing a prison message board. Do not imply that I'm some spoiled Millenial, trying to get a free ride from taxpayers. Court costs are nonsense. The state(through taxes) pays the salaries of the prosecutors, judge, court reporter, bailiffs, etc already. Why should a person have to pay for the very bullets to execute one's self with? Is it not enough punishment to have been to prison? Not to mention how many tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars I will never see because my income potential is severely damaged, if not completely destroyed, due to the fact that my unexpungeable felony will haunt me, digitally, until my last breath.

What I am saying is that $3,200 IS exorbitant and cruel, when my situation is taken into account; as courts are supposed to do. I am 29 years old. I have a pretty good work history and have a degree(and am currently working on the second) but I'm almost completely unemployable to 90% of employers of the most mundane jobs(even higher if I were to ever try for jobs that I am actually qualified for). I have no family to ask for help from; not one single family member. I pay 650 dollars(not incl. electricity) with a roommate for a shit apt because it's the only place I could find without a background check. I also have to eat.

I feel that the 1,000 dollar fine, as well as 286 in restitution, was reasonable; and I was ready to pay it. But I call bullshit on the rest: the court costs and an additional 1,010 dollars in "sheriff's fees" that took 2 years to "be determined." 500 of which is a "subpoena returned fee", and $510 for "mileage fees." BULLSHIT. They just made up an arbitrary number; then charged it again, adding 10 dollars, to try to not be so obvious about just multiplying the same arbitrary number twice. Gas is expensive, but not THAT expensive, to serve 3 witnesses subpoenas, a few times. They all live within 3 miles of the courthouse.

From The Ohio Bar website: http://www.ohiobar.org/Pages/LawYouC...spx?itemID=578

Q: What are “court costs” and how are they set?
A: Court costs, which are typically set by statute (written law), are amounts of money added to a fine for the purpose of helping to pay for some of the expenses of operating the courts. Sometimes these costs are set by individual judges to fund special projects in the courts. Court costs are typically a nominal assessment, however, and do not cover the actual expense of operating the courts.

i.e. They just make shit up; to increase the likelihood that the poorest, most stigmatized portion of the population will return to prison, which the state and/or corporation profits from. This is nothing more than a clever ruse to surreptitiously bring back debtor's prisons. It's really pretty obvious why the United States is less than 5% of the world's population, yet warehouses 25% of its prisoners.

Last edited by overindictedOH; 02-21-2012 at 12:34 AM..
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:42 AM
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You committed an aggravated assault, and it seems that all the time you did was 79 days and have to pay $3200, and you're sitll complaining? I doin't really think someone in your position has much of a right to complain about that fine, but that's just my personal belief. i'd challenge you so show us the stats that there is an appreciable amount of people in prison for not paying Court costs. I can tell you that in VA, that is not done. People just won't get hteir licenses. That's all. So that takes one big state out of the picture on that one.

Now, the way I read your quote from th Ohio bar is that the Court costs they charge you are actually less than what it costs them. So, you should probably consider yourself lucky the costs are not higher.
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  #10  
Old 02-21-2012, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overindictedOH View Post
Why should a person have to pay for the very bullets to execute one's self with? Is it not enough punishment to have been to prison? Not to mention how many tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars I will never see because my income potential is severely damaged, if not completely destroyed, due to the fact that my unexpungeable felony will haunt me, digitally, until my last breath.
Why do you think "I" (law abiding tax payer) should pay for your bad decision? And the red highlighted part....whose fault was that? Put your big boy boxers on and suck it up.
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Old 02-21-2012, 08:37 AM
26thncaliswag 26thncaliswag is offline
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Quote:
Sorry. You did the crime. The state nor it's taxpayers want to be responsible for your voluntary debt. Imay suck to have it over your head, but why should the state pay for decision?

In my case, we don't collect your fines and costs. We are only responsible for your reporting fees and restitution. We will violate you for failure to pay those. We also have a sliding fee scale for indigent or low income clients.

For fines and costs, we let the court know that your balance is outstanding and allow them to decide whether they want to violate and terminate you unsatifactory, continue for fine payments only, convert you over to community service, credit you for jail time, take your bond, or whatever options you still have left on the table.
Told ya!
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Old 02-21-2012, 09:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overindictedOH View Post
Today, I went to pay off what I thought was going to be half of my 1,200 dollar balance, only to be told by the clerk that my balance is actually 3,200. I was found guilty of lesser included offense of agg. assault(f4) and ordered to pay restitution, court costs and a thousand dollar fine. I did 79 days in prison then let out on judicial; initially on intensive supervision, but now on medium, once a month reporting.

The big issue I have is that I only just now got a shitty minimum wage job(with a 4 year degree, might I add) and absolutely will not be able to pay off 3,000 in the next year and 3 months. If worse came to worse, and I don't pay off these bullshit fees/fine, but I have paid off all the restitution, what is the likelihood that they would send me back over the court costs/fine alone? Or, would those be sent to a collection agency, and treated like any other debt? Is there a way to try to talk to my PO and/or judge into changing the fine to community service. Because I am absolutely indigent and should not have been given such exorbitant fees.

What happened to the state paying for the legal process? Isn't the threat of imprisonment over not paying these court costs, etc, the same as threatening us with debtor's prison?
You should get a pretty good income tax refund.

Put it all toward this debt.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:24 AM
overindictedOH overindictedOH is offline
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Why do you think "I" (law abiding tax payer) should pay for your bad decision? And the red highlighted part....whose fault was that? Put your big boy boxers on and suck it up.
I pay taxes too. Taxes fund the salaries of said occupations. It should not be charged twice.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:26 AM
overindictedOH overindictedOH is offline
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You should get a pretty good income tax refund.

Put it all toward this debt.
Only got 177, from wages made before I went to prison. Since prison, I've only had a job for the last 3 months. I got out in may of 2011.
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:28 AM
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The more I see of the justification, rationalization and dodging of responsibility from some of the people who post here, the more I understand how probation gets a rap as being 'impossible to complete'.

Really. You screwed up. So did I.

The difference here is I'm not bitching and moaning about how the system's out to screw me. Do I think the system's *fair*? Not really. But I also know that it's not like *I DIDN"T KNOW WHAT THE CONSEQUENCES WERE WHEN I FUCKED UP AND SIGNED ON*.

Hell, when you get that court appointed attorney, through the whole process, even, they tell you that you're going to be paying for it. Literally.

Suck it up, butter cup.
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overindictedOH View Post
Only got 177, from wages made before I went to prison. Since prison, I've only had a job for the last 3 months. I got out in may of 2011.

Have you tried requesting a hearing before the judge to get your obligations modified? Congratulations on getting *A* job. I don't understand your dislike towards conservatives. I'm a lifelong Republican. The blame for our system is bipartisan. The Democrats have over-criminalized our way of life. Some Republicans have made conditions too harsh for those who have fallen victim to that over-criminalization. Did you know Mitt Romney had to endure a false arrest? Here is the link if you wish to confirm: http://nation.foxnews.com/mitt-romne...y-got-arrested

Regarding doing work you are actually qualified for: There are ways to work besides a W-2 employee. That has been covered extensively on other sections of this forum.
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Old 02-21-2012, 01:10 PM
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It costs everybody to have a subpoena served. If you'd like to know the typical, going rate, ask at the courthouse. You'll be told what they charge for 3 tries (during normal business hours, not sitting outside a house until 3 am). If they don't hit in those three tries, the attorney has to either pay for 3 additional tries or get leave from the court to get special service - that's hiring somebody qualified to track down the person and serve him/her. You can look those services up in your Yellow Pages, give a call, and find out what they charge per service attempt.

You think you have it rough? Service has to be made on a spouse in divorce cases. A disappeared spouse means going through the SO, then going through special service, and finally getting leave from the court for notice through publication (and, yes, you have to pay for that, too. Put your notice in the legal section of the relevant newspaper with the required language and have it run for the statutory period of time). Think about that, and the fact that a lot of people seeking this type of divorce don't have jobs, and their spouse isn't bothering to support them, or their kids.

It's not arbitrary. The funds gained from service of process go to pay for the service of process - training, hiring, all the stuff that goes along with having a few deputies who only do service of process. That means we, the tax payers, aren't fully funding everything they do, but the burden of deputies who serve process is placed on the people requiring service of process.

You're not paying the full boat for that service of process.
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Old 02-21-2012, 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by overindictedOH View Post
I pay taxes too. Taxes fund the salaries of said occupations. It should not be charged twice.
You are not being taxed twice. You committed a crime, were convicted, and are now, quite literally, paying for it. As your article said, the costs you have been charged as a result of your willful behavior do not even begin to cover the actual costs. My advice to you is that you change your mindset about this. I understand that you think it's not fair, but what I think you need to seriously think about is the person who's life you affected by committing an aggravated assault against them. Consider yourself very lucky to have received such a light sentence. Pay your fine, change your attitude, and move on with your life.
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Old 02-21-2012, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by VA PO View Post
You are not being taxed twice. You committed a crime, were convicted, and are now, quite literally, paying for it. As your article said, the costs you have been charged as a result of your willful behavior do not even begin to cover the actual costs. My advice to you is that you change your mindset about this. I understand that you think it's not fair, but what I think you need to seriously think about is the person who's life you affected by committing an aggravated assault against them. Consider yourself very lucky to have received such a light sentence. Pay your fine, change your attitude, and move on with your life.

He said he was convicted of a *lesser included* of aggravated assault. He's lucky not to be doing 5 years+ . Some basic research shows that AA is lesser included to things like manslaughter. My first question is: Did someone die? I hope the OP gets his situation together. I have heard that a hearing before a judge can adjust obligations relative a hardship.
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:23 PM
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I will add, if you get a hearing, make sure you don't sit there talking on a cell phone, take public transportation, and don't have a pack of cigarettes or a can of chaw hanging out of your pocket. And, though you might want to show your bling, no judge is going to appreciate your poverty if you're wearing it to a hearing where you're arguing how poor you are and how unfair the costs are.
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:36 PM
26thncaliswag 26thncaliswag is offline
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We ask for income verification through your social security printout, you 1040's or public assistance verification.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:50 PM
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Y'know, this is why I find it so hard to answer questions sometimes. The "it wasn't my fault" concept that can get thrown out...like they're owed something for committing a crime?
Pay the fines and fees and stay out of whatever trouble it was that got you on supervision in the first place. Be glad you have the opportunity to do so.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AwareNow View Post
He said he was convicted of a *lesser included* of aggravated assault. He's lucky not to be doing 5 years+ . Some basic research shows that AA is lesser included to things like manslaughter. My first question is: Did someone die? I hope the OP gets his situation together. I have heard that a hearing before a judge can adjust obligations relative a hardship.
No, no one died, or was even close to dying. It was down from F. Assault(f2), thanks to the jury. I was overindicted, as DAs do. Hence, the screen name.


Quote:
The "it wasn't my fault" concept that can get thrown out...like they're owed something for committing a crime?
I never said it wasn't my fault. I stood up and turned myself in and told the truth on the stand. I'm saying it's cruel and unusual, on top of everything else, given all the other collateral consequences(e.g. having been to prison, the spoiled identity, lifelong indentured slavery, the legal discrimination).


Quote:
The blame for our system is bipartisan. The Democrats have over-criminalized our way of life. Some Republicans have made conditions too harsh for those who have fallen victim to that over-criminalization. Did you know Mitt Romney had to endure a false arrest? Here is the link if you wish to confirm: http://nation.foxnews.com/mitt-romne...y-got-arrested


Thanks for the well wish. I have to politely disagree with you about conservatism though. It has been the conservatives who were in control of the executive and legislatives branches for so long(starting with Reagan) that increased punitivity in sentencing, in an effort to be more "tough on crime", even though violent crime has steadily gone down since the 90's. And let's not forget our "war on drugs", which was created by republicans, that has done nothing but ruin lives, and has, in effect, put more blacks in prison than there were slaves at the height of slavery, and created an underclass of unemployable pariahs unable to rehabilitate and/or redeem themselves.

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Old 02-22-2012, 12:59 AM
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You're quite the martyr, aren't you? 79 days for agg assault is nothing. Cruel and unusual for making you pay hte fines that you yourself even said don't begin to cover the costs? You spoiled your own identity, so you can't really say that it was 'the system' that did it to you. You did the crime, were convicted, and became a felon. End of story. Had you been able to control yourself better, you would not be in this position, and your victim would not have been injured as a result of of your actions. Your war on drugs analogy is inappropriate. That discussion is appropriate if we are talking aobut crack v. powder cocaine, but we are not. At this point, I feel that further discussion with you on this topic is pointless. You want to view yourself as the victim here, fine, that's your decision. The rest of us are just trying to point out to you that your current attitude will not serve you well in life.
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Old 02-22-2012, 05:43 AM
26thncaliswag 26thncaliswag is offline
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You're quite the martyr, aren't you? 79 days for agg assault is nothing. Cruel and unusual for making you pay hte fines that you yourself even said don't begin to cover the costs? You spoiled your own identity, so you can't really say that it was 'the system' that did it to you. You did the crime, were convicted, and became a felon. End of story. Had you been able to control yourself better, you would not be in this position, and your victim would not have been injured as a result of of your actions. Your war on drugs analogy is inappropriate. That discussion is appropriate if we are talking aobut crack v. powder cocaine, but we are not. At this point, I feel that further discussion with you on this topic is pointless. You want to view yourself as the victim here, fine, that's your decision. The rest of us are just trying to point out to you that your current attitude will not serve you well in life.
I never could understand how people complain about restitution. It's not a fine. It's making YOUR victim whole. And that's only within the context of what you damaged. Medical costs, broken item within the home etc... It has nothing to do with fines and taxes. And it does nothing to repair the victim's mental state from your assault.

There are a few things that makes something aggravated in these states. None of which could be considered overcharge. You need to be more of a culprit and less of a victim. If you were coming into my office, you'd be irking me with this attitude.

Last edited by 26thncaliswag; 02-22-2012 at 06:21 AM..
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