Interim Report: A Framework to Improve How Fines, Fees, Restitution, and Child Support are Assessed and Collected from People Convicted of Crimes

This report describes how fines, fees, and restitution are assessed in criminal courts in Texas, how these court-ordered financial obligations are collected, and how these assessments and collections account for child support that defendants may already owe. This report reviews the challenges court officials encounter under the current system and recommends strategies to clarify and streamline existing policies. Using the findings and recommendations in this report, state and local government policymakers can launch an effort to increase financial accountability among people who commit crimes, improve rates of collection for child support and victim restitution, and ensure people's transition from prisons and jails to the community is safe and successful.

Carl Reynolds, Mary Cowherd, Andy Barbee, Tony Fabelo, Ted Wood, and Jamie Yoon | March 2009 | The Council of State Governments Justice Center and Texas Office of Court Administration
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