Fines and Fees

We are proud to partner with the Berkeley Law Policy Advocacy Center to reduce fines and fees imposed on juveniles and their families in Wyoming.  Check out the resources below to learn more about how devastating fines and fees are to children in the criminal justice system in our state and what we can do to stop it.

Research & Scholarly Articles

Making Families Pay: The Harmful, Unlawful, and Costly Practice of Charging Juvenile Administration Fees in California

"This report presents findings about the practice of assessing and collecting administrative fees from families with youth in the California juvenile system. We use the term “administrative fees” to describe the charges imposed by local jurisdictions on families for their child’s involvement in the juvenile system. State law permits counties to charge administrative fees for legal representation, detention, and probation, but only to families with the ability to pay. Most counties in California charge these administrative fees, imposing millions of dollars of debt on families with youth in the juvenile system."

Exploitative Revenues, Law Enforcement, and the Quality of Government Service

"A growing body of evidence indicates that local police departments are being used to provide revenue for municipalities by imposing and collecting fees, fines, and asset forfeitures. We examine whether revenue collection activities compromise the criminal investigation functions of local police departments. We find that police departments in cities that collect a greater share of their revenue from fees solve violent and property crimes at significantly lower rates."

Debtors Prison for Kids? The High Cost of Fines and Fees in the Juvenile Justice System

"Across the country, youth and their families, including many in poverty, face monetary charges for a young person’s involvement in the juvenile justice system. Too often, the inability to pay pushes the young person deeper into the juvenile justice system and exacerbates the family’s economic distress. This report examines how and when youth and families face financial obligations, briefly looks at the economic consequences, and considers the legal consequences for failure to pay. "

Impact of Juvenile Justice Fines and Fees on Family Life: Case Study in Dane County, WI

"Drawing on interviews with 20 parents and their children conducted in July-September 2018, we explore how parents and youth experience and perceive fines and fees. . . This report focuses not only on the specific fines and fees and respective amounts that parents and youth are asked to pay, but also the impact of Legal Financial Obligations (LFOs) on their family life. Our research reveals that these charges impose a significant financial burden on families. We also explore how participants view potential and actual alternatives to LFOS."

National Council of Juvenile and Family Courts: Resolution Addressing Fines, Fees, and Costs in Juvenile Courts

“Our resolution demonstrates NCJFCJ’s call to action for juvenile and family court to work with their courts towards reducing and eliminating fines, fees, and costs by considering a youth and their family’s ability to pay prior to imposing such financial obligations,” said Judge Anthony (Tony) Capizzi, NCJFCJ president. “The NCJFCJ implores judges to provide strong leadership to exercise their discretion to alleviate harm, and support youth and their families on pathways to successful and thriving futures.”