Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio

Bench Card Offers Guidance on Collection of Court Fines, Costs in Juvenile Court

The Ohio Supreme Court today announced the availability of a bench card for costs, fees, fines, and restitution in juvenile court.

The reference guide – developed by a group led by the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission – seeks to better educate judges and court personnel about appropriate financial sanctions and obligations that can be levied in juvenile court.

The juvenile court bench card follows the release of a 2014 bench card about the collection of fines and court costs in adult court.

The bench card briefly explains the fine schedule per type of offense, assessing obligations on parents for the delinquent acts of a child, and the process for a court to substitute community service as payment for court costs. It also includes citations to state statutes and court cases.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor has been a national leader in the elimination of the practice of “debtor’s prisons.” She also serves as co-chair of the National Task Force on Fines, Fees and Bail Practices to address the ongoing impact that court fines and fees and bail practices have on communities – especially the economically disadvantaged – across the United States.

“Education is the key in bringing this problem to light,” Chief Justice O’Connor said. “Just as we developed a bench card for judges in adult courts, we thought it would help juvenile court judges to have at their disposal a handy resource guide to ensure the proper imposition, management, and collection of financial sanctions in juvenile court cases.”

Each juvenile court in the state received notice earlier this month about the availability of the bench card.

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