Poverty Penalties and Poverty Traps

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State Statute Description/Statute Name Statutory language Type of poverty penalty or poverty trap Level of offense Mandatory
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Iowa Iowa Code § 909.5 Nonpayment of fines and court costs — contempt

A person who is able to pay a fine, court-imposed court costs for a criminal proceeding, or both, or an installment of the fine or the court-imposed court costs, or

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both, and who refuses to do so, or who fails to make a good faith effort to pay the fine, court costs, or both, or any installment thereof, shall be held in contempt of court.

Incarceration All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 665.4 Contempts: Punishment

The punishment for contempt, where not otherwise specifically provided, shall be:

1. In the supreme court or the court of appeals, by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars or by

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imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

2. Before district judges, district associate judges, and associate juvenile judges by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars or imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months or by both such fine and imprisonment.

3. Before judicial magistrates, by a fine not exceeding one hundred dollars or imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding thirty days.

Increased fine All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 665.5 Contempts: Imprisonment

If the contempt consists in an omission to perform an act which is yet in the power of the person to perform, the person may be imprisoned until the person

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performs it. In that case the act to be performed must be specified in the warrant of the commitment.

Incarceration All No
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Iowa Iowa Code § 8A.504(d)(3),(2) Setoff Procedures

d. “Qualifying debt” includes, but is not limited to, the following: (3) Any debt which is in the form of a liquidated sum due, owing, and payable to the clerk of

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the district court.

2. Setoff procedure. The collection entity shall establish and maintain a procedure to set off against any claim owed to a person by a public agency any liability of that person owed to a public agency, a support debt being enforced by the child support recovery unit pursuant to chapter 252B, or such other qualifying debt.

Wage/bank account garnishment All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 910.4(1)(a)-(b) Condition of probation — payment plan

1. When restitution is ordered by the sentencing court and the offender is placed on probation, restitution shall be a condition of probation.

a. Failure of the offender to comply with

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the plan of restitution, plan of payment, or community service requirements when community service is ordered by the court as restitution, shall constitute a violation of probation and shall constitute contempt of court.

b. If an offender fails to comply with restitution requirements during probation, the court may hold the offender in contempt, revoke probation, or extend the period of probation.

Condition or extension of supervision All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 910.5(4)(b) Condition of work release or parole

If an offender is to be placed on parole, restitution shall be a condition of parole.

b. After the expiration of the offender’s sentence, the failure of an offender to comply with

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the plan of restitution ordered by the court shall constitute contempt of court.

Incarceration All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 910.7A Judgment — enforcement.

1. An order requiring an offender to pay restitution constitutes a judgment and lien against all property of a liable defendant for the amount the defendant is obligated to pay

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under the order and may be recorded in any office for the filing of liens against real or personal property.

2. A judgment of restitution may be enforced by the state, a victim entitled under the order to receive restitution, a deceased victim’s estate, or any other beneficiary of the judgment in the same manner as a civil judgment.

Property liens All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 909.3A Community service option

The court may, in its discretion, order the defendant to perform community service work of an equivalent value to the fine imposed where it appears that the community service work

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will be adequate to deter the defendant and to discourage others from similar criminal activity. The rate at which community service shall be calculated shall be the federal or state minimum wage, whichever is higher.

Community service All No
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Iowa Iowa Code Ann. § 910.4(1) Condition of probation--payment plan

1. When restitution is ordered by the sentencing court and the offender is placed on probation, restitution shall be a condition of probation.

a. Failure of the offender to comply with the plan

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of restitution, plan of payment, or community service requirements when community service is ordered by the court as restitution, shall constitute a violation of probation and shall constitute contempt of court.

b. If an offender fails to comply with restitution requirements during probation, the court may hold the offender in contempt, revoke probation, or extend the period of probation.

Condition or extension of supervision All No
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Iowa Iowa Code § 815.9(7)-(8) Indigency determined — penalty

7. When ordering payment of all or a portion of the total costs and fees incurred for legal assistance under subsection 6, the court may order payment of the costs and

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fees in reasonable installments as provided in section 909.3, or may order the entire amount due and payable. If any costs and fees are not paid at the time specified in the order of the court, a judgment shall be entered against the person for any unpaid amount. Such judgment may be enforced by the state in the same manner as a civil judgment.

8. If a person is granted an appointed attorney or has received legal assistance in accordance with this section and the person is employed, the person shall execute an assignment of wages. An order for assignment of income, in a reasonable amount to be determined by the court, shall be entered by the court. The state public defender shall prescribe forms for use in wage assignments and court orders entered under this subsection.

Wage/bank account garnishment All Yes
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Iowa Iowa Code § 909.3 Criminal Corrections - Fines: Payment in installments

1. All fines imposed by the court shall be paid on the day the fine is imposed, and the person shall be instructed to pay such fines with the office of

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the clerk of the district court on the date of imposition.

2. a. The court may, in its discretion, order a fine to be paid in installments.

Payment plan/installment plan All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 15 §1903 Fines and forfeitures recovered by indictment unless otherwise provided

All fines and forfeitures, imposed as punishment for offenses or for violations or neglects of statute duties may, when no other mode is expressly provided, be recovered by indictment. When

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no other appropriation is expressly made, they inure to the State.

Incarceration All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 1710 Modification of payment of fine

If a convicted person who has been sentenced to pay a fine is in danger of default, that person shall move the court for a modification of time or method

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of payment to avoid a default. The court may modify its prior order to allow additional time for payment or to reduce the amount of each installment.

Payment plan/installment plan All Yes
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 1711(4)(A)(1) Fines: Default

Unless the offender shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the default was not attributable to an intentional or knowing refusal to obey the court's order or to a

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failure on the offender's part to make a good faith effort to obtain the funds required for the payment, the court shall find that the default was unexcused and may:(

(1) Commit the offender to the custody of the sheriff until all or a specified part of the fine is paid. The length of confinement in a county jail for unexcused default must be specified in the court's order and may not exceed 6 months. An offender committed for nonpayment of a fine is given credit toward the payment of the fine for each day of confinement that the offender is in custody at the rate specified in the court's order, which may not be less than $25 or more than $100 of unpaid fine for each day of confinement. The offender is also given credit for each day that the offender is detained as the result of an arrest warrant issued pursuant to this section. An offender is responsible for paying any fine remaining after receiving credit for confinement and detention.

Incarceration All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 1711(4)(A)(2) Fines: Default

Unless the offender shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the default was not attributable to an intentional or knowing refusal to obey the court's order or to a

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failure on the offender's part to make a good faith effort to obtain the funds required for the payment, the court shall find that the default was unexcused and may:

(2) If the unexcused default relates to a fine imposed for a Class C, Class D or Class E crime, as authorized by this subchapter, order the person to perform a specified number of hours of community service work for the benefit of the State, a county, a municipality, a school administrative district or other public entity, a charitable institution or other entity approved by the court until all or a specified part of the fine is paid. The number of hours of community service work must be specified in the court's order and the person must receive a credit against the unpaid fine at a rate equal to the current hourly minimum wage. A person ordered to perform community service work pursuant to this subparagraph is given credit toward the payment of the fine for each 8-hour day of community service work performed. The person is also given credit toward the payment of the fine for each day that the person is detained as a result of an arrest warrant issued pursuant to this section at a rate specified in the court's order that is up to $100 of unpaid fine per day of confinement. A person who fails to complete the work in the manner ordered by the court must be returned to the court to explain the failure. A person is responsible for paying any fine remaining after receiving credit for any detention and for community service work performed. 

Community service All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 2007(1) Restitution: Income withholding order

When restitution is required of an offender who will not be commencing service of a period of institutional confinement, who does not receive a sentence that includes a period of

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probation and who is employed, the court shall, at the time of ordering restitution, enter a separate order for income withholding. When restitution is required of an offender who receives a sentence that includes a period of probation and who is employed, upon application of the offender's probation officer, the court shall enter a separate order for income withholding. The withholding order must direct the employer to deduct from all income due and payable to the offender an amount determined pursuant to section 1326-A to meet the offender's restitution obligation. The withholding order must include an instruction to the employer that upon receipt of a copy of the withholding order the employer shall: A. Immediately begin to withhold the offender's income when the offender is usually paid; B. Send each amount withheld to the agency to which restitution has been ordered to be paid at the address set forth in the order within 7 business days of the withholding; and C. Identify each amount sent to the agency by indicating the court's docket number.

Wage/bank account garnishment All Yes
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. 17-A § 2015(3)(A) Restitution: Default

A. Unless the offender shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the default was not attributable to an intentional or knowing refusal to obey the court's order or to a

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failure on the offender's part to make a good-faith effort to obtain the funds required to make payment, the court shall find that the default was unexcused and may commit the offender to the custody of the sheriff until all or a specified part of the restitution is paid. The length of confinement in a county jail for unexcused default must be specified in the court's order and may not exceed one day for every $5 of unpaid restitution or 6 months, whichever is shorter. An offender committed for nonpayment of restitution is given credit toward the payment of restitution for each day of confinement that the offender is in custody, at the rate specified in the court's order. The offender is also given credit for each day that the offender has been detained as the result of an arrest warrant issued pursuant to this section. An offender is responsible for paying any restitution remaining after receiving credit for confinement and detention. A default on the remaining restitution is also governed by this section.

Incarceration All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 2015(3)(B) Restitution: Default

B. If it appears that the default is excusable, the court may give the offender additional time for payment or may reduce the amount of each installment.

Payment plan/installment plan All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 2016(1) Work program release; restitution

A prisoner who has been ordered to pay restitution or fines may not be released pursuant to a work program administered by the Department of Corrections under Title 34-A, section

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3035, or a sheriff under Title 30-A, section 1605, or participate in an industry program under Title 34-A, section 1403, subsection 9 or any other program administered by the Department of Corrections or a sheriff by which a prisoner is able to generate money, unless the prisoner consents to pay at least 25% of the prisoner's gross weekly wages or other money generated to the victim or the court until such time as full restitution has been made or the fine is paid in full.

Wage/bank account garnishment All No
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Maine Me. Rev. Stat. tit 17-A § 1751(6)(A) County jail reimbursement fee

6. Motion to enforce payment of reimbursement fee. The attorney for the State, the attorney for the county or the court may initiate a motion to enforce payment of a reimbursement

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fee. Notification for the hearing on the motion must be sent by regular mail to the individual's last known address. If the individual does not appear for the hearing after proper notification has been sent, the court may issue a bench warrant.

A. Unless the individual shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the default was not attributable to an intentional or knowing refusal to obey the court's order or to a failure on the individual's part to make a good faith effort to obtain the funds required to make payment, the court shall find that the default was unexcused and may commit the individual to the custody of the sheriff until all or a specified part of the reimbursement fee is paid. The length of confinement in a county jail for unexcused default must be specified in the court's order and may not exceed 6 months. An individual committed for nonpayment of a reimbursement fee is given credit toward the payment of a reimbursement fee for each day of confinement that the individual is in custody, at the rate specified in the court's order, which may not be less than $25 or more than $100 of unpaid reimbursement fee for each day of confinement. The individual is also given credit for each day that the individual has been detained as the result of an arrest warrant issued pursuant to this section. An individual is responsible for paying any reimbursement fee remaining after receiving credit for confinement and detention.

Incarceration All No