Poverty Penalties and Poverty Traps

Keyword search across all of the laws in the states. Subject-area tabs above allow you to narrow results. Click the advanced search for further refinement.

Every law can be saved to the Reform Builder  

See all poverty penalty and poverty trap policy recommendations in CJPP’s Policy Guide

Below are the poverty penalties and poverty traps that meet your search criteria. Many include a See related provisions prompt which searches our database for laws that may pertain to your result.

116 Results

Export results to Excel

State Statute Description/Statute Name Statutory language Type of poverty penalty or poverty trap Level of offense Mandatory
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Wyoming Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 31-9-303 Continued suspension until judgment satisfied; discharge in bankruptcy
Except as provided in W.S. 31-9-305, the license, registration and nonresident's operating privilege shall not be renewed, nor shall any license or registration be issued in the name of the
+ See more
person, including any person not previously licensed, until every judgment is stayed, satisfied or discharged, except that a discharge in bankruptcy does satisfy the judgment for the purposes of this section.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Wyoming Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 6-10-105 Commitment for refusal to pay fine or costs; rate per day.
A person committed to jail for willfully refusing to pay a fine or costs may be imprisoned if the court determines that the defendant has an ability to pay or
+ See more
that a reasonable probability exists that the defendant will have an ability to pay, until the imprisonment, at the rate of fifteen dollars ($15.00) per day, equals the amount of the fine or costs, or the amount shall be paid or secured to be paid when he is discharged.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Wyoming Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 7-11-504 Commitment until fines and costs paid
If a defendant sentenced to pay a fine or costs defaults in payment, the court may order the defendant to show cause why he should not be committed to jail.
+ See more
If the court finds that the defendant's default is willful or is due to a failure on defendant's part to make a good faith effort to obtain the funds required for the payment and the court determines that the defendant has an ability to pay or that a reasonable probability exists that the defendant will have an ability to pay, the court may order him committed until the fine or costs, or a specified part thereof, is paid. The defendant shall be given a credit for each day of imprisonment at the rate provided by W.S. 6 10 105, and may earn additional credits against his fine or costs for work performed as provided by W.S. 7 16 101 through 7 16 104.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Michigan Mich. Comp. Laws § 257.907(11) Restitution by defendant convicted of misdemeanor
If a person fails to comply with an order or judgment issued under this section within the time prescribed by the court, the driver's license of that person shall be
+ See more
suspended under section 321a until full compliance with that order or judgment occurs. In addition to this suspension, the court may also proceed under section 908.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 10.01.180(1),(3) Fine or costs--Default in payment--Contempt of court--Enforcement, collection procedures
(1) A defendant sentenced to pay a fine or costs who defaults in the payment thereof or of any installment is in contempt of court as provided in chapter 7.21
+ See more
RCW. The court may issue a warrant of arrest for his or her appearance….(3) If a term of imprisonment for contempt for nonpayment of a fine or costs is ordered, the term of imprisonment shall be set forth in the commitment order, and shall not exceed one day for each twenty-five dollars of the fine or costs, thirty days if the fine or assessment of costs was imposed upon conviction of a violation or misdemeanor, or one year in any other case, whichever is the shorter period. A person committed for nonpayment of a fine or costs shall be given credit toward payment for each day of imprisonment at the rate specified in the commitment order.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 10.01.180(5) Fine or costs--Default in payment--Contempt of court--Enforcement, collection procedures
(5) A default in the payment of a fine or costs or any installment thereof may be collected by any means authorized by law for the enforcement of a judgment.
+ See more
The levy of execution for the collection of a fine or costs shall not discharge a defendant committed to imprisonment for contempt until the amount of the fine or costs has actually been collected.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 10.70.010  Commitment until fine and costs are paid
When the defendant is adjudged to pay a fine and costs, the court shall order him or her to be committed to the custody of the sheriff until the fine
+ See more
and costs are paid or secured as provided by law.
Incarceration All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 46.20.289 Suspension for failure to respond, appear, etc.
The department shall suspend all driving privileges of a person when the department receives notice from a court under RCW 46.63.070(6), 46.63.110(6), or 46.64.025 that the person has failed to
+ See more
respond to a notice of traffic infraction for a moving violation, failed to appear at a requested hearing for a moving violation, violated a written promise to appear in court for a notice of infraction for a moving violation, or has failed to comply with the terms of a notice of traffic infraction, criminal complaint, or citation for a moving violation, or when the department receives notice from another state under Article IV of the nonresident violator compact under RCW 46.23.010 or from a jurisdiction that has entered into an agreement with the department under RCW 46.23.020, other than for a standing, stopping, or parking violation, provided that the traffic infraction or traffic offense is committed on or after July 1, 2005. A suspension under this section takes effect pursuant to the provisions of RCW 46.20.245, and remains in effect until the department has received a certificate from the court showing that the case has been adjudicated, and until the person meets the requirements of RCW 46.20.311. In the case of failure to respond to a traffic infraction issued under RCW 46.55.105, the department shall suspend all driving privileges until the person provides evidence from the court that all penalties and restitution have been paid. A suspension under this section does not take effect if, prior to the effective date of the suspension, the department receives a certificate from the court showing that the case has been adjudicated.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment Traffic Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington Wash. Rev. Code Ann. § 9.94B.030 Post release supervision-violations
If the offender violates any condition of post release supervision, a hearing may be conducted in the same manner as provided in RCW 9.94B.040. Jurisdiction shall be with the court
+ See more
of the county in which the offender was sentenced. However, the court may order a change of venue to the offender's county of residence or where the violation occurred, for the purpose of holding a violation hearing. After the hearing, the court may order the offender to be confined for up to sixty days per violation in the county jail.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington DC DC ST § 11-741 Contempt powers (DC Court of Appeals)
(a) Subject to the limitation described in subsection (b), and in addition to the powers conferred by section 402 of title 18, United States Code, the District of Columbia Court
+ See more
of Appeals, or a judge thereof, may punish for disobedience of an order or for contempt committed in the presence of the court.... (3)(A) An individual imprisoned for 6 consecutive months for civil contempt for disobedience of an order in a proceeding described in paragraph (1) who continues to disobey such order may be prosecuted for criminal contempt for disobedience of such order at any time before the expiration of the 12-month period that begins on the first day of such individual's imprisonment, except that an individual so imprisoned as of the date of the enactment of this subsection may be prosecuted under this subsection at any time during the 90-day period that begins on the date of the enactment of this subsection. ...
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Washington DC DC ST § 11-944 Contempt power (Superior Court of DC)
(a) Subject to the limitation described in subsection (b), and in addition to the powers conferred by section 402 of title 18, United States Code, the Superior Court, or a
+ See more
judge thereof, may punish for disobedience of an order or for contempt committed in the presence of the court.... (3)(A) An individual imprisoned for 6 consecutive months for civil contempt for disobedience of an order in a proceeding described in paragraph (1) who continues to disobey such order may be prosecuted for criminal contempt for disobedience of such order at any time before the expiration of the 12-month period that begins on the first day of such individual's imprisonment, except that an individual so imprisoned as of the date of the enactment of this subsection may be prosecuted under this subsection at any time during the 90-day period that begins on the date of the enactment of this subsection.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

West Virginia W. Va. Code §62-4-9. Criminal procedure - Recovery of fines in criminal cases - Capias pro fine; release of defendant on bond.
When a judgment for fine and costs is rendered by a circuit court, or other court of record having jurisdiction in criminal cases, the court may order a capias pro
+ See more
fine to be issued thereon at any time during the term at which the judgment is rendered, and if not such order be made, such capias shall be issued by the clerk of the court in vacation if he be ordered to do so by the prosecuting attorney. If the judgment of the court in such case be that the defendant be imprisoned and fined, or that he be fined and imprisoned until the fine and costs be paid, or if the defendant be imprisoned by virtue of such capias pro fine, in either event, the defendant may be released from such imprisonment, where he is detained for a failure to pay such fine and costs, only upon his giving bond with good security before the court, or before the clerk thereof in vacation, or before the sheriff of the county in which such judgment is rendered, payable to the state of West Virginia, for the payment of such fine and costs, at a time not exceeding twelve months after the date of such bond. If default be made in the payment of such bond, the same may be proceeded against to judgment and execution as if it were a forthcoming bond.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

West Virginia W. Va. Code §62-4-17. Criminal procedure - Recovery of fines in criminal cases - Suspension of licenses for failure to pay fines and costs or failure to appear in court.
(a) If costs, fines, forfeitures, penalties or restitution imposed by the circuit court upon conviction of a person for any criminal offense under this code are not paid in full
+ See more
when ordered to do so by the court, the circuit clerk shall notify the division of motor vehicles of such failure to pay: Provided, That at the time the judgment is imposed, the court shall provide the person with written notice that failure to pay the same when ordered to do so shall result in the suspension of such person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle in this state and that such suspension could result in the cancellation of, the failure to renew or the failure to issue an automobile insurance policy providing coverage for such person or such person's family: Provided, however, That the failure of the court to provide such notice shall not affect the validity of any suspension of such person's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle in this state. For purposes of this section, such period of time within which the person is required to pay shall be stayed during any period an appeal from the conviction which resulted in the imposition of such costs, fines, forfeitures or penalties is pending.Upon such notice, the division of motor vehicles shall suspend the person's driver's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle in this state until such time that the costs, fines, forfeitures or penalties are paid. (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of this section to the contrary, the notice of the failure to pay such costs, fines, forfeitures or penalties shall not be given where the circuit court, upon application of the person upon whom the same were imposed filed prior to the expiration of the period within which the same are required to be paid, enters an order finding that such person is financially unable to pay all or a portion of the same: Provided, That where the circuit court, upon finding that the person is financially unable to pay the full amount thereof, requires the person to pay the remaining portion thereof, the circuit clerk shall notify the division of motor vehicles of such person's failure to pay the same if the same is not paid within the period of time ordered by such court. (c) If a person charged with a criminal offense fails to appear or otherwise respond in court after having received notice to do so, the court shall notify the division of motor vehicles thereof within fifteen days of the scheduled date to appear unless such person sooner appears or otherwise responds in court to the satisfaction of the court. Upon such notice, the division of motor vehicles shall suspend the person's driver's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle in this state until such time that the person appears as required.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

West Virginia W. Va. Code §50-3-2a. Magistrate courts - Costs, fines and records - Payment by credit card or payment plan; suspension of licenses for failure to make payments or appear or respond; restitution; liens.
(c) (1) If any costs, fines, fees, forfeitures, restitution or penalties imposed by the magistrate court in a criminal case are not paid within one hundred eighty days from the
+ See more
date of judgment and the expiration of any stay of execution, the magistrate court clerk or, upon judgment rendered on appeal, the circuit clerk shall notify the Commissioner of the Division of Motor Vehicles of the failure to pay: Provided, That in a criminal case in which a nonresident of this state is convicted of a motor vehicle violation defined in section three-a, article three, chapter seventeen-b of this code, the appropriate clerk shall notify the Division of Motor Vehicles of the failure to pay within eighty days from the date of judgment and expiration of any stay of execution. Upon notice, the Division of Motor Vehicles shall suspend any privilege the person defaulting on payment may have to operate a motor vehicle in this state, including any driver's license issued to the person by the Division of Motor Vehicles, until all costs, fines, fees, forfeitures, restitution or penalties are paid in full. The suspension shall be imposed in accordance with the provisions of section six, article three, chapter seventeen-b of this code: Provided, That any person who has had his or her license to operate a motor vehicle in this state suspended pursuant to this subsection and his or her failure to pay is based upon inability to pay, may, if he or she is employed on a full- or part-time basis, petition to the circuit court for an order authorizing him or her to operate a motor vehicle solely for employment purposes. Upon a showing satisfactory to the court of inability to pay, employment and compliance with other applicable motor vehicle laws, the court shall issue an order granting relief.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Pennsylvania Pa. R. Crim. P. 430(B)(4) Failure to respond to traffic citation
(4) that failure to respond to the citation as provided above within the time specified: (a) shall result in the issuance of
+ See more
a summons when a violation of an ordinance or any parking offense is charged, or when the defendant is under 18 years of age, and in all other cases shall result in the issuance of a warrant for the arrest of the defendant; and (b) shall result in the suspension of the defendant’s driver’s license when a violation of the Vehicle Code is charged;
Driver's license suspension/impoundment Traffic Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Pennsylvania 42 Pa. Stat. Ann. § 9730(b)(2) Failure to pay court costs, restitution and fines
(b) Procedures regarding default.--(1) If a defendant defaults in the payment of a fine, court costs or restitution after imposition of sentence, the issuing authority or a senior judge or
+ See more
senior magisterial district judge appointed by the president judge for the purposes of this section may conduct a hearing to determine whether the defendant is financially able to pay. (2) If the issuing authority, senior judge or senior magisterial district judge determines that the defendant is financially able to pay the fine or costs, the issuing authority, senior judge or senior magisterial district judge may turn the delinquent account over to a private collection agency or impose imprisonment for nonpayment, as provided by law.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

New Jersey N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:46-2 Consequences of Nonpayment
When a defendant sentenced to pay an assessment imposed pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1979, c. 396 (C.2C:43-3.1), a penalty imposed pursuant to section 11 of P.L.2001, c. 81 (C.2C:43-3.6),
+ See more
a penalty imposed pursuant to section 1 of P.L.2005, c. 73 (C.2C:14-10), monthly probation fee, fine, a penalty imposed pursuant to section 1 of P.L.1999, c. 295 (C.2C:43-3.5), other court-imposed financial obligations or to make restitution or pay child support or other support or maintenance ordered by a court defaults in the payment thereof or of any installment, upon the motion of the person authorized by law to collect the payment, the motion of the prosecutor, the motion of the victim entitled to payment of restitution, the motion of the Victims of Crime Compensation Office, the motion of the State or county Office of Victim and Witness Advocacy or upon its own motion, the court shall recall him, or issue a summons or a warrant of arrest for his appearance. The court shall afford the person notice and an opportunity to be heard on the issue of default. Failure to make any payment when due shall be considered a default. The standard of proof shall be by a preponderance of the evidence, and the burden of establishing good cause for a default shall be on the person who has defaulted. (1) If the court finds that the person has defaulted without good cause, the court shall: (a) Order the suspension of the driver's license or the nonresident reciprocity driving privilege of the person
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

New Jersey N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2C:46-2 Consequences of Nonpayment
If the court finds that the person defaulted on payment of a court-imposed financial obligation, restitution, or child support or other support or maintenance ordered by a court without good cause and finds
+ See more
that the default was willful, the court may, in addition to the action required by paragraph (1) of this subsection a., impose a term of imprisonment or participation in a labor assistance program or enforced community service to achieve the objective of the court-imposed financial obligation, restitution, or child support or other support or maintenance ordered by a court. These options shall not reduce the amount owed by the person in default. The term of imprisonment or enforced community service or participation in a labor assistance program in such case shall be specified in the order of commitment. It need not be equated with any particular dollar amount but, in the case of a fine it shall not exceed one day for each $50 of the fine nor shall it exceed a period of 90 consecutive days. In no case shall the total period of imprisonment in the case of a disorderly persons offense for both the sentence of imprisonment and for failure to pay a fine exceed six months.
Incarceration All No
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Virginia Va. Code Ann. § 53.1-127.4 Driver's license suspension
No suspension of driving privileges shall be issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles for failure or refusal to provide for immediate payment in full of fees imposed under §
+ See more
53.1-131.3 or for failure to make payments under a deferred or installment payment agreement unless the sheriff or jail superintendent has (i) entered into an agreement with the Department of Motor Vehicles pursuant to § 46.2-320.2, (ii) has obtained a judgment and court order for suspension or nonrenewal issued by a court of competent jurisdiction, and (iii) has provided to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles electronic notice of such judgment or default and court order and the person's most current mailing address. The provisions of this section shall apply to all unpaid fees imposed under § 53.1-131.3 provided the sheriff or jail administrator or other entity under a contract pursuant to § 53.1-127.5 informs the person who owes the fees and receives signed certification of understanding at the time the deferred or installment payment agreement is entered into that upon failure or refusal to pay in accordance with the payment agreement the person's privilege to operate a motor vehicle shall be suspended pursuant to the provisions of § 46.2-320.2.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes
BS-+-Light-Rounded-Square
Add to Dashboard

+ Create New

Virginia Va. Code Ann. § 46.2-395. Suspension of license for failure or refusal to pay fines or costs
B. In addition to any penalty provided by law and subject to the limitations on collection under §§ 19.2-340 and 19.2-341, when any person is convicted of any violation of
+ See more
the law of the Commonwealth or of the United States or of any valid local ordinance and fails or refuses to provide for immediate payment in full of any fine, costs, forfeitures, restitution, or penalty lawfully assessed against him, or fails to make deferred payments or installment payments as ordered by the court, the court shall forthwith suspend the person's privilege to drive a motor vehicle on the highways in the Commonwealth. The driver's license of the person shall continue suspended until the fine, costs, forfeiture, restitution, or penalty has been paid in full.
Driver's license suspension/impoundment All Yes