New Oklahoma Laws In 2016 Part 20 – Granting Trial Courts Authority To Waive Fines, Court Costs, & Fees

HB 3160 gives trial courts the authority to waive fines, court costs, and fees of individuals who have been released from the Department of Corrections. The defendant must have made 24 months of timely payments every month following release and must have complied with all probation or supervision requirements following release. This waiver does not apply to restitution or child support.

Any person released from the Department of Corrections is to report within 180 days to the district court of the county from which the judgment and sentence resulting in incarceration arose and all other district courts or municipal courts where the person owes fines, fees, costs and assessments. A hearing will be held to determine the ability of the person to pay fines, fees, costs or assessments owed by the person in every felony or misdemeanor criminal case filed in a district court or criminal case filed in a municipal court.

This is great for people getting released from prison. Many will have a very hard time paying the enormous court costs and fees. Failure to pay these results in a probation violation and likely return to prison. Hopefully, this law will allow people to spend the money they earn on things like food and housing and reduce the likelihood they will return to prison.

This law went into effect November 1, 2016 and created 22 OS §§ 983a & 983b.

HB 3160 – http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/cf_pdf/2015-16%20ENR/hB/HB3160%20ENR.PDF

22 OS § 983a – http://www.oscn.net/applications/oscn/DeliverDocument.asp?CiteID=478325

22 OS § 983b – http://www.oscn.net/applications/oscn/DeliverDocument.asp?CiteID=478326

If you have just been released from prison and would like help with reducing your court costs and fines, then contact The Urbanic Law Firm.

405-633-3420