Application for the Waiver of Court Costs

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					Fee Waivers
AB 2448 (Feuer)
History
 • Issue that arose in enhanced
   collections discussions
 • Subcommittee formed to look at
   fee waivers
 • Becomes Fee Waiver Working
   Group
 • All stakeholders represented
Fee Waiver Working
Group
 • Chaired by Hon. Carolyn Kuhl
  and Michael Planet
 • Included judges, court staff, and
  legal services providers
 • Initial focus on collections
 • Also identified need to enhance
  consistency in existing practice
AB 2448 (Feuer, 2008)
 • Most provisions in AB 467
   (Feuer) (vetoed 2007)
 • AB 2448 differences
   •   for incomplete applications – no
       right to hearing
   •   Delayed implementation until July
       1, 2009
 • Government Code 68630 et seq.
Eligibility
 • Same three categories as in
  existing law
 • New public benefit programs
  added to the existing list
  including Medi-Cal, IHSS,
  and immigrant assistance
  programs
Application
 • Application under penalty of
  perjury
 • Court cannot require proof of
  benefits, identification, or
  personal appearance at filing
  of application
Counsel advancing costs
 • Requires that an applicant
  represented by non-legal
  services counsel advancing
  costs indicate on the
  application and the court set
  a hearing to determine if
  waiver needed
Incomplete applications
 • Requires a clerk to accept all
  applications
 • Can request completion, but
  not refuse to file the
  application or papers
Denial of application
 • Cannot be delegated to clerk
 • Order must be on JC form,
  include specific reasons for
  denial, and opportunity to
  request a hearing except…
 • Incomplete application can only
  be resubmitted
Hearing required
 • If court doubts veracity of
  application
 • If application does not
  conclusively establish
  ineligibility
   •   10 days notice + reasons for
       hearing
Partial payment
 • Only if applicant is not
  eligible for full waiver
 • Partial denial only with notice
  and opportunity to be heard
 • Alternatively can order
  payments over time
Changed circumstances
 • Limits reconsideration to every 6
  months & at final disposition
 • Requires 10 days written notice

 • Before disposition, notice must
  contain reasons for hearing
Effect of reconsideration
 • If court finds applicant was
  not eligible at filing, waiver
  retroactively withdrawn
 • If court finds not eligible
  after filing, can prospectively
  withdraw waiver from that
  date
Using court in bad faith
 • New authority for court to
  limit the services for which
  fees are waived if court finds
  litigant is acting in bad faith
Adding fees to judgment
 • Mandatory if the party with
  waived fees is the CCP 1032
  prevailing party
 • Except: Unlawful Detainer,
  Family Law, and 2-fee-
  waivers cases are exempt
Lien on settlement
 • Court has lien for fees on any
   settlement of $10,000 or more
 • Court can refuse to enter
   dismissal until lien satisfied
 • Court must provide information
  re amount of waived fees, so
  party can be informed of
  amount due.
Family law only
provisions
 • Court must consider ordering
  other party to pay fees
 • Court must consider at
  judgment whether applicant can
  now pay fees
   •   Any party ordered to pay gets
       notice & opportunity to be heard
Duration
 • Fee waiver expires 60 days
  after judgment, dismissal, or
  other final disposition of case
New rules and forms
 • New rules and forms were
  developed by Civil & Small
  Claims, Family/Juvenile, and
  Appellate Advisory Committees
 • Approved and adopted by
  Judicial Council as of April 24,
  2009
 • July 1 effective date.

				
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