National Reports

See also the State Fines, Fees and Bail Practices Interactive Map for all state reports.
   

Criminal Justice Policy Program, Harvard Law School (March 2019) Bail Reform, A Guide for State and Local Policy Makers.

     
   

Criminal Justice Policy Program at Harvard Law School 50-State Criminal Justice Debt Reform Builder Bringing transparency to areas of significant legal complexity.

     
   

Supreme Court steps in to halt states' predatory fines.  In a unanimous opinion written by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the court held it is “fundamental” to liberty to protect against excessive fines, and a state cannot circumvent the Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment by renaming a criminal fine a civil forfeiture, or by seizing a vehicle in lieu of currency.

     
 
 

The Aleph Institute's Video Pocketbook Justice: Bail, Fines and Fees, a panel at Aleph Institute's Rewriting the Sentence Summit, June 17, 2019.

     
   

Report: Nine facts about monetary sanctions in the criminal justice system by Patrick Liu, Ryan Nunn, and Jay Shambaugh, March 15, 2019.

     
   

Punishment Without Crime: How Our Massive Misdemeanor System Traps the Innocent and Makes America More Unequal (Basic Books, 2018), describes the powerful influence that misdemeanors exert over the entire U.S. criminal system. A new book by former federal public defender and legal scholar Alexandra Natapoff examines an aspect of American criminal justice that she argues is often overlooked: misdemeanors. 

     
   

Vera Incarceration Trends Pretrial Jail Incarcerations Rate Interactive Map

     
 

National Consumer Law Center (NCLC) Commercialized (In)Justice Consumer Abuses in the Bail and Corrections Industry Report discussing the abuse arising out of the commercialization of the criminal legal system and mass incarceration. 

     
   

National Task Force on Fines, Fees, and Bail Practices. Bail Reform: A Practical Guide Based on Research and Experience.

     
   

The Brennan Center for Justice and the Fair and Just Prosecution’s 21 Principals for the 21st Century Prosecutor

     
   

ACLU’s A New Vision for Pretrial Justice in the United States, by Andrea Woods and Portia Allen-Kyle, March 2019.

     
   

National Center for Access to Justice and Fordham Law School’s Justice Index Fines & Fees Typology, by David Udell & Amy Widman, May 2019.

     
   

Suspended Driver Alternative Reinstatement Working Group (2018) Reducing Suspended Drivers and Alternative Reinstatement, Best Practices.

     


 

Multi-State Collaborative (2018) Enforcing Inequality: Balancing Budgets on the Backs of the PoorCalifornia Reinvestment Coalition, Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition, Reinvestment Partners, and Woodstock Institute.

     
   

Yale Law School's Liman Public Interest Colloquium (2018) Who Pays? Fines, Fees Bail and the Cost of Courts.

     
   

Matthew Menedez (April 2018) Fees and Fines Threaten Judicial Independence, ABA Journal.

     
   

National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (2018) Resolution Addressing Fines, Fees, and Costs in Juvenile Courts.

     
   

ACLU (2018) A Pound of Flesh: The Criminalization of Private Debt.

     
   

Beth A. Colgan (2017) Graduating Economic Sanctions According to Ability to Pay, 103 Iowa L. Rev. 53.

     
   

National Juvenile Defender Center (2017) The Cost of Juvenile Probation: A Critical Look into Juvenile Supervision Fees.

     
   

Pretrial Justice Institute (November 2017) The State of Pretrial Justice in America.

     
   

Legal Aid Justice Center (September 2017) Driven By Dollars: A State-By-State Analysis of Driver's License Suspension Laws for Failure to Pay Court Debt.

     
   

Law Enforcement Leaders To reduce Crime & Incarceration (September 2017) Letter of Support for the Pretrial Integrity and Safety Act of 2017.

     
   

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (September 2017) Targeted Fines and Fees against Communities of Color: Civil Rights and Constitutional Implications.

     
   

Governing (August 2017) Special Report: How Autonomous Vehicles Could Constrain City Budgets.

     
 

Michael W. Sances, and Hye Young You (May 2017) Who Pays for Government? Descriptive Representation and Exploitative Revenue Sources.

     
 

Prison Policy Institute (May 2017) Era of Mass Expansion: Why State Officials Should Fight Jail Growth.

     
 

Color of Change and ACLU's Campaign for Smart Justice (May 2017) Selling Off Our Freedom: How Insurance Corporations Have Taken Over Our Bail System

     

Alexes Harris, et. al. (April 2017) Monetary Sanctions in the Criminal Justice System Laura and John Arnold Foundation.

     
 

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Briefing: Targeted Fines and Fees against Low-Income People of Color (March 2017). Briefing materials can found on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights website.

   
 

Karin D. Martin, Sandra Susan and Wendy Still (January 2017) Shackled to Debt: Criminal Justice Financial Obligations and the Barriers to Re-Entry They Create.

   
 

Joshua Aiken, Prison Policy Initiative (December 2016) Reinstating Common Sense: How Driver's License Suspensions for Drug Offenses Unrelated to Driving Are Falling Out of Favor.

   

Criminal Justice Policy Program, Harvard Law School (October 2016) Moving Beyond Money: A Primer on Bail Reform.

   
 

Criminal Justice Policy Program, Harvard Law School (September 2016) Confronting Criminal Justice Debt: A Guide for Policy Reform.

   
 

Vera Institute for Justice (May 2016) Justice in Review: New Trends in State Sentencing and Corrections 2014-2015.

   
 

American Bar Association Commission on the Future of Legal Services (2016) Report on the Future of Legal Services Recommendation 9.2 9.2. Administrative fines and fees should be adjusted to avoid a disproportionate impact on the poor and to avoid incarceration due to nonpayment of fines and fees.

   
 

U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs Diagnostic Center (2016) Resource Guide:  Reforming the Assessment and Enforcement of Fines and Fees.

   
 

Atkinson, Torie (2016) A Fine Scheme: How Municipal Fines Become Crushing Debt in the Shadow of the New Debtors’ Prisons Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review.


   

 

Strong, Suzanne M. (2016) State-Administered Indigent Defense Systems 2013 Bureau of Justice Statistics.


   
 

Zatz, Noah, et al. (2016) Get To Work or Go To Jail: Workplace Rights Under Threat, UCLA Institute for Research on Labor and Employment.


   

 

Brennan Center for Justice (2015) Charging Inmates Perpetuates Mass Incarceration.


   
 

Council of Economic Advisers (2015)  Fines, Fees, and Bail Payments in the Criminal Justice System that Disproportionately Impact the Poor.

   

 

Brennan Center for Justice (2015) Reducing Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Jails: Recommendations for Local Practice.

     
   

National Association of Counties (2015) County Jails at a Crossroads: An Examination of the Jail Population and Pretrial Release.

   
 

Human Rights Watch (2014) Profiting from Probation, America’s “Offender-Funded” Probation Industry.

   

 

National Institute of Corrections (2014) Fundamentals of Bail: A Resource Guide for Pretrial Practitioners and a Framework for American Pretrial Reform.

   

 

Center for Community Alternatives (2013) When All Else Fails, Fining the Family.

   
 

Brennan Center for Justice (2010) Criminal Justice Debt: A Barrier to Reentry.

   
 

The Council of State Governments Justice Center (2007) Repaying Debts.