Debt Collective v. San Mateo Superior Court, County of San Mateo (Civil Assessments)
On January 27, 2022, LCCRSF filed suit against San Mateo County Superior Court
’s for their unlawful practice of automatically imposing a $300 charge every time an individual misses a payment or court deadline in their traffic infraction case. The Court administers this additional fee known as the civil assessment without judicial review, adequate notice, or consideration for a person’s circumstances.
The $300 charge is often six to eight times greater than the base fine for a traffic infraction in California. These fees operate as a way for the Court to cover gaps in funding, shifting the cost of mass incarceration policies onto those who can least afford to pay.
The suit is filed in partnership with the ACLU Foundation of Northern California, Bay Area Legal Aid, and Fenwick & West LLP on behalf of plaintiff Anthony McCree and the Debt Collective.