AB 2724, as introduced, Bradford. Failure to appear in court: fines.
Existing law authorizes the court, in addition to any other penalty in an infraction, misdemeanor, or felony case, to impose a civil assessment of up to $300 against any defendant who fails, after notice and without good cause, to appear in court for any proceeding authorized by law, or who fails to pay all or any portion of a fine ordered by the court or to pay an installment of bail, as specified. Existing law provides that the assessment shall not become effective until at least 10 calendar days after the court mails a warning notice to the defendant, and requires the court, if the defendant appears within the time specified in the notice and shows good cause for the failure to appear or for the failure to pay a fine or installment of bail, to vacate the assessment.
The bill would provide that ability to post bail or to pay the fine or civil assessment is not a prerequisite to filing a request that the court vacate the assessment. The bill would also state that the imposition or collection of a civil assessment does not preclude a defendant from scheduling a court hearing on the underlying charge.
Existing law authorizes a court to give notice to the Department of Motor Vehicles if any person has willfully failed to pay a lawfully imposed fine, or bail in installments, within the time authorized by the court, except as specified. If the fine is fully paid, the court or court is required to issue and file with the department a certificate showing that the fine has been paid.
This bill would require the court clerk, if the fine is fully paid, or an agreement is signed to pay the fine, fee, or bail in installments, or an agreement is signed to perform community service, to issue and file a certificate with the department that the fine has been paid or satisfied, or an agreement has been signed, and request that the license hold be lifted. The bill would prohibit the court from requiring the payment of bail, the fine, or a civil assessment before a person may request the court to vacate a civil assessment.
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.
The people of the State of California do enact as follows:
Section 1214.1 of the Penal Code is amended to
(a) In addition to any other penalty in infraction,
4misdemeanor, or felony cases, the court may impose a civil
5assessment of up to three hundred dollars ($300) against
begin delete anyend delete
6 defendant who fails, after notice and without good cause, to appear
7in court for
begin delete anyend delete proceeding authorized by law or who fails to
8pay all or any portion of a fine ordered by the court or to pay an
9installment of bail as agreed to under Section 40510.5 of the
10Vehicle Code. This assessment shall be deposited in the Trial Court
11Trust Fund, as provided in Section 68085.1 of the Government
13(b) The assessment
14 shall not become effective until at least 10 calendar days after the
15court mails a warning notice to the defendant by first-class mail
16to the address shown on the notice to appear or to the defendant’s
17last known address. If the defendant appears within the time
18specified in the notice and shows good cause for the failure to
19appear or for the failure to pay a fine or installment of bail, the
20 court shall vacate the assessment.
P3 1(c) If a civil assessment is imposed
begin delete under this sectionend delete, no bench warrant or warrant of arrest shall be
3issued with respect to the failure to appear at the proceeding for
4which the assessment is imposed or the failure to pay the fine or
5installment of bail. An outstanding, unserved bench warrant or
6warrant of arrest for a failure to appear or for a failure to pay a
7fine or installment of bail shall be recalled prior to the subsequent
8imposition of a civil assessment.
9(d) The assessment imposed
begin delete underend delete subdivision (a)
10shall be subject to the due process requirements governing defense
11and collection of civil money judgments generally.
12(e) Each court and county shall maintain the collection program
13that was in effect on July 1, 2005, unless otherwise agreed to by
14the court and county. If a court and a county do not agree on a plan
15for the collection of civil assessments imposed pursuant to this
16section, or any other collections under Section 1463.010, after the
17implementation of Sections 68085.6 and 68085.7 of the
18Government Code, the court or the county may request arbitration
19by a third party mutually agreed upon by the Administrative
20Director of the Courts and the California State Association of
Section 40509 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:
(a) Except as required under subdivision (c) of Section
begin delete anyend delete person has violated a written promise to appear
25or a lawfully granted continuance of his or her promise to appear
26in court or before the person authorized to receive a deposit of
27bail, or violated an order to appear in court, including, but not
28limited to, a written notice to appear issued in accordance with
29Section 40518, the magistrate or clerk of the court may give notice
30of the failure to appear to the department for
begin delete anyend delete violation of
31this code, or
begin delete anyend delete violation that can be heard by a juvenile traffic
32hearing referee pursuant to Section 256 of the Welfare and
33Institutions Code, or
begin delete anyend delete violation of any other statute relating
34to the safe operation of a vehicle, except violations not required
35to be reported pursuant to paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (6), and (7) of
36subdivision (b) of Section 1803. If thereafter the case in which the
37promise was given is adjudicated or the person who has violated
38the court order appears in court or otherwise satisfies the order of
39the court, the magistrate or clerk of the court hearing the case shall
40sign and file with the department a certificate to that effect.
P4 1(b) If
begin delete anyend delete person has willfully failed to pay a lawfully imposed
2fine within the time authorized by the court or to pay a fine
3pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 42003, the magistrate or
4clerk of the court may give notice of the fact to the department for
5any violation, except violations not required to be reported pursuant
6to paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (6), and (7) of subdivision (b) of Section
71803. If thereafter the fine is fully paid, the magistrate or clerk of the court shall issue
11and file with the department a certificate showing that the fine has
17(c) (1) Notwithstanding subdivisions (a) and (b), the court may
18notify the department of the total amount of bail, fines,
19assessments, and fees authorized or required by this code, including
20Section 40508.5, which are unpaid by any person.
21(2) Once a court has established the amount of bail, fines,
22assessments, and fees, and notified the department,
23the court shall not further enhance or modify that amount.
24(3) This subdivision applies only to violations of this code that
25do not require a mandatory court appearance, are not contested by
26the defendant, and do not require proof of correction certified by
28(d) With respect to a violation of this code, this section is
29applicable to any court which has not elected to be subject to the
30notice requirements of subdivision (b) of Section 40509.5.
31(e) Any violation subject to Section 40001, which is the
32responsibility of the owner of the vehicle, shall not be reported
33under this section.