A mom walks up to the District Attorney’s desk in the Justice of the Peace Court with a total of six tickets as a result of her low-income children’s truancy, three in her name and one for each of her three children. She faces the possibility of having to pay anywhere from $510 to $2010 in court costs and fines. Luckily for this mother, her children’s cases can be dismissed if she and the children comply with the Judge’s probation terms. In this Court, the court costs are actually at the lowest end of the range for the price established by the state; some judges can charge as much as $150 per case and $500 fines per offense. In this instance, the costs are $85 per person, $340 total for the mother and the three children. Those costs cannot be waived and must be paid, regardless of family income. The judge may waive the fine if the parent and the students complete the community service assigned by the judge.
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