© 2024 WEMU
Serving Ypsilanti, Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County, MI
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Michigan Court Will Decide Whether Court Fees Are Taxes

Michigan Supreme Court
Wikipedia Media Commons

The Michigan Supreme Court will decide whether it’s legal for judges to order defendants to pay fees and court costs.  A defendant says that violates thestate constitution.

Shawn Cameron Junior was ordered to pay more than $1,600 in court costs after he was convicted of assault.  But he says that amounts to a tax, and only the Legislature can enact taxes.  He says courts can also be arbitrary in how they set the charges.

Cameron is also challenging the law that allows courts to collect fees and costs.  He says it does not specifically state the purpose of imposing court costs and does not adequately set standards for determining the costs.

Lower courts have upheld the fees on the grounds they raise money from people using the criminal justice system to help pay for the criminal justice system.

Non-commercial, fact based reporting is made possible by your financial support.  Make your donation to WEMU todayto keep your community NPR station thriving.

Like 89.1 WEMU on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

— Rick Pluta is the Managing Editor and Reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org

Rick Pluta is the managing editor for the Michigan Public Radio Network.
Related Content