Florida Senate - 2020                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. SB 1328
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              

       The Committee on Judiciary (Wright) recommended the following:
    1         Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
    3         Delete everything after the enacting clause
    4  and insert:
    5         Section 1. Subsection (26) of section 28.24, Florida
    6  Statutes, is amended to read:
    7         28.24 Service charges.—The clerk of the circuit court shall
    8  charge for services rendered manually or electronically by the
    9  clerk’s office in recording documents and instruments and in
   10  performing other specified duties. These charges may not exceed
   11  those specified in this section, except as provided in s.
   12  28.345.
   13         (26)(a) For receiving and disbursing all restitution
   14  payments, per payment: 3.50, from which the clerk shall remit
   15  0.50 per payment to the Department of Revenue for deposit into
   16  the General Revenue Fund.
   17         (b) For receiving and disbursing all partial payments,
   18  other than restitution payments, for which an administrative
   19  processing service charge is not imposed pursuant to s. 28.246,
   20  per month...................................................5.00
   21         (c) For setting up a payment plan, a one-time
   22  administrative processing charge in lieu of a per month charge
   23  under paragraph (b)........................................25.00
   24         (c)In lieu of the administrative processing charge in
   25  paragraph (b), a one-time administrative processing charge that
   26  covers all payment plans within a particular county for a person
   27  who is indigent pursuant to s. 27.52, is receiving public
   28  assistance as defined in s. 409.2554, or whose household income
   29  is below 200 percent of the federal poverty level, based on the
   30  current year’s federal poverty guidelines...................5.00
   31         Section 2. Section 28.246, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   32  read:
   33         28.246 Payment of court-related fines or other monetary
   34  penalties, fees, charges, and costs; monthly partial payments;
   35  community service; distribution of funds.—
   36         (1) The clerk of the circuit court shall report the
   37  following information to the Legislature and the Florida Clerks
   38  of Court Operations Corporation on a form, and using guidelines
   39  developed by the clerks of court, through their association and
   40  in consultation with the Office of the State Courts
   41  Administrator:
   42         (a) The total amount of mandatory fees, service charges,
   43  and costs assessed; the total amount underassessed, if any,
   44  which is the amount less than the minimum amount required by law
   45  to be assessed; and the total amount collected.
   46         (b) The total amount of discretionary fees, service
   47  charges, and costs assessed and the total amount collected.
   48         (c) The total amount of mandatory fines and other monetary
   49  penalties assessed; the total amount underassessed, if any,
   50  which is the amount less than the minimum amount required by law
   51  to be assessed; and the total amount collected.
   52         (d) The total amount of discretionary fines and other
   53  monetary penalties assessed and the total amount collected.
   55  The clerk, in reporting to the Legislature and corporation,
   56  shall separately identify the monetary amount assessed and
   57  subsequently discharged or converted to community service, to a
   58  judgment or lien, or to time served. The form developed by the
   59  clerks shall include separate entries for recording the amount
   60  discharged and the amount converted. If a court waives,
   61  suspends, or reduces an assessment as authorized by law, the
   62  portion waived, suspended, or reduced may not be deemed assessed
   63  or underassessed for purposes of the reporting requirements of
   64  this section. The clerk also shall report a collection rate for
   65  mandatory and discretionary assessments. In calculating the
   66  rate, the clerk shall deduct amounts discharged or converted
   67  from the amount assessed. The clerk shall submit the report on
   68  an annual basis 90 days after the end of the county fiscal year.
   69  The clerks and the courts shall develop by October 1, 2012, the
   70  form and guidelines to govern the accurate and consistent
   71  reporting statewide of assessments as provided in this section.
   72  The clerk shall use the new reporting form and guidelines in
   73  submitting the report for the county fiscal year ending
   74  September 30, 2013, and for each year thereafter.
   75         (2) The clerk of the circuit court shall establish and
   76  maintain a system of accounts receivable for court-related fees,
   77  charges, and costs.
   78         (3) Court costs, fines, and other dispositional assessments
   79  shall be enforced by order of the courts, collected by the
   80  clerks of the circuit and county courts, and disbursed in
   81  accordance with authorizations and procedures as established by
   82  general law.
   83         (4) The clerk of the circuit court shall accept monthly
   84  partial payments for court-related fees, service charges, costs,
   85  and fines electronically, by mail, and in person in accordance
   86  with the terms of an established payment plan and shall enroll
   87  in a monthly payment plan. an individual seeking to defer
   88  payment of fees, service charges, costs, or fines imposed by
   89  operation of law or order of the court under any provision of
   90  general law shall apply to the clerk for enrollment in a payment
   91  plan. The clerk may provide a discount or waive fees for
   92  individuals who enroll in automatic monthly payment plan
   93  arrangements and shall encourage individuals to elect that
   94  payment option. The shall enter into a payment plan with an
   95  individual who the court determines is indigent for costs. A
   96  monthly payment amount, shall be calculated based upon all
   97  fines, fees, service charges, and all anticipated costs and
   98  must, is presumed to correspond to the person’s ability to pay.
   99  The monthly payment plan shall be no less than $10 per month,
  100  provided such payment does not exceed if the amount does not
  101  exceed 2 percent of the person’s annual net income, as defined
  102  in s. 27.52(1), divided by 12. The court may review the
  103  reasonableness of the payment plan.
  104         (a)If a person is not in custody, he or she has 30 days to
  105  notify the clerk of his or her intention to set up a payment
  106  plan and shall have up to 30 days after establishing a payment
  107  plan to make the first payment. If a person is in custody, he or
  108  she has 30 days from the date of release to notify the clerk of
  109  his or her intention to set up a payment plan and shall have up
  110  to 30 days after establishing a payment plan to make the first
  111  payment. The clerk shall send notice to the Department of
  112  Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in accordance with s. 318.15
  113  if a person fails to pay the fines, fees, service charges, and
  114  costs that have been assessed or enter into a payment plan.
  115         (b)If a county has more than one case open for a person
  116  against whom fines, fees, service charges, and costs have been
  117  assessed, the clerk shall notify the Department of Highway
  118  Safety and Motor Vehicles to release all driver license
  119  suspensions for failure to pay, provided the individual is not
  120  in default under such plans.
  121         (c)The clerk shall send notice within 5 days to an
  122  individual who fails to make timely payment under a payment
  123  plan. Such notice may be made by mail or electronically. The
  124  clerk shall transmit notice to the Department of Highway Safety
  125  and Motor Vehicles if any payment due under a payment plan has
  126  not been received within 45 days of the due date, unless the
  127  individual makes alternate payment arrangements or enters into a
  128  revised payment plan with the clerk before such date.
  129         (d)The court, on its own motion or by petition, may waive,
  130  modify, or convert the outstanding fees, services charges,
  131  costs, or fines to community service if the court determines
  132  that the individual is indigent or, due to compelling
  133  circumstances, is unable to comply with the terms of the payment
  134  plan.
  135         (5) When receiving partial payment of fees, service
  136  charges, court costs, and fines, clerks shall distribute funds
  137  according to the following order of priority:
  138         (a) That portion of fees, service charges, court costs, and
  139  fines to be remitted to the state for deposit into the General
  140  Revenue Fund.
  141         (b) That portion of fees, service charges, court costs, and
  142  fines required to be retained by the clerk of the court or
  143  deposited into the Clerks of the Court Trust Fund within the
  144  Department of Revenue.
  145         (c) That portion of fees, service charges, court costs, and
  146  fines payable to state trust funds, allocated on a pro rata
  147  basis among the various authorized funds if the total collection
  148  amount is insufficient to fully fund all such funds as provided
  149  by law.
  150         (d) That portion of fees, service charges, court costs, and
  151  fines payable to counties, municipalities, or other local
  152  entities, allocated on a pro rata basis among the various
  153  authorized recipients if the total collection amount is
  154  insufficient to fully fund all such recipients as provided by
  155  law.
  157  To offset processing costs, clerks may impose either a per-month
  158  service charge pursuant to s. 28.24(26)(b) or a one-time
  159  administrative processing service charge at the inception of the
  160  payment plan pursuant to s. 28.24(26)(b) s. 28.24(26)(c).
  161         (6) A clerk of court shall pursue the collection of any
  162  fees, service charges, fines, court costs, and liens for the
  163  payment of attorney fees and costs pursuant to s. 938.29 which
  164  remain unpaid after 90 days by referring the account to a
  165  private attorney who is a member in good standing of The Florida
  166  Bar or collection agent who is registered and in good standing
  167  pursuant to chapter 559. In pursuing the collection of such
  168  unpaid financial obligations through a private attorney or
  169  collection agent, the clerk of the court must have attempted to
  170  collect the unpaid amount through a collection court,
  171  collections docket, or other collections process, if any,
  172  established by the court, find this to be cost-effective and
  173  follow any applicable procurement practices. The collection fee,
  174  including any reasonable attorney’s fee, paid to any attorney or
  175  collection agent retained by the clerk may be added to the
  176  balance owed in an amount not to exceed 40 percent of the amount
  177  owed at the time the account is referred to the attorney or
  178  agent for collection. The clerk shall give the private attorney
  179  or collection agent the application for the appointment of
  180  court-appointed counsel regardless of whether the court file is
  181  otherwise confidential from disclosure.
  182         Section 3. Section 28.42, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  183  read
  184         28.42 Manual of filing fees, charges, costs, and fines;
  185  uniform payment plan forms and work plan.—
  186         (1) The clerks of court, through their association and in
  187  consultation with the Office of the State Courts Administrator,
  188  shall prepare and disseminate a manual of filing fees, service
  189  charges, costs, and fines imposed pursuant to state law, for
  190  each type of action and offense, and classified as mandatory or
  191  discretionary. The manual also shall classify the fee, charge,
  192  cost, or fine as court-related revenue or noncourt-related
  193  revenue. The clerks, through their association, shall
  194  disseminate this manual to the chief judge, state attorney,
  195  public defender, and court administrator in each circuit and to
  196  the clerk of the court in each county. The clerks, through their
  197  association and in consultation with the Office of the State
  198  Courts Administrator, shall at a minimum update and disseminate
  199  this manual on July 1 of each year.
  200         (2)By October 1, 2020, the Office of the State Courts
  201  Administrator, in consultation with the clerks of court, through
  202  their association, shall develop a Uniform Payment Plan form and
  203  informational materials to be used for individuals seeking to
  204  establish a payment plan in accordance with s. 28.246. The form
  205  and informational materials must inform the individual about the
  206  minimum payment due each month, the term of the plan, available
  207  payment options for acceptance of payment by the clerk, the
  208  contact information for the applicable clerk’s office, and the
  209  consequences for nonpayment of fines, fees, service charges, and
  210  costs, including driver license suspension and collections
  211  referral.
  212         (3)By January 1, 2021, the Office of the State Courts
  213  Administrator, the Department of Highway Safety and Motor
  214  Vehicles, and the clerks of court, through their association,
  215  shall develop and submit a work plan to the Governor, the
  216  President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of
  217  Representatives which identifies opportunities for increased
  218  collaboration between the parties and other relevant
  219  stakeholders, examines opportunities to work with nonprofit and
  220  community-based groups to help increase awareness of payment
  221  plans, and outlines best practices, including use of text
  222  messaging or other technology, to help improve plan compliance,
  223  improve collection rates, and reduce the number of individuals
  224  who lose their driving privilege due to the nonpayment of fines,
  225  fees, service charges, and costs.
  226         Section 4. Section 322.245, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  227  read:
  228         322.245 Suspension of license upon failure of person
  229  charged with specified offense under chapter 316, chapter 320,
  230  or this chapter to comply with directives ordered by traffic
  231  court or upon failure to pay child support in non-IV-D cases as
  232  provided in chapter 61 or failure to pay any financial
  233  obligation in any other criminal case.—
  234         (1) If a person charged with a violation of any of the
  235  criminal offenses enumerated in s. 318.17 or with the commission
  236  of any offense constituting a misdemeanor under chapter 320 or
  237  this chapter fails to comply with all of the directives of the
  238  court, within the time allotted by the court, other than the
  239  payment of fines, fees, costs, and service charges, the clerk of
  240  the traffic court shall mail to the person, at the address
  241  specified on the uniform traffic citation, a notice of such
  242  failure, notifying him or her that, if he or she does not comply
  243  with the directives of the court within 30 days after the date
  244  of the notice and pay a delinquency fee of up to $25 to the
  245  clerk, from which the clerk shall remit $10 to the Department of
  246  Revenue for deposit into the General Revenue Fund, his or her
  247  driver license will be suspended. The notice shall be mailed no
  248  later than 5 days after such failure. The delinquency fee may be
  249  retained by the office of the clerk to defray the operating
  250  costs of the office.
  251         (2) In non-IV-D cases, if a person fails to pay child
  252  support under chapter 61 and the obligee so requests, the
  253  depository or the clerk of the court shall mail in accordance
  254  with s. 61.13016 the notice specified in that section, notifying
  255  him or her that if he or she does not comply with the
  256  requirements of that section and pay a delinquency fee of $25 to
  257  the depository or the clerk, his or her driver license and motor
  258  vehicle registration will be suspended. The delinquency fee may
  259  be retained by the depository or the office of the clerk to
  260  defray the operating costs of the office after the clerk remits
  261  $15 to the Department of Revenue for deposit into the General
  262  Revenue Fund.
  263         (3) If the person fails to comply with the directives of
  264  the court within the 30-day period, or, in non-IV-D cases, fails
  265  to comply with the requirements of s. 61.13016 within the period
  266  specified in that statute, the depository or the clerk of the
  267  court shall electronically notify the department of such failure
  268  within 10 days. Upon electronic receipt of the notice, the
  269  department shall immediately issue an order suspending the
  270  person’s driver license and privilege to drive effective 20 days
  271  after the date the order of suspension is mailed in accordance
  272  with s. 322.251(1), (2), and (6).
  273         (4) After suspension of the driver license of a person
  274  pursuant to subsection (1), subsection (2), or subsection (3),
  275  the license may not be reinstated until the person complies with
  276  all court directives imposed upon him or her, including payment
  277  of the delinquency fee imposed by subsection (1), and presents
  278  certification of such compliance to a driver licensing office
  279  and complies with the requirements of this chapter or, in the
  280  case of a license suspended for nonpayment of child support in
  281  non-IV-D cases, until the person complies with the reinstatement
  282  provisions of s. 322.058 and makes payment of the delinquency
  283  fee imposed by subsection (2).
  284         (5)(a)A person whose driver license was suspended before
  285  October 1, 2020, pursuant to this section solely for the
  286  nonpayment of financial obligations in a criminal case may,
  287  except when there was a court-ordered directive for payment
  288  which remains unpaid or involves an offense listed under s.
  289  318.17, and if otherwise eligible, apply to have his or her
  290  license reinstated upon payment of a reinstatement fee When the
  291  department receives notice from a clerk of the court that a
  292  person licensed to operate a motor vehicle in this state under
  293  the provisions of this chapter has failed to pay financial
  294  obligations for any criminal offense other than those specified
  295  in subsection (1), in full or in part under a payment plan
  296  pursuant to s. 28.246(4), the department shall suspend the
  297  license of the person named in the notice.
  298         (b)The department must reinstate the driving privilege
  299  when the clerk of the court provides an affidavit to the
  300  department stating that:
  301         1.The person has satisfied the financial obligation in
  302  full or made all payments currently due under a payment plan;
  303         2.The person has entered into a written agreement for
  304  payment of the financial obligation if not presently enrolled in
  305  a payment plan; or
  306         3.A court has entered an order granting relief to the
  307  person ordering the reinstatement of the license.
  308         (6)(c) The department shall not be held liable for any
  309  license suspension resulting from the discharge of its duties
  310  under this section.
  311         Section 5. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.
  313  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  314  And the title is amended as follows:
  315         Delete everything before the enacting clause
  316  and insert:
  317                        A bill to be entitled                      
  318         An act relating to fines and fees; amending s. 28.24,
  319         F.S.; revising specified service charges for certain
  320         one-time administrative processing by the clerk of the
  321         circuit court; amending s. 28.246, F.S.; revising the
  322         methods by which the clerk of the circuit court may
  323         accept payments for certain fees, charges, costs, and
  324         fines; requiring the court to enroll certain persons
  325         in a monthly payment plan under certain circumstances;
  326         authorizing the court to provide discounts or waive
  327         fees for certain individuals; providing requirements
  328         and court procedures for the payment plan; authorizing
  329         a court to convert certain fees, services charges,
  330         costs, or fines to community service under specified
  331         circumstances; conforming a cross-reference; amending
  332         s. 28.42, F.S.; requiring the Office of the State
  333         Courts Administrator, in consultation with the clerks
  334         of court and by a specified date, to develop a Uniform
  335         Payment Plan form and informational materials;
  336         providing requirements for such form and materials;
  337         requiring the office, the Department of Highway Safety
  338         and Motor Vehicles, and the clerks of court to develop
  339         and submit a work plan to the Governor and the
  340         Legislature by a specified date; specifying
  341         requirements for the work plan; amending s. 322.245,
  342         F.S.; conforming provisions to changes made by the
  343         act; authorizing a person who meets specified criteria
  344         to apply to have his or her driver license reinstated;
  345         deleting provisions related to the department’s duty
  346         to suspend and reinstate driver licenses; providing an
  347         effective date.