- Daniel J. Boches, Brittany Martin, Andrea Giuffre, Amairini Sanchez, Aubrianne L. Sutherland, and Sarah K. S. Shannon
- November 2022
- Link to Focus-on-Poverty-38-2d (PDF)
- Link to Focus-on-Poverty-Classroom-Supplement-38-2 (PDF)
Daniel Boches and co-authors Brittany Martin, Andrea Giuffre, Amairini Sanches, Aubrianne Sutherland, and Sarah Shannon examine the extensive impacts—called symbiotic harms—of legal fines and fees on friends and family of system-involved individuals. This work draws insight from a series of semi-structured interviews at multiple sites in Georgia and Missouri.
- Monetary sanctions include a wide array of fines and fees associated with legal-system involvement, the negative financial implications of which easily spread through broader social networks.
- Family members often pay for system-involved individuals’ legal fines and fees, stretching already-thin household budgets to do so.
- Court actors such as probation officers are known to use coercive tactics to pressure family members to pay legal fines and fees, amounting to state-sanctioned extortion.