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Trial Court Collections  

Enforcing a court's order on court-ordered financial sanctions is a top priority for the Michigan judiciary. Enforcing court orders, including financial sanctions, is a court responsibility that, if done effectively, improves courts' credibility and effectiveness while providing funds to support law enforcement, libraries, the Crime Victim's Rights Fund, and local governments. 
 

The State Court Administrative Office convened the Collections Advisory Committee in 2004 to develop a statewide strategy for improving collection of court-ordered financial obligations.  The Supreme Court approved the committee's recommended collections strategy on June 5, 2005.  This strategy includes communication, education, training, data collection, and identification of best practices. On January 27, 2010, the Supreme Court approved the committee's final recommendations detailing its proposed plan to implement court collections programs and collections-related reporting requirements statewide.  The final recommendations included adopting the proposed administrative order and that the Supreme Court work with court staff, agencies, and associations to amend or enact legislation that enhances the courts' ability to enforce and collect court-ordered financial obligations.  

 

Child support and civil judgments are not included in this collections initiative. For questions regarding child support, please go to Friend of the Court Services. For questions regarding collecting money on civil judgments, please go to the Self-Help Center

 

Trial Court Collections Program Status Measure

What is the Trial Court Collections Program Status Measure?

The trial court collections program status measure determines whether the court’s program satisfies the required components of a trial court collections program.  See memo.
 

Why is it Important to Measure Trial Court Collections Program Status?

Integrity and public trust in the dispute resolution process depend in part on how well court orders are observed and enforced.  In particular, restitution for crime victims and accountability for enforcement of monetary penalties imposed on criminals are issues of intense public interest and concern.  The focus of this measure is on the extent to which a court takes responsibility for the enforcement of orders requiring payment of monetary penalties.
 
Enforcing court orders, including financial sanctions, is a court responsibility that, if done effectively, improves courts’ credibility and effectiveness while ensuring that crime victims are made whole and providing funds to support law enforcement, libraries, the Crime Victim’s Rights Fund, and local governments.  Courts must implement the first seven components of the model collections program to be rated compliant.
 

How is Trial Court Collections Program Status Measured?

Trial Court Collections Program Status is measured by verifying that a court’s program satisfies the minimum program requirements established by the State Court Administrative Office.  If a court has adopted a program that includes the first seven components, its status is compliant. If the program does not include the first seven components, its status is noncompliant.  See details on the Court Collections Program Components. See also Collections Program Status Performance Measure Manual.

 

Court Collections Program Requirements

Administrative Order 2010-1 requires all circuit courts, circuit court family division, district courts, and municipal courts to comply with court collections program requirements established by the state court administrator.  This includes establishing a collections program that conforms to an SCAO model.  To comply with this mandate, SCAO has published:
 
Each program model provides minimum requirements or components. Compliance with the Court Collections Program Requirements means that a court has adopted a program that includes the required components provided in the Court Collections Program Components and Details. Compliance does not require that a court implement each detail listed below each component. Rather, the details provide additional information about the component or concrete examples of ways a court may fulfill the listed requirement. 
 

Confidentiality of Personal Identifying Information

The court has the authority to personal identifying information for purposes of trial court collections.  That information must be kept confidential pursuant to the program requirements and SCAO ADM Memorandum 2006-04.
 

Resources

Find best practices, policies, COLLECT applications, forms, press releases and news articles, training materials and videos, compilation of court rules and statutes, and administrative orders, communications to the courts, links of interest, and more.

Staff Contact

Management Questions

Julia Norton

collections@courts.mi.gov

(517) 373-4987

 

Support

Katha Moye

collections@courts.mi.gov

(517) 373-4987