42c9728s

§ 9728.  Collection of restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties.

(a)  General rule.--

(1)  Except as provided in subsection (b)(5), all restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties shall be collected by the county probation department or other agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county for that purpose in any manner provided by law. However, such restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties are part of a criminal action or proceeding and shall not be deemed debts. A sentence, pretrial disposition order or order entered under section 6352 (relating to disposition of delinquent child) for restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines or penalties shall, together with interest and any additional costs that may accrue, be a judgment in favor of the probation department upon the person or the property of the person sentenced or subject to the order.

(2)  In accordance with section 9730.1 (relating to collection of court costs, restitution and fines by private collection agency), the collection of restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties under this section may be referred to a private collection agency. Any county that does not engage the services of a private collection agency shall operate a collections enforcement unit consistent with the provisions of paragraph (1) and dedicated to carrying out the duties therein provided. Statistical information relating to the amount of restitution collected by the county probation department or any agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county shall be provided to the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing on an annual basis. The statistical information shall be sufficiently detailed so as to show compliance with the requirements of this section, including subsection (g.1).

(b)  Procedure.--

(1)  The county clerk of courts shall, upon sentencing, pretrial disposition or other order, transmit to the prothonotary certified copies of all judgments for restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties which, in the aggregate, exceed $1,000, and it shall be the duty of each prothonotary to enter and docket the same of record in his office and to index the same as judgments are indexed, without requiring the payment of costs as a condition precedent to the entry thereof.

(2)  The clerk of courts, in consultation with other appropriate governmental agencies, may transmit to the prothonotary of the respective county certified copies of all judgments for restitution, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties which, in the aggregate, do not exceed $1,000, and, if so transmitted, it shall be the duty of each prothonotary to enter and docket the same of record in his office and to index the same as judgments are indexed, without requiring the payment of costs as a condition precedent to the entry thereof.

(3)  The county clerk of courts shall, upon sentencing, pretrial disposition or other order, transmit to the Department of Probation of the respective county or other agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county and to the county correctional facility to which the offender has been sentenced or to the Department of Corrections, whichever is appropriate, copies of all orders for restitution and amendments or alterations thereto, reparation, fees, costs, fines and penalties. This paragraph also applies in the case of costs imposed under section 9721(c.1) (relating to sentencing generally).

(4)  The total amount for which the person is liable pursuant to this section may be entered as a judgment upon the person or the property of the person sentenced or ordered, regardless of whether the amount has been ordered to be paid in installments.

(5)  Deductions shall be as follows:

(i)  The Department of Corrections shall make monetary deductions of at least 25% of deposits made to inmate wages and personal accounts for the purpose of collecting restitution, costs imposed under section 9721(c.1), filing fees to be collected under section 6602(c) (relating to prisoner filing fees) and any other court-ordered obligation.

(ii)  The county correctional facility to which the offender has been sentenced shall:

(A)  Be authorized to make monetary deductions from inmate wages and personal accounts for the purpose of collecting restitution, costs imposed under section 9721(c.1), filing fees to be collected under section 6602(c) and any other court-ordered obligation or fees owed to the county jail or prison related to the inmate's incarceration.

(B)  Deduct an amount sufficient to satisfy any outstanding restitution, costs imposed under section 9721(c.1), filing fees to be collected under section 6602(c) or other court-ordered obligations before releasing funds on deposit.

(iii)  Any amount deducted under this paragraph shall be in addition to the full amount authorized to be collected pursuant to any order for support. Any amount deducted shall be transmitted to the probation department of the county or other agent designated by the county commissioners with the approval of the president judge of the county in which the offender was convicted.

(iv)  The Department of Corrections and each county correctional facility shall develop guidelines relating to its responsibilities under this paragraph. The guidelines shall be incorporated into any contract entered into with a correctional facility.

(b.1)  Restitution file.--Upon receipt of each order from the clerk of courts as provided in subsection (b)(3), the department of probation of the respective county or other agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county shall open a restitution file for the purposes of recording the amounts of restitution deducted by the Department of Corrections or county correctional facility or collected by the department of probation or the agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county.

(b.2)  Mandatory payment of costs.--Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, in the event the court fails to issue an order under subsection (a) imposing costs upon the defendant, the defendant shall nevertheless be liable for costs, as provided in section 9721(c.1), unless the court determines otherwise pursuant to Pa.R.Crim.P. No. 706(C) (relating to fines or costs). The absence of a court order shall not affect the applicability of the provisions of this section.

(c)  Period of time.--Notwithstanding section 6353 (relating to limitation on and change in place of commitment) or 18 Pa.C.S. § 1106(c)(2) (relating to restitution for injuries to person or property), the period of time during which such judgments shall have full effect may exceed the maximum term of imprisonment to which the offender could have been sentenced for the crimes of which he was convicted or the maximum term of confinement to which the offender was committed.

(d)  Priority.--Notwithstanding any other statutory provisions in this or any other title, any lien obtained under this section shall maintain its priority indefinitely and no writ of revival need be filed.

(e)  Preservation of assets subject to restitution.--Upon application of the Commonwealth, the court may enter a restraining order or injunction, require the execution of a satisfactory performance bond or take any other action to preserve the availability of property which may be necessary to satisfy an anticipated restitution order under this section:

(1)  upon the filing of a criminal complaint, information or indictment charging a criminal violation or a petition alleging delinquency for which restitution may be ordered and alleging that the property with respect to which the order is sought appears to be necessary to satisfy such restitution order and judgment; and

(2)  if, after notice to persons appearing to have an interest in the property and an opportunity for a hearing, the court determines that:

(i)  there is a substantial probability that:

(A)  the Commonwealth will prevail on the underlying criminal charges or allegation of delinquency;

(B)  restitution will be ordered exceeding $10,000 in value;

(C)  the property appears to be necessary to satisfy such restitution order; and

(D)  failure to enter the order will result in the property being destroyed, removed from the jurisdiction of the court or otherwise made unavailable for payment of the anticipated restitution order; and

(ii)  the need to preserve the availability of the property through the entry of the requested order outweighs the hardship on any party against whom the order is to be entered.

(f)  Temporary restraining order.--A temporary restraining order under subsection (e) may be entered upon application of the Commonwealth without notice or opportunity for a hearing, whether or not a complaint, information, indictment or petition alleging delinquency has been filed with respect to the property, if the Commonwealth demonstrates that there is probable cause to believe that the property with respect to which the order is sought appears to be necessary to satisfy an anticipated restitution order under this section and that provision of notice will jeopardize the availability of the property to satisfy such restitution order and judgment. Such a temporary order shall expire not more than ten days after the date on which it is entered, unless extended for good cause shown or unless the party against whom it is entered consents to an extension for a longer period. A hearing requested concerning an order entered under this subsection shall be held at the earliest possible time and prior to the expiration of the temporary order.

(g)  Costs, etc.--Any sheriff's costs, filing fees and costs of the county probation department, clerk of courts or other appropriate governmental agency, including, but not limited to, any reasonable administrative costs associated with the collection of restitution, transportation costs and other costs associated with the prosecution, shall be borne by the defendant and shall be collected by the county probation department or other appropriate governmental agency along with the total amount of the judgment and remitted to the appropriate agencies at the time of or prior to satisfaction of judgment.

(g.1)  Payment.--No less than 50% of all moneys collected by the county probation department or other agent designated by the county commissioners of the county with the approval of the president judge of the county pursuant to subsection (b)(1) and deducted pursuant to subsection (b)(5) shall, until the satisfaction of the defendant's restitution obligation, be used to pay restitution to victims. Any remaining moneys shall be used to pay fees, costs, fines, penalties and other court-ordered obligations.

(h)  Effect on contempt proceedings.--This section shall not affect contempt proceedings mandated by 18 Pa.C.S. § 1106(f).

42c9728v

(Dec. 17, 1990, P.L.726, No.181, eff. 60 days; May 3, 1995, 1st Sp.Sess., P.L.999, No.12, eff. 60 days; May 12, 1995, 1st Sp.Sess., P.L.1006, No.13, eff. 60 days; Feb. 7, 1996, P.L.7, No.3, eff. 60 days; June 18, 1998, P.L.640, No.84, eff. 120 days; Nov. 9, 2006, P.L.1352, No.143, eff. imd.; Oct. 27, 2010, P.L.949, No.96, eff. 60 days; Dec. 18, 2019, P.L.776, No.115, eff. imd.)

 

2019 Amendment.  Act 115 amended subsecs. (a)(2) and (b)(5).

2010 Amendment.  Act 96 amended subsec. (b)(3) and (5) and added subsec. (b.2). Section 4(1) of Act 96 provided that the amendment of subsec. (b)(3) and (5) and the addition of subsec. (b.2) shall apply to costs imposed on or after the effective date of section 4(1).

2006 Amendment.  Act 134 amended subsec. (g).

Cross References.  Section 9728 is referred to in sections 2154.1, 6352, 9721 of this title; section 3020 of Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses).