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Calif. Reduction of Restitution&Recovery

2 posts in this topic

In this age of reduced attention spans resulting from MTV and fast-framed movies, prove me wrong, some well-versed in Calif. Law relating my below situation, please impress me and others and also help me. I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks. Also, please avoid being pompous, caustic or obnoxious. This type of reply doesn't help and it's bad karma and unhealthy for you and I in terms of health. Anger, cynicism, and condescending language even though providing useful info. is unhealthy for the heart and increases blood pressure.

*Also, please be as thorough and as precise as possible in answering each and every question. For your ease I've separated my problem into first Facts of my matter and then Questions.


I was evading arrest during auto theft car chase from police which I accidently hit a car and the women exaggerated and claimed injuries over and above what she really sustained. I did this mistake during my young stupid years and accidently . Now I'm a born again Christian. (just some background info.) I currently owe $17,000 in what's called Restitution and Recovery (r & r); I'd like to reduce it by $7,000 to $10,000, preferably, but a reduction to $12,000 would be acceptable. I am in the process of going on Monday, 12/7/09, to court to set up an appointment with a California Criminal Court Judge to reduce my R & R. I haven't been arrested in a little more than 3 yrs. I've been making r & r timely payments in the minimum amount due of $115 each month for a little over 4 and a half years, except for a couple of rare ocassions where I missed a payment or I was late. I pay $600 a month including utilities for a renting a room. Others in Calif. have beren able to have the judge erase Probation and Supervision Costs. What's the best way once I have an appointment with a judge in about a month or 2 to decrease the $17,000 r & r? Others in Calif. have been able to drastically reduce their total restitution amount. I pay $350 a month to my separated wife and 2 small children to support them and my wife is satisfied with that since her mother (my mother-in-law) has tons of money and will inherit same to her and our 2 small children). I earn $410 a week after taxes ($19,680 after taxes). I thus am not entitled to free legal aid and need to represent myself at court hearing in front of criminal law judge to ask for a reduction in r & r total payment. I sincerely believe $17,000 is undue hardship on me and would take forever to payoff. This is how my r & r payment is broken down so a person on this forum/post can decide which entry can be reduced. All of the below comprise the $17,000 r & r payment:

(1) Probation & Supervision Cost: $1,609.55;

(2) Probation & Supervision Cost: $2,966.73;

(3) Criminal Court's Attorney's Fees: $366; and

(4) Restitution and Recovery (r & r): $10,000

Again the court clerk said that some people have been able to totally erase from having to pay numbers (1) and (2) above (able to erase Probation & Supervision Costs but didn't say what documents they provided to be able to successfully erase these fees.

Questions: 1) How can I erase probation and supervision costs?

2) should I also provide a letter from my landlord stating I have been living at such and such address and paying a $600 a month rental fee?)

3) should I also provide a letter from my wife stating that I pay her $350 a month to help her and my 2 small children since we're separated and don't live under the same roof and I have been paying her cash?

4) should I also provide alike recent copies of my paycheck stubs?)

5) what other documents, if any, should I provide the judge?

6) before the actual hearing/court date with the judge asking to reduce r &r or erase probation and supervision costs should I find out who the judge is and write a letter to the judge explaining the above facts comprising my undue hardship and attach the above numbers 2), 3), and 4) documents? This would be done so that the judge would have advance knowledge of my undue hardship with supporting documents/letters.

7) Finally, is it possible if I go to criminal court on Monday 12/7/09 to find the name of the judge who would be hearing my r & r reduction request so I can send the letter with supporting docs/letters to his/her attention?

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You don't "accidentally" get into a car chase with cops in a stolen car. That's a choice you made. The ONLY court that can consider reducing probation fees is the court that ordered them in the first place so the judge that sentenced you is the judge that must hear this petition. You did not say whether or not you were still on probation. If you aren't those fees are pretty much set in stone now although the probation fees seem high for 3 year probationary period. The court is not going to reduce the restitution to the victim. You had the right to challenge that at sentencing, not now. You can certainly advise the court of your financial situation but since you were given probation rather than prison, the court may take the view that it already cut you one break. It would be in wise to consult a local attorney. Most criminal defense attorneys offer free initial consultations....

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