Wakefield v. Richland and Kennewick

This court case is completed

On November 9, 2015, the ACLU, along with Terrell Marshall Law Group, Columbia Legal Services, the Washington Defenders Association, The Washington Association for Criminal Defense Lawyers, Disability Rights Washington, and Center for Justice filed an amicus brief addressing the practice of requiring individuals whose only income is needs-based public assistance to pay legal financial obligations from extremely limited monthly benefits. Although the Court of Appeals (Division III) initially accepted review, the court then sent the case directly to the Supreme Court without hearing, specifically citing the issue of needs-based assistance being diverted to LFOs as a violation of state and federal anti-alienation provisions. The Supreme Court issued an opinion agreeing with arguments made both by Briana Wakefield’s attorneys at the Northwest Justice Project and amici.
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