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The enforcement of financial penalties by magistrates' courts: an evaluative study

By Robin James Moore


Despite the fine’s position as the most commonly imposed sentencing disposal, it has been the subject of limited research. This dearth is a particular concern as recent statistics show that a large proportion of financial penalties are in arrears, with significant amounts being written-off. There have been various attempts in recent years to improve the enforcement process, which underscores the need for an evaluation of current policies and practices.\ud \ud The thesis is based on a study evaluating the enforcement of financial penalties by the Birmingham and Manchester city centre magistrates’ courts. The fieldwork was conducted both inside and outside the court building: defaulters’ appearances at the fines court, and fines clinic, were observed, and bailiffs and Civilian Enforcement Officers [CEOs] were accompanied as they attempted to execute distress warrants and bail warrants respectively. The thesis outlines various problems, and makes a number of proposals designed not only to raise the levels of effectiveness and efficiency but also the quality of justice. Taken together they provide a new coherent framework for the enforcement process. \u

Topics: HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare, KD England and Wales
Year: 2002
OAI identifier: oai:etheses.bham.ac.uk:655

Suggested articles



  1. (1986). An Examination of Fine Default and Enforcement at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court
  2. (1993). Impositions and Enforcement Following the Criminal Justice Act
  3. (1999). Magistrates, ex parte Rayner, unreported,
  4. (1999). R v Hereford Magistrates’ Court, ex parte Wallwyn, unreported,
  5. (1997). R v Oldham Justices and another, ex parte Cawley [1996] 1 All E.R. 464 R v Stockport Justices, ex parte Conlan; R v Newark & Southwell Justices, ex parte Keenaghan, The Times,

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