How fines impact on disadvantaged people


Zhigang Wei, Hugh M. McDonald and Christine Coumarelos, February 2018

Using LAW Survey data, this paper reveals that fines problems disproportionately affect disadvantaged people. The most disadvantaged were particularly vulnerable to fines problems, and the adverse consequences resulting from fines problems increased as the level of disadvantage increased.

Disadvantaged people were also less likely to have the financial and legal capability to handle their fines problems satisfactorily. They were less likely to take any type of action, and, consequently, were less likely to finalise these problems. Notably, inaction in response to fines problems was linked to less favourable outcomes.