Tarrant County pays $150,000 to settle lawsuit over court fees charged to low-income litigants

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“Tarrant County has agreed to settle a decade-long lawsuit that accused the district clerk of charging hundreds of dollars in court fees to low-income people who should have been exempt. The lawsuit, first filed in 2013, challenged District Clerk Tom Wilder over charging people for court fees in divorce cases, even though the litigants had filed the proper paperwork proving their inability to pay. Last week, Tarrant County Commissioners agreed to pay $150,000 to settle the case. Tom Stutz, an attorney with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas, represented one group of plaintiffs in the case. Ending the county’s practice of charging these fees was a victory for equal access to the courts, he said.”

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