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A state statute provides that if you cannot pay for court fees or costs, you may be able to have the state pay for them. Read more to see if you are eligible and how to use this law.
You are eligible for a waiver, substitution or state payment of fees and costs if any one of the following scenarios applies to you:
A. You receive public assistance under one of the following programs:
B. Your income, after taxes, does not exceed 125% of the current Federal Poverty Line. See Poverty Threshold Guidelines for a chart of income by family size.
C. You cannot pay the court fees or costs without depriving yourself or those who are dependent on you of the necessities of life, including food, shelter and clothing.
If you are currently confined in prison or jail and do not seek your immediate release but are
please get from the Clerk's office separate forms for prisoners, which you must complete in order to qualify for a waiver. You can use the general forms for non-prisoners if you are asking the court to pay for extra fees.
If you are a prisoner, a Judge will need to act on your application after first ordering the facility where you are confined to produce a copy of your canteen account for the last six months. You may ask the court to order payment of the cost of serving the summons and complaint in the meantime, however, so your case can begin.
The court divides the fees and costs related to each case into two categories: normal fees and extra fees. Attorneys' fees are not eligible for waiver, substitution, or payment by the Commonwealth.
Normal fees and costs include:
If you have costs and fees that are not considered normal costs and fees, they are "extra fees and costs."
Examples of extra fees and costs are:
Our Related Links section potentially includes additional helpful information about the affidavit of indigency. However, please note that the Massachusetts Court System assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or veracity of the information that a user may encounter at these sites.