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Oldbooks1 wrote: "On the face of it, yes this particular system is inequitable for poorer people."
Here is an interesting case in this area in US District Court.
Damian Stinnie owes fees, fines, and costs to Virginia's courts. He cannot pay them, so Virginia law requires that his driver's license be suspended until he pays. But the suspension makes it difficult to get and keep a job. In other words, because he cannot pay the fees, his license is suspended, but because his license is suspended, he cannot pay the fees. Caught in this cycle, Stinnie and others have sued the Commissioner of Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicles ("DMV"). Caught in this cycle, Stinnie and others have sued the Commissioner of Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicles ("DMV"). They argue that the Commissioner suspended their licenses and that those suspensions violated their federal constitutional rights to due process and equal protection.
The judge dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction.