State v. Ramirez-Hernandez

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
  • Date Filed: 07-23-2014
  • Case #: A151952
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Ortega, P.J., for the Court; DeVore, J.; and Edmonds, S.J.
  • Full Text Opinion

The state bears the burden of proving that a defendant "is or may be able to pay" attorney fees; mere speculation as to a defendant's ability to pay is insufficient.

Defendant appealed the imposition of attorney's fees in the absence of evidence in the record of his ability to pay those fees as required by ORS 151.505(3). The State argued that because evidence in the record supported the possibility that Defendant could pay the attorney's fees in the future, they had met their burden. However, the Court held that mere speculation as to whether the Defendant would be able to pay the fees in the future was insufficient to impose the fees. Portion of judgment requiring defendant to pay attorney fees reversed; otherwise affirmed.

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