Legal Memorandum: Retention of Funds Collected by a Marshall

Issue: What funds collected by the marshal may be retained by the marshal in the city of Shreveport, Louisiana?

Area of Law: Municipal, County and Local Law
Keywords: Retention of funds; Funds collected by the Marshall
Jurisdiction: Louisiana
Cited Cases: None
Cited Statutes: La. Rev. Stat. § 13:1899(C); La. Rev. Stat. § 33:1704(A)
Date: 09/01/2010

Section 13:1899 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes states generally that in criminal matters a special assessment by the city judge in the amount of $15 or $30*FN1 “as additional costs of court” will be made and deposited into a special account for the office of marshal of court.  La. Rev. Stat. § 13:1899(C).  The Louisiana Attorney general has opined that the Leeville City Council, which was under home rule charter (as is Shreveport), did not have authority to take away from the amount collected pursuant to § 13:1899; the city council may not enact provisions that require an agency or office to ignore legislative mandate.  La. Op. Att’y Gen. 06-0101 (May 9, 2006). 

Another Louisiana statute provides that certain enumerated fees and costs in civil cases, such as fees for making service, are payable to the constables and marshals of most Louisiana parishes and courts.  La. Rev. Stat. § 33:1704(A).*FN2  The Louisiana Attorney General has confirmed in an opinion that these fees may not go to the city, but are for the marshal to use in his sole discretion out of a special account for operational expenses.  La. Op. Att’y Gen. No. 02-146 (Sept. 27, 2002).


*FN1 The provision states,

[W]hen the office of the marshal has derived one hundred thousand dollars or more in revenues for the year 2004 from costs assessed pursuant to this Subsection, the city judge shall […]

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