On Saturday Washington launched a website where those convicted of drug possession between 1971 and 2021 can request a refund for any court fines, fees and other related costs they paid. See www.courts.wa.gov/blake. Why? Because Washington’s Supreme Court found that its drug possession laws were unconstitutional during that period. The law has since been fixed but the correction isn’t retroactive. Who is eligible? Those convicted of simple drug and/or drug paraphernalia possession between 1971 and 2021. There is a caveat, however, one can only apply for a refund after their conviction has been vacated by a judge. To vacate a possession conviction from that time frame, one should review www.washingtonlawhelp.org/resource/blake. Folks may also be eligible for third party costs, i.e. attorney costs, if approved by a judge. Once the refund is applied for, it will take approximately 90 days to be issued. Finally, be aware that refunds will not be adjusted for inflation. So, what a person paid in 1971 is what they are entitled to get back, regardless of the fact that it may be worth less now.
If you or a loved one is in a bind as a result of a criminal charge, immediately contact a Seattle Criminal Attorney. A Criminal lawyer is not going to judge you and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Hiring a Seattle Criminal Lawyer to help can – at a minimum – reduce penalties and can help direct people on how to best deal with their criminal charge, and many times even get them dismissed. So, it should go without saying that someone cited for a misdemeanor or felony should hire a qualified Seattle Criminal Lawyer as soon as possible. Criminal charges can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with a crime in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle Criminal Lawyer. SQ Attorneys can be reached at (425) 359-3791 and/or (206) 441-0900.