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Bench Book - 2.12.2 Judicial Enforcement

The Commission can initiate judicial enforcement by filing a complaint or petition in the appropriate U.S. district court. A member state that loses in any such litigation is required to reimburse the Commission for the costs incurred in prosecuting or defending a suit, including reasonable attorney’s fees. See, Art. XII § C; Rule 6.104 (prevailing party shall be awarded all costs associated with the enforcement action, including reasonable attorneys’ fees).

All courts and executive agencies in each member state must enforce the Compact and take all necessary actions to achieve its purposes. See Art. IX, § A. See Scott v. Virginia, 676 S.E.2d 343, 346 (Va. App. 2009); Johnson v. State, 957 N.E.2d 660, 663 (Ind. App. 2011) (“All of the rules and bylaws adopted by the commission established by the interstate Compact are binding upon the Compacting states”) For a discussion of the application of a similar provision in Interstate Compact on Juveniles, see, In re O.M., 565 A.2d 573, 581 (D.C.C.A 1989) holding that provisions in the Compact requiring rendition of a juvenile to another member state is required by the terms of the Compact which the courts and executive agencies of the District of Columbia must enforce. The Court of Appeals has concluded that, “The courts of the District of Columbia have no power to consider whether rendition of a juvenile under the Interstate Compact on Juveniles is in the juvenile’s best interests.” Id. at 581. In the context of a Compact, courts cannot ignore the use of the word “shall,” which creates a duty, not an option. Id. See also A Juvenile, 484 N.E.2d 995, 997-998 (Mass. 1985).

The Commission is entitled to all service of process in any judicial or administrative proceeding in a member state pertaining to the subject of the Compact where the proceedings may affect the powers, responsibilities or actions of the Commission. See Art. IX, § A. It is not clear what influence the failure to provide service to the Commission would have on the enforceability of a judgment vis-à-vis the Commission.



Click terms below to reveal definitions used in this rule.

By-Laws – means those by-laws established by the Interstate Commission for Adult Offender Supervision for its governance, or for directing or controlling the Interstate Commission’s actions or conduct.