Guidelines For Client Operational Staff

KB article ID:5100

Prevent eligibility of must-appear cases (Contractual)

Mark charges on new cases as must-appear where appropriate to prevent electronic plea. Sometimes it is necessary for an otherwise may-appear charge be indicated as a must-appear due to certain circumstances (e.g. two or more citations resulting from the same incident)

If someone asks why their case isn't eligible for e-plea

    1. Direct the person to the E-Pay section of the Judici FAQs (available from the Judici home page). Question C pertains to eligibility of E-Plea cases.

    2. If the eligibility requirements have been met, the ineligibility may be due to the court's data entry.

        • The case has more than one count (usually, this is a mistake by the court).

        • The court's fee table may not agree with the amount Judici associates with the offense.

        • JIMS is unable to verify the user as the defendant due to lack of required data (DLN, DOB, and Ticket Number).

        • Prohibit Payment Form indicated in the A/R as EPay 1, EPay 2, Credit Card, or Online Payment.

Contact GAL if the case is still ineligible after checking all these issues.

If someone asks why their case isn't eligible for e-pay

    1. Direct the person to the E-Pay section of the Judici FAQs (available from the Judici home page). Question B pertains to eligibility of E-Pay cases.

    2. If the eligibility requirements have been met, the ineligibility may be due to the specifics of the case.

        • Prohibit Payment Form indicated in the A/R as EPay 1, EPay 2, Credit Card, or Online Payment.

        • A/R has a due amount for Nonstandard fee.

            • Payments for Nonstandard fees cannot be taken because the Nonstandard Code must be allocated at the time of payment.

    3. Cases with active warrants will not be eligible.

Contact GAL if the case is still ineligible after checking all these issues.

FTA cases

If defendant does not pay or appear...

    1. Execute the county's FTA notice procedure.

    2. The cases due amount will be raised to include the Failure to Appear fine when one of the following dispositions is added to the case:

        • 304- FTC/NRVC

        • 305- Order of FTA

Docketing issues relating to e-pay

Remove cases with last-minute payments from the docket

    • E-plea cases such as traffic: If the "Delete Hearings on Close" option in the Edit Custom Information screen is set to "Y", then (just as with an "over-the-counter" payment, the pending hearing will be removed after a case is pled online.

    • E-pay (Pay or Appears)

        • If the account is paid in full, the hearing will be removed.

        • If the court is using the JIMAS Collections Tools to administer a payment plan, those tools will ensure that pending hearings are not shown if the account is "paid up to date".

        • Otherwise, the court will have to determine on a case-by-case basis what to do with the pending hearing.

Filing Receipts

    • A copy of the receipt from each processed EPay/EPlea transaction is sent to the email address provided by the Clerk during the set up of the program.

    • Users may choose to print the receipt and place it in the case file.

    • It has been noted that during an audit, the auditor may request to see a more detailed receipt for a transaction. At this time, the payment record may be printed from JIMS.

How Judici interacts with the court and what happens if something goes wrong in the middle

Typical card payment technologies, even simple swipers, process the payments continuously and collect a batch of them to be settled (finalized) later, often at the end of the day. This means that any payment system can wind up with "orphan" payments for which the money never changes hands. For example: if a Clerk using a swiper enters a payment into JIMS, and it doesn't settle because the card is reported stolen between the time of the payment and batch settlement, the payment entered by the Clerk will also be an orphan. But unlike a simple card swiper, Judici E-Pay is tightly integrated with the court's case management system. So to understand what happens if the court or Judici loses its internet connection or has some other error, you have to understand the back and forth between Judici and the court.

Judici actually runs the transaction in multiple steps, which can also cause orphans in the rare situation in which some part of the process cannot be completed due to an error (e.g. a loss of connection or other error). Judici actually operates a lot like gas stations. They run a “pre-authorization” transaction to make sure you have enough money to pay for the gas. Then, once you finish pumping your gas, they void the pre-authorized transaction and run a new one for the actual amount.

Judici does something similar:

    1. User indicates plea on a one Judici page, then (if required), then enters their plea on another.

    2. Judici contacts the court to check issues such as whether there are fee distribution priorities for the case type, whether there is so much bond that the desired payment would overpay the account (CRTEPYTRN errors).

    3. If Judici reached the court and there were no issues, Judici pre-authorizes the amount of the payment,

      • We can't actually take the money at this point, since the AOIC won't allow the court to receipt money prior to a plea. But running a pre-auth ensures that the defendant actually has enough money to make the payment.

    4. Judici asks JIMS to create payment/plea record at the court, even though the payment process isn't fully complete. This means we err on the side of giving credit for the payment, so that someone doesn't face non-payment consequences when they actually attempted to pay. We could wait to record the payment until midnight, when we can guarantee that it has successfully batched , but then last-minute payments wouldn't be in JIMS at hearing time.

    5. If Judici does not get a message back from JIMS saying that the payment/plea were recorded, the user gets an error message and never sees a receipt.

      • At this point, there is an "orphan" transaction in JIMS. Judici staff and court staff both have tools to watch for such orphans.

    6. If Judici does get confirmation from JIMS that the payment/plea were recorded, Judici captures (does a post-authorization) to mark the transaction to be settled in the next batch so that the court actually gets its money.

    7. Once the batch settles, Judici records the batch ID and batch date.

If for some reason Judici and court staff fail to realize that there is an orphan before the pre-authorization expires, Judici has the right to resubmit the transaction. As noted here, this is allowed when the specific product or service which the individual purchased hasn't yet been delivered. For example, can't charge you for a back-ordered item until it is shipped. But they want to continue to have a hold on the funds it will take to pay for it, so they can re-do that authorization every time it expires... until such time as the product actually ships.

Reversing Payments(chargebacks)

The Judici E-Pay/E-Plea portion of our Judici Refund Policy limits the need for refunds. But reversals of payments (though not necessarily the associated pleas) will still happen (due to mistakes, etc.). Chargebacks can have implications for the Judici side and the JIMS side:

The Judici side

When a customer issues a chargeback:

    • The total amount of the transaction (including amount disbursed to court and the service fee disbursed to Judici) will be debited from the Service Provider's Merchant Account Debit Clearing Account, along with a chargeback fee charged by the processor for handling the dispute..

    • Judici will fight the chargeback as appropriate, seeking assistance from court when required.

    • The processor may or may not reverse the chargeback.

If the chargeback is not reversed:

    • Court shall reverse the plea/payment in JIMS (for how to do this, see below).

    • Judici will invoice the Client to recover the payment originally receipted at the court.

      • Remember: If the transaction is in a batch which has been reconciled, the funds were moved from the from Client's Merchant Account Debit Clearing Account to the Client's main court funds disbursement account. So they will have to come out of the main account (much as with an NSF check). The court can either write the check from the main account or transfer the funds into their Merchant Account Debit Clearing Account and pay Judici from there.

If the chargeback is reversed:

    • The entire transaction amount, (including Judici's service fee) will be credited back to the Merchant Account Debit Clearing Account owned by Client. The chargeback fee is retained by the processor.

    • The Service Provider will invoice the Client to recover the entire transaction amount. The Client will pay this out of their Merchant Account Debit Clearing Account.

Customer contacts Judici support for a refund

Judici will contact the court for direction as to whether to issue a credit.

The Judici E-Pay/E-Plea portion of our Judici Refund Policy clearly indicates that refunds will not be made. But reversals of payments (though not necessarily the associated pleas) will still happen (due to errors, etc.). There are two sides to a reversal, one in JIMS and the other with the processor:

Reversing a payment in JIMS

Pleas (even electronic ones) are usually reversed by a motion to vacate and a court appearance. The AOIC indicated to GAL in September 2008 (FB6586) that failure of a payment transaction should NOT automatically affect the disposition and sentence. And refunds (whether through Judici Support or a chargeback requested by cardholder from their card company) will be treated the same way, because ANY payment reversal can happen after a disposition has been reported through ADR. So backing out a plea when a refund is issued or when the authorized payment fails to settle for some reason actually starts with reversing the payment.

Case 0: E-Pay payment on an existing A/R

Court refunds to the payor as per its normal practices

Case 1: Traffic cases where payment was fully settled

This happens when payor convinces Judici support staff or the credit card company to do a refund. The Court may already have an applicable procedure, as when payment is made using a bad check. If not, the Court should:

    1. Enter a negative voucher

    2. Enter an A/R for the appropriate amount

    3. Assuming that the violator holds an Illinois driver's license (see Kayte if not) send a Notice of Failure to Pay Fines (see Notice Generation or call Service Provider tech support)

    4. If payment is not made in the appropriate amount of time, the Court can request a revocation of the disposition which will have been reported through ADR already.

    5. Depending on local practice and the circumstances, the court may also elect to add a fee for the revocation.

Case 2: If the payment failed to settle, normally due to a technical problem

The court isn't involved with this.

Regularly-scheduled tasks

Look for unsettled orphaned transactions

    • Transactions that have not settled within 2 business days from the payment date

    • May occur because of a communication interruption during the transaction process

    • Not a common occurrence

    • User should periodically run the Unsettled Transaction Report to look for orphan transactions

To run the Unsettled Transaction Report:

    1. From main screen, press the Reports icon and select Transaction Report

    2. Print Transaction Report screen will open. Enter data:

        • Transaction Type- Unsettled

        • Report Begin and End Dates- Dates can be entered manually or a calendar is provided by pressing the drop down arrow

            • The single drop down located to the right contains preset date ranges. Selecting a preset range will place the appropriate corresponding dates in the Report Begin and End date fields.

        • Sort- Select how the report will be sorted, either by name or date

    3. Press the Run button. Report will be created and open.

    4. A Print button is located in the top left of the report screen.

Disburse Service Fees to Service Provider (Contractual)

As of the conversion to the new processor in late-2015, the Service Provider's fees are disbursed directly to the Service Provider by the card processor, so the court is no longer tasked with disbursement.