As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires:
Terms Used In Iowa Code 910.15
- Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
- Escrow: Money given to a third party to be held for payment until certain conditions are met.
- Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
- following: when used by way of reference to a chapter or other part of a statute mean the next preceding or next following chapter or other part. See Iowa Code 4.1
- Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
- person: means individual, corporation, limited liability company, government or governmental subdivision or agency, business trust, estate, trust, partnership or association, or any other legal entity. See Iowa Code 4.1
- Plea: In a criminal case, the defendant's statement pleading "guilty" or "not guilty" in answer to the charges, a declaration made in open court.
- property: includes personal and real property. See Iowa Code 4.1
- Restitution: means payment of pecuniary damages to a victim in an amount and in the manner provided by the offender's plan of restitution. See Iowa Code 910.1
- state: when applied to the different parts of the United States, includes the District of Columbia and the territories, and the words "United States" may include the said district and territories. See Iowa Code 4.1
- Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
- Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
- United States: includes all the states. See Iowa Code 4.1
- Victim: means a person who has suffered pecuniary damages as a result of the offender's criminal activities. See Iowa Code 910.1
Once an escrow account is established, the attorney general shall make reasonable efforts to notify victims and representatives of victims of the escrow account and their possible rights under this section. The reasonable efforts shall include, but are not limited to, mailing the notification to known victims or representatives of known victims. The cost of notification shall be paid from the escrow account or from the sale of property held in receivership.
The attorney general shall make payments from the escrow account or property held in receivership to the person accused of the crime upon the order of a court of competent jurisdiction after a showing by the person that the money or other property shall be used for the exclusive purpose of retaining legal representation at any stage of the criminal proceedings against the person, including the appeals process.
The remaining proceeds in escrow may be levied upon to satisfy an order for restitution under this chapter or a money judgment entered against the convicted felon, by a court of competent jurisdiction, for physical, mental, or emotional injury, or pecuniary loss proximately caused by the convicted felon as a result of the felony for which the felon was convicted.
Proceeds distributed under subsection 3 shall have first priority, and proceeds distributed for the cost of legal defense under subsection 4 shall have second priority in the distribution of proceeds in the escrow account. If there are multiple orders for restitution and judgments by victims under subsection 5 against the convicted felon, and the remaining proceeds in the escrow account are insufficient to satisfy all of the orders for restitution and judgments, the proceeds shall be distributed on a pro rata basis based on the ratio that the amount of an order for restitution or an individual victim’s judgment bears to the total amount of all restitution orders and victims’ judgments against the convicted felon which have been claimed under this section.
Notwithstanding section 614.1, a victim or the victim’s representative who has a cause of action for a crime for which an escrow account or receivership is established pursuant to this section may bring the action against the escrow account or against the property in receivership within five years of the date the escrow account is established.
Notwithstanding the other provisions of this section, upon a disposition of charges favorable to the person accused of committing the felony, or upon a showing by the person that five years have elapsed from the date of establishment of the escrow account and further that no actions are pending against the person or unpaid orders for restitution or monetary judgments outstanding relating to the felony for which the felon was convicted, the attorney general shall immediately pay over any money in the escrow account to the person.
The purpose of this section is to meet the following compelling state interests: