Compliance with the ICJ

The Commission's mission is to "preserve child welfare and promote public safety interests of citizens, including victims of juvenile offenders, by providing enhanced accountability, enforcement, visibility, and communication." To promote this mission, the compact vests the Commission with the responsibility of enforcing compliance. The ICJ Rules and ICJ Compliance Policies detail the manner in which the Commission measures and enforces compliance.

Compliance efforts are not directed at compelling juvenile compliance. Juvenile compliance is a matter that rests with the member states’ courts, paroling authorities and corrections officials.  Rather, the tools provided for in the compact are directed exclusively at compelling the member states to meet their contractual obligations by complying with the terms and conditions of the Compact and any rules promulgated by the Commission. Compliance is not punitive in nature but provides a necessary means to ensure that juveniles are treated fairly and community safety is protected.

Compliance Matters and Requests for Assistance

To promote compliance, the Commission provides a range of options for addressing compliance-related concerns. 

Interpretation of Rules

Do you have a question about the interpretation of ICJ Rules? 

ICJ Rule 9-101(3) provides a mechanism for submitting a request for an interpretation of ICJ Rules. For more information, see the page: Interpretation of Rules and ICJ Rule 9-101.

Dispute Resolutions

Does your state need assistance with resolving a controversy or dispute? 

ICJ Rule 9-101(1) and (2) and ICJ Compliance Policy 03-2009 outline the steps for a state's Compact Commissioner to submit a request for a dispute resolution. For more information, see the page: Dispute Resolution and ICJ Rule 9-101.

Allegations of Default

What happens if there is an allegation of default?

If a controversy or dispute is not resolved through dispute resolution, an allegation of default may be filed. The Executive Committee shall review the allegations, determine whether an investigation is warranted, and determine whether a finding of default is substantiated. For more information, see:  ICJ Compliance Policy 01-2009 and ICJ Rule 9-103.

Principles of Enforcement

The Commission possesses significant enforcement authority against states that are deemed in default of their obligations under the compact. The enforcement tools available to the Commission include:

  • Requiring remedial training and providing technical assistance (Art. XI § B(1)(a); Rule 9-103);
  • Imposing alternative dispute resolution, including mediation or arbitration (Art. XI § B(1)(b); Rule 9-102);
  • Imposing financial penalties on a defaulting state (Art. XI § B(1)(c); Rule 9-103);
  • Suspending a non-compliant state (Art. XI § B(1)(d));
  • Termination from the Compact (Art. XI § B(1)(d)); and
  • Initiating litigation to enforce the terms of the Compact, monetary penalties ordered by the Commission, or obtaining injunctive relief. (Art. XI § C).

Grounds for default include, but are not limited to, a state’s failure to perform such obligations as are imposed by the terms of the Compact, the By-laws of the Commission, or any duly promulgated rule of the Commission.

For more information, see Chapter 2 Section 7 of the ICJ Bench Book