What to do with Victims Restitution Debt
There are many options for dealing with your Victims Restitution Order debt. The most important thing is that you don’t ignore it.
A victim of an act of violence may be awarded financial support and/or a recognition payment. Victims Restitution Orders are the recovery of money from a person who has been convicted of the offence that led to the victim’s injury.
Victims Restitution Orders can be enforced by Revenue NSW the same way as unpaid fines.
If you think there is a good reason why you shouldn’t have to pay the Victims Restitution debt, or you cannot afford to pay, you should seek legal advice about your options.
- If the notice has come from Revenue NSW and
- If you believe there was a mistake in making the order or
- If you weren’t notified that an order was going to be made or
- If you believe someone else should pay, or the debt should be shared by another person including a co-offender or
- If you cannot afford to pay the fine by the due date
Do not do this if:
- You have been served an Order for Restitution by Victims Services
The law about making restitution orders has changed over the years so its best to get legal advice before acknowledging or agreeing to the debt, especially if the debt is from a long time ago.
Order for Restitution
There is a difference between an order for restitution and a confirmed order for restitution. You have 28 days to file an objection to the making of a confirmed order after an order for restitution has been made. This gives you a chance to tell your side of the story and explain your reasons for requesting the restitution be reduced or dismissed.
If you agree with the making of the order, you can make an offer to settle restitution proceedings by offering a lesser amount and/or by seeking to pay by instalments, at any time after a provisional order or final order has been made.
Work and Development Order
If you cannot afford to pay and you meet the eligibility criteria, you may be able to work off your Victims Restitution Debt through a Work and Development Order.
Victims Restitution debts are enforced by Revenue NSW in the same way as unpaid fines. This means they can impose licence sanctions and business restrictions on you if your fines are not managed.
If you are disputing the making of the order or you cannot afford to pay you should get legal advice before contacting Victims Services or Revenue NSW about it.
If the notice is an ‘Order for Restitution’ and has come from Victims Services, click here
Get legal advice
If you think there is a good reason why you shouldn’t have to pay the Victims Restitution debt, or you cannot afford to, you should seek legal advice about your options.
There can be many options to deal with the debt
- Pay the debt in a lump sum
- Ask to pay the debt in installments or through a Centrepay arrangement
- Apply for a Work and Development Order to work off the debt
- Apply for a full or partial write off and
- In some circumstances the debt can be withdrawn
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