Reducing the harm of criminal victimization: The role of restitution

Stacy Hoskins Haynes, Alison C. Cares, R. Barry Ruback

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Restitution is a court-ordered payment by offenders to their victims to cover the victims' economic losses resulting from the crime. These losses can be substantial and can harm victims and victims' families both directly and indirectly. But most victims do not receive reparation for their injuries, both because judges do not always impose restitution and because of problems with collecting restitution payments, even if there is a court order to do so. In this article, we review the literature on restitution and suggest that this compensatory mechanism is necessary to restore victims to where they were before the crime occurred. But monetary restitution alone is not sufficient. Making victims whole requires not only financial compensation from the offender but also procedural, informational, and interpersonal justice from the criminal justice system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)450-469
Number of pages20
JournalViolence and victims
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Health(social science)
  • Law


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