Victims of crimes in Florida have the right to request restitution from the offender. Restitution is the payment of money by an offender to a victim for damage or loss that occurred as a result of the offender’s criminal actions. In the event that a victim was killed, the offender may be ordered to pay restitution to the victim’s family.
Restitution is one of the many penalties that a court may order as punishment for a crime. Restitution can quickly become very costly and may include payment to the victim for the following:
- Medical expenses
- Wages lost while the victim was recovering from injuries or while in court
- Expenses for counseling sessions
- Property lost or damaged by the offender
- Funeral expenses in the event of the death of a victim
In Florida, the total restitution amount that is to be paid to a victim or victim’s family is decided based on the damages and loss to the victim. Once it has been decided whether restitution will be ordered and how much the offender will be ordered to pay, the court will then review the defendant’s financial resources to determine how the restitution should be paid.
The court may use information on the defendant’s current and future earning potential and the burden that restitution would place on the offender’s dependents to schedule the required payments. Restitution may be divided into many payments and may take many years to pay in full.
If you have been charged with a crime that involves injury or damages to a victim or victims, you may be ordered by the court to pay restitution if convicted. Restitution is just one of the many penalties you may face if you are found guilty of a crime. To begin preparing your defense for court and ensure that your rights are protected throughout the trial process, consider contacting a criminal defense lawyer immediately.
For more information on restitution, other criminal penalties, and constructing a defense for your case, please contact the experienced West Palm Beach criminal attorneys of Eric N. Klein & Associates, P.A. today at 561-353-2800.