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A victim of crime can apply for counselling and financial support and/or recognition payment from Victims Services. This is called “victims support package”. It is only available to victims of crime.
Restitution is the recovery of victims support paid to the victim. A person who has been convicted of a relevant offence will be required to pay back all or some of the money.
For more information, see What is restitution?
The restitution process is a civil legal process and is separate from the criminal proceedings. An order for restitution is usually made within two years of the end of the five-year period in which a claim may be made by a victim, or within two years from the date of conviction.
There are longer time limits for victims of child abuse, sexual assault and domestic violence. For more information, see What is restitution?
The Victims Support Levy (formerly Victims Compensation Levy or VCL) is an amount levied on a person who is found guilty of an offence by a NSW court. Payment of the levy is made to the Court and is separate from restitution recovery.
Victims support payments can be made before any person is charged with a crime.
Restitution orders can only be made when someone has been convicted of the offence that resulted in victims support payments being made.
No. Victims Services is not authorised to impose penalties.
If the date of the restitution order is over 12 years, then you should get legal advice before you agree to pay.
Victims Services can’t enforce a debt if it has been more than 12 years.
There is no time limit for Revenue NSW to enforce a debt.
It is important that you respond to an order for restitution sent to you even if there was another offender involved in the offence.
If there was a co-offender, you can file a written objection setting out reasons why you think the amount should be reduced.
For more information, see Responding to an order for restitution.
If you are in financial hardship, you can file a written notice of objection or ask for more time to pay through Revenue NSW.
For more information about your options, see Responding to an order for restitution.
You have 28 days to respond to an order for restitution.
The order will be sent to your last known address. The 28 days are calculated from the seventh business day that the order was posted.
If you do not respond within 28 days, the order will be confirmed by Victims Services and transferred to Revenue NSW for enforcement.
For more information about dealing with an order for restitution, see Responding to an order for restitution.
If you were under 18 years of age at the time of the offence, you may still receive an order for restitution.
The fact you were under 18 years of age at the time offence may be relevant in objecting to paying some or the entire restitution amount.
For more information on how to object, see Step by Step guide: Objecting to an order for restitution.
You have 60 days from the date of the Victims Services decision to apply for an administrative review at the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT).
You should get legal advice before applying for a review. You will need to pay your own costs.
For more information, see Step by Step guide: Applying for a review at NCAT.
Unfortunately, there is no option to pay an order for restitution by instalments to Victims Services unless the order for restitution was made before 27 April 2020.
You can apply for more time to pay through Revenue NSW if you complete and sign the Consent to an order for restitution form.This form is included in the letter enclosing the order for restitution from Victims Services.This means that the debt will be transferred to Revenue NSW.
For more information, see Step by Step guide: Consenting to the order for restitution.
If you don’t pay the full amount or file an objection within 28 days, the Commissioner of Victims Rights can confirm the restitution amount.This means that Victims Services can refer the confirmed order to Revenue NSW for enforcement.
If you have received an overdue fine from Revenue NSW, see Responding to an overdue fine from Revenue NSW.
If you have an existing payment arrangement with Victims Services for a provisional order made before 27 April 2020, you should speak to Victims Services about your situation and ask to change your payment plan.
If you stop making payments, Victims Services can refer the debt to Revenue NSW for enforcement.
For more information, see Existing payment arrangement with Victims Services.
If you received an overdue fine from Revenue NSW, it means that Victims Services has transferred the debt to Revenue NSW for enforcement. You can no longer negotiate with Victims Services.
You have 28 days to pay an overdue fine before enforcement action starts.
Depending on your financial and personal situation, you have a number of options to deal with an overdue fine. Do not ignore it! If you ignore an overdue fine, Revenue NSW will take enforcement action against you.
For more information, see Responding to an overdue fine from Revenue NSW.
If you don’t pay an overdue fine within 28 days, Revenue NSW can:
There are no time limits for Revenue NSW to enforce an overdue fine.
For more information, see Enforcement of an overdue fine.
If you are unable to pay your overdue fine, you can apply for a Work and Development Order (WDO) or a write off.
A WDO helps you pay off all or some of your fine by completing set activities.
A write off application can be made by someone who is not suitable for a WDO.
An application is made to Revenue NSW and is assessed on a case by case basis.
You may be eligible for a WDO if you:
To apply for a WDO, you will need to find an approved sponsor. For more information, see Applying for a Work and Development Order.
Yes. You should speak to your sponsor about your situation. Your sponsor will need to notify Revenue NSW that you have completed all the required activities.
Revenue NSW can refer you to another sponsor and discuss which activities best suits you. The new sponsor will need to make a separate application to Revenue NSW.
For more information, see Applying for a Work and Development Order.
Revenue NSW will put any enforcement action on hold while they assess your application.
If your application is accepted, your fine will be written off for five years. If your application is refused, you will be given another 28 days to make arrangements to pay the overdue fine.
For more information, see Step by Step guide: Applying for a write off.
You can ask an advocate to talk to Revenue NSW and negotiate on your behalf. Advocates are services like Legal Aid NSW, Community Legal Centres (CLCs) and free financial counsellors. They can help you understand your options in dealing with the overdue fine.
You can find an advocate near you.
For more information, see Advocates.
If your application for a Work and Development Order or write off is refused by Revenue NSW, you can apply to the Hardship Revenue Board for a review of their decision. Before you apply for a review, it’s important to speak to Revenue NSW about their decision. They may suggest other options to pay the debt.
For more information, see Step by Step guide: Applying for a review at the Hardship Review Board.
If you are already bankrupt, you should notify your trustee immediately about the order for restitution. Do not ignore an order for restitution.
For more information, see Bankruptcy.
Before you consider applying for bankruptcy, you should speak to a free financial counsellor about managing your debts. Depending on when you apply for bankruptcy, you may still be liable to pay the debt.