Ask a Criminal Lawyer in Buffalo NY: Is there a difference between fines and criminal restitution?


The Tabashneck Law Firm provides passionate criminal defene with Buffalo Criminal Attorneys who fight for clients in criminal cases


For many crimes, fines and criminal restitution are common punishments. Depending on the situation, you may face one or both, in place of or in addition to prison time.

What is criminal restitution?

Restitution is payment to victims of a crime. Generally, in New York, where the the victim suffers a financial loss, restitution will be awarded. The payment is intended to make the victim whole again and prevent you from benefiting from your crime.

Several examples include: paying the value of destroyed artwork; covering the costs of medical care for someone you punched; paying the funeral costs of someone who died as a result of your negligence; returning stolen items; or paying back their value.

Victims may be persons businesses, and even the public in cases like welfare fraud. For crimes against society, you’d likely pay the value of your fraudulent activity to a state restitution fund.

What are criminal fines?

A fine is money paid to the government as punishment for your crime. The amount of the fine is unrelated to the victim’s financial loss. They are common in all kinds of crimes, from infractions to felonies.

In New York, a judge may sentence you to just a fine or may combine it with other punishments like community service, probation or jail time.

For minor crimes—infractions and many misdemeanors—just a fine or a fine plus community service is common, especially for a first offense. For more serious crimes and repeat offenders, common sentences include a fine plus jail time. Depending on your situation, you might be able to plea bargain for a fine plus probation.

Will you get a fine or have to pay restitution?

In many cases you’ll have to pay both a court fine and restitution to your victim. Sometimes, this will depend on the arguments advanced by your criminal defense lawyer. For serious criminal charges, the criminal law may require the defendant to pay fines, restitution, and jail time. Clearly, the outcome of your case depends on the strategy suggested by your criminal defense lawyer. Your specific punishment will depend on many different things, including what the criminal law says, the facts in your criminal case, and any plea deal you make

It’s usually a good idea to talk with a Criminal Lawyer in Buffalo Ny before making a plea in your case. A criminal attorney buffalo ny can evaluate your case to see if you can avoid a conviction. If not, the criminal defense lawyer buffalo ny can negotiate to get you the best deal possible.

The Criminal law is complicated. If you are looking for lawyers in buffalo ny free consultation and facing criminal charges or in the middle of a criminal case, such as a dwi cases, contact a criminal lawyers buffalo ny,  buffalo dwi lawyer, or  criminal attorney buffalo ny

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