Restitution in Michigan is a victim’s Constitutional right and mandatory. It cannot be excluded through a plea bargain or sentencing agreement. It is only awarded if the Defendant is convicted of a criminal allegation related to his or her conduct that gave rise to the restitution. Restitution even survives the death of the Defendant, and can be pursued against his or her estate. Under Michigan law, the Prosecutor is required to provide information to a victim concerning restitution. The Sentencing Court must order the Defendant to make full restitution as required by law to any victim of the Defendant’s course of conduct that gives rise to the conviction, or to the victim’s estate.
A victim is defined as an individual who suffers direct or threatened physical, financial, or emotional harm as the result of the commission of a crime, juvenile offense, or misdemeanor. A victim also include companies, corporations, government entities, or any other legal entity that suffers a direct physical or financial harm as the result of a crime, juvenile offense, or a misdemeanor. A person who was charged with offenses arising out of the same transaction as the charged levied against the Defendant is not considered to be a victim.
Restitution can be expensive. For any criminal case in which a large amount of restitution may be an issue, it is recommended that you retain attorney Daniel Hilf of the law firm of Hilf & Hilf, PLC.