Collection of Victim Compensation
Although the judge ordered the defendant to pay your restitution, you will only receive your money if the defendant has the ability to pay. The defendant's ability to pay is dependent upon whether he/she is working or has other sources of income.
DTAC bills the defendant each month. If the defendant fails to pay on a regular basis, the collector assigned to the account contacts the defendant to determine why payment was not made. If the defendant is working, but refuses to pay, our office will obtain a court order to garnish his/her wages.
If the defendant is not working and has no assets, the account will be referred back to the probation officer or the court for issuance of a court order to have the defendant appear before the judge and explain why payment was not made.
When the defendant is ordered to pay restitution, state law mandates that a judgment be entered against the defendant. If the court or DTAC is not successful in securing payment, you have the right to pursue the defendant in a civil law suit. You can also file a lien against the defendant by obtaining a copy of the judgment from the court and filing an abstract with the Clerk-Recorder's Office. In addition, you may qualify for reimbursement from the California State Victim Restitution Fund.