Repeal Unfair Colorado Law that charges interest on restitution payments

Repeal Unfair Colorado Law that charges interest on restitution payments

September 15, 2022
Signatures: 15Next Goal: 25
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Why this petition matters


1.2 million people in Colorado have been convicted of a crime. 1.2 million people have been ordered to pay restitution for that crime.

Colorado Law C.R.S 28-1-603 (4) (b) states that ANY order for Restitution made pursuant to Colorado Law requires.....The defendant owes simple interest from the date of the entry of the order at 8% per year.

Here is what this means..... For every 1.2 million persons who commit a crime, restitution payments by law, are ordered for ALL crimes with interest being charged at 8% annually until restitution is paid in full.

I completely understand and support the need for restitution to compensate for any damages done by committing that crime. Restitution should be imposed for the fixed amount that the crime incurred to the victim(s)

The above stated law passed in 2020 however, allows Colorado state to charge 8% interest each year for all people who cannot pay their restitution in full.

Let's be real, most people who have been in jail cannot afford to pay large sums of restitution all at once and have to make smaller payment arrangements, which they can barely afford after being refused housing, jobs, benefits etc.

These harsh penalties create a negative feedback loop preventing an individual from getting out of the justice system. If restitution is not paid in full the  judicial requirements cannot be met, records cannot be sealed or expunged, and  taxes and wages can be garnished which creates an even more difficult financial situation for someone who is already struggling.

Let's put some real numbers to this to show the actual impact of this law.

If someone commits a crime and completes all court requirements, finishes their sentence but owes $20,000 in restitution, they will still be slave to the state until that $20k is paid in full. With this law that $20k mark moves up by 8% each year. Regardless of payment.

If this person makes $100 payments every month on time, they will incur 8% interest per year, ($1,600 in this example). This means they will NEVER pay off their restitution. They will owe more after each year than they did when the crime occurred. 

$100/ month payment = $1,200 in payments/ year 

8% interest of $20,000 Restitution = $1,600 per year.

$100/ month paid x 5 years = $6,000 paid

Restitution still owed after 5 years =$22,000 which is MORE than the original amount despite paying $6,000  (1/3 of total) already. 

If a crime is said to have cost x amount at the time it happened.  NO ONE should have to pay interest on a crime. This law prevents people from moving beyond their mistakes, getting free from the justice system and making a better life for themselves.

Please help me repeal this harsh and oppressive law by signing this petition asking that restitution be assessed in full at the time of the crime at a fixed amount based on the damage incurred to the victims at the time of the crime and that no person shall pay interest on a crime.




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Signatures: 15Next Goal: 25
Support now