What is the purpose of reparations?

What is the purpose of a victim-offender compromise?

A perpetrator-victim compensation, or TOA for short, is oneAgreement to settle a dispute out of court or oneMitigation of sentences to achieve for the perpetrator in the process. The purpose is to restore legal peace between the victim and the perpetrator. A TOA is usually carried out at the instigation of the public prosecutor or the court by a neutral mediator. We from theLaw firm RA Rainer Sebel explain below when a TOA makes sense and how it works.

What is the goal of a TOA?

A victim-offender reconciliation can be carried out regardless of the type of crime in order to come to terms with it and to negotiate reparation for the victim. The goal is alwaysVictim and perpetrator under the supervision of an independent intermediary, to give aamicable settlement to find and negotiate the extent of redress.

Legal regulations for the TOA

The central legal provisions on the TOA are essentially laid down in Section 46a of the Criminal Code on the subject of compensation for damages. Here it says:

“Has the perpetrator, in an effort to achieve a settlement with the injured party (perpetrator-victim settlement), wholly or for the most part made amends or theirsMaking amends seriously strives [...], the court can mitigate the penalty according to § 49 para. 1 or, if no higher penalty than imprisonment of up to one year or a fine of up to three hundred and sixty daily rates has been forfeited, waive the penalty. "

What are the advantages and disadvantages of a TOA?

An out-of-court settlement of the conflict usually has both for the victim and for the perpetratoradvantages. We have summarized the most important of them for you.


  • Active participation about the nature and extent of the reparation
  • Support from a neutral, independent intermediary
  • Reducing the feeling of threat and harassment
  • Easier processing of the experienced
  • Compensation for damage suffered and psychological suffering
  • The prospect of a quick and unbureaucratic reparation


  • Active participation in negotiating the settlement
  • Prospect ofMitigation of sentences
  • Possible suspension of further prosecution by the court

How does a TOA work?

In practice there is a victim-offender balance several steps. It is usually initiated by the authorities and takes place as follows:


If the public prosecutor suggests a TOA, it is first proposed to both the victim and the perpetrator.Both agree in writing to the proposal, the public prosecutor's office informs the arbitration board and informs them of the victim's and offender's data as well as the facts of the matter.

Preliminary talks

Find after an appointment with the arbitration board separate preliminary talks with the neutral mediator instead of. Both sides are informed about the TOA procedure and facts, causes and consequences are discussed. In addition, a possible compensation meeting is being prepared and a framework for making amends is set. Then both sides have time to think about the content of the conversation and make the necessary arrangements.

Compensation meeting

The common conversation between victim, perpetrator and arbitrator begins with clarifying the rules of the conversation. Then both sides describe their view of the dispute. There follows one emotional reappraisal of the factto collect possible solutions. This can be, for example, compensation in the form of compensation for pain and suffering or damages. If the victim and the perpetrator agree on the scope of the reparation, both sign a legally secured oneReparation agreement. In this the result of the conversation is precisely documented and the type of reparation is written down.

Review of the agreement made

The independent intermediary then checks whether the perpetrator is keeping to the agreement. If this is the case, the TOA is considered to have been carried out successfully.If the perpetrator does not stick to the agreement, the TOA is considered to have failed. In both cases, the arbitrator notifies the local court of the result. Then it is up to the public prosecutor to decide whether or not to drop the caseCharged becomes.

We at the Kanzlei RA Rainer Sebel in Berlin-Friedrichshain We would be happy to provide you with comprehensive clarification should you have any legal questions on the subject of offender-victim compensation. As a perpetrator or victim of a crime, seek advice on your options.