res·​ti·​tu·​tion | \ ˌre-stə-ˈtü-shən How to pronounce restitution (audio) , -ˈtyü- \

Definition of restitution

1 : an act of restoring or a condition of being restored: such as
a : a restoration of something to its rightful owner
b : a making good of or giving an equivalent for some injury
2 : a legal action serving to cause restoration of a previous state

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Examples of restitution in a Sentence

the restitution of her stolen property He was ordered to make restitution to the victim.
Recent Examples on the Web The Board also expedited the clemency process for former felons who have paid all fines, fees and restitution. Steven Lemongello,, "DeSantis again denies pardon to ex-felon voting advocate Desmond Meade," 10 Mar. 2021 All payments for court costs, fines, fees and restitution should be made by money order mailed to the clerks office or paid by cash or credit card by calling the office. Andrew Wolfson, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky Supreme Court asks jury trials to be postponed when a county is in the 'red zone'," 30 Oct. 2020 Statewide, outstanding fines, fees and restitution total about $23 billion, according to the ACLU. Washington Post, "Most Florida felons kept from registering to vote by fines, fees or fears, activists say," 5 Oct. 2020 Unlike Florida, neither required payment of fines, court fees or restitution. Michael Wines, New York Times, "How Republicans Undermined Ex-Felon Voting Rights in Florida," 17 Sep. 2020 Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in his opinion for the court that the provision of federal law that the FTC has relied on does not authorize the commission to seek or a federal court to order restitution or disgorgement of profits. Mark Sherman, Star Tribune, "Supreme Court cuts back FTC power to seek ill-gotten gains," 22 Apr. 2021 Breyer wrote that nowhere in the provision can its language be understood to allow the FTC to seek monetary restitution. Nicholas Rowan, Washington Examiner, "Supreme Court cuts FTC's ability to seek monetary rewards in courts," 22 Apr. 2021 The lawsuit seeks to have Google's practices declared unlawful and stopped, as well as unspecified triple and punitive damages and restitution. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Chain of small Wisconsin newspapers sues Google, Facebook, alleging antitrust violations," 20 Apr. 2021 Per the Art Newspaper, Christine Mullen Kreamer, deputy director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art, stated during the April 9 conference that the museum could lead discussions on American restitution efforts. Nora Mcgreevy, Smithsonian Magazine, "Museums Around the World Make Renewed Push to Repatriate Benin Bronzes," 19 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'restitution.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of restitution

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for restitution

Middle English restitucioun, from Anglo-French, from Latin restitution-, restitutio, from restituere to restore, from re- + statuere to set up — more at statute

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Time Traveler for restitution

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The first known use of restitution was in the 14th century

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Statistics for restitution

Last Updated

11 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Restitution.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of restitution

: the act of returning something that was lost or stolen to its owner
: payment that is made to someone for damage, trouble, etc.


res·​ti·​tu·​tion | \ ˌres-tə-ˈtü-shən, -ˈtyü- How to pronounce restitution (audio) \

Legal Definition of restitution

1a : a restoration of something to its rightful owner
b : a making good of or giving an equivalent for some injury
2a : the equitable remedy of restoring to an aggrieved party that which was obtained in unjust enrichment
b : a remedy for breach of contract that consists of restoring the aggrieved party to the status quo that existed before the contract was made
3 : an amount to be paid for the purpose of restitution ordered to pay restitution to the victim of his crime — compare fine

Other Words from restitution

restitutional \ ˌres-​tə-​ˈtü-​shə-​nəl, -​ˈtyü-​ \ adjective
restitutionary \ ˌres-​tə-​ˈtü-​shə-​ˌner-​ē, -​ˈtyü-​ \ adjective
restitutive \ ˈres-​tə-​ˌtü-​tiv, -​ˌtyü-​ \ adjective
restitutory \ ˌres-​tə-​ˈtü-​tə-​rē, -​ˈtyü-​; rə-​ˈsti-​tyə-​ˌtōr-​ē \ adjective

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