Source: (1985) International Journal of Comparative and Applied Criminal Justice 9(1/2):29-39.The German Victim Compensation Act of 1976 provides compensation for violent acts with periodic payments, while most of the other West European countries grant lump sums from a special compensation fund. The German legislation has given the victim a relatively weak position. Other problems are discussed. A balancing of the victim-offender interests seems important for criminal policy. An extension of victim compensation is necessary as is the wider application of restitutional sanctions, instead of or combined with penal sanctions. Help for victims should also include social and psychological assistance programs.