At common law, restitution is a general legal term embracing various extra-contractual remedies aimed at the prevention of unjust enrichment and/or unconscionability.

Restitution ‘gives back’ or ‘makes up for’ – it is a restoration which seeks to return the affected party to the position he or she would have been in prior to rendering the goods/services subject to contract.

These remedies are applied in situations where contract law cannot provide a just remedy because there is no enforceable contract, but a plaintiff still possesses a valid claim to be paid a reasonable price for goods/services rendered.

Restitution is also an equitable remedy in and of itself, and can be ordered at the court’s discretion where it is persuaded that damages will be insufficient.