Residual stresses due to manufacturing processes, such as welding, change the load bearing capacity of cracked components. The effects of residual stresses on crack behaviour in single edge bending specimens were investigated using Finite element analyses. Three parameters (J, Q and R) were used to study the crack behaviour. The J-integral predicts the size scale over which large stresses and strains exist, the constraint parameter Q describes the crack-tip constraint as a result of geometry, loading mode and crack depth and the constraint parameter R is used to describe the constraint resulting from residual stresses. To carry out a systematic investigation on the effect of residual stresses on the J-integral and crack-tip constraints, models under different combinations of residual stresses and external loads with different crack depths were analysed. It has been shown that the crack-tip constraint R increased by tensile residual stresses around the crack-tip. On the other hand, the constraint parameter R decreased and tended to zero at high external load levels.