1. Where is crime
victim compensation available.?
in the country and several United States
territories offer crime victim compensation
benefits. See our Program Directory
(a link on
our home page) for more information on each
state. There is no federal or national crime
victim compensation program for crimes occurring
within the U.S. However, the U.S. Department of
Justice does operate an expense reimbursement
program for U.S. citizens who are victims of
international terrorism outside the U.S..
2. What is crime
compensation is a program to assist innocent
victims of crime for many of their unreimbursed
out-of-pocket costs resulting from the
commission of a violent crime.
1. What are the
state's eligibility requirements vary slightly,
victims are generally required to:
1) Report the crime promptly to law enforcement.
Most states have a 72-hour reporting
2) Cooperate in the investigation and
prosecution of the crime.
3) Be innocent of any criminal activity or
misconduct leading to the victim's injury or
4) File a timely application with the
compensation program in the state where the
crime occurred, and provide any information
requested. Most states require that the
application be filed within 1 year from the date
of the crime, but a few states have shorter or
2. Who may get
eligible for crime victim compensation include:
1) A crime victim who has been physically
2) In most states, a victim who suffers
emotional injury as a result of violence or
threats, even though no physical injury
3) Family members of a deceased victim, and in
some states, any individual who pays for
expenses resulting from a victim's injury or
3. Who is eligible
general, innocent victims of most violent crimes
are eligible to apply for crime victim
compensation benefits. This includes victims of
assault, rape, domestic violence, child abuse,
drunk driving and other crimes involving
personal injury. Families of murder victims may
also be eligible for financial help.
1. Are there limits
on the assistance available?
directly to the crime can be reimbursed up to
the maximum level in each state. The average
maximum is $25,000, but a number of states have
higher or lower maximums. In addition, there may
be sub-limits on some types of benefits, such as
mental health counseling or funeral costs.
2. What costs are
following are some of the expenses that will not
be reimbursed by crime victim compensation
1) Property loss, theft and damage are usually
not covered (unless damage is to eyeglasses,
hearing aids, or other medically necessary
devices.) A few states may pay limited amounts
for the loss of essential personal property
during a violent crime. Many states can pay for
cleaning up a
2) Expenses paid for by other sources, such as
any type of public or private health insurance,
automobile insurance, disability insurance, or
3) Except in Hawaii, Tennessee, and the Virgin
Islands, awards for pain and suffering. (Such
awards are in very limited amounts in those
3. What are
sources are other private or public programs,
agencies, companies or other sources that will
cover the same costs. This may include private
insurance, workers' compensation, welfare,
veteran's benefits, etc. Crime victim
compensation programs are "payors of last
resort" which means that the crime victim
compensation program will not pay for expenses
covered by those other sources.
4. What costs may
expenses may be covered if they are not paid for
a collateral source and if they resulted
directly from the crime:
1) Medical and hospital care, and dental work to
repair injury to teeth.
2) Mental health counseling.
3) Lost earnings due to crime-related injuries.
4) Loss of support for dependents of a deceased
5) Funeral and burial expenses.
Check with the specific state where the crime
occurred to determine exactly what costs are
covered by the program. Many can pay