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Crime Victim Compensation
Every state has a crime victim or criminal injuries compensation program to help pay some of the out-of-pocket expenses for victims of crime. In the District of Columbia the Crime Victims Compensation Program (CVCP) is administered by the DC Courts and assists victims and their families with their financial burden in the aftermath of a violent crime. Specifically, the CVCP can provide reimbursements or direct payment to providers for services necessary as a result of the crime that are not covered by private insurance, medical aid programs, or other benefit programs.
What types of crimes are covered by the Crime Victim Compensation Program?
- Cruelty to children
- Sexual abuse
- Unlawful use of an explosive
- Driving under the influence
- Hit and run
What expenses does the Crime Victims Compensation Program cover?
The CVCP can cover part of the following crime related expenses:
- Medical treatment and medications
- Mental health counseling
- Funeral and burial costs
- Loss of Wages
- Cleaning of a crime scene
- Reimbursement for car rental while vehicle is being held as evidence
- Temporary emergency shelter and moving expenses where necessary for the health and safety of the victim
- Windows, doors, and lock changes for the safety of the victim
The program does not cover the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Damage to personal property
What are the eligibility requirements for the Crime Victims Compensation Program?
In order to be eligible for compensation applicants must meet the following requirements:
- A victim is a person who suffered personal injury or death in the District of Columbia, or is a resident who was injured as a result of terrorism outside of the United States.
- A secondary victim is a close family or household member of the victim.
- Police report filed within 7 days of crime.
- In cases of sexual assault obtaining a sexual assault exam is sufficient.
- In cases of domestic violence, obtaining a Civil Protection Order is sufficient.
- In cases of cruelty to children the filing of a neglect petition will satisfy the reporting requirement.
- Law enforcement agencies were reasonably provided with information and all necessary cooperation was given.
- Claimant did not participate in consent to, or provoke the crime that is the basis of the claim.
- Application must be filed with the Compensation Program within one year of crime, or one year of learning of the Program.
What documents are needed to apply for compensation?
- Police Report or appropriate court orders/petitions
- Medical bills
- Mental health counseling bills
- Verification of employment
Please note that other information may also be requested to support your claim.
What Can I do?
- File a Claim – Victims and survivors may file a claim by filling out an application and submitting it in person or by mail along with the appropriate supporting documentation.
- Use an Advocate for Support – You may find it helpful to have the assistance of a crime victim advocate to help you through the process of filing a claim. Visit our list of DC and national resources for assistance in getting connected to a local victim support service provider.
- Look for Other Means of Emergency Assistance – Victims Compensation is not a source of immediate or emergency funding. Look to local social service agencies or churches if you are in need of crisis funding.
Contact the VictimConnect Resource Center by phone at 1-855-484-2846 or by chat for more information or assistance in locating services that can help you with victim compensation.
The Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) helps income eligible District residents facing housing emergencies. The program provides funding for overdue rent if a qualified household is facing eviction (including late costs and court fees). The program also supports security deposits and first month’s rent for residents moving to new apartments.
Visit Need Help Paying Bills for additional information about resources in DC that are available to help individuals with living expenses, medical bills, debt counseling, taxes and more.