WV Crime Victims Compensation Fund Explained
Dealing with physical and mental trauma after a violent crime is difficult, and high crime-related costs don’t make the situation easier. Most states have their own crime victims compensation programs that help violent crime victims and their loved ones handle financial challenges caused by a crime.
Would you like to learn more about the WV Crime Victims Compensation Fund and crime victims compensation application in West Virginia? DoNotPay’s guide provides valuable info! We can help you file your crime victims compensation application hassle-free in under two minutes.
What Is the WV Crime Victims Compensation Fund?
West Virginia created the Crime Victims Compensation Fund to help victims of violent crimes and their family members cover crime-related expenses through the Victim Assistance Program. The program provides reimbursement for the medical, counseling, funeral, and other costs caused by the following crimes:
- Domestic violence
- Child abuse
- Reckless driving and driving under the influence
- Vehicle homicide
- Sexual assault
- Hunting accident
You can apply for the program only if your other sources—including health insurance, unemployment benefits, civil lawsuit recoveries, and similar—can’t cover your expenses.
The funding for violent crime victims in West Virginia comes from:
- Offender fees and fines:
- Municipal infractions (excluding parking tickets)—$8
- Other offenses—$10
- Drunk driving cases—20% of assessed fines
- The annual Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant
The Victims Assistance Program grants up to $35,000 for personal injuries and up to $50,000 in a case of homicide.
Do You Qualify for Crime Victims Compensation in WV?
The program covers crime-related costs of:
- Victims who suffered physical injury or mental trauma as a result of a crime that occurred in West Virginia
- Dependents of victims who passed away due to crime-related injuries
- Legal guardians of minor victims
- Individuals who need to pay funeral expenses for homicide victims
- West Virginia residents victimized by terrorist attacks outside of the U.S.
- West Virginia residents injured in a violent crime in another American state without a compensation program
To be eligible to apply for the Victim Assistance Program, you must fulfill certain conditions. You have to:
- Have reported the crime to the police within 72 hours of the incident
- Cooperate with law enforcement during the investigation and prosecution
- File a violent crime compensation claim within two years of the crime
The program won’t approve your application if you:
- Were injured while participating in a crime
- Refused to cooperate with the police during the investigation
- Suffered injuries while incarcerated
Apply for Crime Victims Compensation in West Virginia in a Few Clicks With DoNotPay
The Victim Assistance Program application consists of numerous complicated steps that can be challenging to follow. If you hesitate to apply for crime victims compensation because of this tedious process, DoNotPay can help you out.
You shouldn’t go through financial struggles because of the complex application procedure. With our app, you can apply for compensation for any violent crime—including terrorist attacks and domestic violence—in a matter of minutes.
To file your crime victims compensation in West Virginia stress-free, do the following:
- Log in to DoNotPay
- Open our Compensation for Crime Victims product
- Tell us whether you’re the victim or a family member of the victim
- Respond to our questions and verify your signature
DoNotPay will complete the necessary application forms on your behalf and send the application to the WV Court of Claims.
Our app works in any American state, including:
Which Expenses Does the West Virginia Crime Victims Compensation Fund Cover?
Consult the table below to find out which crime-related expenses the program covers:
|Compensable Expenses||Maximum Compensable Amount|
|Medical expenses||Not specified|
|Mental health counseling||Not specified for primary victims
$1,000 for secondary victims
|Lost wages or support||Not specified|
|Replacement services||Not specified|
|Travel for medical services and prosecution||$1,000|
|Crime scene cleanup||$1,000|
|Attorney fees||Same as public defender’s hourly fee|
The Victims Assistance Fund in WV doesn’t cover:
- Personal property (except for eyeglasses, hearing aid, and other medically necessary items)
- Work loss of family members
Find Out What Happens After You Apply for Crime Victims Compensation in WV!
While the crime victims compensation boards handle applications in most states, in West Virginia, the Court of Claims makes the decision. Once you file your application, the Court of Claims will assign it to an investigator who will write and file Finding of Fact and Recommendation (FFR). You will receive a copy of the report, and you will have the right to respond within 30 days of getting it.
A Court of Claims judge will review the FFR and make a decision regarding your application. A copy of the order will be sent to you. Should you disagree with the judge’s decision, you have 30 days to send an appeal letter. Your application will be sent to another judge, and you’ll have 21 days to request and schedule a hearing.
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