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NCJ Number: 67852 Find in a Library
Title: SURVEY OF 27 VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS
Journal: JUDICATURE  Volume:63  Issue:10  Dated:(MAY 1980)  Pages:485-496
Author(s): W E HOELZEL
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 12
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS OF 27 STATES AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS ARE SURVEYED; TABLES AND NARRATIVE DESCRIBE PROGRAM FINANCING, VICTIM ELIGIBILITY, PUBLIC AWARENESS, MAXIMUM AWARDS, AND PROGRAM IMPACT.
Abstract: A TOTAL OF 27 STATES AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS NOW HAVE VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS TO HELP PEOPLE RECOVER FROM THE EFFECTS OF A CRIME AND TO ENCOURAGE VICTIM SUPPORT OF LAW ENFORCEMENT. MANY OF THESE PROGRAMS ARE ADMINISTERED BY SPECIALLY CREATED AGENCIES. SOME, INSTEAD, MAKE IT PART OF VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS. INVESTIGATORS USUALLY VERIFY VICTIMS' CLAIMS--A PROCESS TAKING FROM 1 TO 10 MONTHS. CALIFORNIA RECEIVES THE LARGEST NUMBER OF CLAIMS; NORTH DAKOTA, THE SMALLEST. BASIC LOSSES COVERED INCLUDE MEDICAL EXPENSES, LOST EARNINGS, LOSS OF SERVICES OF A FAMILY MEMBER, AND FUNERAL AND BURIAL EXPENSES. TO PREVENT COSTS OF COVERING THE LOSSES FROM GROWING TOO HIGH, ADMINISTRATORS USUALLY IMPOSE THREE TESTS OF ELIGIBILITY. ELIGIBILITY TESTS INCLUDE FINANCIAL MEANS, EXCLUSION OF THE OFFENDER'S FAMILY OR HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS, AND A MINIMUM LOSS REQUIREMENTS, RESIDENCY, AND EXCLUSION OF NONPHYSICAL INJURIES AND AUTO ACCIDENTS. ESTIMATED COSTS OF FEDERAL FUNDING OF STATE VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS RANGE FROM $235 MILLION TO $245 MILLION WITH THE FEDERAL SHARE ABOUT $62 MILLION. THE MAJOR PROBLEM VICTIMS ENCOUNTER IS A LACK OF BENEFIT INFORMATION; THIS MAY BE REMEDIED, HOWEVER, THROUGH STATUTORY REQUIREMENTS OF POLICE NOTIFICATION AND THROUGH HOSPITAL AND ATTORNEY REFERRALS. STRANGELY ENOUGH, THE PROGRAMS DO NOT APPEAR TO HAVE BETTERED THE PUBLIC IMAGE OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM. TWO KEY FINDINGS OF A FLORIDA SURVEY OF 198 VICTIMS REVEALED THAT (1) VICTIMS WHO WERE COMPENSATED HELD MORE FAVORABLE ATTITUDES TOWARD THE COMPENSATION COMMISSION BUT WERE NO MORE SATIFIED WITH THE POLICE, STATE ATTORNEY, OR JUDGE THAN PEOPLE WHO DENIED AWARDS; AND (2) THOSE IN THE COMPENSATED GROUP WERE NO MORE LIKELY THAN OTHERS TO SAY THAT THEY WOULD COOPERATE WITH THE SYSTEM IN THE FUTURE. A TABLE OF THE STATES' OPERATING DATA (MAXIMUM AWARD, MINIMUM LOSS, EXCLUSIONS, EMERGENCY AWARD, AND ATTORNEYS' FEES,) A MAP, A DIRECTORY OF 27 STATE VICTIM COMPENSATION PROGRAMS, AND FOOTNOTES ARE INCLUDED. (AOP)
Index Term(s): Alaska; California; Nebraska; New Jersey; New York; North Dakota; Oklahoma; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Tennessee; Texas; United States of America; Victim compensation; Virginia; Washington; Wisconsin
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=67852

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