Financial Assistance for Victims and Families

Common Questions Asked about the Crime Victim’s Compensation Act

What is the Crime Victim’s Compensation Act?
How is a claim decided?
Can the State’s Attorney’s Office assist with these claims?
What crimes are compensable?
Who can file a claim?

What is the Crime Victim’s Compensation Act

The Crime Victim’s Compensation Act was enacted in 1973 and provides financial compensation to innocent victims of violent crime and their families. Eligible victims or their family members receive compensation for certain out-of-pocket expenses, medical/hospital expenses or loss of earnings. There is no compensation for property loss or pain and suffering and the claim must be filed within two years from the date the crime was committed, or within one year of the criminal indictment.

Compensation under this program is a secondary source of compensation. The applicant must first exhaust all other sources reasonably available, including, but not limited to any governmental, medical or health insurance programs.

How is a claim decided?

The Illinois Attorney General’s Office gathers and evaluates documents given to them by the claimant and other sources. An investigative report is then prepared by the claims analyst and filed with the Court of Claims. The Court of Claims (in Springfield) makes the final decision. The copy of the decision is mailed to the claimant within 15 to 24 months.

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office does not administer the compensation fund.

Can the State’s Attorney’s Office assist with these claims?

The State’s Attorney’s Office has victim-witness specialists available to assist crime victims filing for compensation. They are familiar with the law’s requirements and work closely with the claim staff at the Illinois Attorney General’s Office. They will forward the applications and the supporting documents to the Attorney General’s Office for processing and follow up for a timely disposition of the case.

What crimes are compensable?

  • First Degree Murder
  • Second Degree Murder
  • Involuntary Manslaughter
  • Reckless Homicide
  • Aggravated Kidnapping
  • Kidnapping
  • Aggravated Assault
  • Assault
  • Aggravated Battery
  • Battery
  • Heinous Battery
  • Reckless Conduct
  • Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault
  • Criminal Sexual Assault
  • Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse
  • Criminal Sexual Abuse
  • Sexual Relations Within Family
  • Driving Under the Influence
  • Aggravated Arson
  • Arson
  • Child Pornography
  • Exploitation of a Child
  • Domestic Battery
  • Violation of Order of Protection
  • Stalking
  • Hate Crime

Also any Attempts of these same crimes, i.e. Attempted First Degree Murder, etc.

Who can file a claim?

Any person who is physically injured in the commission of one of the violent crimes listed above; a parent or guardian of a minor victim or a victim under legal disability; a relative of a deceased victim who pays or incurs reasonable funeral and/or medical expenses; and a relative who is a dependent of a deceased victim may file for compensation.