Crime Victims Compensation Division
Office of the Attorney General
P.O. Box 12548, Capitol Station
Austin, TX 78711-2548
(512) 936-1200 FAX: (512) 320-8270
The Crime Victims Compensation Division has responsibility for determining compensation claims. The program was established in 1979.
Director: Anita A. Drummond
The program receives $45 for each felony conviction, $35 for each Class A and B misdemeanor, and $15 for class C misdemeanors, excluding pedestrian violations. The program receives an annual VOCA grant.
Reporting period: reasonable time period
Filing period: 3 years
Exceptions: Reporting and filing periods do not apply to child victims; good cause waiver may apply to other cases
After receipt and data entry, the application is forwarded to the documentation unit, which reviews it for completeness and makes requests for additional information. When the information is received, the file is forwarded to the eligibility unit, which reviews the information, conducts additional inquiries if necessary, and makes the recommendation to award or deny the application. If the applicant is eligible, the file is forwarded to the awards section, where information relating to the victims' losses are gathered. Medical bills are sent to a private company, which applies fee guidelines and reviews for duplicate billings and unrelated charges. The indemnity and awards unit reviews claims for nonmedical benefits, then prepares recommendations for the award and forwards the claim to the accounting unit for final processing of payment.
Appeals: Victim may request in writing a reconsideration, which is an informal step intended to give the victim another opportunity to provide relevant information. If the victim remains dissatisfied with the decision, the victim may request a final ruling hearing, which is more formal, and which will be conducted near the victim's residence. An appeal may be filed in district court.
Maximum award: $50,000 with additional $50,000 for permanent injuries
Compensable Costs (with limits)
Medical expenses: fee schedule places limits on individual procedures
Mental health counseling: $3,000; $400 per day, 30-day limit on inpatient psychiatric care
Lost wages/support: $500 per week
Funerals: $5,500 for funeral, $1,500 miscellaneous burial costs
Moving/relocation: for domestic-violence victims, one-time costs of up to $2,000 for relocation and $1,800 for rent
Replacement services: child/dependent care @ $100 per child/dependent per week
Crime-scene cleanup/evidence: replacement of clothing; bedding seized as evidence; property rendered unusable by crime investigation/lab testing
Travel: to obtain treatment, help in investigation and attend criminal proceedings
Attorney fees: paid in addition to award according to time spent, if reasonable and necessary; fees are limited to 25% of amount the attorney assisted victim in obtaining, or $300 if no appeal
Emergency: up to $1,500 for lost support and lost earnings, emergency medical and funeral charges