Violent crime impacts every aspect of a person’s life. The resulting physical and psychological injuries can affect a person’s ability to work, go to school, and meet their own individual goals and aspirations.
Often victims may require treatment to address the injuries caused by the violent acts of another. The monetary expenses incurred – after losing a loved one, for medical and dental care, for psychological assistance, and by injuries resulting in a disability to work – should not serve to further victimize those who are affected by violent crime.
The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office is committed to empowering crime victims and providing them with the tools and support they need to begin the healing process. Our Victim Compensation and Assistance Division is one resource that works diligently to make this happen. We are able to provide financial assistance to eligible victims of violent crime for uninsured medical and dental care, mental health counseling, funeral and burial costs, and income lost due to the inability to work. Victims of crimes that occurred on or after July 1, 2013, may, in addition, be eligible to receive financial assistance relating to compensable expenses.
Our division uses funds primarily obtained from perpetrators, and can assist with expenses up to a maximum of $25,000 per crime. My experienced staff will assist you in understanding your rights as a crime victim, determining what expenses may be eligible for compensation, and assessing what other resources are available to assist you.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of violent crime, please contact the Victim Compensation staff at the Office of the Attorney General for further assistance, at (617) 727-2200 ext. 2160. Please note that victim compensation funds are funds of last resort and are to be rewarded only after all other forms of assistance have been exhausted. For further information about victim rights and victim services, visit the Reporting a Violent Crime section of our website.
Who is eligible?
- Victims of violent crime occurring in Massachusetts
- Dependents and family members of homicide victims
- Any person responsible for the funeral expenses of a homicide victim
What are the requirements?
- The crime must have been reported to police within five days unless there is good cause for delay.
- You must cooperate with law enforcement officials in the investigation and prosecution of the crime unless there is a reasonable excuse not to cooperate.
- You must apply for compensation within three years of the crime. Victims under the age of 18 at the time of the crime may apply until age 21, or later in certain limited circumstances.
What expenses are covered?
To the extent insurance or other funds do not cover your expenses, you may be eligible to be reimbursed for:
- Medical and dental expenses (including equipment, supplies and medications)
- Counseling expenses (for victims, for family members of homicide victims, and for children who witness violence against a family member)
- Funeral/burial costs (limits apply)
- Lost wages (for victims only)
- Loss of financial support (for dependents of homicide victims)
- Homemaker expenses
- Ancillary funeral/burial
- Replacement bedding/clothing
- Crime scene cleanup
- Forensic Sexual Assault Exam
- Security measures
- Counseling for non-offending parents of a child victim
What expenses are not covered?
- Property losses, compensation for pain and suffering, and all other losses
Complete the "Application For Crime Victim Compensation" and return it to the Victim Compensation and Assistance Division for verification.
Office of the Attorney General
Victim Compensation & Assistance Division
One Ashburton Place, 19th floor
Boston, MA 02108-1698
(617) 727-2200 ext. 2160
(617) 742-6262 fax
In general, you will receive a decision 4 to 6 months later. Your claim can be reopened for future expenses.