Victims of Crime Compensation

A victim of crime is a person who has suffered physical or emotional injury:

(i) as a direct result of an act of violence committed against them (a primary victim), or
(ii) is present at the scene of an act of violence (a secondary victim), or
(iii) is related to a victim who has died as a direct result of an act of violence (a related victim).

The crime committed may include a violent physical attack, or a sexual assault etc.

If you have been a victim of crime you can claim for compensation in three ways.

1. Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal (VOCAT) Application

The following benefits may be awarded: 

  • Special Financial Assistance,
  • Counselling Services,
  • Medical expenses,
  • Funeral expenses,
  • Loss of earnings,
  • Compensation for pain and suffering.

2. Sentencing Act Application

  • If the offender is sentenced, you can make an application to the Court seeking an Order from the sentencing judge for compensation from the offender.
  • Compensation is payable for pain and suffering, counselling and medical expenses, loss of earnings and for loss or damage to property.
  • The amount of compensation awarded under the Sentencing Act is generally higher than the amounts awarded by VOCAT.
  • If your claim is successful, the offender is responsible for paying any compensation awarded in your favour.

3. Civil Proceedings

  • A civil claim entitles you to sue the offender directly and seek damages for pain and suffering and loss of income and other related expense.
  • The offender needs to have assets and the financial means to pay any award of damages to you.

The amount and type of compensation will depend on whether the victim of crime is a primary, secondary or a related victim and upon the severity of injury sustained.

It is important that you receive professional legal advice to ensure that your rights are protected.


The law sets strict time limits within which you must begin legal action. If you do not make your claim within the time constraints, you could lose all the rights to your entitlements.

Do not delay, contact us now