top of page

The Crime Victims Compensation Act (CVCA)

The Crime Victims Compensation Act (CVCA) is a federal law that provides financial assistance to victims of crime who have suffered physical or emotional harm as a result of the crime. The law is administered by the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) within the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Act provides reimbursement for expenses such as medical treatment, lost wages, and funeral costs, as well as counseling and other related expenses. The program is intended to help alleviate some of the financial burden that victims may face as a result of their victimization.

The CVCA also provides funding to states to develop and maintain their own crime victim compensation programs. Each state's program is unique, but they all must meet certain federal guidelines in order to receive funding from the CVCA.

To be eligible for compensation under the Act, victims must report the crime to the appropriate law enforcement agency and cooperate with the investigation and prosecution of the crime. Additionally, the compensation is limited to losses that are not covered by insurance or other forms of compensation.

It's important to note that the CVCA only covers losses resulting from certain violent crimes and the compensation awarded to the victims is capped at a certain amount, the amount varies from state to state. The CVCA is a valuable resource for victims of crime, as it helps to alleviate some of the financial burden they may face as a result of their victimization. The Act helps victims to receive some compensation for their losses and to move forward with their lives.

The Crime Victims Compensation Act (CVCA) covers losses resulting from certain violent crimes, such as:



Child abuse

Domestic violence

Sexual assault



Human trafficking

Terrorist acts

The Act also covers losses resulting from crimes committed against a person or property that have been reported to the appropriate law enforcement agency and that are under investigation or prosecution. Some states may have slightly different rules but generally speaking the above mentioned crimes are covered by the CVCA.

It's important to contact the relevant state's crime victim compensation program for more information on the specific rules and regulations that apply, as well as information on how to apply for compensation.

The Illinois Crime Victims Compensation Program offers reimbursement up to $45,000 (eff. 8/7/22) for expenses incurred by eligible victims as a result of a violent crime.


Adult without a disability -Five years from the date of the crime or one year from criminal charge for the offense.

Minor- Three Years from turning 18

Adult with disability -Three Years from the removal of the disability

More Information:

Illinois Crime Victim Compensation Online Application:

Application Process:

Written Instructions (English):

Written Instructions (Spanish):

If you or someone you love is having difficulty coping with the long-term effects of a violent crime, please call our toll-free Crime Victims Assistance Line for more information about compensation and other statewide victim services: 1-800-228-3368 (Voice) 1-877-398-1130 (TTY).


bottom of page