Crime Victims Reparations Act
Act 250 of 1982
La.R.S. 46: 1801-1822
Effective July, 1982, the State of Louisiana established a program to provide for the payment of compensation to the victims of certain crimes. The law, known as the Crime Victims Reparations Act, created the Crime Victims Reparations Board and established the Crime Victims Reparations Fund. The Board administers the provisions of the Act and awards payments from the Fund. Income for the Fund is composed primarily of monies paid as costs levied on Criminal Court cases. Other components of the fund include a federal grant, court-ordered restitution from criminals, donations, and interest.
Victims of violence and their families must deal with the emotional and financial aftermath of crime. The Louisiana Crime Victims Reparations Fund helps innocent victims and their families when they have no other means of paying for the financial cost of crime. The fund is administered by the Crime Victims Reparations Board under the jurisdiction of the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement. The money in the fund comes from people who break the law.
Basic Qualification Requirements
The crime must occur in Louisiana or the crime must involve a Louisiana resident who becomes a victim in another state that does not have a crime victim compensation program for which the victim would be eligible.
Reporting the Crime
The crime must be reported to a law enforcement agency within 72 hours after the incident unless there is a good reason why the crime was not reported within this time period.
Filing for Compensation
The application must be filed within a year of the crime unless there is a good reason why the application was not submitted within this time period.
The victim and/or claimant must cooperate fully with law enforcement officials in the investigation and prosecution of the case.
Who May Qualify
An innocent victim of a violent crime who suffers physical and/or emotional harm or death or catastrophic property loss.
A person who legally assumes the obligations or voluntarily pays certain expenses related to the crime on behalf of the victim.
Immediate family members needing counseling as a result of the consequence of the death of the victim
Who is Not Eligible
A victim whose own behavior contributed to the crime (in those cases, benefits may be reduced or denied).
A victim or claimant who was engaged in illegal activity at the time of the crime.
An offender or an accomplice of the offender.
Anyone who as incarcerated in a penal institution when the crime occurred or who had a felony conviction in the last five years.
Victims of motor vehicle accidents except those listed below (“What Crimes are Covered”).
What Crimes Are Covered
Crimes that involve the use of force or the threat of the use of force and result in personal injury, death or catastrophic property loss.
Only these motor vehicle-related crimes: DWI, Hit and Run, a victim of a driver who is fleeing apprehension by law enforcement, or a victim whose injuries were intentionally inflicted with a vehicle.
What Expenses are Eligible
Reimbursement for property damage or loss is not an eligible expense. Approved claims may be awarded compensation for the following only if they are related to the crime:
Reasonable medical and prescription expenses
Mental health counseling
Loss of earnings or support
Child care to enable a victim, spouse, surviving spouse of a deceased victim, or guardian to continue employment
Reasonable replacement costs for items or items taken as evidence or made unusable as a result of the criminal investigation.
What Expenses are Not Eligible
Expenses which may not be reimbursed for any reason include:
Property losses except for a catastrophic property loss which is limited to the loss of your current residence provided it is owned and occupied by the victim/claimant.
Pain and Suffering
Attorney fees except when they are part of an order from a hearing or award by a court of law.
Limits on Awards
Total recovery may not exceed $ 10,000 unless the victim suffered total and permanent disability. Victims who suffer total permanent disability as a result of their victimization may qualify for $25,000.