prosecuting attorney – victim’s compensation
If you’re on this web page, chance are someone who cares has directed you to here because you or someone close to you has been a victim of crime. This program helps pay out-of-pocket medical expenses, lost earnings, funeral bills or counseling for people who suffer physical injury as a direct result of a crime.
Can you be helped?
Yes, if you are:
- A person who was injured as a direct result of a crime in Michigan.
- A sexual assault victim.
- A person who was injured while trying to help a crime victim.
- A surviving spouse, parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, brother or sister of a person who dies as a direct result of a crime.
- A Michigan resident injured in another state that doesn’t pay compensation for a non-resident.
- A Michigan resident injured outside the U.S. by an act of international terrorism.
What kind of financial help may be available?
Injury-related expenses that a person must legally pay and other eligible losses that can be proved with supporting papers and other evidence.
For the injured person:
- Hospital bills and medical expenses.
- Loss of earnings.
- Counseling for the injured person and family members.
- Replacement services needed because of the person’s injury.
- Medical forensic exam.
For a survivor:
- Funeral and burial expenses.
- Loss of support for legal dependents of the person who died.
- Grief counseling for the family.
- Hospital and medical bills for the person who died if the survivors must legally pay them.
A person must have at least $200 in out-of-pocket expenses or two continuous weeks loss of earnings or support. These limits are excused for victims who are retired or disabled persons and victims who are sexual assault victims.
About other benefits?
- Crime Victims Compensation always pays last. All other public funds and private insurance payments that a person is eligible for or becomes eligible for must be paid and reported to the program before compensation can be considered.
- A report must be made to police within 48 hours after the injury unless there was a good reason for a delay or the injured person is a child.
- The victim must be willing to cooperate with the police and the prosecutor.
- A person cannot have committed or be an accomplice to the crime.
- Inmates are not eligible.
- A claim will be rejected if the victim caused the injury or was doing something illegal and dangerous at the time of injury.
How to get an application?
Applications are available from the commission’s office, county prosecuting attorneys, victim assistance agencies, state police posts and other agencies and care providers. Send the fully completed application to:
Crime Victim Services Commission
320 South Walnut
Lansing, Michigan 48913
When should you file a claim?
- Within one year of the date of the injury.
- Claims for child abuse should be filed within one year of the report to the police and before the child’s 19th birthday.
- When the cause of injury is first thought to be accidental or natural and then discovered to be criminal, the claim must be filed within one year of the discovery.
- A longer time to file a claim will be allowed after a written request shows good reason. Good reason could be that the victim was a child or injuries were more serious than first thought or if someone helping the victim didn’t follow through with the claim.
- You don’t have to wait until the investigation or trial is over.
- You don’t need a lawyer. If you use a lawyer, it is at your own expense.
What do you need to send in?
- A fully completed application.
- Itemized copies of all bills you want to claim. If you will need more medical treatment, see if your doctor can give a written estimate of future expenses.
- If you have insurance or Medicare, send copies of your insurance benefit statements for all expenses.
- For lost earnings, send copies of recent payroll check stubs and a written disability statement from your doctor.
- For burial assistance, send a copy of the signed itemized funeral bill.
- For counseling, ask your therapist for the assessment, a treatment plan, and an itemized billing or estimate.
- For loss of support, send check stubs or the last tax return of the person who died, the social security survivor’s benefit and life insurance statements.
- If you’re not sure what to send, just send in your completed application and we’ll let you know what is needed.
How the claim process works
- Your application is looked over for completeness. Be sure to complete all sections. An incomplete form will be returned to you with a list of the papers and other information needed.
- Your claim is assigned a claim number and we notify your prosecuting attorney that you filed a claim. We send for police reports and other papers we may need.
- All papers and records received in our office are reviewed by a claim specialist. How long it takes depends on how accurate and complete your application is, and how long it takes to get other information we need to investigate. You will receive a written decision with the record and findings of your claim. If you claim is approved, the decision will show itemized payments and payments will be made within a few days. If you owe money to your medical providers, we will pay the providers. If our claim is denied, the legal reasons for the denial will be explained to you.
What if your claim is denied?
You have 30 days to write to us to disagree. You may ask for a review of the file or a hearing before the commission in Lansing. The decision by the commission is final.
A person’s papers and testimony before the commission are private. We may tell only whether a person’s claim was approved or denied. Any other information will only be released by a court order.
Money to support this services is paid by criminal defendants convicted in Michigan’s courts. The state also receives money to help crime victims from criminal fines collected in federal courts.
Don't Give False Information
It’s a crime to give false information to try to get money from the state. Many safeguards are in place to protect crime victim funds. We will forcefully pursue the arrest and conviction of anyone trying to cheat crime victims from the money the State of Michigan provides for them.
Safe Response Effective December 29, 2008
Sexual Assault Forensic Exam
- If you are a sexual assault victim, you do not have to pay for your won forensic exam.
- You do not have to talk to the police for you to get a sexual assault medial forensic exam or have it paid.
- Hospitals, doctors or nurses will bill your insurance, unless you believe that billing your insurance would interfere with your personal privacy or safety.
Limits on Payments
The SAFE Response Program will pay up to $600.00 for a forensic exam. You will not be billed for additional costs related to the forensic exam.
What’s Not Covered by Safe Response
- If you have other injuries or want counseling, you may be eligible for help through the Crime Victim Services Commission compensation program.
- You will have to complete an application.
- Report the injury to the police and cooperate with the investigation.
- Your insurance would be billed.
- Payment of the victim’s sexual assault examination does not guarantee that they will be eligible for counseling or other medical services.
ARE PROTECTED BY THE CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN.
SEE YOUR PROSECUTING ATTORNEY FOR MORE INFORMATION.
CONTACT YOUR LOCAL VICTIMS ASSISTANCE COORDINATION
Crime Victim Services Commission
(PA 223 of 1976)
Capitol View Building
201 Townsend Street
P.O. Box 30195
Lansing, MI 48909
Victim Only Toll Free