Published: 24 November 2016
Author: Nicole Elliott
VOCAT available to crime victims
Have you been a victim of crime?
If your answer is 'yes', you may be entitled to assistance through VOCAT – the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal.
The Victorian Government scheme provides assistance to eligible victims of an act of violence – whether that be family violence, assaults or sexual abuse.
However, it is important to note VOCAT is not designed to be a compensation scheme. Instead, it is designed to give assistance to help you get back on your feet.
VOCAT can provide money towards expenses such as counseling, medical and dental, safety-related expenses and funeral costs. Assistance may also be provided in relation to loss of earnings and relocation expenses.
Victims have two years after an act of violence to lodge a claim with VOCAT.
Most applications are finalised based on the material provided to the Tribunal but an applicant may request that the Tribunal list their matter for hearing which may require a court attendance.
VOCAT can also provide assistance to both primary and secondary victims of a crime. A secondary victim of a crime may be a person who is injured as a direct result of witnessing an act of violence. The Tribunal may also award assistance to related victims of a person who dies as a result of a crime.