Victims of Crime

Apply for Victims of Crime Compensation with Expert VOCAT Lawyers in Melbourne

How to apply for VOCAT?

At MS and Co Lawyers, we have efficient criminal compensation lawyers who help clients on a day-today basis with their application to VOCAT.

We note if the client has a lawyer, the tribunal will pay for the lawyer’s fees, even if the tribunal refuses the application. However, this is usually done at the tribunal’s discretion.

What assistance is available at VOCAT?

Apart from the financial support, the tribunal also helps with a range of expenses including counselling, medical, safety-related, and funeral expenses. Survivors may also get assistance for lost earnings and other reasonable expenses which assist their speedy recovery.

Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal (VOCAT) was established by the legislation in Melbourne to acknowledge and provide monetary assistance to the victims of crime in Victoria. It was established by the Victims of Crime Assistance Act of 1996.

What is VOCAT?

VOCAT aspires to be a commiserate and compassionate forum for applicants to relate their experience as victims of crime. The applications for financial aid are carefully assessed by Tribunal members, who are also Magistrates or Judicial Registrars of the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria. The Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal consists of a Chief Magistrate of the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria and other personnel. The latter hold the magistrate’s office under section 7 of the Magistrates’ Court Act 1989 or acting magistrate under section 9 of that Act.

Who can apply for VOCAT?

To apply for monetary assistance by VOCAT, one must be a victim of a violent crime that occurred in Victoria and caused severe injury or loss. The injury could be due to a number of reasons such as family violence, violent Acts, robbery, physical bodily harm or mental impairment or emotional disorder. Typically, the crime must be reported to police.

The amount of assistance a client is eligible for is based on the following:

Compensation through the courts

As a victim of a crime, one can receive a court order for compensation if the offender is proven guilty of the offence. However, the survivor must ensure that the applications must be filed within 12 months of the court’s decision. It is therefore important to discuss the details of the claim with a lawyer as early as possible. The judge can release an order for compensation. This implies that the offender is responsible for paying the compensation. The court will take into account the offender’s financial circumstances. However, if an offender has no assets, it may be challenging to get any payment.