What do the changes to the Victims Rights and Support Act mean for you?

Submissions

Under the new Support Act, Applicants are now permitted to file submissions.

 

Further, if you have any material evidence relevant to your claim, you have to file it with the Victims Services Registry. Here are several examples of acceptable material evidence:

  • Evidence regarding any facts about the event or the circumstances under which it unfolded;
  • The applicant’s medical history
  • Medical documents describing the injuries sustained and;
  • Relevant documents describing the applicant’s claim to expenditures

 

 

Support

The new Scheme also provides additional Support, such as:

1) Professional counseling services;

2) Victims may receive financial assistance of up to $5,000.00 for urgent medical needs. This amount will be used to pay for the medical treatment of urgent medical interventions, to restore the victim’s health and wellbeing.

3) Victims may also receive financial assistance of up to $30,000.00 to cover economic losses. This amount will be used by the victim to pay for the economic losses that come as a direct consequence of the act of violence. This financial compensation will be offered provided under the following circumstances:

 a) Victims who have actual evidence of economic losses are eligible to receive up to $20,000;

b) Victims who do not have actual evidence of economic losses are eligible to receive up to $5,000.00 that they can use for out-of-pocket costs;

c) Victims can also receive financial assistance for medical and/or dental services excluding the urgent medical care described above;

d) Victims can receive up to $5,000.00 to cover for legal protocol required to declare the act of violence. This includes giving statements, drafting the impact statement and other such legal expenses.

e) Victims can receive up to $1,500.00 to cover for the damage and/or loss of clothing or personal items they were in possession of when the act of violence took place.

4. Should the act of violence cause grievous bodily harm, the victim is eligible to receive Category C financial assistance.

 

What differs most between the old and new legislation regarding financial assistance is the fact that, in the old Act, victims could receive a fixed sum of money, depending on the type of injury sustained. However, according to the new Act, victims receive a discrete a capped amount, which cannot exceed the numbers established in the Victims Rights and Support Act 2013.

 

Due to the fact that this legislation is subject to change, it is highly advisable that you seek professional legal support to stay up to date with the latest news and receive accurate advice. For any concern or question regarding this topic, please contact Nas Hanafi from Lion Legal at (02) 9251 2722.