For Advocates

Almost all cities and counties in the Commonwealth are served by Victim/Witness Assistance Programs. These programs generally assist victims of crimes occurring within their service areas.

Victim/Witness programs are established and operated by local governments, and they are usually associated with either the local Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office or the local police department or sheriff’s office. The primary functions of VWAP are to explain the criminal justice process to victims and witnesses of crime, to help victims and witnesses understand their rights, and to assist victims and witnesses with matters concerning the arrest, trial, and incarceration of criminals.

Victim/Witness programs and law-enforcement officers are required by law to inform victims of financial assistance that may be available to them as victims of crime, including information about their possible right to file a claim for compensation from the Virginia Victims Fund. § 19.2-11.01(A)(2)(a) Victim/Witness professionals often assist victims with filing and perfecting their VVF claims, and they usually have VVF claim forms on hand.

In localities without a VW program, or in areas in which the VW program does not work with criminal injuries claims, claimants can often contact the local Commonwealth's Attorney or law-enforcement agency for information and claim forms for VVF. Click here for help locating or contacting local resources.

Click here for specific information regarding claims processing, eligibility, and covered expenses.

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