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Alabama Crime Victim’s Law

The concept of crime victims` assistance programs in America began in mid 1970’s. It provides for fair treatment of crime victims by law institutions. Crime victims should cope with the realization that this new field in the justice system isimportant. However, theideaif assisting crime victims has lacked properattentiondue to the absence of professionalism or individuals withspecialtraining to deal with compensation of victims of crime (Hentig, 1948). Currently many institutions across America have adopted Victims` compensation programs in their systems. For instance, The Alabama Crimes Victims` ‘Law provides abasisof providing a timely andefficientcompensation to innocent victims of violent crime in a confidential manner. Eligible victims may be provided assistance to cater for qualified expenses. It takes agooddecision that innocent victims of crime have the right to be accorded fair treatment withcompassionand respect. The Alabama CrimesVictims` Law advocates for the rights of innocent victims in a number of ways.

 

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Innocent crime victims may be eligible forcompensationif a crimeis reportedto the law enforcement within 72 hours,and in situations, where there is agoodcausethat can be provided for not doing so.Compensation in forms of financial assistance may be given victims ofinnocentcrime if theclaimis filledwithin one year of the date of the incident, unless there are genuine reasons,which must bewritten down for not doing so.Victims, who suffer injuries or death due to the result of the criminalact,are alsoeligibleforcompensation. The Alabama Criminal Victims` Law assists victims of crime, who cooperate with the Law enforcement officials, the prosecutor's office, the Law enforcement courts, and the Alabama Crime Victims` Compensation Commission on criminal acts. If thevictimis foundinnocent by not provoking, inciting, orwillinglyparticipating in a criminal activity,hence,a victim of crime is eligible forcompensation. Furthermore, if a crimesuspectdid not contribute to victimization in any way, or in a situation, whereby the presence of the victim in United States of America wasunlawful. This also applies to claimants or crime victims, whoare certifiedby the federal authorities as victims involved in acts of human trafficking,are also consideredeligible forcompensation. Finally, innocent victims of domestic violence are alsoeligibleforcompensationas provided by the Alabama Victims` Crime Law. Emergency awardsare providedfor cases that are in direeconomicneedthat results from violent crime victimization.

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Compensation may be awarded for medical expenses, in addition,crime victims may be awarded 100%reimbursementfor medical expenses that he should pay fromhis ownpocket.Other expenses may include rehabilitation expenses that include vocational or physical therapy, in case theyare not coveredwith another source. Counseling expenses may also be covered including payments made to counselor, psychologist or may be paid in the form of fees counseling services thatare not relatedto victimization. It is necessary tohavethe phone numbers of officers handling victim’s cases, since it isessentialin handling of court costs. It Court clerks are responsible to maintain accurate records reflecting the amounts due the commission for deposit into the crimes victims’ compensation fund. Compensationis providedto the victims of crimeduetoworkloss. This covers the victim’s or claimants pay for a specifiedperiod of timeof absenteeism from work due to a criminal act. Victims of crime may alsoobtainfuneral expenses as compensation. Financial assistance includes expenses incurred at the funeral homes, cremation expenses,burialexpenses covering monuments (Alabama Crimes Victims Compensation Commission, 2011).

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The AlabamaCrime Victims` Law also providesforallocationofpropertyexpenses, which may be awarded for eligible property thatis confiscatedby law enforcers as evidence, or propert that is damaged during the time of victimization. It is important to have the name, and the phone number of the prosecuting attorney to provide details of items that may be compensated (Alabama Crimes Victims Compensation Commission, 2011).

Other expenses thatare compensatedinclude moving expenses, such as security deposits, utility deposits and other costs tomove. However,rentexpensesare not included, but may be considered in extreme conditions, in which thevictimmay be an imminent physical danger and when the crime act occurred at home. Compensations may also be provided on the basis of future economic loss. These arethe futureoradditionalexpenses orlossto a victim or those who depend on the victim.These conditionsmust be justified, and theircalculationmust be clarified.In addition, other expenses include replacement service loss, which covers the expenses aclaimantmay have not incurred, ifthevictimlived.Finally, the Alabama Crime Victims` Law providesfor guardianshipfee,which coversreimbursement, for legal charges to obtain guardianship of people with a disability or aminor, in case the guardianshipfeeis awarded.

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In conclusion, the compensationsare providedby following the procedural steps provided by the Alabama Crime Victims` Law, the availability of the victim’s compensation benefits. The Law provides a listing of a victim’s right that includes aformto ensure that avictimis accordedthe rights. It also provides for the existence and eligibility requirements ofrestitutionas well as compensation. If anindividualis facedwith threats or intimidation as a victim, the rights of a victiminclude all the criminalproceedingsand charges thatare filedagainst a defendant, with the exception of the first appearance and the right to beavailableduring court proceedings. These alsoincludevital information from relevant agencies, an explanation of the pre-sentence report, time and place, and information regardingreturnof property. A crime victim has the right to know the date of conviction, and anyvitalinformation regarding theresultof any post convictionappeal. In addition, a victim of crime has the right toknowanyvitalinformation regardingcollectionof restitution. A successful crime victim for compensation should be notified of anypardonor parole Board hearing and thevictim’s right to beavailableduring hearings.

 

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