As a retail business owner, it is understandable you have a concern about your store becoming a victim of crime. The owner of a St Kilda jewellery store faced two armed offenders in November 2015 who took off with a significant value amount of jewellery. If this type of stressful situation happened to you, how would you feel about going back to work again afterwards? The good news is there is State-funded assistance in Victoria that is available to help you get back to work, you just need to know how to find it.
Who Qualifies For State Funded Criminal Compensation?
In Victoria, you can file a claim for financial assistance if you were the victim of a crime or if you are related to the victim of the crime. The types of crime victims who are eligible for criminal compensation include those who have experienced armed robbery, violent robbery, and harmful threats.
Before you can apply for financial assistance, you must meet three main criteria:
- The crime must have happened in the state of Victoria.
- The crime must have occurred within the last two years.
- The crime must have been reported to the police.
If you meet these criteria, then you can lodge a compensation claim for financial assistance.
What Is The Financial Assistance Used For?
You can file a claim for financial assistance to cover a number of expenses you may face after being the victim of an armed robbery. For example, if you were the primary victim of the robbery, you can receive up to $60,000 to cover your medical and counselling expenses. Being targeted during an armed robbery can be an emotionally disturbing event, and you will be encouraged to receive counselling before you return to work.
If you need to close your business for a few days after the robbery to repair any damage, or for crime scene investigation to be completed, you may be able to claim up to $20,000 towards loss of income.
Not every business owner has insurance to cover the emotional and physical toll that an armed robbery can take on them, so the criminal compensation fund covers your expenses when insurance does not.
You can make an online application for financial assistance directly with the Victims of Criminal Assistance Tribunal. However, you will find it less stressful to have a lawyer help you with this. By having a lawyer fill out the forms and act on your behalf, you can take a step back from the trauma experienced.