Being the victim of a crime is troubling enough. When you are injured as a result of a crime, getting over the trauma you have suffered is even more of a challenge. Like any injury caused by the willful wrongdoing of another party, you should never have to pay the expenses that accrue due to someone else’s actions. In Florida, there are several means of getting compensation for injuries sustained during the commission of a crime against you.
When the perpetrator of a crime is sentenced, the judge can order the individual to pay restitution as part of his or her sentence. Restitution may include the costs of medical/dental bills, physical rehabilitation, psychological counseling, and lost wages (both current and future) that stem from your injury.
Though the criminal court can award an injured victim the actual costs of the injury he or she sustained, a criminal court judge does not have the authority to order restitution for immeasurable losses, such as lost potential or pain and suffering. Filing a civil lawsuit helps fill in the gaps in financial (and lifestyle) losses that restitution fails to pay.
Florida State Victim Compensation
When the perpetrator of a crime is ordered to pay restitution, this fee becomes the priority. By law, the offender must pay his or her victim before paying any other fines or fees. It is possible, however, an offender will not have the means to pay restitution or will not pay quickly enough. Florida has a Crimes Compensation Fund that reimburses crime victims for expenses they accrue due to a crime. Reimbursable expenses include funeral costs, medical expenses, counseling, and lost wages. To be eligible, the crime must be reported within 72 hours and claims must be filed within a year. The amount of compensation is also limited by the nature of the crime.
Florida Crime Victim Compensation Attorney
When you have been the victim of a crime in Florida, you are not relegated to one means of getting compensation. Your best chance of getting the money you need as quickly as possible is to file for all means of compensation at once. Gregory McFarlane helps clients who were injured during the commission of a criminal act get the compensation they need for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Based in Pembroke Pines, he also serves Davie, Sunrise, Fort Lauderdale, Miami Lakes, Miami Gardens, Orlando, Winter Park, and Tallahassee.