One of most unsettling, traumatic events that can occur in the course of a lifetime is to experience some sort of violent crime in your home. In some cases, a violent crime committed in your residence can result in the necessity for you to obtain professional crime scene cleanup services. Crimes that can necessitate professional biohazard remediation which includes assaults of different types and homicides. (The Board may also assist with crime scene cleanup involving your automobile.)
Depending on the nature of the crime and the extent of blood and other biological materials at the scene, the costs of obtaining professional biohazard cleanup assistance can mount up. You may wonder what financial assistance is available to assist with the costs of a residential crime scene cleanup in California.
California Victim Compensation Board
The California Victim Compensation Board exists to aid Californians with losses they sustain as victims of crime. This includes assisting with the costs associated with professional crime scene cleanup services. The Board will provide you up to $1,000 to assist with the costs associated with engaging a professional crime scene cleanup service.
The Board presents a comprehensive 15-minute video that provides an overview of its services and available types of assistance to victims of crime. This is a useful resource when ascertaining the spectrum of services available to you from the California Victim Compensation Board.
How to Apply for Compensation
You can apply for financial assistance for crime scene cleanup in a number of ways:
Call the California Victim Compensation Board at (800) 777-9229
Download an application
Email the Board at [email protected]
Apply at the local Victim Witness Center
The Victim Witness Center serving Los Angeles County is located at:
3204 Rosemead Boulevard
El Monte, California 91731
Appointments are recommended.
Supporting Documentation for Application
When submitting an application for assistance, you need to attach supporting documentation. Examples of supporting documentation include:
- Crime reports
- Other documentation in support of your application
Time Period for Filing Application for Compensation
The Board established certain timeframes within which an application for financial assistance needs to be submitted. This includes an application for assistance in paying for professional crime scene cleanup. The deadlines for applying are:
- 3-year filing period after the date of a crime, where the applicant is an adult.
- Age 19 if a crime occurred where the applicant was a child and more than three years past since the crime.
- No set limit to report the crime to law enforcement but must be in a reasonable time to ensure that the investigation is not hampered.
The Board can make exceptions to these filing periods when good cause is demonstrated by an applicant.
Other Types of Compensable Losses
In addition to obtaining compensation to assist with the costs associated with crime scene cleanup, you may also qualify for other types of assistance. These include:
- Medical expenses
- Dental expenses
- Mental health counseling
- Lost wages
- Funeral expenses
- Moving expenses
- Home security
- Rehabilitation (job retraining, vehicle modification for disability)
- Attorney fees
Due to the nature of crime scene cleanup, you may be able to obtain an emergency payment. This is a payment of eligible expenses if there truly is an immediate need and a substantial hardship would occur in the absence of a more immediate payment.
Coordination of Benefits
Depending on your specific situation, and the nature and extent of your losses (including crime scene cleanup), you may qualify for financial assistance from other sources. These other sources may include:
- Homeowners insurance (for crime scene cleanup)
- Workers compensation insurance
If appropriate, you will want to pursue claims with these entities as well. You provide information about these other potential resources for financial assistance or compensation to the Board. The Board’s staff will correspond with these other entities to verify benefits and too coordinate payments of bills, including expenses associated with crime scene cleanup.
Appeal of Initial Decision
If an applicant initially is denied compensation from the Board, an appeal can be pursued. Appeals are handled by hearing officers, at a location convenient to the applicant or by phone. An applicant has the opportunity to support additional information to support an application for compensation. If an appeal results in a denial, an applicant can request that the Board members themselves reconsider that decision.
Contact Information for the California Victim Compensation Board
California Victim Compensation Board
P.O. Box 3036
Sacramento, California 95812
Fax: (916) 491-6400