Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Illinois Attorney General Proposes Legislation To Help DV Victims Establish Safe Living Enviroments

Marking the 25th Annual National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan recently announced she has proposed legislation to help victims of domestic violence secure permanent housing and establish a safe living environment away from their abusers by providing, when needed, for the payment of security deposits and first month’s rent as relocation expenses.

Madigan said Senate Bill 416 is a critical improvement to the Illinois Crime Victims’ Compensation Act, which her office administers and which helps victims of violent crime with grants for services ranging from funerals to counseling to relocation expenses.
Madigan said the Crime Victim Compensation Act does not specifically identify security deposits or first month’s rent as potentially reimbursable relocation expenses. As a result, the Court of Claims – which approves expenses – has repeatedly rejected the Office of the Attorney General’s recommendation for those expenses. However, under SB 416, those costs specifically would be identified as relocation expenses and therefore would be eligible for reimbursement.

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