Knowledge Base

Victims of Crime Act (VOCA)

Each year, states and territories receive Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funds to support community-based organizations that serve crime victims. VOCA funds are distributed by the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) at the U.S. Department of Justice and come out of the Crime Victims Fund (CVF), which was established by the Victims of Crime Act of 1984. The CVF is financed by criminal fines, forfeitures, and penalties paid by federal offenders, not from taxpayer dollars. As of 2018, the Crime Victims Fund balance was over $12 billion. Since VOCA is not based on taxpayer dollars, the VOCA legislation does not need to be reauthorized regularly, the way that both FVPSA and VAWA have to be reauthorized periodically. VOCA provides two types of services to victims of crime including victim compensation and it provides funds to various service programs. For more information, read Esperanza United’s Policy Boletín, “Accessing Federal Resources to Enhance Services for Survivors from Culturally Specific Communities”, which reviews VOCA, VAWA and FVPSA and how culturally specific programs can access federal resources to enhance services for survivors.