Services for Domestic Violence Victims

EMERGENCY PROGRAMS:

 

 

  • Domestic Violence Hotlines provide emergency information and support for victims 24/7.
  • Domestic Violence Shelters offer emergency housing and support for victims 24/7.
COUNSELING SERVICES:

 

  • For Victims:  There are specialized domestic violence counseling programs throughout New Jersey. Should you seek counseling at a mental health center, ask if the counselor has special training or experience in working with those affected by domestic violence since not all therapists are familiar with the dynamics of relationship abuse.
  • For Children: Children may suffer from feelings of anger, fear, shame, and conflicted loyalties. The resources available to you may also have services for children or if not, may refer you to programs that provide counseling for your children.
  • For Abusers:  The most appropriate type of counseling for those who are abusive is a special group program known as Batterers Intervention Program. “Couples counseling” is not a recommended form of treatment. It is essential that that abuser first takes responsibility for the abuse and has learned that controlling behavior is a form of abuse before engaging in couples counseling.

 

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE:

The New Jersey Department of Human Services has established special regulations to make it easier for victims of domestic violence to get benefits. Be sure to tell the agency that you are a victim of domestic violence because special rules apply.

Emergency Assistance is a “fast track” for getting quick approval of the application for public assistance and receiving cash benefits. Approval should occur within 10 days of the application. You may qualify for assistance with housing, including temporary rental assistance, back rent, mortgage payments, hotel vouchers, or housing in a shelter. You may also qualify for essential food, clothing, household furnishings, utility payments, transportation to search for housing, and moving expenses. This Emergency Assistance will only last for one year, but you can sometimes apply for an extension.

To apply, contact the Board of Social Services through your County Welfare Agency. You can find the contact information for your County Welfare Agency on our Helpful Resources page.

VCCO may provide money to domestic violence victims for such needs as:

  • Moving expenses
  • Medical expenses
  • Counseling expenses
  • Lost wages of a certain amount per week for a period of time
  • Loss of financial support for up to a certain period of time
  • Attorney fees
  • Child care/day care

To qualify for this assistance, you will need to show that you have filed a criminal report on the abuse incident and you will be asked to fill out an application for VCCB’s review. Visit www.njvictims.org to apply online or call toll free 877-658-2221.

If you lost your job as a result of domestic violence, you may be eligible for unemployment benefits.
LEGAL ASSISTANCE:

 

There are many legal needs that a victim of domestic violence may have. When seeking legal assistance, it is important to ask if the lawyer has had experience and/or training regarding domestic abuse issues. There are a few legal services and nonprofit organizations that provide free representation and/or legal advice for individuals who are low income and qualify for these services. A victim may wish to seek help from a lawyer for the following:

    • Final Restraining Order Hearing
    • Custody and Child Support
    • Divorce and Spousal Support
    • Immigration: Victims of domestic violence who are undocumented are provided the same legal protections against abuse as those who are documented. However, it is crucial to consult with an immigration attorney if you have any immigration issues. You can find contact information for organizations that specialize in immigration law on our Helpful Resources page.

You can find contact information for organizations that offer free legal assistance to domestic violence victims/survivors on our Helpful Resources page.

 

ADDRESS CONFIDENTIALITY PROGRAM (ACP):

 

 

How can I keep my address confidential?
As part of the State of New Jersey Address Confidentiality Program, victims of domestic violence can apply to keep their addresses confidential from abusers.

The New Jersey Address Confidentiality Program provides these services for residents of New Jersey. An applicant must be a victim of domestic violence who has relocated to an address unknown to the batterer. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, an emancipated minor, a parent or guardian acting on behalf of a minor or a guardian acting on behalf of an anticipated person. Local victim assistance programs will work with victims of domestic violence to complete applications and forward them to the Address Confidentiality Office. The Address Confidentiality Program will review the application and issue an ACP authorization card.For more information about the program please contact the Address Confidentiality Program at 1-877-218-9133.

The New Jersey Address Confidentiality Program was established by the Address Confidentiality Act which became effective in January 1998. The goal of the Address Confidentiality Program is to assist victims of domestic violence who have relocated in their effort to keep batterers from finding them. The Address Confidentiality Program offers two service components, a substitute address service, and a protected record service. These services will severely limit a batterer’s ability to access information which could identify the new location of a victim of domestic violence.

Each Address Confidentiality Program participant is assigned a substitute address. The Address Confidentiality Program substitute address has no relation to the participant’s actual location. Clients who use the substitute address will have first class mail forwarded to their actual location. Program participants may use their substitute address when creating records with state and local government agencies. All program participants have issued an ACP authorization card which must be presented to an agency when requesting the use of a substitute address. State and local government agencies must accept the Address Confidentiality Program substitute address. In some cases, an agency may be granted a substitute address use exemption. In order to be considered for an exemption, an agency must identify a statute or administrative rule which demonstrates the agency’s bona fide requirement and authority for the use of the actual address of an individual. In addition, the agency must provide an explanation of how the acceptance of a substitute address will prevent the agency from meeting its obligations under statute or administrative rule.

The Address Confidentiality Program Protected Records program provides confidentiality for state and local government records. Address Confidentiality Program participants must specifically request ACP Protected Records services. ACP program participants who request this service will receive security records handling from state and local government agencies.
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