Victim Rights Movement of the 1970s and 1980s resulted in the creation of
many programs dedicated to assist victims of crimes. The local, state and
federal governments passed laws establishing certain rights for victims.
These rights may vary from state to state depending on the legislation adapted
by each state and the available resources within.
The local and state authorities investigate criminal acts which are violations of the state criminal laws. The FBI investigates criminal acts that involve violations of the United States Federal Criminal Code. Victims of federal crimes are entitled to certain rights and services according to federally mandated law.
The mission of the Office for Victim Assistance (OVA) is to ensure that victims of crimes investigated by the FBI are afforded the opportunity to receive the services and notification as required by federal law and the Attorney General Guidelines on Victim and Witness Assistance (2000). The FBI recognizes not only the necessity of providing for the legal rights of victims but the benefits that effective and timely victim assistance brings to investigations.