New Jersey's 16th Legislative District

Senator Kip Bateman

Senator Kip Bateman

Bateman Bill Expanding Eligibility for Benefits Under “Crime Victim’s Bill of Rights” Passes Senate

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The Senate passed bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman to include the domestic or civil union partner of a homicide victim among those eligible to receive compensation, as well as certain protections and rights from the criminal justice system.

Sen. Kip Bateman’s legislation expands eligibility for loved ones of crime victims to receive benefits and rights from the criminal justice system. (©iStock)

The legislation, S-180, revises the definition of “victim” under the “Crime Victim’s Bill of Rights” to be more consistent with the definition of “victim” in the New Jersey Constitution. Under the legislation, “victim” will now include the spouse, parent, legal guardian, grandparent, child or sibling of the decedent in the case of a criminal homicide or act of juvenile delinquency that would constitute criminal homicide if committed by an adult.

In addition, the bill includes in the definition of “victim” a domestic partner or civil union partner.

“The benefits and protections afforded to crime victims and their loved ones is a way to begin the healing process and to make what can be a difficult criminal just process as smooth as possible,” said Bateman (R-Somerset, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Mercer). “Extending these benefits to a surviving domestic or civil union partner addresses a major oversight in the state’s law. These loved ones will now be treated with the same respect and dignity as other family members.”

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