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Victim Compensation Policy and White-Collar Crime Public Preferences in a National Willingness-to-Pay Survey

NCJ Number
Criminology & Public Policy Volume: 17 Issue: 3 Dated: 2018 Pages: 553-594
Date Published
42 pages
This study used survey data from a nationally representative sample to explore public support for taxpayer funded victim compensation programs for financial fraud, consumer fraud, identity theft, and burglary.

The study used contingent valuation (willingness to pay) methodology to infer preferences for compensation programs and explore predictors of those preferences. Overall, the findings indicate that the public strongly supports the implementation of victim compensation programs. The results also indicate, however, that this support may be driven in part by perceptions of benefiting from this program directly in the future. Additionally, a small but notable minority of respondents exhibit preferences for programs without compensation. These findings suggest that the general public is supportive of restitutive compensation programs, not only as paid for by offenders, but also as paid for by the government. The authors suggest that policy makers may seek to extend victim compensation funds to white collar crimes, which may otherwise be more financially damaging than traditional crimes. (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2018