The National Fund of the Republic of Austria for Victims of National Socialism was called into being with the Federal Law BGBl ("Federal Law Gazette") no. 432/1995 in 1995. Its task was to make so called gesture payments, as quickly and unbureaucratically as possible, to persons who had been victims of National Socialism in Austria between 1938 and 1945. Over the years, the National Fund evolved into a central point of contact for survivors of National Socialist injustice and as such was entrusted with further responsibilities. In 2001, the General Settlement Fund for Victims of National Socialism was established on the basis of the Washington Agreement in order to enable a comprehensive resolution to open questions of compensation for victims of National Socialism on the territory of the present day Republic of Austria. Both institutions pursue a common goal: The recognition of Austria's special responsibility towards the victims of the National Socialist regime.
The common organs of the National Fund and the General Settlement Fund are comprised of the Board of Trustees and the Secretary General. The Committee decides on applications to the National Fund, and applications to the General Settlement Fund are decided on by the independent Claims Committee. The Board of Trustees is comprised of the three Presidents of the National Council, the Federal Chancellor, the Vice-Chancellor, the Federal Minister for European and International Affairs, the Federal Minister for Social Affairs and Consumer Protection, the Federal Minister for Finance and the Federal Minister for Education, Arts and Culture. Twelve additional members, who are selected from the Main Committee of the National Council, complete the Board of Trustees. On the cut off day of this review, 31st December 2007, National Council President Mag.a Barbara Prammer held the chairmanship of both the Board of Trustees and the National Fund Committee; she has taken responsibility for both functions since October 2006.