State compensation to victims of violent crime
If you have been attacked, knocked down or raped, or have been the victim of some other criminal act involving violence or coercion, you may have a right to compensation from the state. In the case of a victim who dies, the surviving relatives may be eligible for compensation.
It must clearly be demonstrated that a violent criminal act has occurred.
The criminal act must have taken place within Norway, aboard a Norwegian vessel, offshore platform or aircraft. In special cases, compensation may be granted for personal injury sustained in a foreign country if the applicant for compensation was resident in Norway at the time of the incident.
The criminal act must have taken place after 1 January 1975.
Compensation may be granted even if the perpetrator cannot be held responsible for his or her actions under the terms of Penal Code section 44, or if the perpetrator was under 15 years of age, or if the limits of self-defence were exceeded but not in a way that is punishable pursuant to Penal Code section 48, subsection 4.
What does the compensation cover?
You have a right to compensation for economic losses you have suffered or will suffer as a result of the personal injury. More specifically:
- income you lose or will lose
- expenses stemming from the injury
- travel expenses
- damage to clothing or personal articles on your person at the time of the incident
In addition, you may be eligible to receive special compensation or redress for long-lasting medical injuries and certain non-economic damages.
Compensation is not available for items or cash that are stolen.
Compensation is not available for losses smaller than NOK 1000. Starting on 1 July 2001, compensation was limited to a maximum of 20 times the basic national insurance benefit.
If you were injured in a criminal act before 1 July 2001, the maximum compensation is NOK 200,000. For injuries sustained before 1 January 1994, the maximum amount is NOK 150,000.
When the appropriate level of compensation is determined, monies that you receive in compensation from other parties are subtracted. These may include national insurance benefits, pension benefits, private insurance benefits or compensation received from the person who injured you. If you bear some responsibility for your own injury, you may be denied compensation or the amount may be reduced.
What must you do to receive compensation?
You must report the matter to the police as soon as possible. When you report the case, you must demand that the guilty party be punished and pay compensation to you.
In certain cases, there may be understandable reasons for not reporting the case immediately. You may be eligible for compensation anyway. You must explain your delay in reporting the case.
Your application for compensation is to be written on a special form. The form is available from the police, from counselling offices for victims of crime, from the Norwegian Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (Kontoret for voldsoffererstatning), from social services offices and from offices of the national social insurance system. Personnel there will provide you with help in filling out the form. The form can also be downloaded from www.voldsoffererstatning.no.
Decisions by the Norwegian Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority may be appealed to the Compensation Board for Victims of Violent Crime (Erstatningsnemnda for voldsofre).
Need legal help?
If you think you require legal assistance, the expense in many cases may be covered by public authorities. Additional information can be provided by the lawyer you choose or by the county governor (fylkesmannen) in your county.
Who evaluates the application?
The application for compensation should be sent to:
Kontoret for voldsoffererstatning
(The Norwegian Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority)
Telephone: +47 78 98 95 00
Telefax: +47 78 98 95 10