Victims of crime


Irish law defines a victim of crime as anyone who has suffered physical, mental or emotional harm or economic loss which was directly caused by a criminal offence. Family members are also victims if the death of their loved one was directly caused by a criminal offence.

If you are a victim of crime, you may come into contact with government agencies such as the Gardai Síochana, the courts, the Prison Service, the Probation Service, the coroner and the State Prosecution Service.

Our document on your rights as a victim of crime sets out how each of these government agencies must provide a service to support and protect you as a victim of crime. You can also learn more about your rights and entitlements as a victim of crime on the Victims Charter website.

You also have a right to access other supports for victims of crime, free of charge.

As a victim of crime, you may be entitled to compensation for what has happened to you. In general, compensation for victims of crime can be awarded by the courts or under the Scheme of Compensation for Personal Injuries Criminally Inflicted. There is also a separate compensation scheme for prison officers who are injured or die due to a violent crime. If you are injured as a result of a crime while visiting another EU member state, you may be entitled for compensation in the state where the incident took place.

Read more in our document on compensation for victims of crime.

There are several pieces of legislation which together make up the law around victims of crime. Your rights as a victim of crime are most clearly set out in the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Act 2017.

Page edited: 5 February 2021