Victims' rights - by country

Sweden

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Sweden

What is the process for claiming damages from the offender? (e.g. court case, civil claim, adhesion procedure)

You can claim damages for more or less any injury suffered in connection with the crime. Claims for damages are usually heard at the same time as the court decides whether the accused is guilty of the crime.

The victim or injured party has to claim damages from the person who committed the crime or caused the injury. To facilitate this, the prosecutor (åklagare) will prepare and present your claim for damages during the trial, if you have requested this. The only exceptions are claims for damages that require extensive investigation or claims that may be considered obviously unjustified, i.e. either unconnected with the crime or much larger than normal in similar situations.

If you seek compensation for injuries suffered as a result of a crime, you should say so when you are questioned by the police. You should also say whether you want the prosecutor to help you with the claim.

The court ordered the offender to pay me damages/compensation. How do I make sure the offender pays?

The fact that the court has ordered the accused to pay damages does not mean that you will automatically receive the money. The offender will often be unable to pay or will not do so voluntarily. The Enforcement Authority (Kronofogden) will help you to get the damages paid.

The court will send a copy of the judgment to the Enforcement Authority, which will then contact you by letter to ask whether you want help in obtaining the damages. If you want this, you have to fill in the form sent to you and return it to the Enforcement Authority, which will then examine the offender’s financial situation. If it turns out that he or she is able to pay, the Enforcement Authority will ensure that you receive damages.

Help from the Enforcement Authority is free of charge except in very specific cases. If you are not contacted by the Enforcement Authority, you should contact them yourself.

If the offender does not pay, can the state pay me an advance?  Under what conditions?

No, this is not possible.

Am I entitled to compensation from the state?

If a convicted offender cannot pay damages and there is no insurance to cover the whole claim, you may be entitled to compensation from the State. This is called is called crime victim compensation (brottsskadeersättning) and is handled by the Crime Victim Compensation and Support Authority (Brottsoffermyndigheten).

To enable crime victim compensation to be paid when the perpetrator is unknown, there must be enquiries, such as a preliminary investigation, to show that you have been the victim of a crime rather than have suffered an accident. The crime must always be reported to the police. If the suspect has been identified, there must normally be a conviction or a sentence passed.

Crime victim compensation covers crimes committed in Sweden, and you may be entitled to compensation whether you live in Sweden or are in Sweden on a temporary basis, e.g. as a tourist or student. If you are actually resident in Sweden, you may be entitled to compensation even when the crime took place abroad.

Like the excess on an insurance policy, a similar amount will be deducted from the crime victim compensation.

Am I entitled to compensation if the offender is not convicted?

To enable crime victim compensation to be paid when the perpetrator is unknown, there must be enquiries, such as a preliminary investigation, to show that you have been the victim of a crime rather than have suffered an accident. The crime must always be reported to the police. If the suspect has been identified, there must normally be a conviction or a sentence passed.

Am I entitled to an emergency payment while I wait for the decision on my compensation claim?

No, that is not possible.

Last update: 16/07/2018

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