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Last update: 15-10-2007
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Compensation to crime victims - Lithuania

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. Obtaining compensation in the form of damages from the offender 1.
1.1. Under which conditions can I make a claim for damages in a trial (criminal proceedings) against an offender? 1.1.
1.2. At which point in the proceedings should I present a claim? 1.2.
1.3. How should I put forward the claim, and to whom? 1.3.
1.4. How should I present the amount of my claim (indicate a total amount and/or specify the individual losses)? 1.4.
1.5. Can I get legal aid before and/or during the proceedings? 1.5.
1.6. What evidence will I be required to present in support of my claim? 1.6.
1.7. If I am awarded damages by the court, is there any special assistance available to me as a crime victim for the enforcement of the judgment against the offender? 1.7.
2. Obtaining compensation from the state or a public body. 2.
2.1. Is it possible to obtain compensation from the State or a public body? 2.1.
2.2. Is this possibility limited to victims that have suffered certain types of crime? 2.2.
2.3. Is this possibility limited to victims that have sustained certain types of injury? 2.3.
2.4. Can relatives or dependants of victims that have died as a result of a crime obtain compensation? 2.4.
2.5. Is the possibility of obtaining compensation limited to persons of a certain nationality or persons residing in a certain country? 2.5.
2.6. Can I apply for compensation in Lithuania if the crime was committed in another country? If so, under what conditions? 2.6.
2.7. Is it necessary to report the crime to the police? 2.7.
2.8. Is it necessary to await the outcome of any police investigations or criminal proceedings before I can apply? 2.8.
2.9. If the offender has been identified, is it necessary to first try to get compensation from the offender? 2.9.
2.10. If the offender has not been identified or convicted, is it still possible to qualify for compensation? If so, what evidence do I need to supply in support of my application? 2.10.
2.11. Is there a time limit for making an application for compensation? 2.11.
2.12. For which losses can I be compensated? 2.12.
2.13. How will the compensation be calculated? 2.13.
2.14. Is there a minimum and/or maximum amount that can be awarded? 2.14.
2.15. Will compensation that I have received, or may receive, for the same losses but from other sources (such as insurance) be deducted from compensation paid by the State? 2.15.
2.16. Are there any other criteria that can influence my chance of receiving compensation, or how the amount of compensation is calculated, such as my own behaviour in relation to the event that caused the injury? 2.16.
2.17. Can I get an advance on the compensation? If yes, under what conditions? 2.17.
2.18. Where can I get the necessary forms and further information on how to apply? Is there a special help line or website that I can use? 2.18.
2.19. Can I get legal aid for making the application? 2.19.
2.20. Where do I send the application? 2.20.
2.21. Are there any victim support organisations that can give further assistance? 2.21.

 

1. Obtaining compensation in the form of damages from the offender

1.1. Under which conditions can I make a claim for damages in a trial (criminal proceedings) against an offender?

A person who has suffered material loss or moral injury as a result of a criminal act is entitled to submit a civil claim during criminal proceedings against the suspect, the accused or persons who hold financial responsibility for the actions of the suspect or the accused. Such claims are examined by the court together with the criminal case.

A person who has suffered material loss or moral injury as a result of a criminal act but who does not submit a civil claim during criminal proceedings is entitled to submit a claim under civil procedures.

1.2. At which point in the proceedings should I present a claim?

A civil claim may be submitted during the pre-trial investigation or while the court is hearing the case, but only until the examination of evidence begins.

1.3. How should I put forward the claim, and to whom?

Civil claims should be submitted by means of an application to the prosecutor general, or where the case is being heard in court, to the court itself.

1.4. How should I present the amount of my claim (indicate a total amount and/or specify the individual losses)?

Claims for compensation of damages should be as comprehensive as possible, setting out specific losses (loss of or damage to assets, medical and other expenses incurred, any income which the person concerned would have earned if he or she had not suffered as a result of the criminal act) and the concrete amount of moral damages being claimed, expressed in monetary terms (for personal physical pain, emotional suffering, discomfort, emotional shock, depression, degradation, damage to reputation, reduction in capacity to be socially active).

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1.5. Can I get legal aid before and/or during the proceedings?

In compensation cases arising from criminal acts, including cases where the issue of compensation for damages is arbitrated as part of a criminal case, the injured parties are entitled to receive legal aid regardless of their assets or income (financial situation). In other cases legal aid may be granted if the assets and income of the person who has suffered as a result of the criminal act do not exceed an established amount.

1.6. What evidence will I be required to present in support of my claim?

Written evidence supporting the amount of damages claimed must be provided (documents from a medical institution stating damage to health, bills and receipts showing expenditure, documents attesting to the level of disability or incapacity for work, employer's certificate stating the level of income etc.). The court may commission a forensic analysis to establish the extent of damage to health.

1.7. If I am awarded damages by the court, is there any special assistance available to me as a crime victim for the enforcement of the judgment against the offender?

A court judgment on compensation for damages which has entered into force can be enforced by a bailiff.

2. Obtaining compensation from the state or a public body.

2.1. Is it possible to obtain compensation from the State or a public body?

Yes. Damage incurred as a result of a violent crime may be compensated from State funds.

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2.2. Is this possibility limited to victims that have suffered certain types of crime?

Yes. Only damage suffered as a result of a violent crime may be compensated. Violent crime is considered any act laid down in the Criminal Code as a result of which a person was intentionally killed, serious or moderate damage was inflicted on a person's health, or a person's right to sexual self-determination or inviolability was infringed.

2.3. Is this possibility limited to victims that have sustained certain types of injury?

Compensation for damages may be granted where a person was intentionally killed or serious or moderate damage was inflicted on their health. Compensation for damages is not payable where minor damage was inflicted on a person's health. Where the person's right to sexual self-determination or inviolability was infringed, compensation may be granted regardless of the degree of damage to health.

2.4. Can relatives or dependants of victims that have died as a result of a crime obtain compensation?

Yes. Spouses and dependants of victims who died as a result of a violent crime are entitled to compensation for damages.

Dependents are considered minor children of victims, invalid parents, and other incapacitated dependents who were supported by the victim or were entitled to received support at the time of the victim's death, and children of victims born after their death.

2.5. Is the possibility of obtaining compensation limited to persons of a certain nationality or persons residing in a certain country?

Where a violent crime was committed in Lithuania, citizens of the Republic of Lithuania or of other EU Member States, permanent legal residents of Lithuania or other EU Member States, and persons from non-EU countries with which Lithuania has concluded international agreements are entitled to receive compensation for damages.

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2.6. Can I apply for compensation in Lithuania if the crime was committed in another country? If so, under what conditions?

No. However, damages may be compensated where a violent crime was committed on board a boat or aircraft bearing a Lithuanian flag or official emblem.

2.7. Is it necessary to report the crime to the police?

Yes, except in cases where criminal proceedings can be launched without a claim by the victim or a statement by their representative and the police or other pre-trial investigation authority has received information relating to the crime and has initiated a pre-trial investigation.

2.8. Is it necessary to await the outcome of any police investigations or criminal proceedings before I can apply?

Yes, except in the case of an advance for material losses where the victim died or suffered serious damage to health as a result of the crime.

2.9. If the offender has been identified, is it necessary to first try to get compensation from the offender?

Yes, except in the case of an advance for material losses where the victim died or suffered serious damage to health as a result of the crime.

2.10. If the offender has not been identified or convicted, is it still possible to qualify for compensation? If so, what evidence do I need to supply in support of my application?

If criminal proceedings have begun relating to a violent crime as a result of which a person died or suffered serious damage to health (where the perpetrator has not been identified and the pre-trial investigation has not been suspended), compensation for damages resulting from the violent crime may be awarded (as an advance). An application must specify the institution carrying out the pre-trial investigation or the court hearing the criminal case. An application must also include documents attesting to the amount of material damages.

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2.11. Is there a time limit for making an application for compensation?

Claims for compensation of damages resulting from a violent crime must be submitted within three years of the crime being committed, except where this term has been exceeded due to special circumstances.

2.12. For which losses can I be compensated?

Compensation may be awarded for material losses – loss of or damage to assets, medical and other expenses incurred, loss of income which the person concerned would have earned if he or she had not suffered as a result of the criminal act – as well as for moral damages – pain, emotional suffering, discomfort, emotional shock, depression, degradation, damage to reputation, reduction in capacity to be socially active.

2.13. How will the compensation be calculated?

Compensation is paid for damages awarded by the court which are still outstanding, not exceeding the established maximum amount. Following a decision to award an advance compensation payment (where criminal proceedings have not yet been completed), the amount of compensation payable for material losses is calculated on the basis of the documents submitted in support of the amount of damages being claimed (bills and receipts showing expenditure).

2.14. Is there a minimum and/or maximum amount that can be awarded?

There is neither a minimum nor a maximum amount of compensation for damages a court may award to be paid by the perpetrator of a crime.

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The maximum amounts of compensation for damages payable by the State are laid down as follows:

Compensation for material losses not exceeding:

  1. LTL 9 750 where a person has died as a result of a violent crime;
  2. LTL 6 500 where serious damage was inflicted on a person's health, or a person's right of sexual self-determination or inviolability was infringed;
  3. LTL 3 250 where moderate damage was inflicted on a person's health.

Compensation awarded by the court for moral injury not exceeding:

  1. LTL 3 900 where a person has died as a result of a violent crime;
  2. LTL 2 600 where serious damage was inflicted on a person's health, or a person's right of sexual self-determination or inviolability was infringed;
  3. LTL 1 300 where moderate damage was inflicted on a person's health.
2.15. Will compensation that I have received, or may receive, for the same losses but from other sources (such as insurance) be deducted from compensation paid by the State?

Yes. The amount of compensation for damages payable is reduced accordingly if the applicant has received or is entitled to receive other compensation from the State budget, the State social security fund, the compulsory health insurance fund, or from an insurer.

2.16. Are there any other criteria that can influence my chance of receiving compensation, or how the amount of compensation is calculated, such as my own behaviour in relation to the event that caused the injury?

Compensation for damages is not payable if:

  1. compensation is being claimed for damages resulting from a violent crime which was perpetrated with the consent of the injured party, except where consent was given under physical or mental duress, the victim was a juvenile, or in a frail condition, or there were other similar circumstances, or where the injured party's consent was given for a lawful act (or a failure to act) and the violent crime was perpetrated in breach of regulations on the performance of such an act (or on the failure to act);
  2. compensation is being claimed for damages resulting from a violent crime the perpetration of which was provoked by the injured party through his or her unlawful or abusive conduct;
  3. the injured party suffered injury as a result of necessary self-defence or other circumstances providing for exoneration from criminal responsibility under legislation.

The following individuals are also not entitled to compensation for damages:

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  1. perpetrators of a violent crime who are claiming compensation for damages resulting from their crime;
  2. persons who contributed directly to the occurrence or significant aggravation of injury through their intentional conduct after the violent act;
  3. persons who refuse to give evidence, provide false evidence or otherwise fail to assist the court investigating the case or conducting proceedings, except in cases specified under legislation where a person is not compelled to give evidence;
  4. persons who abuse their right to compensation for damages incurred as a result of a violent crime, or where compensation for damages would in any other way contradict the rule of law.
2.17. Can I get an advance on the compensation? If yes, under what conditions?

Advance compensation may be paid while criminal proceedings are ongoing for material losses resulting from a violent crime which caused a person's death or serious injury.

2.18. Where can I get the necessary forms and further information on how to apply? Is there a special help line or website that I can use?

Information and application forms are available on the Ministry of Justice website:

http://www.tm.lt/default.aspx?item=smurt&lang=3

Tel: (+370 5) 266 2949

Fax: (+370 5) 262 5940

E-mail: tminfo@tic.lt

2.19. Can I get legal aid for making the application?

In compensation cases arising from criminal acts, including cases where the issue of compensation for damages is arbitrated as part of a criminal case, the injured parties are entitled to receive legal aid regardless of their assets or income (financial situation). In other cases legal aid may be granted if the assets and income of the person who has suffered as a result of the criminal act do not exceed an established amount. The Ministry of Justice can assist in drawing up an application for compensation of damages resulting from a violent crime.

2.20. Where do I send the application?

Applications should be sent to the Ministry of Justice:

Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Lithuania

Gedimino pr. 30/1

LT-01104, Vilnius

Lithuania

Tel: (+370 5) 266 2980

Fax:(+370 5) 262 5940

E-mail: tminfo@tic.lt

2.21. Are there any victim support organisations that can give further assistance?

Non-governmental organisations exist whose aim is to provide information and support to victims of crime.

« Compensation to crime victims - General information | Lithuania - General information »

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Last update: 15-10-2007

 
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