I am a victim of violence, what can I do?
Violence can be physical, sexual, psychological or economic. Witnessing violence is also considered a form of victimisation.
Was that violence punishable? If so, go and make a statement as soon as possible. The more details you remember, the better. The longer you wait, the more you forget and the more traces disappear and details blur. Going to the police is important, but it can also be very scary. It's best to prepare for it.
You have a choice between three procedures:
- File an ordinary complaint with the police. In this case, you are not further informed about the staff procedure and therefore cannot claim compensation.
- Registering as an injured person. In this case, you can consult the criminal file during the investigation and you will be informed if the case is dismissed or dismissed without further action.
- Taking your civil action before the investigating judge (he has to investigate the case further anyway and if the public prosecutor decides to prosecute, you can request compensation before the criminal court)
Is there any damage? Check whether you have insurance that covers damages. Maybe you have work insurance, theft insurance, property damage insurance, ... Contact your insurance company. Maybe there is a legal aid clause that allows you to intervene in any legal costs.
Do I need a lawyer?
A lawyer gives you (legal) advice on the best way to proceed and supports you in this: he or she will be able to recommend the best procedure to start.
In turn, prior consultation and assistance during an interrogation by a lawyer is useful to optimally guarantee your rights during the interrogation: your lawyer will help you make a structured coherent statement It is not because you are a victim that you do not need a lawyer. If you have experienced trauma, you may say confusing or untrue things.
Finally, a lawyer guides you through the whole procedure and defends your interests. They will assist you, advise you if you are questioned, guide you through the proceedings and advocate for you in court.