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6. Compensation and Financial assistance

International regulations

Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings

Article 15 – Compensation and legal redress

3. Each Party shall provide, in its internal law, for the right of victims to compensation from the perpetrators.

4. Each Party shall adopt such legislative or other measures as may be necessary to guarantee compensation for victims in accordance with the conditions under its internal law, for instance through the establishment of a fund for victim compensation or measures or programmes aimed at social assistance and social integration of victims, which could be funded by the assets resulting from the application of measures provided in Article 23 seizure of criminal gains.

EU Framework decision on the standing of victims in criminal proceedings (2001)

Article 9 - Right to compensation in the course of criminal proceedings

1. Each Member State shall ensure that victims of criminal acts are entitled to obtain a decision within reasonable time limits on compensation by the offender in the course of criminal proceedings, except where, in certain cases, national law provides for compensation to be awarded in another manner.

2. Each Member State shall take appropriate measures to encourage the offender to provide adequate compensation to victims.

Nordic Baltic standards - key elements in a victim-centred approach

- National legislation and procedures should allow for women VOT to receive compensation. Victims should have the right to be compensated for personal suffering due to physical and psychological stress (non-material damages), losses caused by material damages, and also compensation for withheld earnings.

- Victims must be informed at the earliest possible moment about their right to compensation.

- Compensation is an important element of redress, a concrete confirmation that harm has been done. It can also contribute to opportunities to build sustainable futures.

- There are different ways of ensuring financial compensation to victims, and the mechanisms may vary in different countries:

’ Direct from the perpetrator on an individual basis through a court procedures.

’ State-run crime victims’ funds, possibly financed by confiscated criminal assets, which all women victims of trafficking could apply to.

- For each successful trafficking case brought to court, there are many more women who do not get any redress. Financial assets confiscated through an individual court case should therefore not only serve to compensate the victim concerned in that specific case. A proportion should be fed into the victims’ fund, and also to fund victim support services.