All crime victims now guaranteed compensation from Dutch government

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Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)

All victims of crimes will be guaranteed compensation from the Dutch government from January 1st, 2016. If the perpetrator is late in paying compensation ordered by the court, or refuses to do so, the government will pay the compensation to the victim and claim it back from the perpetrator, AD reports.

With this measure, Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice hopes to better protect victims of crime against injustice and offer them some peace of mind. "Those who are victims of crimes, have enough to deal with. The should not also have to worry about whether they get their compensation", he said.

This regulation was implemented for victims of violent and sexual offenses in 2011. It will now be extended to include all criminal cases including theft, burglary and fraud. A claim may be filed if the perpetrator of a criminal case has not paid the compensation of the court, or only partially paid it, eight months after the judgement. The advance paid by the government can not exceed 5 thousand euros. The extension takes effect on January 1st and will not apply retrospectively.

Since the first version of this regulation was implemented in 2011, the government paid 15,500 advances totaling in an amount of 24 million euros. The Ministry of Security and Justice expects that this extension will cost an extra 5 million a year and that 8 percent of that will never be repaid by the perpetrator.

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