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Legal advice

You are a victim of a crime. This may have various effects on you as well as legal implications.

If you were injured or have suffered damage, you are entitled to compensation from the offender. This compensation claim may include compensation for material damage, that is, damage to your property that can be expressed in money, but also compensation for immaterial damage, above all compensation for pain and suffering. In order to enforce such claims, which, however, are not always recognised by the offender, you can either apply for an adhesive procedure in the criminal proceedings or take legal action against the offender in separate civil proceedings. In both cases it is recommended to turn to a lawyer who has experience in advising victims of a crime.


If you have experienced a crime, you are always witness to the event as well. As witness you have certain rights and obligations in the criminal proceedings. The respective rights and obligations are listed under the menu item Your Rights / Criminal Proceedings. As witness, you do not necessarily need a lawyer. However, you have the right to bring along a lawyer if you are examined as witness. If you feel unable to assert your rights on your own during the examination, you may ask if a lawyer may be assigned to you as legal counsel during the examination.

If you yourself are also the aggrieved person of the crime, you have a double role during the criminal proceedings. In addition to your rights and obligations as witness, you may also participate actively as the aggrieved person in the criminal proceedings. Further information is available at Your Rights / Investigative Proceedings#Accessory Private Prosecution .

If you are looking for a lawyer specialized in accessory private prosecution or rights of victims, you may contact the institutions for victim assistance included in the List of Support Facilities. In addition, you can refer to the website of the Federal Bar Association (Bundesrechtsanwaltskammer), look for the Chamber of Lawyers (Rechtsanwaltskammer) responsible for your region and ask for a lawyer with experience in accessory private prosecution and rights of victims.