Crime Victim Protection Act

Link to law: http://law.moj.gov.tw/ENG/LawClass/LawAll.aspx?PCode=I0050005

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Article 1


This Act is enacted for the purposes of protecting the family members of deceased victims, seriously injured victims of criminal acts and victims of sexual assault crimes, safeguarding the rights and interests of the people as a whole, and enhancing the security of society.


Article 2


Protection of victims of criminal acts shall be governed by this Act, unless otherwise provided for in other laws.


Article 3


The following terms as used in this Act are defined as follows:
1. The term "criminal act" shall mean the willful or neglectful act committed by any person within the territory of the Republic of China, or on board a R.O.C.-registered vessel/warship or aircraft outside the territory of the Republic of China, that resulted in fatal or bodily injury to another person and is criminally punishable under the laws of the Republic of China, and includes the acts which are not punishable under Paragraph 1 of Article 18, Paragraph 1 of Article 19 and the forepart of Paragraph 1 of Article 24 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of China.
2. The term "victims of sexual assault crimes" refers to the victims of crimes under Articles 221, 222, 224, 224-1, 225, 226, 226-1, 228 and 229, Subparagraph 2 of Paragraph 2 of Article 332, Subparagraph 2 of Paragraph 2 of Article 334, and Subparagraph 1 of Paragraph 2 of Article 348 of the Criminal Code, the victims of crimes under Article 33, Paragraphs 1-5 of Article 34, Paragraph 2 of Article 35, Paragraph 3 of Article 36, and Article 37 of the Child and Youth Sexual Exploitation Prevention Act as well as attempts to commit crimes prescribed in Paragraph 2, Article 35 and Paragraph 3, Article 36 of the act, and the victims of crimes under Article 227 of the Criminal Code who are mentally or physically disabled, mentally defective or of any other similar condition, who are victimized as a result of illegitimate means such as promise of gain and deception or the use of power and influence, or who are violated by family members as defined in Article 3 of the Domestic Violence Prevention Act.
3. Crime victim compensation shall mean pecuniary compensation payable by the state in accordance with this Act to the family members of deceased victims, seriously injured victims of criminal acts, and victims of sexual assault crimes for their property losses and mental distress.


Article 4


Family members of deceased victims or seriously injured victims of criminal acts, or victims of sexual assault crimes shall be entitled to apply for crime victim compensation.
The crime victim compensation under the preceding paragraph shall be paid by the prosecutors' office of a district court or its branch court out of the following funding sources:
1. The funds budgeted by the Ministry of Justice.
2. Amounts deducted from the total labor wages paid to prisoners who participate in work programs in jail.
3. The proceeds from the criminal venture, or the proceeds from sale of confiscated property of the criminals.
4. Certain amounts deducted from the sum of amounts payable by criminals for suspension of sentence, deferred prosecution, or negotiations relating to criminal judgments.
5. Other proceeds.


Article 4-1


The Ministry of Justice may establish a crime victim protection fund to improve crime victim protection.


Article 5


The categories of crime victim compensation and the persons entitled to receive such compensation are as follows:
1. Compensation to family members of deceased victims: payable to the family members of deceased victims of criminal acts.
2. Compensation to seriously injured victims: payable to seriously injured victims of criminal acts.
3. Compensation to victims of sexual assaults: payable to victims of sexual assault crimes.
The compensation under the preceding paragraph shall be paid in a lump sum, or in installments at the request of the applicant.


Article 6


The family members in each category below are entitled to receive the compensation to family members of deceased victims if the family members in the categories above them do not exist:
1. Parents, spouse, sons and daughters.
2. Grandparents.
3. Grandsons and granddaughters.
4. Brothers and sisters.
Family members of a deceased victim under categories 2, 3 and 4 of the preceding paragraph who are entitled to apply for the compensation under Item 3, Paragraph 1, Article 9 of this Act shall be limited to those who depend on the deceased victim for support.


Article 7


Where a seriously injured victim of a criminal act or the victim of a sexual assault is unable to claim the compensation to a serious injury or a sexual assault that he/she deserves, he/she may authorize a person to make the claim on his/her behalf. Where the victim is unable to authorize an agent to make the claim, the claim may be made on his/her behalf by his/her closest relatives, or the municipal/county/city government having jurisdiction over the victim's domicile, or the Association for Protection of Victims of Crimes.
Where a seriously injured victim of a criminal act or the victim of a sexual assault is a minor, or is subject to a court order of guardianship or counseling, while his/her statutory guardian or counselor is the injurer, the claim may be made on his/her behalf by his/her closest relatives, or the municipal/county/city government having jurisdiction over the victim's domicile, or the Association for Protection of Victims of Crimes.


Article 8


In any of the following situations, a family member of a deceased victim shall not be entitled to claim payment of the compensation:
1. He/she caused, intentionally or through negligence, the death of the victim.
2. Before the death of the victim, he/she intentionally caused the death of another family member of the deceased victim, who has prior or the same entitlement to claim the compensation.
3. After the death of the victim, he/she intentionally caused the death of another family number of the deceased victim, who has prior or the same entitlement to claim the compensation.


Article 9


Categories of compensation and the amount of compensation payable under each category are as follows:
1. For the medical treatment costs incurred by an injured victim, four hundred thousand New Taiwan dollars (NT$400,000) in the maximum.
2. For the funeral expenses incurred from the death of a victim, three hundred thousand New Taiwan dollars (NT$300,000) in the maximum, where an amount of compensation not exceeding two hundred thousand New Taiwan dollars (NT$200,000) may be immediately granted over other categories of compensation to the family members of a deceased victim without the requirement of submitting the receipt or relevant proofs of the expense.
3. For a victim's statutory obligation to support the dependents, which cannot be fulfilled by the victim after his/her death, one million New Taiwan dollars (NT$1,000,000) in the maximum.
4. For the loss or reduction of work ability or the increased living expenses of a seriously injured victim or a victim of a sexual assault, one million New Taiwan dollars (NT$1,000,000) in the maximum.
5. Compensation for mental distress, four hundred thousand New Taiwan dollars (NT$400,000) in the maximum.
The family members of a deceased victim of criminal acts shall be entitled to claim the compensation under Items 1 through 3 and Item 5 of the preceding paragraph, while the seriously injured victims of criminal acts or victims of sexual assaults shall be entitled to claim payment of compensation under Items 1, 4 and 5 of the preceding paragraph.
Where there is more than one family member of a deceased victim who is entitled to claim the compensation, each member may file his/her own application for the compensation other than the compensation of the funeral expense, with the amount distributable to each of them to be decided within the ceiling set forth in the applicable items of Paragraph 1 of this Article.
Where a family member of a deceased victim applying for the compensation under Item 3 or 5 of Paragraph 1 of this Article is a minor or is subject to a court order of guardianship or counseling, the compensation payable to the deceased victim may be deposited with a crime victim protection institution for trust custody, which shall pay the family member the compensation or the interest accrued thereon in monthly installments until the minor becomes an adult or the guardianship or counseling order is revoked. Where the victim of a sexual assault who applies for any compensation under Paragraph 1 of this Article is a minor or is subject to a court order of guardianship or counseling, while his/her statutory guardian or counselor is the injurer, the preceding provision in this Paragraph 4 shall also apply.


Article 10


No compensation shall be paid for all or a part of the loss suffered by victims of criminal acts under any of the following circumstances:
1. Where the cause of harm to the victims is also attributable the victims themselves.
2. Where, after taking into consideration the relationship between the victims or their family members and the person who committed the criminal act and other relevant factors, it is believed on the basis of general social mores that payment of compensation is inappropriate.


Article 11


If the applicant for the compensation under this Act has already received any compensation for the damage incurred from a criminal act, or any other pecuniary benefit claimable by him/her under the Compulsory Automobile Liability Insurance Act or any other law, the sum of such other payments received by him/her shall be deducted from the amount of crime victim compensation payable to him/her under this Act.


Article 12


Upon payment by the government of any crime victim compensation under this Act, the government shall have the right to make a claim for reimbursement against a convicted defendant and/or others liable for indemnification of the victim concerned. Such reimbursement shall not exceed the compensation paid by the government to the crime victim.
The right to make a claim for reimbursement of compensation given to a crime victim under Paragraph 1 of this Article shall be exercised by the prosecutors' office of the district court or a branch court that paid the compensation to the victim. Such prosecutors' office may request the prosecutors' office of a higher court to assign such right to the prosecutors' office of another district court or a branch court, if necessary.
The right to claim reimbursement under Paragraph 1 of this Article will be extinguished if not exercised within two years. Where the person responsible for the crime victim’s loss is unknown and or the party liable for indemnification is unknown, the aforesaid period for the right to claim reimbursement shall not commence until the person liable is identified.


Article 12-1


The prosecutors' office of a district court or a branch court may check the property status of the convicted defendant or others liable for indemnification with the taxation bureau or other government agencies or groups concerned for claiming the reimbursement under Article 12. Anyone subject to such investigation shall not refuse to respond to the investigator's inquiries.


Article 13


Under any of the following circumstances, the compensation to a crime victim hereunder shall be refunded by the recipient:
1. Where a deduction shall be made in accordance with Article 11 of this Act, or where redundant claims for damages are made, an amount equal to the sum of compensation received or to be received by him/her under another claim shall be refunded.
2. Where the recipient is found not entitled to any crime victim compensation, the compensation he/she has received hereunder shall be all refunded.
3. Where a crime victim compensation recipient is found having claimed the compensation through deception or other dishonest means, he/she shall refund all the compensation and pay interest accrued from the date of his/her receipt of such compensation.


Article 14


A prosecutors' office of a district court or a branch court shall have a crime victim compensation review committee (hereinafter referred to as the "Review Committee") be in charge of screening and making decisions on compensation claims and other relevant matters.
The prosecutors' office of a high court or a branch court shall have a crime victim compensation reconsideration committee (hereinafter referred to as the "Reconsideration Committee") direct and supervise the Review Committee's handling of crime victim compensation claims and shall process and make decisions of appeals against decisions of the Review Committee.
A Reconsideration Committee and a Review Committee shall each have a chairman, who shall be the chief prosecutor at the prosecutors' office of a high court or a branch court, and the chief prosecutor at the prosecutors' office of a district court or a branch court, respectively. A Reconsideration Committee and a Review Committee shall each also have six (6) to ten (10) members, who shall be public prosecutors and other experts specializing in the field of law, medical science or other relevant academic fields and shall be selected and recommended by the chief prosecutor concerned and be subject to the approval of the Ministry of Justice. Staff members of the Review Committees and the Reconsideration Committees shall be the existing staff members of the prosecutors' office concerned.


Article 15


Any person claiming crime victim compensation under this Act shall file a written application with the Review Committee at the jurisdiction where the criminal act at issue was committed. Under any of the following circumstances, the competent review committee processing a compensation claim shall be designated by the Reconsideration Committee at the jurisdiction where the central government is located:
1. Where the criminal act at issue was committed is unknown.
2. There is a dispute over which committee is the competent authority to process the compensation claim at issue.
3. There is no committee eligible to process the compensation claim.


Article 16


No claim under the preceding article shall be made two (2) years or more after the time the victim's loss resulting from the criminal act at issue becomes known to the applicant, or five (5) years or more after the time of commission of the criminal act at issue.


Article 17


The Review Committee shall examine a compensation claim by consulting results of investigations by the competent judicial authorities and render its decision in writing on the compensation claim within three (3) months of the date of its receipt of the application for compensation.


Article 18


A claimant who objects to the decision made by the Review Committee may, within 30 days of receipt of the written decision, file with the Reconsideration Committee a written appeal for reconsideration stating therein the reason for such appeal.
If the Review Committee fails to render a decision within the 30-day period under the preceding article, the claimant may, within 30 days of the expiration of said period, file an application with the Reconsideration Committee for its decision.
The provisions of the preceding article shall apply mutatis mutamdis when the Reconsideration Committee is making its decision on an appeal for reconsideration or making a decision bypassing the Review Committee.


Article 19


If a claimant objects to the reconsideration decision or a decision of the Reconsideration Committee made while bypassing the Review Committee, or the Reconsideration Committee fails to make a decision within the time limit under Article 17 hereof, the claimant may file an administrative suit within 30 days of receipt of the reconsideration decision or the decision made while bypassing the Review Committee, or within 30 days of the expiration of the time limit under Article 17.


Article 20


If it is deemed necessary during the investigation, the Reconsideration and the Review Committee may issue a notice to summon the claimant and the interested party (parties) to make statements, present evidentiary documents or other necessary information, or be diagnosed by a physician. In addition thereto, the Reconsideration Committee and the Review Committee may also request that the authorities or organizations concerned provide necessary assistance.
If the claimant, without good cause, refuses to appear when summoned to make statements, present supporting documents or other necessary information, or undergo a diagnosis conducted by a physician, the Reconsideration Committee and the Review Committee may dismiss the applicant's appeal or application or render a decision by default.


Article 21


If a claimant is in urgent need of compensation after being injured by a criminal act, the Reconsideration Committee and the Review Committee may, before deciding the compensation claim, make a decision for payment of provisional compensation.
No appeal for reconsideration or administrative suit may be filed against a decision regarding provisional compensation.


Article 22


The amount of provisional compensation shall not exceed four hundred thousand New Taiwan dollars (NT$400,000).
When a decision is made on the payment of compensation to a crime victim, such compensation shall be given less the prepaid provisional compensation, if any. If the prepaid provisional compensation is more than the total amount of compensation payable, or if the compensation claim is dismissed, the Review Committee shall order the recipient to refund the difference between the amounts or the entire provisional compensation.


Article 23


The Ministry of Justice may, in order to accommodate the changes in the current conditions, propose that the Executive Yuan adjust the maximum amounts set forth in Paragraph 1, Article 9 and/or the amount set forth in the preceding Article.


Article 24


Drawing of crime victim compensation or provisional compensation hereunder shall be effected within two (2) years of the date on which such sum can be collected.


Article 25


The written decision to be made by a Review Committee in accordance with the provisions of Article 13 or Paragraph 2, Article 22 hereof on refund of the compensation paid shall be a "title of execution" once the decision is finalized. The Review Committee shall, in such written decision or per another written notification, order the obligor to refund the compensation within a certain period of time, or order an obligor who fails to refund the compensation within a certain period of time to be subject to compulsory execution.
The obligation to refund the compensation to be refunded under the preceding paragraph shall be performed before ordinary debts are repaid.
The provisions of Article 17, Paragraph 1 of Article 18 and Article 19 of this Act are also applicable if a decision on refund of compensation made under Paragraph 1 of this Article is challenged.


Article 26


The right to receive crime victim compensation or provisional compensation shall not be subject to any attachment or assignment or be provided as collateral.


Article 27


In order to preserve the right to claim reimbursement under Article 12 of this Act, the prosecutors' office of a district court or a branch court may request that the court provisionally seize the property of the convicted defendant or others liable for indemnification for damage in accordance with the applicable laws.
When the prosecutors' office of a district court or a branch court makes a request to the district court under the preceding paragraph, Part VII-Precautionary Proceedings of the Code of Civil Procedure, except Article 526, Paragraphs 2 to 4 of Article 526, and Article 531, shall apply.


Article 28


In the event that a victim or person described in Article 6 of this Act institutes an action against the injurer through a legal procedure other than the ancillary civil suit with criminal proceedings, claiming indemnification for damage under any items of Paragraph 1, Article 9 hereof, he/she shall be exempted temporarily from the court fee arising from such suit.
If the plaintiff under the preceding paragraph is incapable of furnishing a security for a provisional attachment, a letter of guaranty to be issued by the criminal act victim protection institution may be provided in substitution for the pecuniary security, except where he/she is unlikely to succeed in the action.


Article 29


In order to assist crime victims or their family members to return to their normal lives, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of the Interior shall work jointly to establish a crime victim protection institution.
The crime victim protection institution shall be an incorporated foundation operating under the direction and supervision of the Ministry of Justice, and its establishment shall be approved by the Ministry of Justice before registration. The regulations governing organization and supervision of the foundation shall be prescribed by the Ministry of Justice.
The operational funds needed by the crime victim protection institution shall come from the following sources:
1. The budgets of the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of the Interior.
2. The donations from individual natural persons and/or private and/or public organizations.
3. Certain amounts set aside from the sum of amounts payable by convicted defendants for pronounced probation, deferred prosecution or negotiations relating to criminal judgments.


Article 29-1


Relevant authorities and diplomatic missions shall actively inform eligible persons of benefits and provide necessary assistance to such persons applicable to the protection or other aids under this Act.
The prosecutor offices knowing the existence of eligible persons resulting from carrying out the prosecutorial duty shall inform such persons of their rights or benefits concerning the application of compensation and protection under this Act.


Article 30


The crime victim protection institution shall carry out the following activities:
1. Help crime victims secure emergent physical and mental treatment and a place to stay.
2. Assist crime victims in the course of the judicial investigation or trial, and after the conclusion of the trial.
3. Assist crime victims in applying for compensation, social relief/aid and in making civil claims.
4. Assist crime victims in investigating the property of the persons committing the criminal acts at issue and the property of the persons liable for indemnification for the damage arising from such criminal acts.
5. Assist with the protection of crime victims.
6. Assist crime victims in obtaining medical treatment to treat their physical and mental injuries, rehabilitation and returning to their normal lives, and occupational trainings.
7. Advocate the protection of crime victims.
8. Provide other assistance.
The protection measures under the preceding paragraph, except the assistance with application for compensation in Item 3, shall apply to the following persons:
1. Victims of domestic violence or human trafficking crimes who survive or are seriously injured.
2. Children or juveniles who are victims of criminal acts other than those under Article 1 of this Act.
3. Family members of a deceased victim entitled to the compensation under Article 34-1 of this Act.
4. Family members of a deceased victim not eligible for the compensation under subparagraph 2 of Article 34-3 of this Act.
Where any other law provides the same or better protection measures to the persons under the preceding paragraph, the law shall apply to those persons first.
The protection activities prescribed in paragraph 1 shall be provided in the Taiwan area.
For the provision of the protection activities prescribed in paragraph 1, the crime victim protection institution and the government diplomatic missions shall offer urgent and necessary assistance.


Article 30-1


The media reporting any criminal case or conducting relevant broadcasting and TV programs shall pay attention to reputation and privacy of crime victims and their family members.
Crime victims or their family members may request the media for correction within fifteen (15) days from the date of reporting or broadcasting in which a mistake was found. The media shall, within fifteen (15) days from the date of receipt of the request, make the correction on the original program, or the broadcasting at the same time, or the publications and columns of the same origins. The media shall provide a written response to the victims or family members when it considers that there is no such a mistake.
In the event that crime victims or their family members suffer any loss or damage caused by the media report, the media and its responsible representative or relevant persons ought to be subject to relevant laws concerning civil, criminal and administrative liabilities.


Article 31


For service of documents and instructions, the relevant provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure shall apply mutatis mutandis.


Article 32


This Act shall not apply to the people of mainland China and the residents of Hong Kong and Macau who suffer injuries from criminal acts committed in the areas of mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.


Article 33


(Deleted)


Article 34


A claim for compensation under this Act shall be accepted only if the criminal act at issue or the results thereof occur after the promulgation of this Act.


Article 34-1


When citizens of Republic of China victimized outside its territory by intentional conduct of any other person die after December 9 2011, their family members may apply for pecuniary aids conditional upon the following:
1. the victim has its family registration in the Taiwan area and the registration was not removed out of his or her moving abroad.
2. the victim has neither illegally left the country nor is wanted for any criminal procedure.
3. the intentional conduct is subject to criminal punishment in accordance with the laws of Republic of China by the time such a conduct occurs.


Article 34-2


The family members of a deceased victim are eligible for applying for pecuniary aids in the following sequence:
1. parents, spouse, sons and daughters;
2. grandparents;
3. grandsons and granddaughters;
4. brothers and sisters.
When there is a number of more than one person in the same sequence in paragraph 1. the pecuniary aid shall be granted evenly.


Article 34-3


The pecuniary aid shall not be granted in either of the following events:
1. there exists an intentional conduct prescribed in each subparagraph of Article 8 of this Act;
2. a compensation of damage has been granted and paid by liable persons or by crime-compensation funds in the foreign regime.


Article 34-4


The amount of the pecuniary aid granted to family members of the victim shall, in total, be twenty thousand NT dollars (NT$ 200.000).
If State makes a payment of the pecuniary aid, it shall obtain the right from the recipient to claim, within the same payment, against the criminal or other legally liable persons. State may waive the right to claim if it considers the claim to be impracticable or extremely costly.
In either of the following events, the paid pecuniary aid shall be returned:
1. the recipient has been proven to be not eligible for the aid;
2. the receipt of the aid has based on false or other illegitimate methods, and in this event the returned payment shall add interests calculated under laws from the date of receipt.
3. the recipient has received a compensation of damage by liable persons or by crime-compensation funds in the foreign regime, and in this event the returned payment shall be within the amount of the receipt.


Article 34-5


The application of the pecuniary aid shall be submitted in writing to the Committee located in the district of the victim’s family registration.


Article 34-6


Paragraph 2 of Article 4, Article 10, paragraphs 2 and 3 of Article 12, and Articles 12-1, 14, 16 to 20, 24 to 28 shall apply to the application of the pecuniary aid, mutatis mutandis.


Article 35


The Enforcement Rules of this Act shall be prescribed by the Ministry of Justice.


Article 36


The effective date of this Act shall be determined by the Executive Yuan.