In the context of criminal proceedings, two closely interrelated types of court assistance are offered:
Psycho-social court assistance:
The aim is to make victims feel as a safe and comfortable as possible in criminal proceedings and provide support for coping with emotional distress to them - especially by
- providing information about police and court procedures, from filing the police report throughout to the end of the proceedings,
- personally accompanying victims to police and court appointments.
Frequently, in criminal proceedings, victims are scared of having to testify in the presence of the defendant. In such cases, victims are advised and given support in filing a motion for their testimony to be taken in a separate room.
Legal court assistance:
Counselling and representation during the entire proceedings by a lawyer, with the aim of protecting the rights of victims in the proceedings and, for example, represent victims in court when claiming damages.
- who have been affected by violence in a premeditated crime (e. g. victims of physical injury, stalking or robbery)
- who have been affected by a serious threat (e. g. death threat),
- whose sexual integrity has been impaired (e. g. victims of rape or sexual abuse).
have a right to court assistance.
Under specific circumstances, persons who have lost a relative in a crime (e. g. murder or fatal traffic accident) may also have a right to court assistance. i. e. if court assistance is indispensable for asserting their rights in court proceedings. The victims‘ personal involvement is taken into account.