Department of Justice
The department of Justice Equality and Law reform is responsible for a number of divisions relevant to a family after a homicide.
You will find a wide range of information on the Department of Justice, Equality and Law reform on:
Addresses for Other Buildings
71–74 Harcourt Street
Crime & Law Enforcement Division
The Department of Justice is committed to taking whatever actions are necessary to reduce the level of crime in our society make our communities and our streets safer meet our obligations in line with human rights and international obligations
More information on this section can be found at:
Criminal Law Reform Division
The Criminal Law reform division is responsible for advising the Minister and the Government in the development of policy on criminal law reform needed to meet political commitments or fulfill domestic or international legal obligations falling within the Minister’s remit, as well as drawing up any subsequent legislative proposals for approval by Government.
This involves keeping the criminal law under review so as to identify potential reforms for consideration by Government.
As part of this process, they engage in and promote research and assess reports or submissions from advisory or research bodies, notably from the Law Reform Commission and consult with relevant interests.
It also involves us in close co-operation with relevant departments in relation to policy development, and the implementation and monitoring of legislation and international instruments.
Courts Policy /Legal Services Division
Under the Courts Service Act 1998, responsibility for the management of the courts system is conferred on the Courts Service, which was established in 1999.The role of Courts Policy Division is to discharge ministerial functions in relation to the courts. The division is also responsible for all aspects of policy, secondary legislation, financing and management of the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme.
More information on this section can be found at:
A wide range of information (including Judgements database) on the court services is available at:
Victims of Crime Office
The core mandate of the Victims of Crime Office is to improve the continuity and quality of services to victims of crime by State agencies and non-governmental organisations throughout the country. It works to support the development of competent, caring and efficient services to victims of crime.
Among its key activities are:
•using the Victims Charter to achieve improved standards of treatment of victims by relevant State and voluntary sector organisations
•promoting awareness concerning victims’ needs and services available to victims of crime
•advising the Minister for Justice and Equality on victims’ issues in Ireland and on international developments pertinent to victims
•working in co-operation with Cosc, the Anti-Human-Trafficking Unit, the Criminal Law Reform Division and other relevant sections of The Department of Justice and Equality to ensure a co-ordinated policy response to issues in relation to victims of crime by the Department
The Director of the Victims of Crime Office is a member of the Independent Commission for the Support of Victims of Crime; the office provides the secretariat to the Commission.
The Commission funds voluntary sector organisations to provide support to victims of crime.
Victims of Crime office
Freedom of Information
The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act came into effect on 21 April, 1998.The FOI Act was amended on 11April, 2003 and is known as the Freedom of Information (Amendment) Act, 2003.The following records held by Government Departments or certain public bodies may be requested:
- Any records relating to you personally, whenever created
- All other records created after 21 April, 1998
A ‘record’ can be a paper document, information held on computer, printouts, maps, plans, microfilm, microfiche, audio-visual material, etc.
You do not have to give a reason as to why you want access to particular records, and the Government department or body concerned must give you an explanation if it refuses you access to any record that you have looked for.
A decision on your FOI application must normally be made within 20 working days.
Application Forms are available at:
For help on making an FOI request, please visit Freedom of Information FAQ.
For more comprehensive information on Freedom of Information including the text of the FOI Acts, please visit the FOI Central Policy Unit website at www.foi.gov.ie.
All requests under the FOI Acts should be addressed to:
Freedom of information officer
Department of Justice, Equality and Law reform
Phone: 00353 1 602 8202 Ext 8408/8417
Lo Call: 1890 221 227 Ext. 8408/8417
Fax: 00353 1 602 8652
Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal
As the family of a homicide victim, you may be entitled to compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal. The Tribunal considers applications from people who suffer a personal injury or death as a result of a crime of violence.
Ex gratia compensation may be awarded on the basis of any vouched out of pocket expenses, including loss of earnings, experienced by the victim or, if the victim has died as a result of the incident, by the dependents of the victim.
The incident in which the injury was caused must have been reported to the Gardaí without delay.
Application must be made to the Tribunal as soon as possible but not later than three months after the incident. The tribunal has discretion under the scheme to extend this time limit in circumstances where the applicant can show that the reason for the delay in submitting the application justifies exceptional treatment of the application. There is no time limit for fatal applications.
Further information may be obtained by contacting the Secretary at the address or telephone number below.
Contact details :
7-11 Montague Street,
Phone: + 353 1 476 8670
Fax: + 353 1 476 8616
In all cases, the tribunal will look for a Garda report on the crime. You do not need legal representation when you apply for compensation. If you choose to have legal representation, the tribunal will not pay your legal expenses.
Usually, your application will be dealt with on the basis of your application form and you do not have to actually appear in front of the tribunal. If your claim is for less than €317, the Secretary of the Tribunal can deal with it.
Appealing the decision of the tribunal
If the original decision was made by the Secretary of the Tribunal, you can appeal that decision to a single member of the tribunal.
If you are unhappy with the decision of a single member of the tribunal, you may appeal it to an informal hearing by 3 members of the tribunal.
You must present your case before the tribunal, although you may have legal representation at your own expense if you wish. The decision of the 3-member tribunal is final.
Exceptions to the scheme
No compensation will be paid
⦁ if the loss is less than €63.49
⦁ if you and the assailant were living together as part of the same household when you suffered the injury
⦁ if your injury is the result of a traffic offence, unless the tribunal decides that there was a deliberate attempt to run you down
⦁ if you do not give reasonable assistance to the tribunal.
Under the terms of Article 10 of the Scheme, compensation is not payable in circumstances where the offender and victim were living together at the time of the incident
AdVIC is strongly opposed to this aspect of the scheme and will continue to lobby the Minister of Justice for a change. We believe that each application should be judged on its merits.
You may seek the help of a voluntary agency to help you to fill the form, but note that the tribunal will not pay your legal expenses if you seek legal representation. If you wish to avail of AdVIC’s assistance, please contact us on 01 6177937 or firstname.lastname@example.org – we will be very happy to help you in any way we can.