Registering as a victim of crime
Who can register as a victim of crime?
The Canadian Victims Bill of Rights defines a victim as any individual who has suffered physical or emotional harm, property damage, or economic loss as the result of the commission of an offence.
The law also allows a spouse, a relative or dependant, an individual who is responsible for the care or support of the victim or the care or support of a dependant of the victim, to act on behalf of a victim, if the victim cannot act on their own behalf.
Victims do not automatically receive information about the offender who harmed them.
If you have been victimized by an offender serving a sentence of two years or more, you must register with the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) or the Parole Board of Canada to receive information or access services.
Victims include persons harmed by the offender regardless of whether the offender has been prosecuted or not, as long as an official complaint has been made to the police or to the Crown.
How to register as a victim
Please complete and sign a Request for Victim Registration and submit it to the nearest regional Correctional Service of Canada or Parole Board of Canada office.
CSC's victim services officers (VSOs) can assist you with the registration process. You can contact a VSO by:
- phone: 1-866-806-2275, or
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Alternatively, you can register to use the online Victims Portal and submit your application through the Portal.
Once you have registered you can receive information about the offender directly from the Correctional Service of Canada. You can also authorize someone else (a victim representative), in writing, to receive the information on your behalf.
Offenders do not have the right to be notified when a victim registers with the Correctional Service of Canada or the Parole Board of Canada.
Registered victims can:
- receive information about the offender
- apply for funds from the Department of Justice to:
- verify information you receive from the offender (if you are in contact with them)
- get information about what is happening with the offender’s correctional plan and release; and
- address the needs and rights of child victims by registering as a representative to receive information on behalf of the child
Your registration will not expire. However, your file may be inactivated if any of these situations occur:
- The offender's sentence expires. However, if the offender receives a subsequent federal sentence, you will be notified and asked if you want to receive ongoing information again.
- You can advise CSC or PBC, in writing that you no longer want to receive information about the offender. However, you can change your decision at any time and ask to begin receiving information again.
- The offender dies while incarcerated or under CSC supervision in the community. (However, you will be notified of the offender’s death).
Keep in mind that if you change your address or telephone number(s), be sure to update your contact information with CSC.
Information provided to victims
The Corrections and Conditional Release Act sets out what information can be disclosed to victims of crime about the offender who harmed them.
This information includes:
- the offender's name
- the offence of which the offender was convicted and the court that convicted the offender
- the start date and length of the sentence that the offender is serving
- the offender's eligibility dates and review dates for temporary absences or parole
Victims may request other types of information that CSC has available if it has been deemed that the victim's interest in receiving it outweighs the need to protect the offender's privacy. In most cases, this information is provided to victims.
This information may include:
- the offender's age
- whether the offender is in custody and, if not, why
- the name and location of the institution where the offender is being held
- information about an offender transferring from one institution to another
- information about the programs in which the offender is participating or has participated
- the serious disciplinary offences committed by the offender
- the reasons for any temporary absence
- the date of a hearing about detaining the offender in custody after his or her statutory release date
- information about an offender's progress in relation to his or her correctional plan; and
- the date when an offender has been removed from Canada
Victims may also request information that CSC has available unless the disclosure would have a negative impact on public safety, including:
- the offender's release date, destination and conditions of release (usually 14 days prior to the release); and
- a current photo of the offender at the time of certain releases or the end of the offender's sentence
- Date modified: