10 Indiana victim’s rights you should know about

Photo of mother and daughter closeup

The state of Indiana protects victims of child abuse with a robust list of laws

A victim of a violent crime—of any age—is entitled to certain rights under Indiana law. The criminal justice process should protect these rights and ensure the victim’s safety is considered. But you should know these rights and understand them to ensure you are treated with fairness and dignity and maintain the right to be informed about your and your child’s case.

The person accused of the crime allegedly committed also has rights under the law and the U.S. Constitution, including the right to face their accuser. In some cases, judges have the authority to protect children. You should speak to an attorney, the Prosecuting Attorney’s office, or your Victim Advocate with questions.

  1. A victim has the right to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect. And be free from intimidation, harassment, and abuse throughout the criminal justice process.
  2. A victim has the right to be informed, when their perpetrator is released from custody or has escaped.
  3. If the alleged felony or act was a felony, you have the right to confer with a representative of the Prosecuting Attorney’s office after a charge, before the trial, and before any disposition. (This right does not include the authority to direct the prosecution of a criminal case involving the victim.)
  4. A victim has the right to have their safety considered in determining released from custody of a person accused of committing a crime against victim.
  5. A victim has the right to be heard at any proceeding involving sentencing, a post-conviction release decision, or a pre-conviction release decision under a forensic diversion program.
  6. A victim has the right to make a statement for use in preparation of the presentence report. You also have the right to read presentence reports relating to the crime committed against, with some exceptions.
  7. You have the right to pursue an order of restitution and other civil remedies.
  8. A victim has the right to information about the disposition of the criminal case involving the victim of the conviction, sentence, and release of a person accused of committing the crime.
  9. A victim has the right to be informed of these and other constitutional and statutory rights.
  10. Sex offense victims under 16 have:
  • The right to confer with the Prosecutor after charges are filed and Defense counsel requests an interview with the child.
  • The prosecuting attorney may not instruct the child not to speak with defense counsel. If the parties are unable to agree to the interview terms, the parties may petition the court for a hearing on the terms.

How to request a protective order in Indiana

If you think you need a protective order for you our children, contact your Victim Advocate at the CAC serving your case. They can help you get started efficiently.

More on Victim Information and Notification Everyday (VINE)

If an offender is arrested, VINE is able to give you notifications if that person is released, escapes, or has a change in status. Call 866-959-8463 or go online to vinelink.com to register. 

This page is also available as a Word Document

CACs, nurses, Victim Advocates, MDT members, and others working with children and families can print and share this page. Download the Word version.

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