If you think or know that someone has committed a crime against you or someone you care about, you might be looking for guidance. On this page, you'll find links to organizations that assist victims and articles that explain potentially relevant areas of law.
We have several articles that discuss the law as it applies to victims of crime. One or more of the pieces here might offer insight into the circumstances you or someone you care about faces. To help you find articles relevant to your situation, we've organized them by issue area. Use the click-down arrows to find links to relevant articles. To jump down to the list of organizations that assist victims, click here.
An explanation of how to go about pressing and filing criminal charges against someone.
Learn how the VINE ("Victim Information and Notification Everyday") network keeps victims and concerned citizens abreast of offender status and location.
Marsy's Law represents a nationwide campaign that seeks to place crime victim rights in state constitutions. Learn more about the law and what it means for crime victims.
Every state has a victims' rights statute or a state constitutional provision that provides crime victims with certain rights (some have both).
Restitution is designed to compensate crime victims for their losses. Learn how restitution works—from qualifying victims to covered expenses.
Learn about divorce and domestic violence, including protecting yourself when leaving an abusive relationship, applying for a restraining order, and dealing with violence in the family.
The process for obtaining a restraining order varies from state to state but the same general steps apply everywhere.
California employees who face domestic violence might be entitled to accommodations and time off work. Learn what type of accommodations may be available.
Information on topics such as taking time off work, collecting unemployment benefits, and seeking assistance from employers (including accommodations and restraining orders).
Your state law might give victims of domestic violence the right to move out early.
Learn about red flag laws and how to get an extreme risk protection order to disarm someone who poses a serious risk of gun violence.
VAWA created a means for the immigrant spouse or child to "self petition" for a green card or otherwise take control of the process at a later phase—provided that the immigrant is able to prove the history of abuse.
How a conditional resident can apply for permanent residence without the help of an abusive spouse.
How to protect yourself when dealing with a complex legal situation.
Before you decide whether to apply for VAWA, asylum, or a U visa, be sure to consider what immigration benefits your children might, or might not, attain along with you.
Provides a look at a parent or guardian's legal options in the civil court system when a child has been the victim of sexual abuse.
What can parents do if their children are being bullied at school, on social media, or through texts? When is bullying or cyberbullying a crime?
Learn about the prevalence of elder abuse in nursing homes and what you can do about it.
Senior citizen fraud can damage an elderly person's financial stability.
Power of attorney scams are one of the most common forms of elder financial abuse.
Your first step in recovering from identity theft is recognizing the warning signs.
The law gives victims many tools to respond to doxxing.
Some organizations and government units exist to help victims of abuse and other crimes, both short- and long-term. These resources can be the best way for people to find assistance. Consider whether any of the websites listed here might apply to your situation, and note that some of them offer immediate help, like a hotline number to call. These are mostly national organizations, but they can often connect you with local resources. You might also be able to find state or local resources through an Internet search.
|The National Center for Victims of Crime||"[W]e remain the most comprehensive national resource committed to advancing victims' rights and helping victims of crime rebuild their lives. … Rather than focus the entire organization's work on one type of crime or victim, the National Center addresses all types of crime."|
|CrimeVictims.gov (Office for Victims of Crime)||"Designed for three audiences—crime victims, volunteers, and victim service providers—crimevictims.gov provides a wealth of resources for each, including links to websites, publications, databases, and hotlines. … If you or someone you know needs victim assistance, find out how to get help... ."|
|National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA)||"Founded in 1975, NOVA is the oldest national victim assistance organization of its type in the United States and is the recognized leader in victim advocacy, education and credentialing. ... We advocate for victims by connecting them with services and resources."|
|Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)||"RAINN ... is the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization. RAINN created and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline ... in partnership with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the Department of Defense." RAINN also has information for LGBTQ victims of sexual and other forms of violence.|
|The National Domestic Violence Hotline||"[P]rovides lifesaving tools and immediate support to enable victims to find safety and live lives free of abuse. Callers to The Hotline ... can expect highly trained, experienced advocates to offer compassionate support, crisis intervention information, educational services, and referral services in more than 200 languages. … We also provide support to friends and family members who are concerned about a loved one."|
|DomesticShelters.org||"We make finding the right shelter and information about domestic violence easier. Instead of searching the Internet, it is all right here. We've painstakingly verified information on shelters in LA to shelters in NY, and every domestic violence program in between. If you or a friend is suffering from physical abuse, emotional abuse, psychological abuse or verbal abuse, this free service can help."|
|National Human Trafficking Hotline||"The National Human Trafficking Hotline is a national anti-trafficking hotline serving victims and survivors of human trafficking and the anti-trafficking community in the United States. The toll-free hotline is available to answer calls from anywhere in the country, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year in more than 200 languages."|
|Immigration Advocates Network||"The Immigration Advocates Network (IAN) ... is dedicated to expanding access to immigration legal resources and information ... Use the options below to search for immigration legal services providers by state, county, or detention facility. Only nonprofit organizations that provide free or low-cost immigration legal services are included in this directory."|
|"The National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) serves as a national resource center dedicated to the prevention of elder mistreatment." The NCEA has resources and information for help with abuse.|
|A 501(c)3 organization "dedicated to promoting services that improve child well-being in all 50 states and developing programs that help to prevent all types of abuse and neglect." The organization lists emergency contacts for child abuse and related issues.|
|Stomp Out Bullying||"STOMP Out Bullying™ is the leading national anti-bullying and cyberbullying organization for kids and teens in the U.S. … The STOMP Out Bullying™ Live HelpChat Line is a free and confidential help chat for kids and teens over the age of 13. It is intended to assist those who are victims of all forms of bullying and those who may be at risk for suicide as a result of being bullied."|
|National Suicide Prevention Lifeline||"The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, across the United States. The Lifeline is comprised of a national network of over 150 local crisis centers, combining custom local care and resources with national standards and best practices." The organization also provides prevention and crisis resources for loved ones.|