Victim Notification Scheme: guidance for victims of crime

Guide explaining what the scheme is, who can take part, what information you can expect to receive and when.

Offenders Sentenced to 18 Months Imprisonment or More – the Victim Notification Scheme

In all criminal cases where the offender has been sentenced to 18 months imprisonment or more, victims have the right to receive information, through the Victim Notification Scheme, about the offender (known as part 1 of the Scheme). They also have the opportunity to make written representations about the release, including temporary release, of the offender (known as part 2 of the Scheme).

Sometimes if an offender is given a prison sentence the court can decide they need treatment for a mental disorder and place them on a Hospital Direction. Similarly, if an offender is serving a prison sentence and is diagnosed with a mental disorder then they can be made subject to a Transfer for Treatment Direction. 

You will not be entitled to know that an offender has been transferred to a hospital. However, you still have a right to receive information as outlined in Part 1 and Part 2 of the scheme. You will only have to register once for the Victim Notification Scheme, but information will come from the Scottish Government (not the Scottish Prison Service) if the offender is detained in hospital for mental health treatment. Your contact details may need to be passed to the Scottish Government for this purpose.



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