Victim of a Crime
Contact Local Police and your nearest Embassy if you become a victim of a crime overseas, contact local police to report the incident and obtain immediate help. Also, contact the nearest U.S. embassy, consulate, or consular agency for assistance. Remember to request a copy of the police report.
How the Embassy or Consulate Can Help
Consular duty personnel are available for emergency assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at embassies, consulates, and consular agencies overseas and in Washington, D.C.
If you need to contact the Office of Overseas Citizens Services in the U.S. or Canada, call 1-888-407-4747, or from overseas call 202-501-4444.
Consular personnel know the local government agencies and resources in the country. They can help you:
- Replace a stolen passport
- Contact family, friends, or employers
- Obtain medical care
- Address emergency needs that arise as a result of a crime
- Obtain general information about the local criminal justice process and information about your case
- Obtain information about local resources to assist victims, including crime victim assistance and victim compensation programs
- Obtain a list of local English-speaking attorneys
If you are the victim of a crime while overseas you may benefit from specialized resources for crime victims available in the United States. There are many assistance programs throughout the U.S. that offer help to victims of violent crimes and most will even assist those who have been the victim of a crime while overseas. They offer:
- Rape crisis counseling programs
- Shelter and counseling programs for battered women
- Support groups and bereavement counseling for family members
- Programs for child abuse victims
- Assistance for victims of drunk driving accidents
- And others
For more information about locating crime victim assistance programs, please visit the crime assistance page.
All states operate crime victim compensation programs and nearly half of them offer benefits to their residents who are victims of violent crime overseas. (See contact information for victim compensation programs below.) These state compensation programs require the victim to report the crime to law enforcement and they usually request a copy of the police report.
Information about victim assistance programs in approximately 20 countries is available at Victim Assistance On-line.
You can click here for additional information from the State Department regarding Victim Compensation and Assistance Programs.
Also, consult the State Department brochure entitled Help for American Victims of Crime Overseas.