Being the victim of a crime in a foreign country can be a devastating and traumatic experience. While no one can undo the emotional trauma, physical injury, or financial loss you may have experienced, the U.S. Embassy is ready to help. We are very concerned about violent crimes committed against U.S. citizens in Ukraine. We will assist you in managing the practical consequences of being a crime victim and provide you with information about accessing the local criminal justice system, as well as other resources for crime victims abroad and the United States. This office can assist you to find appropriate medical care, contact family or friends on your behalf and explain how funds can be transferred. We can also help you to better understand the criminal justice system in Ukraine which is very different from the system in the United States.
Reporting crimes: If you are the victim of a crime, you should report the incident to local law enforcement agencies as soon as possible in order to obtain assistance and preserve evidence, if necessary. In Ukraine, to reach the local police on the telephone, please dial 102. When you file a police report, the police should give you a copy. Please note that the Embassy cannot act as your legal representative, and has no authority to investigate or prosecute crimes committed in Ukraine. If you need legal assistance, please consider obtaining it from local law firms that specialize in legal matters. Law firms can help you file and follow up on police reports.
If you wish, you may send the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv a copy of your police report for our awareness. If the police refuse to accept your police report, or if you feel they are deliberately delaying investigation of the case, please feel free to contact us.
Investigations: Ukrainian law enforcement agencies are responsible for investigating crimes. The respective office should collect forensic evidence, if required. The case will be assigned a number and assigned to an officer for investigation. The victim should immediately inform the respective law enforcement office if he or she receives threats, harassment or intimidation from anybody because they reported a crime.
Attorneys: You may want to consider hiring a local attorney to secure appropriate legal guidance. Local legal procedures differ from those in the United States. Although the prosecutor is responsible for prosecuting your case, your attorney can look out for your interests with the police and the court. The Embassy cannot recommend specific attorneys, but we do maintain a list of attorneys that may be of help to you in contacting and selecting a lawyer.
Victim compensation: Twenty-six U.S. states provide some compensation to residents who are victims of violent crimes overseas. Information about each State’s crime victim compensation program and application instructions are available on the web site of the National Association of Crime Victim Compensation Boards, and the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators.
Enroll with the Embassy: U.S. citizens living or traveling in Ukraine are encouraged to enroll with the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv through the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program website so that they can obtain updated information on travel and security within Ukraine. By registering, U.S. citizens also make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of emergency.