If a victim has not requested compensation during the criminal or administrative offences proceedings related to hate speech, they can lodge a civil claim for damages. This claim must be submitted to the civil court. A civil claim for damages can be filed even if the court has acquitted the accused.

The victim may ask to be compensated for the loss of both:

  • damaged or lost property
  • moral suffering

A victim may also initiate civil litigation and ask for monetary compensation from the author or disseminator of the expressed hate speech even if no criminal or administrative offences proceedings have been initiated. In this case they will have to prove that the statements (or other forms of expression) have caused moral suffering or material damage.

Defamation claim

Even if the insulting expressions did not reach the level of hate speech and were not considered a crime, you may still consider these expressions defamatory and file a complaint. Read more about defamation and how to submit such complaint.

Amount of compensation

In determining the amount of compensation, the court will consider:

  • the gravity of the offense
  • the injuries suffered and their consequences
  • the psychological trauma the victim may have suffered and other factors


Human Rights Guide

A European platform for human rights education