Victims' Rights Complaint Procedures

The Crime Victims' Rights Act of 2004, Title 18 USC 3771, affords crime victims specific rights:

  • The right to be reasonably protected from the accused.

  • The right to reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of any public court proceeding, or any parole proceeding, involving the crime or of any release or escape of the accused.

  • The right not to be excluded from any such public court proceeding, unless the court, after receiving clear and convincing evidence, determines that testimony by the victim would be materially altered if the victim heard other testimony at that proceeding.

  • The right to be reasonably heard at any public proceeding in the district court involving release, plea, sentencing, or any parole proceeding.

  • The reasonable right to confer with the attorney for the Government in the case.

  • The right to full and timely restitution provided by law.

  • The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay.

  • The right to be treated with fairness and with respect for the victim's dignity and privacy.

A crime victim may file a complaint against any Department of Justice (DOJ) employee who violates or fails to provide the rights specified above. Accordingly, the DOJ has established the Office of Victims' Rights Ombudsman to investigate complaints against DOJ employees.

The BOP is committed to respecting and protecting the rights of crime victims and works with the Victims' Rights Ombudsman to resolve complaints from crime victims. If a crime victim believes any BOP employee has violated or refused to provide the rights established in Title 18 USC 3771, the crime victim should complete the complaint form (English and Spanish versions available) in its entirety within 60 days of the violation. The completed form should be forwarded to:

Federal Bureau of Prisons
Office of Internal Affairs
320 First St., NW, Room 600
Washington, DC 20534

An investigation into the complaint will be conducted and the Victims' Rights Ombudsman will notify the crime victim whether or not a violation was sustained.