Estonia. Domestic violence and intimate partner sexual violence - Labirint
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Estonia. Domestic violence and intimate partner sexual violence

    Estonia. Domestic violence and intimate partner sexual violence

    We have collected instructions, recommendations and contacts, which can help you in the chosen country and situation

    If you are in danger now, assess whether you need emergency help.

    01. Call the Police

    — What should I do if I am in danger and need emergency help?

    Emergency number 112 (police, ambulance, rescue). If your do not need urgent reaction of the police, you can can also report a crime through:  https://www.politsei.ee/en/report-to-police

    — Do I need documents/being registered in the country to call the police?

    No, you don’t need.

    — When I call the police, what language should I speak?

    Services are provided in Estonian, Russian and English.

    — Can I say that I am a victim of domestic violence? Authorities’ formal and informal attitudes towards victims of domestic violence.

    You are recommended to say so. 

    — How long will it take for the police to come? What should I do if they do not come?

    The police reacts to all call-outs  as quickly as possible  but  the call-outs that require  immediate response  shall  be served in the first place e.g. if:

    • A crime has been committed just before the reporting and the perpetrators haven’t managed to move far;
    • A crime is happening now;
    • A crime is a serious crime against person etc.

    — Are there any restraining orders/ no contact orders etc.? How do they work?

    Following is the imposition of Restraining Order and Other Similar Measures for Protection of Personality Rights from Civil Court Procedure Act (Chapter 55)

    § 544. Application of restraining order and other measures for protection of personality rights

    (1) In order to protect the personal life of a person or other personality rights, the court may apply a restraining order or other measures based on § 1055 of the Law of Obligations Act. Such measures may be applied with a term of up to three years.

    (2) If the court conducts proceedings in the matter of application of measures in order to protect a personality right in connection with a family relationship, the provisions regulating family matters on petition additionally apply, unless otherwise provided by this Chapter.

    (3) In the case provided in subsection (1) of this section, the court may adjudicate the matter in a proceeding on petition, if it is adjudicated together with other action or if the plaintiff so requests.

    § 546. Application of provisional legal protection

    Where necessary, the court may secure a petition for application of a restraining order or another measure for protection of personality rights or apply provisional legal protection by a ruling. As a measure of provisional legal protection, measures for securing the action may be applied pursuant to the procedure for securing an action.

    § 547. Service and entry into force of ruling

    A ruling on application of a restraining order or another measure for protection of personality rights shall be served on the persons with regard to and in the interests of whom such measures are applied. The ruling is subject to execution after the date in which the ruling is served on the obligated person.

    § 548. Recall and amendment of measures for protection of personality rights

    If circumstances change, the court may recall or amend a restraining order or another measure for protection of personality rights. Before recalling or amending a measure, the court must hear the participants.

    Code of Criminal Procedure

    § 1411. Temporary restraining order

    (1) For protection of private life or other personality rights of the victim, a person suspected or accused of a crime against the person or against a minor may be prohibited to stay in places determined by the court, to approach the persons determined by the court or communicate with such persons at the request of a Prosecutor’s Office and on the basis of an order of a preliminary investigation judge or on the basis of a court ruling.

    (2) The temporary restraining order is applied to a suspect or accused with the consent of the victim.

    (3) In order to issue a ruling on application of temporary restraining order, a preliminary investigation judge shall examine the criminal file and interrogate the suspect or accused and, where necessary, the victim with a view to ascertaining whether the request for temporary restraining order is justified. The prosecutor and, at the request of the suspect or accused, the counsel shall also be summoned before the court or the preliminary investigation judge and their opinions shall be heard.

    (4) A ruling on temporary restraining order shall set out:

    • the reasons for the temporary restraining order;
    • the conditions of the temporary restraining order.

    (5) A victim, a Prosecutor’s Office, a suspect, accused or his or her counsel may file an appeal pursuant to the procedure provided for in Chapter 15 of this Code against application of temporary restraining order or refusal to apply temporary restraining order.

    (6) A copy of a ruling on establishment of temporary restraining order shall be submitted to the suspect or accused and victim and sent to the police prefecture of the residence of the victim. A preliminary investigation judge or court shall also immediately notify other persons whom the restraining order concerns of the application of temporary restraining order.

    § 1412. Verification of reasons for application of temporary restraining order

    (1) A suspect or accused or his or her counsel may, within three months after the application of temporary restraining order, submit a request to the preliminary investigation judge or court to verify the reasons for the application of temporary restraining order or to amend the conditions of application of temporary restraining order. A new request may be submitted three months after the reviewing of the previous request.

    (2) A preliminary investigation judge or court shall review a request within five days as of the receipt thereof. The prosecutor, victim, suspect or accused and, at the request of the suspect or accused, his or her counsel shall be summoned before the preliminary investigation judge or court.

    (3) A request shall be adjudicated by a court ruling. A ruling made in reviewing a request is not subject to contestation except in the case when the conditions of the temporary restraining order are amended.

    3101. Decision concerning restraining order

    (1) At the request of the victim, the court may apply, for protection of private life or other personality rights of the victim on the basis of § 1055 of the Law of Obligation Act, the restraining order with a term of up to three years to an offender convicted of a crime against the person or against a minor.

    (2) A court shall adjudicate a request for restraining order pursuant to the procedure provided for in § 310 of this Code.

    — What can i do if the order is violated?

    You can call the police as violation of a restraining order is a crime.

    Penal Code

    § 3312. Violation of restraining order

    Violation of a restraining order or other measure of protection of personality right imposed by a court decision, if this poses a danger to the life, health or property of persons, or repeated violation of a restraining order or other measure of protection of personality right is punishable by a pecuniary punishment or up to one year of imprisonment.

    02. Get medical help

    — How to get medical help?

    Information and advice on health issues is available in English and Russian on the family physician advisory line 1220 (when calling from a foreign number (+372 634 6630). If necessary, the person is referred to the emergency number 112.

    Psychological support is available from the crisis support hotline 116 006 (+372 6147 393). In addition, you can also use online chat at www.palunabi.ee. Support is available in Estonian, English and Russian.

    — When I call the ambulance, what language should I speak?

    You can use Estonian, English, or Russian languages.

    — Do I need money/documents/being registered in the country to get medical help?

    Emergency medical care

    In the event of a serious or life-threatening health problem, all people in Estonia, including war refugees or persons in transit here are entitled to emergency medical care.

    Pharmacies are allowed to accept paper prescriptions issued in Ukraine, except for narcotic and psychotropic drugs. The pharmacist should have a clear understanding on what kind of medicine has been prescribed for the person.

    Primary medical care

    Primary care centers provide primary care to all Ukrainian war refugees. You do not have to be on the family physician’s list to get medical help. The primary care centers provide medical care as needed and refer the patient to a medical specialist for further examinations or necessary procedures. You will find the list of primary care centers that provide medical assistance to war refugees: by clicking on the “I have a health concern that does not require emergency care” button in the diagram.

    Legislation punishing domestic and intimate partner sexual violence?

    List of Articles from Administrative and Criminal Codes

    In Estonian legislation there is no separate section for domestic violence, but the latest changes to Penal Code consider violence against the partner to be aggravated circumstances in committing the crime.

    Penal Code § 58. Aggravating circumstances

    Aggravating circumstances are: 

    <…>

    3) commission of the offenсe knowingly against a person who is less than eighteen years of age, pregnant, in an advanced age, in need of assistance or has a severe mental disorder;

    4) commission of the offence against a person who is in a service or financially dependent relationship with the offender, and against a former or current family member of the offender, against a person who lives with the offender or a person who is otherwise in a family relationship with the offender;

    <…>

    12) commission of the offence against a minor with abuse of power or confidence;

    13) commission of the offence against the person by an adult in the presence of a minor.

    Following there is a list of the offences against the person from Penal Code (Chapter 9):

    Offences Against Life (Division 1)

    Subdivision 1: Offences hazardous to health

    § 118. Causing serious damage to health

    Causing of health damage which results in:

    • a danger to life;
    • a severe physical illness;
    • a severe mental disorder;
    • miscarriage;
    • a permanent mutilating facial injury, or;
    • the loss or cessation of functioning of an organ,

    is punishable by 4 to 12 years’ imprisonment.

    § 119. Causing serious health damage through negligence

    (1) Causing serious health damage through negligence is punishable by a pecuniary punishment or up to one year of imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if it causes serious damage to the health of two or more persons, is punishable by up to 3 years’ imprisonment.

    Subdivision 2: Acts of violence

    § 120. Threat

    (1) A threat to kill, cause health damage or cause significant damage to or destroy property, if there is reason to fear the realization of such threat, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment or up to one year of imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 121. Physical abuse

    (1) Causing damage to the health of another person and physical abuse which causes pain is punishable by a pecuniary punishment or up to one year of imprisonment.

    (2) The same act if:

    • it causes health damage which persists for at least four weeks;
    • committed in a close relationship or relationship of subordination; or
    • committed repeatedly, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment or up to five years’ imprisonment.

    (3) An act provided for in subsection (1) or (2) of this section, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    Sexual Self-determination (Division 7)

    141. Rape

    (1) Sexual intercourse or commission of another act of sexual nature with a person against his or her will by using force or taking advantage of a situation in which the person is not capable of initiating resistance or comprehending the situation is punishable by one to five years’ imprisonment.

    (2) The same act:

    • if committed against a person of less than eighteen years of age;
    • if committed by a group;
    • serious damage is thereby caused to the health of the victim;
    • it causes the death of the victim;
    • it leads the victim to suicide or a suicide attempt; or
    • it was committed by a person who has previously committed a criminal offence provided in this Division, is punishable by six to fifteen years’ imprisonment. 

    (3) The same act, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 143. Compelling person to engage in sexual intercourse or other act of sexual nature

    (1) Sexual intercourse or commission of another act of sexual nature with a person against his or her will by taking advantage of the dependency of the victim on the offender but without using force or outside a situation where the person was not capable of initiating resistance or comprehending the situation as provided for in § 141 of this Code, is punishable by up to three years’ imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if committed by a person who has previously committed a criminal offence provided for in this Division, is punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment.

    (3) The same act, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 143². Sexual intercourse or other act of sexual nature using influence

    (1) Engagement in sexual intercourse or commission of another act of sexual nature by an adult person with a person of less than eighteen years of age by taking advantage of the dependency of the victim on the offender or with abuse of influence or confidence but without using force or outside a situation where the person was not capable of initiating resistance or comprehending the situation as provided for in § 141 of this Code, is punishable by two to eight years’ imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if committed by a person who has previously committed a criminal offence provided for in this Division, is punishable by three to eight years’ imprisonment.

    (3) The same act, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 144. Sexual intercourse with descendant

    (1) Sexual intercourse or commission of another act of sexual nature by a parent, person holding parental rights or grandparent with a child or grandchild is punishable by two to eight years’ imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if committed by a person who has previously committed a criminal offence provided for in this Division, is punishable by three to eight years’ imprisonment.

    § 145. Sexual intercourse or other act of sexual nature with child

    (1) Engagement in sexual intercourse or commission of another act of sexual nature by an adult person with a person of less than fourteen years of age is punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment.

    (2) The same act, if committed by a person who has previously committed a criminal offence provided for in this Division, is punishable by two to eight years’ imprisonment.

    (3) The same act, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 145¹. Buying sex from minors

    (1) Engaging in sexual intercourse or committing another act of sexual nature with a person of less than eighteen years of age for monetary payment or any other benefit, is punishable by up to three years’ imprisonment.

    (2) An act specified in subsection (1) of this section, if committed against a person of less than fourteen years of age, is punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment.

    (3) The act specified in subsections (1) and (2) of this section, if it was committed by a person who has previously committed criminal offence provided for in this Division, is punishable by two to eight years’ imprisonment.

    (4) An act specified in subsection (1) or (2) of this section, if committed by a legal person, is punishable by a pecuniary punishment.

    § 147. Inability of person of less than ten years to comprehend

    Within the meaning of the offences provided for in this Division, a person is deemed to be incapable to comprehend if he or she is less than ten years of age.

    Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure and Civil Court Procedure Act can be found in English: http://www.legaltext.ee

    The latest versions of previously mentioned acts in Estonian can be found in www.riigiteataja.ee 

    03. List of local (N)GOs who can help victims of domestic and sexual violence?

    — Which organizations can help?

    Tallinn Women’s Crisis Center, +372 5396 9834, http://www.naisteabi.ee/en/ The Tallinn Women’s Crisis Center offers support, understanding and help. The Center provides primary counseling to assess your situation, psychological and legal counseling and shelter during crisis periods, if necessary.

    Victim support helpline, 116 006, http://www.palunabi.ee/ Victim support provides extensive assistance to people who have been abused or mistreated. People will be supported in cases of physical, psychological, sexual and economic abuse as well as accidents and crimes. Additional services include psychological counseling and applying for victim support compensation.

    Crisis support counseling, https://www.tallinn.ee/eng/Teenus-Kriisiabi-21 Crisis support counseling is short-term psychological aid for people who have been through a traumatic experience or accident (including being a witness/bystander) or who have encountered a crisis in their everyday life and feel the need for support.

    Did our instructions help?

    When compiling the instructions, we relied on the help of volunteers and lawyers from different countries. If something went wrong – the organization didn’t respond to you, you found a bug or the instructions weren’t precise enough – tell us about it. Email us at: help@labirint.online

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