What happens if you get caught breaking the Covid-19 rules in Norway?
Covid-19 measures in Norway are broken down into a mix of both local and national restrictions and recommendations, this is how they work and what happens if you break them.
How do the measures work in Norway?
In Norway Covid-19 measures are applied at both national and local level. All municipalities in the country must adhere to the national rules and recommendations that have been implemented. Additionally, they can also introduce and enforce their own rules that apply for the municipality such as curfews or alcohol bans.
The government can also impose stricter or more lenient measures on areas, these range from from A to C. Oslo and Viken county, as an example, are under the strictest set of measures, Level A.
Covid-19 restrictions applied both nationally and locally are legally enforceable, recommendations on the other hand are not enforced by law.
The infection control restrictions are enforceable under the Communicable Diseases Act.
What happens when they are broken?
If someone is found to have broken local or national Coronavirus rules, it is up to the local prosecution authorities of that area to decide how to deal with them.
An example of this would be Prime Minister Erna Solberg’s breach of Covid-19 rules being investigated by the South East police district as it was the area under their jurisdiction where she broke the rules.
If prosecuted, the prime minister is likely to face a fine.
The Higher Prosecuting Authorities and the Office of the Attorney General of Norway issue guidance on how police should deal with those who break the rules to ensure that the law is applied consistently throughout Norway.
Previously police were advised to focus on providing guidance to those who are in breach of the rules. However, as infections have risen the guidance has changed.
“The punitive sanctions must be so tangible that they have a deterrent and attitude creating effect, the directive states, which recommends the most equal practice throughout the country,” the Office of the Attorney General of Norway outlined in its latest guidance.
If you break the law, you are most likely to receive a fine, in some cases though you can face up to 15 days imprisonment.
In most cases the district attorney advises that the fine be set at 20,000 kroner for individuals and 50,000 kroner for business.
What are the punishments?
Here is an overview of the recommended punishments, but punishments will always vary depending in the case. Each municipality will have its own rules in addition to national restrictions so always be sure to check their infection control rules when travelling between municipalities.
In extreme cases prison sentences can be applied if the fines cannot be paid or in the case of repeat offences.
Violation of rules on private gatherings
- Individuals who arrange the gathering: 20,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 15 days
- Companies that arrange the gathering: normally no lower than NOK 50,000
- Individuals who participate: 10,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 10 days
Violation of rules on business closures
- Individuals and company: Recommended to be no lower than 50,000 kroner.
- For individuals possible imprisonment for 20 days
Violation of a ban on serving alcohol in restaurants
- Individuals: 20,000 - 50,000 kroner
- Enterprises: 20,000 - 50,000 kroner
Violation of rules on quarantine and quarantine hotels, isolation
- Individuals: 20,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 15 days
Violation of the duty to wear a face-mask
- Individuals: 2,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 2 days
Violation of the obligation to register upon entry to Norway
- Individuals: 5,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 4 days
Violation of the obligation to test for Covid-19 upon entry to Norway, or within 24 hours
- Individuals 10,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 10 days
Violation of provisions on illegal border crossing between Sweden and Norway (negligent violation)
- Individuals 5,000 kroner / possible imprisonment for 4 days
Violation of provisions on illegal border crossing between Sweden and Norway (intentional violation)
- Individuals NOK 10,000 / possible imprisonment for 10 days