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Rätt till självförsvar? - Om ansvarsfrihet vid bruk av dödligt våld i nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess


  • Julia Dahl

Summary, in English

According to Chapter 24 paragraph 1 of the Swedish Penal Code a person who is subject to an impending or an embarked criminal attack has a right to protect himself by using self-defence. The fact that this right arises already when a criminal attack is impending means that the person who is subject to the attack has the right to defend himself at a quite early stage. An act committed in a self-defence situation must never be manifestly indefensible.

If the person attacked crosses the limit and acts in a way that is manifestly indefensible the provision in Chapter 24 paragraph 6 of the Penal Code may be applied. The one who has done more than is permitted can be granted impunity on the grounds that the person found it difficult to come to its senses.

Since 1995 the ECHR is binding law in Sweden. Article 2 of the Convention provides that the State Parties shall ensure that law protects the right to life. Even though this right is seen as really important, it is possible to restrict it. An extensive right to use self-defence may constitute a breach of Article 2 of the ECHR. Therefore, I examine whether there has been a change in Supreme Court practice since the ECHR was incorporated in Swedish law.

In this essay I am doing a research about the outer limits of the right to use self-defence (Chapter 24 paragraph 1 of the Penal Code) and the possibilities to be excused despite the use of excessive force (Chapter 24 paragraph 6 of the Penal Code). The overall purpose is to examine whether a person who has used deadly force in a situation of self-defence may go unpunished. I examine which circumstances the courts take into account when considering if an act of self-defence was manifestly indefensible or if the perpetrator found it difficult to come to its senses. I ask myself which circumstances that are decisive in such a consideration.

Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Bachelor's degree


  • Law and Political Science


  • Straffrätt
  • criminal law
  • nödvärn
  • nödvärnsexcess
  • självförsvar
  • EKMR


  • Uta Bindreiter