If you suffer an injury when a violent crime is committed, the first thing you’ll probably want is for the perpetrator to be punished for their crime. At the same time, you’ll begin the recovery process which can take a long time and can have an effect on everyday life or your ability to work. Therefore, you may want compensation to help with the recovery process. But how do you claim compensation if the criminal doesn’t have the ability to pay you or if they’ve not been identified? Well, the government runs the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) which is able to compensate violent crime victims when no other compensation is possible. Therefore, we’ll look at the types of crime covered by the scheme, the eligibility criteria for claiming and the amount of compensation you could receive.
Advice.co.uk are here to help you begin your claim. Our team of advisors can support you by reviewing your case on a no-obligation basis and by providing free legal advice. If they think there’s a reasonable chance of making a successful claim, you’ll be referred to a personal injury solicitor on our panel.
To start your claim today, please call 0161 696 9685 straight away. Otherwise, please carry on reading this article to find out more about CICA claims.
Select A Section
- A Guide To Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims
- Calculating Claims For Criminal Injuries Compensation
- Types Of Damages Which You Could Claim
- What Are Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims?
- The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority
- Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For A Criminal Injury?
- Types Of Claim Which May Be Made Through The CICA
- Criminal Injuries Compensation For Assaults
- Criminal Injuries Compensation For ABH And GBH
- Criminal Injuries Compensation For Rape And Sexual Assaults
- Criminal Injuries Compensation For Historical Sexual Assault
- Criminal Injuries Compensation Claim Time Limits
- No Win No Fee Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims
- How To Start A Criminal Injuries Compensation Claim
- Contact Our Specialist Team
- More Information
A Guide To Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims
When a crime happens, which causes you to sustain an injury, you probably won’t even think about making a compensation claim for your suffering. However, the impact of crime can be long-lasting and leave you with both physical and psychological injuries through no fault of your own.
That’s why the government set up the criminal injuries compensation fund to allow innocent victims a method of claiming compensation to aid their recovery. The scheme allows claims for crimes such as assault, sexual assault and historical abuse. It’s not the same as a personal injury claim though and the amount of compensation isn’t usually the same. Therefore, CICA claims are generally made when no other option for compensation is available. As well as looking at when you might be able to claim, we’ll also review how much compensation could be paid.
Importantly, the criminal who injured you doesn’t need to have been caught, charged or prosecuted before you make your claim. That means you could begin your case as soon as possible. The CICA has its own eligibility criteria which include a 2-year time limit from the date the crime took place. There are some exceptions to this rule which we’ll review later in the guide.
So, how long does it take to get criminal injuries compensation? CICA state that you should expect to wait for 12-months to be paid but they do prioritise older cases as well as newer cases which are simple to process so the waiting time could differ. For more complex cases, you should expect to wait more than a year.
If you’re considering making a criminal injuries compensation claim, please speak with a member of our team about your options.
Violent Crime Statistics
In this section, we’re going to look at data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) relating to crime in the year ending March 2020. For that period, the following number of crimes were estimated:
- Violent crimes – 1,239,000.
- Homicide – 683.
- Knife crime – 46,265.
- Robbery 83,241.
With regards to sexual offences, the report estimates 2.2% of adults were victims of sexual assault. The total number of sexual offences recorded by the police was 154,113. If you’ve been the victim of any type of violent crime, you could be entitled to seek compensation through the CICA scheme. Our advisors can explain your options to you so please get in touch today.
Calculating Claims For Criminal Injuries Compensation
To give you an idea of how much compensation you might receive through the CICA scheme, we’ve included the table below. Because the list of criminal injuries is quite extensive, we’ve only included a sample here. Therefore, don’t worry if your injury is not listed, you could still be entitled to claim. Once your claim has been assessed by a member of our team, you’ll be provided with a more accurate compensation estimate.
|Psychological Injury||£1,000||A mental injury which has been confirmed by a psychiatrist lasting up to 28 weeks.|
|Psychological Injury||£13,500||A mental injury which has been confirmed by a psychiatrist lasting over 5 years (but not permanent).|
|Psychological Injury||£27,000||A permanent and seriously disabling mental injury which has been confirmed by a psychiatrist.|
|Arm Injury||£44,000||Loss of function in a non-dominant arm.|
|Elbow Injury||£6,200||A fractured or dislocated elbow causing continuing significant disability.|
|Shoulder Injury||£3,500||A dislocated shoulder with continuing significant disability.|
|Back injury||£6,200||A permanent and seriously disabling prolapsed invertebral disc.|
|Ankle Injury||£11,000||Fractured or dislocated ankle injuries which cause a significant and continuing disability.|
|Hip Injury||£16,500||Where both hips are fractured and caused continuing significant disability.|
To try and ensure you receive the correct level of compensation, your solicitor will arrange for a medical assessment to be completed locally. A medical specialist will look at your doctor’s records and ask several questions about how you’ve been affected. They’ll then produce a document that contains:
- A list of injuries you’ve sustained.
- Information on how they’ve affected you.
- Details of any long-term symptoms which will persist.
It’s important to note that when claiming for multiple injuries, the CICA will only compensate you for the 3 most serious. These are paid on a sliding scale which means you’ll get 100% of the tariff for the most serious injury, 30% for the second and 15% for the third. For more information about how this affects your claim, please call an advisor today.
Types Of Damages Which You Could Claim
When you make a compensation claim through the CICA, there are different elements that are used depending on how you have been affected.
These are used to compensate victims of crime for any pain, suffering and loss of amenity caused by their injuries. The table in the previous part of this guide contained examples of general damages payments. The CICA scheme’s rules allow you to claim for the 3 most serious injuries that you’ve sustained. Therefore, a medical report will be used to demonstrate the nature of each injury.
These are designed to reimburse you for any financial losses incurred as a direct result of your injuries. Claims for special expenses need to be necessary, caused by your criminal injury and reasonable. The CICA will not pay expenses that could be paid by other services like the NHS or the benefits system.
Special expenses can include:
If your injuries mean you’re unable to work for more than 28 weeks, you could claim lost earnings through the CICA scheme.
You could also claim back any medical expenses that arise from treatment provided by the NHS. This might include travelling costs as well as the costs of prescription medicines.
If your injuries mean you need specialist equipment to help you daily, then you could claim back the cost. This could include physical aids such as wheelchairs, walking sticks or even specially adapted vehicles.
You could claim for changes to your home which improve your independence. This could cover the cost of ramps or stairlifts.
If your injuries mean that you need support with bodily functions or food preparation, you could include any associated costs within your claim.
Claiming For Payments From The Hardship Fund
When you suffer injuries that aren’t serious enough to be compensated through the CICA scheme, you could request a payment through the hardship fund which is also operated by the CICA.
What Are Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims?
There are different ways to make criminal injuries compensation claims. However, a CICA claim is made when there are no other means of a victim of violent crime being compensated. For instance, if a criminal had the means to compensate their victim directly, then a claim through the CICA scheme wouldn’t be possible. Compensation can be claimed for physical and psychological injuries as well as some financial losses incurred as a result of the criminal injury.
Compensation of this type is not a fine or penalty paid by the criminal, they are awards made to help the victim recover or improve their standard of living. They can also be used to recover the financial losses caused by your injuries.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is an agency of the Ministry of Justice. It is responsible for paying compensation to victims of crime based on the criteria set by the governments Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme. The scheme covers victims of crime in England, Wales and Scotland.
Over 200 staff are employed by the CICA and they manage over 30,000 claims a year which equates to more than £130 million in compensation payments.
Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For A Criminal Injury?
The CICA eligibility criteria are different from that of a normal personal injury claim. To be entitled to claim you need to:
- Be a blameless victim of violent crime.
- Have suffered a physical or psychological injury.
- Be a British citizen (or meet other residency requirements).
- Report the crime to the police.
- Claim within 2-years of the crime happening (there are some exceptions that we’ll discuss later).
- Co-operate fully with the criminal justice system and the police.
There are some things that could prevent you from claiming such as having unspent criminal convictions or if your behaviour contributed to the crime happening. In some cases, the CICA may reduce the level of compensation rather than block it completely depending on the length of the sentence you were given or how long ago your crime was committed.
Types Of Claim Which May Be Made Through The CICA
In the next few sections of this guide, we’ll look at the different crimes against you which could lead to a claim. CICA documentation states that victims of violent crimes or people whose loved ones have died in such crimes can make a claim. The crimes we’ll look at include:
- Physical assault including ABH and GBH.
- Rape and sexual assault.
- Historical sexual abuse.
Criminal Injuries Compensation For Assaults
The first two crimes we’ll cover are for GBH or ABH. Both crimes are forms of assault covered by the Offences Against The Person Act 1861.
If you’re injured in an assault against you, then you could be entitled to make a claim. Our advisors will be able to advise you on your options so please get in touch when you’re ready to begin a claim.
Criminal Injuries Compensation For ABH And GBH
Actual Bodily Harm (ABH) and Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH) are both forms of assault that can lead to criminal charges and a prison sentence for the perpetrator. The main difference between the two is that more serious injuries will be sustained in cases of GBH.
If you’ve been the victim of ABH or GBH, you could be entitled to claim criminal injuries compensation. Again, the criminal doesn’t have to have been caught or prosecuted for you to be eligible to claim. For free advice on making such a claim, please contact an advisor.
Criminal Injuries Compensation For Rape And Sexual Assaults
Any victim of rape or sexual assault could claim through the CICA scheme even if the criminal hasn’t been caught or charged. While seeking compensation will probably the last thing you’re concerned about after such a horrific crime, any compensation awarded could be used to support your recovery in a small way.
We understand how difficult it will be to discuss your case with a stranger, but our advisors are trained to handle such calls with discretion, empathy and in confidence. If you find it easier, you could discuss your claim with an online advisor using our live chat feature.
Criminal Injuries Compensation For Historical Sexual Assault
You might think that you’re not able to claim for historical sexual abuse because of the length of time that’s passed since the crime happened. However, CICA still allows claims to be made if you submit one within 2-years of reporting the historical assault to the police. If the incident took place before you turned 18, and was not reported, you can make a CICA claim within two years from you reporting the incident or abuse to the police
It’s quite common for such crimes not to be reported until later on as the victim might have suffered from psychological problems or felt scared of exposing what happened. We could help you begin a claim in such cases so please contact a member of our team today. Your call will be treated in complete confidence and we’ll work at a speed that suits you.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Claim Time Limits
The amount of time you have to make a CICA claim is different from the normal personal injury claims time limit. In general, you have 2-years from the date of the crime to submit your claim.
However, the limitation period for claiming could be extended if:
- The application was unable to be made earlier due to exceptional circumstances; and
- Enough evidence has been provided which means the claims officer does need to make extensive enquiries.
Importantly, CICA does not need to wait for a criminal trial to be completed before they payout. Therefore, you shouldn’t use that as a reason for delaying your claim. Speak to a member of our team today to find out more.
For claims on behalf of victims who are under 18-years old, the CICA will allow claims after the 2-year limitation period. However, they advise you to begin as soon as possible while everything is as fresh as possible in your mind. If that doesn’t happen, the victim has 2-years from their 18th birthday to begin their own claim.
No Win No Fee Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims
To reduce worry and your financial risk, our panel of solicitors will carry out their work on a No Win No Fee basis if they believe your case can be won.
First of all, they’ll go through what happened and how you were injured. They’ll then check your eligibility to claim through the CICA. If they’re happy, you’ll be given a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). The CFA is your contract and is used to fund your case. Here are some of the benefits of claiming in this way:
- You will not be asked to pay any solicitor fees before the claim begins.
- There are no solicitor’s fees to pay while the claim is ongoing.
- Should the claim fail, you don’t need to pay solicitor’s fees at all.
To cover your solicitor’s work and costs, a success fee will be deducted from your compensation if the case is won. This is a small percentage of your settlement which is legally capped. So that there are no surprises later on, your CFA will provide details of the success fee when you sign it.
How To Start A Criminal Injuries Compensation Claim
When you contact Advice.co.uk to discuss a CICA claim, this is the process we’ll follow:
|Get in touch with our team by email, phone, or live chat.||Your criminal injuries claim will then be assessed||Once you're happy to proceed, the claim can begin.|
Contact Our Specialist Team
Thanks for visiting Advice.co.uk and reading this article about making a criminal injuries compensation claim. Hopefully, the information we’ve provided has helped you understand whether you’re eligible to make a claim. To discuss your case with us you can:
- Telephone a member of our team for comprehensive claims advice on 0161 696 9685.
- Tell us what happened by completing our online contact form.
- Connect with one of our online advisors via the live chat option.
When you contact Advice.co.uk, an advisor will review your options with you. They’ll give you completely free advice and could connect you to a No Win No Fee personal injury solicitor from our panel if there’s a reasonable chance your claim could be won.
Thanks for visiting Advice.co.uk and reading our guide about claiming criminal injuries compensation. We hope that you’ve received all the information you needed but to support you further, we’ve listed some further useful guides and resources below. Our team will be happy to provide any further information you need to please do get in touch if that’s the case.
Reporting Child Abuse – Resources from the government providing advice on reporting rape and other sexual crimes against children.
NHS Services – Use this online locator to find hospitals and other NHS services in your area.
Report A Crime – This online tool allows you to report various different crimes to the police.
Assault At Work Claims – Information on making a personal injury claim if you’re assaulted at work.
Reporting Historical Sexual Abuse – Guidance on the steps you could take to report a historical sex crime.
Claiming For Permanent Scars – Information on making a personal injury claim because your injuries have left you with permanent scars.
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