Criminal Injury Compensation Claims


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By Crispin Bateman

on Tuesday 15 January 2019


Police tape

At Accident Line Direct, we are specialists at obtaining our clients the maximum possible compensation for personal injuries, both physical and mental. One aspect of this is in securing personal compensation for criminal injuries, brought on by assault.

Can you claim compensation for being attacked?

I’ve been attacked by a criminal – what is a CICA claim?

Are there any problems with a CICA claim?

How long does it take to get criminal injury compensation?

Am I eligible for a CICA claim?

What common types of crime and criminal injuries are covered by CICA?

How much compensation do you get for assault?

How do I claim against a criminal?

Can you claim compensation for being attacked?

It is often perceived that compensation can only be gained when there is a company at fault, but that isn’t the case.

If you have been the victim of an assault then you are entitled to claim suitable compensation from the perpetrator of the crime, and in their absence, there is a government run scheme overseen by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) to ensure that you receive the financial recompense that you are due.

This means you can receive a criminal injury award even if your attacker has never been identified or caught.

I’ve been attacked by a criminal – what is a CICA claim?

The criminal injuries compensation scheme is a government-run arrangement that seeks to provide a fair financial award to anyone in England, Scotland or Wales who has been the victim of a violent crime.

If you are eligible, then you are fully entitled to make a claim yourself without any legal representation. The claim is not brought to a court but is assessed by a tribunal and paid out based on a set of guidelines and tariffs.

Are there any problems with a CICA claim?

Unfortunately, many legitimate cases are rejected by CICA due to the applicant's inability to navigate the complicated technicalities of building an application. Furthermore, many successful claims fail to obtain the maximum possible award and find themselves being somewhat ‘short-changed’ due to a similar level of inexperience.

At Accident Line Direct, we have a team of specialist no win no fee personal injury lawyers who are fully-versed in the finer points of the CICA system and can work on your behalf to make a successful claim with the highest possible payout.

How long does it take to get criminal injury compensation?

At the fast end of the scale, some claims are completed by CICA in as little as eight weeks. These tend to be simple claims with no mental health component (for example, a nightclub assault that led to a fractured jaw) and can be completed based on the initial police paperwork.

CICA try to ensure that all claims are completed within an 18-month timeframe and most of the time they meet this deadline. Cases which extend beyond the 18-month limit are typically those with a complicated and detailed mental health history that must be analysed and assessed by medical experts – examples of this include complex PTSD claims and those relating to long-term abuse.

Am I eligible for a CICA claim?

There is a set of criteria to be eligible for an award under the criminal injuries compensation scheme:

  • The assault must have taken place in England, Scotland or Wales.
  • The original attack needs to have been reported to the police within 48 hours of occurring.
  • You must have been fully co-operative with the police throughout any investigation.
  • You must not have previously tried to make a claim against the same incident.
  • The claim with CICA must be placed within two years of the original incident.
  • The value of the compensation must exceed £1,000.

As CICA work hand-in-hand with the police, there is a great emphasis on your proper following of procedure when interacting with them.

In addition to a single assault, it is possible to claim with CICA for a longer-running situation, such as a case of child abuse that took place over years. In these cases, the two-year limitation on initiating the claim no longer stands, and a compensation award can be given many years after the end of the situation.

What common types of crime and criminal injuries are covered by CICA?

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority are there to provide financial support for any type of criminal attack or assault upon your person, whether the resulting injuries are physical or psychological in nature.

Examples of incidents and situations which fall under the remit of CICA include:

Physical assault

This can include incidents of Actual Bodily Harm (ABH), Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH), domestic violence, workplace-related violence, attack in a public place (such as a mugging), nightclub-related attacks including violence done by bouncers or other staff, violent attacks with a weapon and more.

Sexual assault

Any unwanted sexual attention is considered criminal and can be brought for compensation with CICA. This includes:

  • Unwanted groping
  • Touching above clothes
  • Forced physical contact
  • Medical misconduct
  • Other sexual assault
  • Rape

Sexual assault can also include non-physical conduct, including stalking.

Psychological harm and damage

If you have suffered emotional harm or damage to your mental health because of any violent attack, it will also be fully considered in your claim for compensation - this can include depression, anxiety, stress and PTSD.

Many people suffer from short-term mental health problems after an attack, such as being unwilling to walk on the streets alone, or wanting to remain at home, and these issues are considered as much an injury as any physical damage.

Long-term abuse

Victims of long-term abuse, from child neglect to adult sexual abuse, are entitled to place a claim for financial recompense with CICA. In these cases, the typical criteria regarding time limits on claims are usually waived.

How much compensation do you get for assault?

Claims made through CICA must have a minimum award value of £1,000 to be considered, and there is a maximum value of £500,000 for any award.

In order to obtain the largest sum for any criminal damage compensation award, it is recommended to seek legal representation – a great number of ‘do it yourself’ claims fail to put forward enough evidence to encourage a full pay-out and the amount of compensation awarded is often far smaller than a properly-represented case would have received.

How do I claim against a criminal?

At Accident Line Direct, we have the finest criminal injury lawyers able to represent you and will petition the CICA for the maximum possible award on your behalf.

We believe that everyone has the right to top-quality legal representation no matter their background or financial status and so we work on a No Win No Fee basis to ensure this.

Under No Win No Fee, we take our success fee as a percentage of any final award and charge you nothing for our services throughout the proceedings. By tying our fortunes in with yours, you can be assured that our lawyers will work to the very best of their ability to secure the maximum possible payout.

If you would like Accident Line Direct to help you receive the best financial compensation for your injury, then we’d love to hear from you. Give us a call or, if you prefer, fill in our contact form to have one of our team call you back at a time that’s convenient to you.

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Accident Line Direct can help you begin your potential claim, get in touch today!