Criminal Injuries Claims (CICA)
If you have been the victim of a violent crime, you may be entitled to compensation via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme. This is a government funded scheme designed to compensate blameless victims of violent crime in Great Britain. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) administer the Scheme and decide all claims.
The rules of the Scheme and the value of the payments awarded are set by Parliament and are calculated by reference to a tariff of injuries, the size of the award varying to reflect the seriousness of the injury/assault suffered.
Claims administered under the Scheme can be quite complex and Jordans have a team of expert lawyers who can explain the legal technicalities of the Scheme and maximise the award that you may be entitled to.
What Type of Claim Can Be Made Under the Scheme
The Scheme defines a “crime of violence” as either:
(a) a physical attack;
(b) any other act or omission of a violent nature which causes physical injury to a person;
(c) a threat against a person, causing fear of immediate violence in circumstances which would cause a person of reasonable firmness to be put in such fear;
(d) a sexual assault to which a person did not in fact consent; or
(e) arson or fire-raising.
The Scheme is described as “a fund of last resort” and therefore, if there are other means of obtaining compensation, these should be explored in the first instance. For example, if you were subjected to physical assaults whilst at a residential school or detention centre, it may be more appropriate to pursue a claim directly against those responsible for the school or the centre.
Our team will be able to advise you on the route which is most suitable for your claim. Jordans have experience in dealing with a wide range of cases via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme and we have a dedicated department which specialise in sexual abuse cases.
How Can We Help With Your Application
Eligibility Under the Scheme
In addition to being a victim of a crime of violence, there are a number of other eligibility criteria which must be met, to enable an application to succeed. If your application does not meet these criteria, your claim could be rejected.
Jordans have experience in overturning a significant number of rejections and our specialist team regularly attend Tribunal hearings on behalf of our clients to content the decisions made by the CICA. Some examples of the decisions we have been overturned are shown below:
- Ms T. Our client had suffered sexual abuse at the hands of different family members and had two claims which had been rejected by the CICA, on the basis that there was no evidence that a crime of violence occurred. We argued that she met the eligibility criteria and the Tribunal was satisfied that, on the balance of probabilities, she had been the victim of two crimes of violence and her appeal was successful. We are currently awaiting an award from the CICA.
- Mr M. Our client suffered sexual abuse by a member of his family, causing severe psychological injuries. The CICA rejected his claim on the basis that he had failed to make his application within two years of reporting the assault to the police. We argued that our client’s psychological injuries had prevented him from making a claim within two years. The Tribunal was satisfied that this was the case and his appeal was successful.
The Value of your Claim
If the CICA consider that you have an eligible claim, they will make an award of damages. On many occasions, this award does not take account of the full extent of the injuries sustained.
The CICA will often make an award for the physical injuries sustained but fail to make an award for the psychological impact of the assault.
We regularly secure increased awards for our clients, either via the CICA’s review procedure or by appearing before a Tribunal. Some examples of awards we have been able to successfully increase are shown below:
- Mr C. Our client suffered sexual abuse by a close member of his family. The CICA made an award of damages but did not take account of the psychological impact of the assault. We presented evidence to the Tribunal that he had a permanent mental injury as a result of the abuse and secured an increase in his award of £5,500.00
- Ms R. Our client suffered serious sexual abuse by a family friend. The CICA made an award of damages but failed to take account of either the fact that she had suffered a psychological injury or that the injury had resulted in her being unable to work. We were able to secure an increase in her award of over £100,000.
If you have made an Application you or another firm has applied on your behalf and you are unhappy with the outcome (and you are within time to appeal the decision), we may be able to have your case reconsidered by the CICA or Tribunal Service.
Making Your Claim
CICA claims can be complex and there are a number of pitfalls. Our expert team at Jordans are here to assist. If you believe you have been the victim of a crime of violence, speak to a member of our team today on our dedicated department number 0800 9555 094. It would be helpful to have to hand when you call, if possible:
– Your unique Police Crime Reference Number
– Name of the police station you reported to
– Name of the Officer that dealt with your incident
What can we do
The effects of abuse on a child can have far reaching implications, having an extreme impact on their development as adults and their day to day functioning.
Our Child Abuse Lawyers are here to provide support and guidance at a very difficult time. If you or someone you know has suffered abuse in any of the situations outlined above please contact the Abuse Team on our dedicated freephone number 0800 9555 094 and one of our specialist Child Abuse Lawyers will be happy to discuss your situation in confidence.
Whilst we cannot change what has happened in the past, we will endeavour to recover compensation to allow you to seek the required support to rebuild your life.