If you are the victim of a violent crime in the UK you might not know that you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation.
The right to claim compensation will depend on the individual circumstances of the violent crime and within this page we hope to provide some helpful information.
If you still have questions you need answering or would like to know if we can help you with a personal injury claim for compensation, contact us on 0191 2636200.
If you are the victim of a violent crime in the UK, there are three different ways you can make a personal injury claim for compensation for your injury.
The first is to make a personal injury claim against the assailant directly; however, this is not usually recommended as even if your personal injury compensation claim is successful, it is difficult to enforce the judgment meaning you may win your case but still never receive the compensation from the guilty party.
The second way to make a personal injury compensation claim is against your employer. This would only apply if the attack / assault took place while you were at work and you feel that your employer exposed you to an unnecessary and foreseeable risk of personal injury which could have been avoided. In cases like this a personal injury lawyer might be able to make a claim against your employer as they would for any accident at work.
The third route to take (and the one covered by this information page) is to make your personal injury claim against the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority which pays compensation to victims of violent crimes which have occurred in Great Britain (including British aircraft, hovercraft and ships but not Northern Ireland).
The purpose of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is to compensate victims of violent crime.
Under recent reforms there have been changes to the rules of the scheme which restrict the entitlement to claim based upon specific eligibility requirements.
Several special criteria apply to claims made via the CICA; including: -
- A two year deadline for making your personal injury compensation claim instead of the usual three year deadline for other personal injury compensation claims.
- You must also ordinarily be a UK resident or member of the EEA and certain types of incident may not be covered under the scheme.
- No legal costs are payable, meaning that you must either deal with the CICA directly yourself and keep your full compensation award or appoint a personal injury solicitor to deal with the compensation claim for you and pay them a fee.
- No personal injury valued at less than £1,000, under the provisions of the scheme will be considered as they deal with compensation claims for serious injuries only.
- Compensation is not paid for the first 28 weeks of lost earnings and the amounts are capped meaning that you may not be compensated fully for your lost earnings.
- Your own behaviour before, during and after the attack will be taken into account, as well as any criminal record you have and the manner in which you co-operate with the police.
- Reporting the assault to the police is a pre requisite term of the scheme.
It is possible that you could make a personal injury compensation claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority as well as against the assailant or your employer if appropriate; however the amount of compensation you receive from your employer would be deducted from any claim paid by the CICA.
All the CICA compensation would have to be refunded to the CICA if the civil damages exceeded any CICA award and all monies that you have received or may receive in the future as a result of the assault have to be declared to the CICA where some or all of that money may be taken into account.
For more information about whether we can help you with your Criminal Injury Compensation claim, contact us on 0191 2636200.
We can usually help with cases where you feel your employer is responsible for the injury as the claim for compensation would be made against your employer rather than through the CICA.
For cases made against the CICA however, as mentioned above, legal costs are not paid by the CICA and public funding is not normally available. Rather than paying legal costs from your compensation, we would usually recommend that you deal with the claim yourself without assistance from a solicitor.
Exceptions to this advice are where there are particular complexities or if you have suffered serious injuries or significant losses in which case we may be able to assist you by using our skill and experience to ensure you receive the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to. Examples of some of the cases we may be able to assist with include fatalities, loss of sight, paralysis, severe burns, loss of hearing, amputations, brain injury and any physical or psychological trauma which results in a long-term or permanent disability.
For more information about whether we can help you with your Criminal Injury Compensation Claim, contact us on 0191 2636200.
Below, are some links which may be of use to you if you have been the victim of a violent crime.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) – The CICA is responsible for administering the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme throughout England, Scotland and Wales. They pay compensation to eligible applicants who have been the victim of a violent crime.
Police – Find contact details for your local Police force.
Victim Support – Victim Support is the independent charity which helps people cope with the effects of crime. They provide free and confidential support and information to help you deal with your experience.
If you would like to find out if we can help you with a criminal injury claim for compensation with no obligation, contact us on 0191 2636200.
Paul Dodds Solicitors are experts in all matters relating to criminal injuries and assaults. We will be happy to advise you as to whether or not you have a valid compensation claim and will talk you through the entire process in plain English.
There are strict time limits in place to make any injury claim. For further information contact us without delay 0n 0191 2636200.