The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is an independent body set up by government to pay damages to the innocent victims of violent crime. Criminal injury compensation solicitors deal with applications to the CICA using the no win no fee scheme. You do not have to fund or finance your claim as it proceeds. Damages are awarded on a tariff scheme basis from public funds provided that certain conditions are met relating to behaviour, previous criminal records and co-operation. There is an appeal system for unacceptable decisions by the CICA. If you would like free advice just contact a criminal injury compensation solicitor who is a member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority panel of personal injury experts who will discuss your potential claim over the telephone and advise you on the chances of success and the anticipated amount of compensation that may be awarded by the CICA.
The CICA employ a tariff scheme in order to assess the compensation award to be made to those who have suffered personal injury as a result of criminal violence. The tariff scheme assigns a value to all potential injuries which are designated in 25 bands ranging from £1,000 to £250,000. If there is more than one injury, only the worst three injuries are considered and the value of the second and third most serious injuries are discounted before the values are aggregated. The minimum CICA award for criminal injury compensation is £1,000 and the maximum CICA award for personal injury compensation is £250,000.
The CICA imposes several conditions which must be satisfied in order to make a successful criminal injury compensation claim. The main relevant parameters as follows: –
application must normally be made within two years of the assault
the incident must be reported to the police as soon as possible
the claimant must not have provoked the attack
the claimant must cooperate with any potential prosecution
the claimants behaviour before, during and after the assault is considered
there is no need for a successful criminal prosecution
the perpetrator need not be identified
injures must take more than 6 weeks to resolve
at least two visits to a medical practitioner are required
Applicants who have ‘unspent’ convictions for any offences, not just those involving violence, may have their potential award refused or reduced on the basis that it is unfair to taxpayers to pay them compensation out of public funds. The CICA carries out a criminal record check to identify those with unspent convictions. Decisions of this nature are subject to appeal.
All interim and final decisions can be appealed by way of internal reconsideration by more senior officers within the CICA and final awards can be appealed by referral to the independent Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeal Panel (CICAP). In certain circumstances anyone who is not satisfied with a CICAP decision can take the matter up with The Parliamentary Ombudsman who has the final decision.
This organisation is a charity that assists victims of crime and witnesses whether or not the incident in question has been reported to the police. Trained volunteers at Victim Support offer :-
police and court procedure information
links to other sources of help
help in dealing with other organisations
information about criminal injury claims
help with applications for insurance payments