If you have been a victim of a violent crime resulting in physical or psychological injury you may be entitled to compensation under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme.
This scheme is administered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). Compensation under the scheme is outside the civil courts system.
Benefit of a CICA claim over a civil claim
If you are injured as a result of a crime of violence but the person causing you injury is uninsured or otherwise unable to pay any compensation award, then it is unlikely to be worthwhile bringing a civil claim against that person. A claim under the CICA Scheme removes the worry as the compensation will be paid by the CICA funded by the state.
Making an application under the CICA Scheme does not prevent you from bringing a civil claim for damages for personal injury. However, any award of compensation you may receive as a result of an application to the CICA will have to be repaid from any compensation you may subsequently receive as a result of a successful civil claim for damages for personal injury arising out of the same incident.
Can I claim?
The scheme sets out the conditions which must be met for a victim of crime to be eligible for compensation. You may be eligible to claim if:
The injury is caused by a crime of violence, although there is not precise definition of this, it will usually be clear whether or not an act is a crime of violence.
Personal injury under the CICA Scheme includes physical and psychological injury, disease and also fatalities. If the case of a crime resulted in death, a claim may be made on behalf of the victim's estate, and the surviving spouse and any dependents.
Your injuries are sufficient to justify the minimum award of £1,000.
The incident happened within the last 2 years (any delay beyond this 2-year period could result in the rejection of your claim by CICA).
The incident occurred within England, Wales or Scotland.
The CICA can refuse to make an award, or can reduce an award, on various grounds including the conduct of the victim. For example, if the injured party has criminal convictions themself or is to some extent at fault for their own injuries.
How much will I receive?
If you are considered eligible to receive compensation for your injuries there is a set tariff of awards that are available depending on the type of injuries you have sustained. Some examples of awards available include:
£3,500 Fractured jaw
£27,000 Loss of an eye
£1,500 Loss of a tooth
£1,000 Fractured tibia