Criminal Injury Compensation Q&A
Your questions answered:
(1) I have been the victim of an assault but did not report the matter to the police. Can I still claim?
In most cases no. The CICA criteria is very strict in that the very least the authority will expect is that genuine claimants will have reported the matter to the police.
(2) I have not sought medical treatment - can I still claim?
Generally the CICA will look to see whether a claimant has received medical treatment. It can be very difficult to claim if you have not sought medical attention from either your GP, the local hospital (A&E) or the ambulance service.
(3) I reported the matter to the police but no further action was taken - can I still claim?
Yes. The fact that the police did not prosecute will have no bearing on your case provided that the facts are clear and that you cooperated fully with the investigation. (There may however be other reasons for the CICA refusing your claim. Please see question 6 below)
(4) Is there a deadline for making a CICA claim?
The rules state that any claim for criminal injury compensation must be made within 2 years of the injury being sustained. If the CICA considers that there is a good reason for the delay and that it is in the interests of justice to do so they may be able to make an exception. For example if you were injured as a child, or your English is poor, or if you have a learning disability, you may still be able to claim. They may also consider an out-of-time application, if the injuries only became obvious some time after the incident
(5) How is compensation calculated?
Physical and/or mental injuries are graded according to their seriousness. Relatively minor injuries, such as scratches or bruises, alone will not qualify for an award but if you have a combination of minor injuries which cause at least two visits to a doctor for treatment, and recovery takes at least six weeks, then you may qualify. What if you have suffered more than one injury? Different amounts of money are allowed for different injuries. If you received more than one injury as a result of a crime of violence, the compensation will include the full amount allowed for the most serious injury, 30% of the amount allowed for the second most serious injury and 15% of the amount allowed for the third most serious injury. Likely awards: Broken Nose £1000-2000 Scarring to face £1500-£11000 Fractured jaw £2000-4000 Soft tissue injuries £1000+
(6) In what circumstances will the CICA refuse to award compensation?
Compensation may be reduced or withheld if:
- You don't personally report the crime to the police as soon as possible. (Claimants who are too young, too old, have a physical or mental disability or are suffering psychological effects of the crime may be exempt from this rule)
- You do not co-operate with the police. ie: If you are unwilling, for example, to make a statement to the police, the CICA may refuse to pay compensation.
- You do not co-operate with the CICA. The CICA can reduce or withhold compensation if, for example, you don't respond to reasonable requests for information or you fail to attend a medical examination when you are asked to.
- The CICA think you behaved in an 'inappropriate' way before or during the crime. They might reduce or withhold compensation if they thought you aggravated, started or took part in the crime - for example, if you used threatening or offensive language or struck the first blow.
- If you have unspent criminal convictions. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority uses a system of penalty points based on the length and type of sentence you have, and the time which has passed between the date of the sentence and the date that the application is received. However, convictions which are spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 will be ignored.
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