Each year 14 million crimes are reported to the police in the UK. In addition, over a million victims of crime find themselves injured after a criminal act. If you have suffered a crime related injury, you may be eligible to make a criminal injury claim. Criminal injury isn’t always physical, but could be psychological; if you are present during a violent crime and have been left traumatised, for instance, you may be eligible to make a claim.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority
Criminal injury claims are not made against the perpetrator of the crime, but are paid by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). Both victims and witnesses incurring physical or psychological harm after a crime can make a claim. Even if nobody has been convicted or even caught for the crime, you can still claim. The CICA are a government body funded by the taxpayer. Each year, CICA pay out millions of pounds to victims of crime. However, the process can be quite complicated and lengthy, which is why it is recommended to consult a personal injury solicitor for advice.
How much you will get
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority makes payments for criminal injury ranging from £1,000 to £500,000. Just like other personal injury claims, each case is calculated on its own merits. This means the CICA will assess the severity of the injury, the effect it has had on someone’s life, as well as taking into account any expenses and medical costs that have accrued. In addition, once a claim has been processed and the compensation decided, victims of crime can appeal the decision if they don’t think the amount is fair.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority was set up to ensure that victims of crime could receive financial damages regardless of whether the perpetrator of the crime had any assets. Many criminals do not have any financial wealth, so it is futile to make a personal injury claim against them. However, in some cases, where the perpetrator of a crime does have assets, it might be possible to make a private claim for damages. This has to be done in the civil courts and will require the assistance of a personal injury solicitor.