A crime is committed in the UK every five seconds. Just like when you are injured due to somebody’s negligence in an accident, you are entitled to compensation if you have been hurt due to somebody’s criminal actions. However, while employers and drivers have insurance to ensure they can payout any damages if you are left injured at work or on the road, this is not the case with criminals. Many perpetrators of crime don’t have any financial assets against which you can make a claim, so no matter how badly you have been injured you normally can’t claim damages directly from them.
Criminal Injury Compensation
Thankfully, if you are the victim of crime, you don’t have to make a claim against the criminal that left you injured. In fact, even if the perpetrator of the crime has not been caught or charged, you can still claim damages. Criminal injury compensation is awarded by the Criminal Injury Compensation Authority (CICA), which assess each individual claim and rewards damages depending on the severity of the injury and the effects the crime has had on your life. The Criminal Injury Compensation Authority will pay damages for both physical and psychological injuries and victims of crime and witnesses can apply.
In addition to the damages awarded by the Criminal Injury Compensation Authority, you may receive further compensation from the courts if the criminal responsible for causing your injury is caught and convicted. Often these are awarded in magistrates’ courts when people are fined for a criminal act, as people sent to prison will no longer have any means to pay. These compensation awards are never normally very high and normally range from £50 to £1000.
In some cases, if the perpetrator of a crime has some financial wealth, it is possible to bring a case for compensation in the civil courts. Therefore, if you are injured due to a criminal act, it is advisable to seek the help of a criminal injury specialist who will advise you to the best course of action.