CICA Criminal Injury Compensation

If you or a loved one falls victim to a violent crime or assault, it can be devastating. Whether you’ve been physically injured or suffered psychological trauma, you could be entitled to make a criminal injury claim from the government-run Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).

The CICA has helped thousands of people secure compensation for criminal injuries and provided innocent victims with the support they need to get their life back on track, whether they were subject to abuse or an assault.

Making a criminal injuries compensation claim can sometimes seem daunting. That’s why our criminal injury lawyers are trained to always handle each case with care. As one of the most experienced and knowledgeable criminal injury claims specialists in the UK, we can work closely with the CICA to work toward the compensation and justice you deserve.

While a settlement will never take away the pain and suffering caused by the violent crime, it can help to cover the cost of medical treatment, some of your loss of earnings, or some short and long-term care needs. If you’ve suffered injuries which are severe, we will work to ensure you and your family receive ongoing support.

Even if the perpetrator was never identified, caught, or convicted we may still be able to obtain a settlement. With all cases pursued on a ‘no win no fee’ basis, there’s no financial risk to you – and you won’t be under any obligation to continue after your free initial consultation.

Download our useful guide on making a claim here >>

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The Hudgell Promise

When we take on any case, we want you to feel reassured and confident in every aspect of your claim. That’s why we offer a service that puts your needs over and above anything else.
We promise to:

  1. Schedule our first meeting within 24 hours
  2. Return your phone call or email the very same day if received before 3pm
  3. Reply to any letter you send us within 2 days
  4. Write to you every 4 weeks with any updates or information on your case

*Our promise is different for criminal injury claims


What is the CICA?

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is a government-run organisation set up in 1996 to provide compensation for blameless victims of crime.

Funded by the Ministry of Justice, the CICA awards pay-outs ranging from £1,000 to a maximum of £500,000 to people who have been mentally or physically injured due to criminal assault.

Government rules state that you might be eligible for a financial award under the CICA scheme if you were either:

     The victim of a violent crime or assault.

     Not to blame in any way for the incident.

     Injured while taking reasonable steps to prevent a crime.

     Psychologically damaged by witnessing a loved one become a victim of a violent crime or the aftermath.

Relatives may also be able to make a CICA criminal assault claim if a loved one dies as a result of a violent crime. This includes a spouse or partner, natural or adoptive parents, a parental guardian, and the children or step-children of a victim.

For any criminal injuries compensation claim to be successful, you must have reported the incident to the police and co-operated fully with them.

If the CICA believe you provoked or willingly participated in the incident, they can refuse your claim for compensation or reduce the amount rewarded. This is also possible if you have a criminal conviction.

The amount of compensation that can be awarded is set out in the official CICA guidelines, which states the tariffs in relation to the different injuries. However, the scheme will only pay out if your injuries exceed the £1,000 minimum tariff.

CICA claims can only be made in England, Scotland and Wales. Northern Ireland has its own scheme.

Latest Cases

£29,000 compensation awarded to 44-year-old man who spoke out about being abused as a child after 30 years

A 44-year-old man has been awarded £29,000 damages by a Government compensation scheme despite police not having enough evidence to bring criminal charges against his alleged abuser. It comes after Hudgell Solicitors challenged an initial rejection of the case by
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The CICA scheme delivers justice in cases where somebody has been the victim of a crime even where there is no criminal conviction, in this case due to the fact that the accused took his own life within days of being arrested on suspicion of grooming.

By taking his own life he prevented there being the natural course of justice in criminal courts over his alleged crimes.

Michelle Nurse

How to make a criminal injury compensation claim

Whether you’ve suffered a violent assault, sexual abuse, or are making a claim on behalf of a family member, our criminal injury  lawyers have years of experience in helping the victims of violent crime. They treat every case with dignity and respect.

Making a CICA compensation claim is as straightforward as getting in touch with one of our expert criminal injury lawyers for a free, no obligation consultation.

All we need are:

  • Contact details for any medical expert who has provided treatment.
  • The police reference number. Please contact the police if you are not sure what your unique police reference number is – it’s sometimes called a Crime Reference Number.
  • The name of the offender (if known).
  • The date of any court case.

Should you wish to start a claim for compensation, we will write to you and explain the fees in full. If you don’t want to carry on after an initial consultation there is no obligation and no charge.

It will cost you nothing to start the process, allowing you to make an informed decision after you have all the information you need.

Compensation amounts: How much compensation will I receive?

Depending on the severity of your injuries, you could be entitled to compensation ranging from £1,000 to £500,000.

If you satisfy the criteria for an award of compensation under the CICA Scheme 2012, the amount of compensation you receive will be assessed from a set tariff of awards available, depending on the type of injuries you have sustained.

Examples of some of the most common awards received include:

     £1,500: Fractured jaw

     £1,000: Strained neck or whiplash injury lasting for more than 13 weeks

     £4,600: Depressed fracture of the skull requiring an operation

     £1,500: Loss of a front tooth

     £2,400: Significant scarring to the face

CICA Compensation Claims: Frequently Asked Questions

What type of assault claims does the CICA handle?

Criminal assault claims can be made to the CICA for any type of incident which has caused physical or psychological injury.

To successfully secure compensation for being attacked or assaulted, you need to have been a victim of a crime, including:

  • Common assault
  • Assault causing actual bodily harm (ABH)
  • Assault causing grievous bodily harm (GBH)
  • Assault in a public place
  • Assault in a prison
  • Assault at work
  • Domestic assault
  • Assault by a security guard or ‘bouncer’
  • Criminal assault
  • Assault leading to fatality
  • Assault with a weapon
  • Sexual assault – any sexual contact without consent

In cases of sexual assault, a victim could have a valid case for compensation for any instance where sexual contact has taken place without consent if the details have been reported to the police. This includes stalking, touching over clothing, groping, drug-facilitated sexual assault, child sexual abuse and rape.

If a person has been subjected to an assault of more than one kind, the CICA will award a compensation settlement based on the crime which is most serious.

Am I eligible for compensation?

You may be eligible for compensation if:

  • You were injured in an act of violence in England, Scotland or Wales (an offender does not necessarily have to have been convicted of, or even charged with a crime)
  • You have made your application for compensation within two years from the date of the incident which caused your injuries, or within two years of reporting it to the police if the claim relates to sexual abuse. In cases involving assaults or abuse on a child, this two-year time limit starts to run when the victim reaches the age of 18.
    This time limit may be waived if you can provide exceptional circumstances that prevented you from submitting an application earlier. For example, if you were mentally or physically incapable of dealing a claim or if you were advised by a police officer not to make a claim before the end of the criminal trial.

You will not be eligible for compensation if:

  • You did not report the incident to the police as soon as reasonably practicable, usually within 48 hours unless there were exceptional circumstances preventing you from doing so.
  • You were injured before 1st August 1964 (prior to the scheme being established).
  • You have already applied for an award for the same criminal injury under the CICA scheme.
  • Your application could be refused if you have a criminal record, if you have failed to co-operate with the police, or if your conduct contributed to the assault.

What can I claim compensation for?

The amount that can be claimed in compensation for criminal injury is determined by the CICA. It depends on the circumstances of the incident and the injuries sustained.

Typically, claims can be made for one or more of the following:

  • Injuries (both physical and psychological) to the victim.
  • A loved one dying because of a violent crime.
  • Loss of earnings in certain circumstances.
  • Being a victim of a sexual offence.
  • Special expenses, if you are also eligible for loss of earnings (for example treatments not covered by the NHS and the cost of care).

The money you receive will reflect:

  • General damages (injuries, pain and suffering).
  • Loss of past or future earnings, at the rate of statutory sick pay only.
  • Bereavement payments.
  • Child dependency payments.
  • Family dependency payments.
  • Funeral costs.

What time limits apply to making a CICA criminal injury claim?

You need to lodge your application within two years of the incident. However, because cases of this nature can be highly sensitive, this timeframe can sometimes be waived if there are exceptional circumstances. Discretion is more readily exercised in abuse cases.

Depending on the circumstances, it may be possible for our criminal injury lawyers

to pursue a case even though an offence was carried out many years ago. For this reason, we always encourage people to come forward and get in touch when they feel comfortable doing so, particularly if the incident happened during childhood.

How long do CICA claims take to resolve?

Criminal injury claims can often be complex. All the facts must be established on a balance of probabilities before the CICA can make an assessment and award a suitable level of compensation.

In legal disputes of this nature, where a financial settlement depends heavily on the severity of the injuries and the impact they have on a victim’s life, this can understandably take a while.

In most instances, CICA injury and assault claims are fully resolved within 18 months. However, if your case is more complex and the full impact of the circumstances are not yet known, it could take longer.

This could be the case if you are trying to claim CICA compensation for PTSD as the victim of a terror attack or historic sexual abuse. In these instances, you would need to undergo a detailed assessment by a psychiatrist or psychologist rather than a GP.

If your injuries eventually prove to be more damaging or longer lasting than first anticipated, a readjustment to your pay-out may be required.

There is a fast track process available for victims of abuse where no additional claim is being made for a mental injury, such cases are decided purely on a report from the police and can be resolved within 8 weeks.

No matter how much legal work is involved, we will support you at every step if we think you have a strong case for compensation.

Can I claim on behalf of a child?

If you have parental responsibility, you can apply for compensation on behalf of a child under the age of 18, knowing the case will be handled with complete confidentiality and sensitivity by Hudgell Solicitors.

If the child has been abused by a member of the same immediate family, you may still be able to claim without parental responsibility.

Our experts are experienced in handling the sensitive and difficult nature of claims relating to children. The matter will be handled with sympathy and understanding throughout.

Why choose Hudgell Solicitors?

We understand that making a criminal injury claim can be a difficult decision. But there’s no need to feel guilty as any settlement is paid from a central Government pot which is funded from the general taxes we all pay.

If you enlist the help and experience of Hudgell Solicitors we will guide you through the entire process, helping you to feel confident rather than frightened or vulnerable.

We will ensure that you receive the correct award from the CICA and advise you on the merits of any review application or appeal to the CICA tribunal.

If we believe you have a strong case for criminal injuries compensation, you can be assured that we will have your best interests at heart. We are wholly committed to delivering the justice you deserve.

If your case is accepted, we will:

  • Provide a free, no-obligation consultation to help assess your claim.
  • Assess your case with honesty, discretion and sensitivity.
  • Keep you up to date with the progress of your claim.
  • Advise about ‘no win, no fee’ assistance.
  • Arrange for you to meet members of the criminal injury team if required.

Types of criminal injury compensation claims

You may be able to make a compensation claim through the CICA because of injuries, a loved one dying, or loss of earnings because of criminal assault even if the perpetrator was never found.

If you have been the victim of a sexual abuse or assault, you may be entitled to compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. You can potentially claim for sexual assault even if you have suffered no physical injuries.

We will not only support you through a legal claim for compensation but also by helping to put you in touch with charities and organisations able to provide additional support. It may be possible to pursue the perpetrator for compensation directly or through an organisation connected to that person, for example, an employer, social services, education establishment or local authority.

Does CICA apply to terrorism?

If you’ve been caught up in a terrorist act and you want to assert your right to claim compensation for the suffering you have undergone, please get in touch and discuss the circumstances with a specialist solicitor – all advice is free and confidential.

We have successfully represented victims of terrorism and recognise that discussing your experience can in itself be traumatic. Our lawyers are specialists in terrorism-related injury claims and will do all they can to ensure you feel assured throughout the legal process. We’ll also offer encouragement and support as you bid to gain redress for your suffering.

  • What can I claim terrorism compensation for?

Incidents classed as terrorist acts can include:

  • Biological attack
  • Chemical attack
  • Hijacking
  • Kidnapping
  • Shootings
  • Suicide bombing

We frequently represent victims of terrorism who need to claim CICA compensation for PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Usually, terrorism claims can be made for one or more of the following:

  • General damages (injuries, pain and suffering)
  • Loss of past or future earnings (at a rate of statutory sick pay)
  • Specialist aids or adaptations in and around the home
  • Care and support costs
  • Bereavement payments
  • Child dependency payments
  • Family dependency payments
  • Funeral costs

The amount of terrorism compensation you can claim for depends on the circumstances, injuries sustained, and the impact they have on your daily life. If your injuries are so severe that you are left with a permanent disability, it can cause undue stress for yourself, your family, and your finances. You may be forced to give up work, change jobs or require 24-hour specialist support and care.

Having represented innocent people who were caught up in the Manchester terror attack in 2017 and British citizens affected by terrorist acts on holiday, we find that pursuing compensation through the CICA scheme can help sufferers come to terms with how they’ve been affected.

If you’re a victim of terrorism and you want to seek justice, please get in touch today – it could help you move forward with the rest of your life.

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