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Hudgell Solicitors™ | Latest News | Can I claim criminal injuries compensation for being assaulted?

Can I claim criminal injuries compensation for being assaulted?

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Sadly, thousands of assaults and unwarranted physical attacks take place in the UK every year.

Under UK law, an ‘assault’ is defined as being any form of physical attack or the threat of harming another person.

If you have been injured intentionally because of a criminal assault, you could be entitled to pursue a claim for damages.

There are two main ways to get compensation for being assaulted:

  • CICA Claim – via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authorities
  • Civil assault claim – via the court UK system

Unfortunately, many innocent victims fail to seek the justice and compensation they are entitled to following an assault because they are too traumatised or because they are unaware of their options.

As a specially-trained professional who deals with CICA claims on a daily basis, my role is to help and support people who are in this predicament so that they can gain justice and some degree of closure.

What type of assaults are there?

There are four different ‘assault’ categories that you can claim compensation for, regardless of whether you suffered physical or psychological injury.

Sexual Assault: This relates to any sexual contact or behaviour which has taken place without consent, including groping, stalking, drug or alcohol-facilitated sexual assault, child sexual abuse and rape.

Under UK law, the other 3 levels of assault are classified according to the level of harm intended and the type of injuries inflicted as a result.

Common assault: A charge often used when a person has been slapped or hit but no marks or visible injury has been suffered by the victim.

Assault causing Actual Bodily Harm: A more serious assault which usually results in visible injuries being suffered, such as cuts, scratches or bruising.

Assault causing Grievous Bodily Harm: This is the most serious level of violent assault, where the aggressor has intended to cause serious harm.

What kind of assault can I claim for?

Although every case is unique, we have previously secured successful assault claims for:

  • Threatening behaviour
  • Mugging
  • Unprovoked attack
  • Unprovoked attack by a stranger
  • Aggravated assault
  • Assault with a weapon
  • Assaults by a spouse or family member
  • Negligent carer assault (care home, support worker, hospital staff)
  • Security Guard assault
  • ‘Bouncer’ assault
  • Criminal assault
  • Assault leading to fatality
  • Assault in a public place
  • Assault in prison
  • Assault in the work place
  • Sexual assault

It doesn’t matter whether the perpetrator is known or unknown, or if they were charged by the police, you can still make a claim for compensation.

The best way to do this is usually through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) – a government-funded body set up in 1996 to help innocent victims receive the support they need to get their life back on track.

Can I claim criminal injuries compensation if no-one has been caught or convicted?

Yes, but to be eligible you must be able to prove you were the victim of a crime through no fault of your own.

The assault must also have caused physical or psychological injuries which have subsequently affected your life. This could include loss of appetite, nightmares, difficulty in sleeping, fear of going out, anxiety or depression.

Am I eligible to make an assault claim?

Anyone who has been injured during a violent criminal attack in England, Scotland or Wales can apply to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), provided their injury is included in the CICA’s tariff of injuries.

To make a CICA compensation claim you must:

  • Be a blameless victim of crime
  • Have suffered a personal injury listed in the CICA’s tariff as a result
  • Have reported the assault to the police and co-operated with them

The CICA could refuse to award compensation or reduce any award if you have an unspent criminal conviction.

Your application must usually be lodged within two years of the incident, although this is discretionary and can be waived in certain circumstances.

How much compensation can I claim for an assault?

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

Settlements are paid from a central fund which is administered by the Government and funded by the general taxes we all pay, so there’s no need to feel guilty about pursuing a case.

Every assault claim is however different and the amount of damages is difficult to determine without assessing all the key facts.

For an accurate assessment of how much you can expect to receive, please get in touch and our CICA claims team will appraise the strength of your case

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The Author

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Nicola Bailey-Gibbs

Solicitor and Manager, Criminal Injuries

nbg@hudgellsolicitors.co.uk

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