What is the CICA?
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme is a government-funded scheme run by The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), designed to compensate victims of violent crime in Great Britain.
Under the scheme, you may be entitled to compensation if you have been injured because of a violent crime in Great Britain.
To qualify for an award, you must have suffered one of the injuries in the tariff on the government website at Annex E. The CICA will investigate your claim, and if they agree to make a payment, they must do so in line with the prescribed amount set out in the tariff.
What can you claim for under the scheme?
- Physical or psychological injury;
- Injuries as a result of sexual or physical abuse;
- Lost earnings;
- Other financial losses where they have been incurred as a result of the crime for more than 28 weeks;
- Damages following a fatality caused by a crime of violence.
Are there time limits for applying?
If you are an adult over 18, you should apply as soon as possible but no later than two years after the incident.
If you are under 18 at the time of the incident, then you should still apply (or an adult on your behalf) as soon as possible, but certainly within 2 years of your 18th birthday or within 2 years of the first report of the incident to the police, if that report was made after your 18th birthday.
In exceptional circumstances, the CICA may allow an application to be made outside of these time limits.
Do I need a solicitor to help me with the application?
Whether you need a solicitor would depend on how severe the incident is and how complex your injuries. The CICA do not pay legal fees, so any work that a solicitor does on your behalf will likely be paid for from your award of damages.
In complex cases, though, it is advisable to have a solicitor assist you with the application, consider the medical evidence, and advise on any offered compensation. In addition, it is possible to seek a review of any award provided or refusal to offer an award, and you would likely need a solicitor to help with that.
LA is experienced in assisting with applications to the CICA and seeking review of CICA decisions. If you, a member of your family or a friend need help with a CICA application and you would like to speak with a member of our team, call 0344 967 0793 or please fill out the enquiry form.