Criminal injury

You can claim compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) if you have been physically or psychologically injured as a result of an act of violent crime.

To qualify for a CICA compensation award you must:

  • Report the crime to the police within 48 hours
  • Co-operate fully with the police at all times
  • Seek medical treatment within 48 hours of being attacked
  • Be injured in Great Britain
  • Make your CICA application within two years of the violent crime that caused your injury. However, CICA has discretion to waive this 2 year limitation period if the victim of crime can show that CICA suffer no prejudice by the delay and there is a good reason for the delay. If a child brings a CICA claim, they have more time to bring a claim and we can explain this to you.

Please note that CICA may refuse to make an award to a person if they have a criminal record or they provoked the violent incident, which caused them injury.

In addition you may still be able to bring a civil claim for compensation directly against your attacker. As an example; if someone drives a car intentionally at you this is a crime, which justifies a CICA claim to be made. However, you can still bring a normal civil compensation claim against the driver and his insurer but you must bring such a claim within 3 years of the incident (not 2 years like a CICA claim). You are not restricted to only bringing CICA claim.

While victims of crime can bring a civil claim for damages for personal injuries against an attacker this is only worthwhile if the prospective defendant is either insured or has the means to pay any damages awarded by the court.

The benefit of bringing a civil claim and not a CICA claim is that compensation payments in a civil claim are higher in value than those paid by CICA who pay tariff awards.

The CICA compensation award

The set CICA tariff of awards for a victim’s injuries is based on 25 levels ranging from £1,000 to £250,000. It covers all types of injury including physical injuries, psychological injuries, child loss, sexual abuse or assault and the infection of life threatening diseases.

Bringing a CICA claim can be very complex. You need to act quickly and we recommend that you do contact our expert lawyers for free no obligation advice on 01392 285000.