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How to Make a Criminal Injury Claim

The way to form a claim

To claim compensation for a criminal injury you generally have to go through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). You can begin the process in one of three ways; online at their website, via post (you can either get a form printed from their website or sent to you by post by phoning 0800 358 3601), or with the help of Victim Support.

There are certain criteria that need to be fulfilled if you are going to make a compensation claim:

  • Your injuries must be serious enough to meet the minimum compensation award of £1000.
  • You must have been injured in England, Scotland or Wales.
  • You must make your application within two years of the incident, unless it was reasonable that you abstained for so long; for example, if you were abused as a child.

There are 4 types of compensation that you can claim for:

  1. Criminal injury compensation – this provides for damages, or what CICA call the 'tariff award'. You can only apply for this if you yourself suffered injuries, your child who is under 18 suffered the injuries, or someone who is mentally incapable of applying for themself was injured.
  2. A loved one was fatally injured by criminal injury – if your parent, child, husband, wife, partner, or if you were financially dependent on the person who was killed you may be able to apply for this (currently £11000 if one person applies, or £5500 each if two). Funeral expense can also be claimed.

Note - The following 2 can only be applied for if you also get the criminal injury compensation awarded.

  1. Income loss - if you lose the ability to earn an income for over 28 weeks because of your injuries then you can claim for this; payment begins in the 29th week.
  2. Special expenses – this can provide for medical expenses for treatment not covered by the NHS, for costs of residential care homes or for special adaptations in you require to your home.

Application forms are available in many languages including: Arabic, Punjabi, Bengali, Somali, Chinese, Turkish, Gujarati, Urdu, Greek, Vietnamese, Hindi and Welsh.

Other routes for claiming compensation

There are two other ways than through CICA for claiming compensation for a criminal injury. These are:

  1. Trespass to the person – assault, and battery are the kinds of acts that constitute trespass to the person, if this is the case you can also claim for compensation through the courts.
  2. Compensation order – during prosecution you can request that the person who caused you injury be made to pay you compensation.

These two methods are generally not used; the success of them both depends on the inability of the offender to pay compensation out of his own pocket.

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