The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is a government funded scheme, designed to financially compensate victims of violent and sexual offences in Great Britain. The Ministry of Justice oversees the organisation, with the CICA themselves, administering the scheme and making decisions on applications received.
CICA considers claims for the following –
Mental or physical injury following a crime of violence;
Sexual or physical abuse;
Loss of earnings – where you have no or limited capacity to work as the direct result of a criminal injury;
Special expenses payments – these cover certain costs you may have incurred as a direct result of an incident. You can only ask them to consider special expenses if your injuries mean you have been unable to work or have been incapacitated to a similar extent for more than 28 weeks;
A fatality caused by a crime of violence including bereavement payments, payments for loss of parental services and financial dependency; and funeral payments.
If you or someone you know has experienced one or more of the above then the answer is yes, you/they can make a CICA claim.
Recent national newspapers have highlighted the recent scrutiny that the CICA have come under. On this occasion, focus has been on the way that the application process requires victims to needlessly and repeatedly relay traumatic details of their experience. A review into CICA carried out by Baroness Newlove, found that the body seemed “to frustrate and alienate” those it should be helping.
Claimants have reported that they are often contacted by CICA and are asked to provide additional information that the authority already has. Other victims report that the authority has queried assertions that state that they (victims) have undergone mental health treatment or surgery.
How a Solicitor can help with a CICA claim
Our Actions Against Detaining Authorities (AADA) department has a dedicated team of qualified and experienced solicitors who specialise in CICA applications. As a regionally and nationally recognised department who specialise in but not limited to child abuse, we aim to ease the burden involved in bringing a CICA claim and assist in making the process as smooth as possible, whilst also achieving the highest award of compensation for you.
By instructing us, you can be reassured that we will –
Submit applications along with supporting documents to the CICA within the strict time limits imposed by them
Provide evidence to them as and when required for example proof that you meet the residency requirements, medical evidence that shows you suffered an injury that can be compensated under the Scheme, evidence to support a claim for lost earnings or future loss of earnings
Obtain, draft and submit witness statements, as and when necessary
Apply to the relevant authorities to request records and review them once received
Instruct experts (if and when necessary) in order to obtain a medical report to be used as evidence to support of your claim
Although CICA applications can be made by individuals themselves, by instructing Farleys Solicitors LLP you can take a step back from the case and the frequent reminders of the ordeal that you have been through. We will deal with the paperwork from CICA and meet the deadlines that are in place in order to ensure that your claim proceeds smoothly.
We are experts in this area and are entirely familiar with how the CICA works as well as the level of compensation that victims should be able to expect. This means that we often successfully appeal CICA decisions to have claims reinstated when they may have been struck out for a variety of reasons or to achieve a higher level of pay-out where supporting evidence suggests that the level of compensation originally offered was too low.