Claims for Compensation for Criminal Injuries

16th January 2015
Claims for Compensation for Criminal Injuries image

Claims for Compensation for Criminal Injuries

Introduction

Whilst a victim of crime can bring a civil claim for compensation for personal injuries against an attacker, this is only worthwhile if the prospective Defendant has the financial means with which to pay any compensation awarded by the Court. A victim of crime can alternatively apply for compensation from the Government/State under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICS) with such an application being made to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).

Eligibility for a Compensation Award from the CICA

To apply successfully for compensation, the victim of crime must meet the following eligibility criteria:-

i. A “criminal injury” must have been sustained, whether physical or mental;
ii. The injury must be attributable to an act of violence that happened in Great Britain;
iii. The crime was within the last two years (although in certain circumstances the CICA may allow claims out of time);
iv. The crime was reported to the Police; and
v. The victim has residency in the UK.

A “criminal injury” is defined as one or more personal injuries sustained in Great Britain and directly attributable to one of the following qualifying events:

i. A crime of violence (eg assault, arson); or
ii. The apprehension or attempted apprehension of an offender or a suspected offender, the prevention or attempted prevention of an offence, or the giving of help to any constable who is engaged in any such activity.

“A crime of violence” is expressly defined for the purposes of the CICS and includes:-

i. A physical attack;
ii. An act or omission of a violent nature which causes injury to another person;
iii. A threat which causes the fear of physical violence;
iv. A sexual assault; and
v. Arson or fire raising.

Injury type

For the purposes of making a claim to the CICA, personal injury is defined as including physical injury, mental injury, fatal claims, sexual and physical abuse.

Rescuers

Rescuers who suffer mental injury as a result of going to aid a victim of a crime of violence will not be eligible for compensation unless they are in a close relationship of love and affection with the victim.

Ineligibility and reductions in compensation

Even if an applicant has suffered personal injury in Great Britain, which is directly attributable to a qualifying event, there may still ineligibility for an award under the CICS. There are various restrictions on eligibility including:-

i. The withholding or reduction of compensation if the applicant has failed to report or to cooperate with the Police or other authorities;
ii. The withholding or reduction of compensation if the conduct of the applicant before during or after the incident makes inappropriate to make a full award or any award (eg provoking a fight);
iii. The withholding or reduction of compensation if excessive consumption of alcohol or illicit drugs by the applicant contributed to the circumstances giving rise to the injuries;
iv. The withholding or reduction of compensation if the applicant’s character makes it inappropriate to make a full award and or any award (eg a history of previous convictions);
v. Not making any award to an applicant who has a conviction for an offence relating to the incident;
vi. Not making any award if the assailant may benefit from the award; and
vii. Not making any award to an adult applicant who lives together with the assailant as members of the same family unless the applicant and assailant are no longer living together and are unlikely to do so again.

If you think that you might be eligible for making a claim to the CICA then please contact Daven Naghen (Head of Personal Injury) on 01775 722261 or email daven.naghen@maplessolicitors.com or write to or come into or offices at 23 New Road, Spalding, Lincolnshire PE11 1DH.

In certain circumstances your case may be funded by a form of “No Win No Fee” Agreement.


How Banks are Cashing in on Wills image

How Banks are Cashing in on Wills

Recent headlines have reported how banks are now cashing in on Wills.

During the 1990s and early 2000s, banks offered customers low cost Wills (or sometimes even free Wills) but the small print allowed the bank to charge extortionate rates to act as Executors. It is reported that banks are expecting billions of pounds of revenue from their Will writing services and administering estates and in some cases their fees have been over £12,000 to administer an estate as they look to charge a fixed fee PLUS a percentage of the deceased’s wealth.

If you or a loved one has made a Will through a bank we would urge you to check who you have appointed as Executors and check any small print which you may have signed. If you are unsure then please speak with one of our lawyers in the Wills and Probate team who can look at your existing Will with you. It may be appropriate to make a new Will which revokes any previous Will you have made which could save your family thousands of pounds when your estate needs to be administered.

In the majority of cases, when someone has passed away we can provide the family with a quote of how much the legal fees will be so that there are no nasty surprises once the administration is complete.

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Testimonials

Gemma Mayer LLB

"I would highly recommend Maples Solicitors, especially Gemma Mayer, for any conveyancing work. The level of support and professionalism was excellent at all times. I also felt if I needed to ask or clarify anything that it was not an issue. Buying and selling a house is stressful enough, but Gemma helped me through it step by step."

Anita Toal LLB BA

"I think you are brilliant. You can use my comments above. You are efficient, friendly and quite clearly very good at what you do. Mainly you don’t leave people hanging around too long for." "So easy to talk to her and she understood what I wanted. She put me at ease and I cant thank her enough"

Daven Naghen LLB

"Daven provided an excellent service, from attending the first interview with me to the final court appearance. He filled me full of confidence that he would defend me to which he did and come out with an excellent outcome in view of my position that I had put myself in."

Faye Blair LLB

Faye was excellent, sensitive and acted very well to the time constraints we faced. Great service and dealt with compassion at such sad times made the process less painful very professional.

Jamie Dobbs ACILEx

Over the last forty years I have cause to deal with many law firms both in a personal and professional capacity, including some ‘top’ London Companies. In all of those dealings I have never found anyone as proactive and so willing to offer help and advice as Jamie Dobbs. During the last two years Jamie guided my parents through the completion of Lasting Powers of Attorney. Helped myself with the use of the LPA and recently dealing with Probate and Estate Administration following their death.

Mike Pepper MA

Mike Pepper gave us excellent advice. He was always most helpful and accommodating giving lucid explanations every step of the way. Thank you Mike.

Claire Smith FCILEx

Claire Smith has been amazing in every way. I highly recommend her and I am so grateful for all her help. She’s professional on all levels, reliable, extremely organised and I will be recommending her to everyone. I’m very lucky to have had her representing me and I can’t thank her enough. She is an asset to Maples. Thanks so much Claire!