If you have been the victim of an assault or other violent crime, you may be entitled to compensation.
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA)is responsible for a scheme to award damages to the innocent victims of violent crimes and compensation for mental or physical injuries and some financial losses is covered by that scheme.
There is also a right of appeal to the CICA Appeals Panel which reviews the original decision where appropriate.
How does the CICA scheme work?
The CICA operates a tariff scheme, which means that injuries are graded according to seriousness and an appropriate figure provided under that tariff. Recent cases include a gentleman who received just over £93000 for injuries received from an attacker during a burglary. He suffered brain damage causing behavioural problems and the loss of his sense of taste and smell.
The tariffs themselves are generally less generous than the sort of compensation you might be awarded in the courts but it has to be borne in mind that the person who injured you will not have any insurance to pay you compensation and will in all likelihood not have any money of their own. That is the main benefit of the scheme; it pays you compensation when otherwise you would probably receive nothing.
Who pays my solicitor?
It is important to note that the CICA does not pay any legal costs which remain your responsibility. Whilst you do not necessarily need to get a solicitor to pursue the claim for you, it is advisable and certainly you would want to have legal representation at any appeal. It is better to have legal help from the earliest stages. Most solicitors will deal with your claim on a no win no fee basis. That is they will not charge you if you are not successful and in the event that you are successful will charge you a small percentage of the award, dependent on the size of the award.
What do I have to show in order to be successful?
Obviously your solicitor will take a full note of what has happened to you when he or she completes the paperwork on your behalf. You should note however that:
1. The scheme covers any crime from minor to the most serious of assaults.
2. You or someone on your behalf should have reported the matter to the police
3. Whilst the scheme covers minor assaults, the injury must attract over £1000 under the tariff which effectively means that a very minor assault leading to some minor cuts and bruises may not be covered.
4. The incident must have happened in the 2 years prior to making the claim
5. You should be the victim of an unprovoked attack
6 Road accidents and damage to property are not covered under the scheme.
7. The claim must be made within two years of the incident.
8. You should not have any previous convictions or be generally of a dubious character. This can lead to refusal of an award or deductions made.
How do I make the claim?
First4Lawyers have a specialist panel of solicitors who will act for you on a no win no fee basis. They will complete the paperwork and carry out all the negotiations with the CICA, providing you with information and assistance all the way. If you are successful, a small percentage fee will be met out of your compensation to cover the legal costs incurred. That will have been agreed between you and your solicitors at the outset of the case under the no win no fee arrangement you enter into. If you are not successful then there will not be a charge to you. You should contact First4Lawyers today to discuss your case.
Start Your Claim
First4Lawyers retain a specialist panel of experienced no win no fee solicitors. To find out if you can make a no win no fee claim, call us now on 0800 567 7866 or request a call back for free advice. If you wish to leave more details about your claim, then fill out our Online Claim Form and one of our specialist advisors will telephone you without obligation to discuss your claim further.