If you have been the victim of violent crime or abuse you may be able to apply to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) for compensation. Gemma Stanley, a highly experienced claimant Serious Injury solicitor, explains why, when considering applying to the CICA, you need expert legal advice.
You can claim compensation to cover both physical and mental injuries. You can also claim for the financial impacts of the injuries including loss of earnings. If violent crime causes the death of someone close to you, you may be able to apply for compensation for bereavement and expenses such as funeral payments.
The CICA Scheme has strict rules in terms of time limits for applications and how they assess whether you are eligible to claim, and what amount of compensation you should receive.
Applying to the CICA yourself
You can apply to the CICA yourself, or instruct a solicitor to do it on your behalf. The CICA do not pay solicitors’ fees, so these would be taken from the compensation awarded, up to a maximum of 25% plus VAT* , along with any other payments owed for example to medical experts who have worked on your case.
Why you need our expertise in CICA claims
The CICA Scheme is not something everyone knows about. In many cases, people do not know whether they are eligible to apply or the compensation to which they may be entitled. And they may not know how best to deal with the application process either, nor be aware of just how complex, and length, that process can be.
Our specialist solicitors will ensure that your application is the best it can be. We have vast experience in pursuing CICA claims on behalf of clients, and will assess all the evidence – gathering supporting evidence from witnesses, financial accounts, and medical experts where necessary – and make sure that you have the best chance of being successful, and of receiving the maximum award.
Challenging the CICA
We can also assess decisions made by the CICA and challenge them when we believe they are wrong. The CICA may reject your application on the grounds that you are not eligible, or they may make an award that is too low for the injuries and losses you have suffered. We can advise you on whether to ask for a review, or make an appeal, and we will gather supporting evidence and make the appropriate submission on your behalf.
A recent CICA case
We have recently been successful in obtaining an award for a client who was the victim of a frightening attack in 2014, whereby several men, masked in balaclavas, broke into her home, demanded money and threatened her. They then poured petrol on the floor and ransacked the house. Our client was left with significant mental injuries as a result.
The CICA went on to reject our client’s application on two occasions by suggesting that her injuries were not significant enough to warrant a compensation payment. We obtained expert medical evidence, and witness evidence, to support the claim of the suffering she had endured. We applied for a review of CICA’s initial rejection and subsequently filed an appeal. Our appeal was successful and the CICA has now made our client an award.
We are proud to say we fight for our clients and always work towards delivering the best possible outcome.
Get in touch
If you think you may have a CICA claim then do not hesitate to get in touch with our specialist solicitors today. We are here to help you, and doing so could make all the difference.
*With Price Slater Gawne – other firms may charge more