APIL Reports Victims Offered More Than Six Times Injury Compensation Following Appeal

APIL CICA Appeal

According to data obtained by the APIL, victims of crime who appeal initial offers made via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICS) are being offered six times more.

APIL said that 379 cases reached an appeal in the year 2022/23 with an average of £7,848 first offered for each claim. However, once an appeal has been made, APIL has reported that the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority’s (CICA) offer in these cases increased to an average of £47,339 – which equals over six times more per person.

Kim Harrison, APIL vice president, said this:

“…clearly suggest victims are not receiving the compensation to which they are entitled if they don’t have legal assistance.

The CICA tells victims of crime that they do not need to appoint a legal representative to pursue their claim. But these figures clearly suggest that victims are not receiving the compensation to which they are entitled if they don’t have legal assistance.”

Harrison went on to say that having no legal representation, a victim of crime is likely to be less able to challenge the CICA’s decision regarding whether the initial offer is fair. She also said how the majority of these people, who are unrepresented, are dealing with the trauma of being injured due to the crime and may not have the time, skills, or confidence to challenge an offer, meaning they will miss out on the compensation they need to help them recover.

APIL has found criticism from survivors of terror attacks, who have argued that the compensation scheme is ‘broken’. A report by the support network, Survivors Against Terror, shows that over 130 survivors of attacks, including the Fishmongers’ Hall stabbings in London in 2019 and the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017, explained their awful experiences of using the CICA.

APIL calls for the compensation scheme to be extended so victims of child sex crimes, such as online child sexual abuse and online grooming, are eligible for damages from the CICA.

The Ministry of Justice, in conjunction with the Tribunal Procedure Committee, is consulting on changing rule 30 of the Social Entitlement Chamber rules to remove the condition for tribunal hearings in CICA cases to be held in private by default and to make hearings public unless there is a privacy reason.

The proposed change follows statements issued by the Judicial Office on how the current position is an unjustified departure from the open justice principle.

Hearings are held in private for reasons of fear of reprisals from offenders, the involvement of sensitive medical evidence, the involvement of children, or that the offender has not been prosecuted/convicted. It is argued that these reasons do not justify that all hearings should be held in private. The Judicial Office has said these issues would be better tackled by imposing reporting restrictions in required cases.

Comment

The CICA appeals procedure can be a daunting one, particularly for those who have suffered trauma with long-lasting physical or psychological injuries. Not everyone has the knowledge or feels equipped to navigate the CICA appeals process on their own and it is always sensible to seek expert legal advice in these circumstances, to ensure that ultimately victims of crime are awarded the full compensation to which they are entitled.

How can we help?

Lisa Preece is a Partner in our expert Personal Injury team, ranked in Tier One by the independently researched publication, The Legal 500 and Commended in The Times Best Law Firms 2023. Lisa specialises in serious personal injury cases, including brain injury claimsaccidents at work and inquests.

For more information on CICA appeals, please contact Lisa or another team member in Derby, Leicester or Nottingham on 0800 024 1976 or via our online enquiry form.

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