Claiming from CICA, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority

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The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) is a government organisation that provides compensation to victims of violent crime in England, Scotland, and Wales. You can claim if you’ve been physically or mentally injured as a result of a violent crime, even if the perpetrator hasn’t been caught or convicted.

Becoming a victim of violent crime can be a traumatic experience, often leaving lasting physical and psychological scars. While no amount of money can undo the harm caused, the CICA scheme aims to provide some financial support to help victims rebuild their lives. This guide will walk you through the process of claiming from CICA, explaining eligibility criteria, the application process, and what to expect.

Understanding CICA

CICA plays an important role in supporting victims of violent crime in the UK. Established by the government, this agency administers a compensation scheme designed to recognise the pain and suffering endured by innocent victims.

Key points about CICA:

  • It’s a government-funded scheme, ensuring that compensation is available even when offenders can’t be identified or lack the means to pay.
  • Compensation is awarded based on a tariff system, which provides a standardised approach to valuing different types of injuries.
  • Claims can be made for both physical and mental injuries, acknowledging that the impact of violent crime isn’t always visible.
  • The scheme covers England, Scotland, and Wales, with Northern Ireland operating a separate but similar system.

This structured approach allows CICA to process thousands of claims each year, providing vital financial support to those affected by violent crime. While no amount of money can truly compensate for the trauma experienced, the CICA scheme aims to offer some measure of recognition and practical assistance to victims.

Types of Injuries Covered

CICA recognises that the impact of violent crime can manifest in various ways, and its compensation scheme is designed to address a wide range of injuries and their consequences.

CICA compensates for various types of injuries resulting from violent crimes, including:

  • Physical injuries: This covers a broad spectrum, from cuts and bruises to more severe injuries like broken bones or long-term disabilities.
  • Mental trauma: Recognising that psychological scars can be as debilitating as physical ones, CICA provides compensation for conditions such as PTSD, anxiety, and depression resulting from the crime.
  • Sexual assault: Victims of sexual crimes can claim for both the immediate trauma and long-term psychological effects.
  • Loss of earnings: If your injuries have affected your ability to work, CICA can compensate for lost income.
  • Special expenses: This category covers additional costs incurred as a result of your injuries, such as medical treatments not covered by the NHS, or necessary adaptations to your home.

It’s important to note that each case is assessed individually, taking into account the specific circumstances and long-term impact of the injuries. This ensures that the compensation awarded reflects the true extent of the harm suffered by the victim.

Evidence Required

Providing robust evidence is crucial to the success of your CICA claim. The authority needs to verify the details of the crime and its impact on you to make a fair assessment.

To support your claim, you’ll need to provide:

  • Police reference number: This confirms that you reported the crime, which is a key requirement for CICA claims. It helps verify the details of the incident.
  • Medical evidence of your injuries: This can include GP records, hospital reports, and assessments from mental health professionals. Comprehensive medical evidence helps establish the extent and duration of your injuries.
  • Proof of loss of earnings (if applicable): If you’re claiming for lost income, you’ll need to provide documentation such as payslips or a letter from your employer confirming your absence from work.
  • Details of any other compensation received: CICA needs to know if you’ve received compensation from other sources related to the same incident, as this may affect your claim.

Gathering this evidence can sometimes be challenging, especially if some time has passed since the incident. However, it’s important to provide as much detailed information as possible. If you’re struggling to obtain certain documents, explain this in your application. CICA may be able to help obtain some records with your permission.

Remember, the more comprehensive and accurate your evidence, the smoother the claims process is likely to be. If you’re unsure about what evidence to provide or how to obtain it, consider seeking advice from our solicitors who are experienced in CICA claims.

Compensation Amounts

CICA uses a carefully structured tariff system to determine compensation amounts. This system aims to provide a fair and consistent approach to valuing different types of injuries and their impact on victims’ lives.

Factors affecting compensation:

  • Type and severity of injuries: The tariff system categorises injuries based on their nature and severity, with more serious injuries attracting higher compensation.
  • Duration of recovery: The length of time it takes to recover from your injuries is taken into account, recognising that longer-term impacts often result in greater hardship.
  • Impact on your life and work: CICA considers how your injuries have affected your daily life, including your ability to work, engage in social activities, or carry out everyday tasks.
  • Any contributory behavior: If your behaviour contributed to the incident in any way, this might affect the compensation amount. However, this is assessed on a case-by-case basis.

It’s important to understand that CICA compensation is not intended to match what you might receive in a civil claim. Instead, it’s designed to provide recognition of your suffering and some financial support to aid your recovery. The tariff system ensures that similar injuries receive similar compensation, promoting fairness across all claims.

Time Limits for Claims

CICA has specific time limits for making claims, but there are exceptions to accommodate various circumstances. Generally, you must apply within 2 years of the incident. However, exceptions may be made in certain circumstances, such as:

  • Claims involving children: The two-year limit doesn’t start until the child’s 18th birthday, giving them until age 20 to make a claim.
  • Cases of historical abuse: CICA recognises that victims of historical abuse may not come forward immediately. In these cases, they may waive the time limit if you can explain why you didn’t claim earlier.
  • Delayed onset of symptoms: Some injuries, particularly psychological ones, may not manifest immediately. If your symptoms appeared later, you may be able to claim from the date you first sought medical help for them.

If you’re outside the 2-year limit, you should explain in detail why you couldn’t claim earlier. CICA will consider each case on its merits, looking at factors such as the reason for the delay, the availability of evidence, and whether a fair decision can still be made.

Remember, while these exceptions exist, it’s always best to claim as soon as possible after the incident. This ensures that evidence is fresh and readily available, increasing the chances of a successful claim.

Alternative Options

While CICA provides a valuable route to compensation for many victims of violent crime, it’s not the only option available. If you’re not eligible for CICA compensation or if you’re looking for additional support, consider the following alternatives:

  • Civil claims against the perpetrator: If the offender has been identified and has sufficient assets, you may be able to pursue a civil claim against them. This can potentially result in higher compensation but carries more financial risk.
  • Victim support services: Various charities and organisations offer practical and emotional support to victims of crime. These services can provide counselling, advice, and assistance with navigating the criminal justice system. For example, and There are also regional support services your local police can direct you to.
  • Local authority support: In some cases, local councils may offer support services or financial assistance to victims of crime, particularly if you need help with housing or social care as a result of your injuries.

Each of these options has its own advantages and considerations. Civil claims, for instance, may offer higher compensation but can be costly and time-consuming. Victim support services, while not providing financial compensation, can offer crucial emotional and practical support during your recovery.

It’s often beneficial to explore multiple avenues of support. Even if you’re claiming from CICA, you may still benefit from the services offered by victim support organisations. Remember, the goal is not just financial compensation, but also ensuring you have the support you need to recover and move forward after experiencing a violent crime.

Do You Need a Solicitor to Make a CICA Claim?

Claimants should be aware that they do not need to have a solicitor to pursue a claim via CICA, and they can make an application directly on the CICA website. There is no cost involved and they will not have to pay a percentage of any compensation settlement to a solicitor.

However, while many claimants successfully navigate the CICA process independently, others prefer the reassurance and expertise of a specialist solicitor. Our experienced solicitors can assist with CICA claims on a no win, no fee basis, meaning you won’t incur any costs if your claim is unsuccessful.

Engaging a solicitor can significantly strengthen your CICA application. A legal professional can:

  1. Compile a comprehensive case that covers all aspects of the crime
  2. Detail your injuries thoroughly
  3. Gather and present relevant evidence to support your claim
  4. Submit a well-structured application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority

As the CICA claims process can be lengthy, having expert legal support can help ensure your case is presented in the strongest possible light. Your solicitor will guide you through each step, from initial application to final decision, maximising your chances of securing fair compensation.

Remember, the CICA scheme exists to support victims of violent crime. If you meet the criteria, don’t hesitate to apply. Whether you choose to proceed independently or with legal representation, understanding your rights and the claims process is key to getting the compensation you deserve.

It’s usually really quick for us to find out if you have a valid claim, call us on 01225 430285, or .

Frequently Asked Questions

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Comments & Questions

Read on for questions and advice about claiming...

I’ve put in for criminal injuries through government website but I think I should of gone through solicitor, can I still do this?


Ian Morris

How far in to the process are you?


Am I entitled to any claim if i was shot during a hijacking with a delivery vehicle?

Ian Morris

This would be a criminal injury compensation claim and you would be able to pursue such action – so long as the incident was reported to the police and you cooperated fully with their investigations.

We can help you make such a claim. If you would like advice and to make a Criminal Injury Compensation claim, please call us on 01225430285.


I instructed a Solicitor to pursue my criminal injury compensation claim, but I thought it would be dealt with more quickly.

I was assaulted and had a suspected fractured eye socket, swollen jaw, black eyes, bruising and bumps on my legs and head. The man who assaulted me was found guilty and received 26 months in prison.

The Police report was received by my solicitor but she hasn’t obtained the ambulance report (the ambulance was called to my home where the assault took place on the day). This claim was made 15 months ago!

My Solicitor told me that she needs to get the ambulance report which can’t be found?! She has informed me that without it, the CICA will not pay me any compensation. I’m very unhappy with the Solicitor.

Ian Morris

It is unfortunate that claims made to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) scheme take so long to process. The reality is that as a tax payer funded scheme, the volume of work required is not matched by the resources provided by the state and as such, to process claims via the CICA regularly takes a minimum of 18 months and often much longer. It is not for the lack of effort by claimant Solicitors, but due to the system.

You mention being unhappy with your Solicitor. It is important that you make your Solicitor aware of your unhappiness (in writing) so that they can have the opportunity to demonstrate to you that they are doing everything that should be expected of them in representing you. You can also make a formal complaint to them if you are unhappy with them.

The Ambulance report that your Solicitor is attempting to obtain may well be important but the lack of the report should not prevent you from being able to settle the claim – so long as medical records from your Hospital or GP treatments are available.


An incident happened whilst I was a work. 2 men came in with guns, they’d pointed them at us and threatened us. This has left me feeling very anxious and stressed. I can’t sleep and I feel very jumpy.

Ian Morris

The incident that has caused you the emotional trauma and psychological injury was one of a criminal nature. As such, under UK law the route to making a claim for compensation would be via the government funded Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) scheme for the victims of crime. To make a claim, you’ll need to have sought medical attention for your injuries whether they be physical or in your case, emotional and you must cooperate fully with the Police during their investigation of the incident. You’ll also need the Crime Reference Number (CRN).

You can make a claim direct to the CICA via their website without legal representation. However, if you prefer, you can instruct a Solicitor to pursue a CICA claim for you on a No Win No Fee basis. Pursuing a claim with a Solicitor would afford you legal representation and you would pay nothing if your claim were to fail. However, you would have to contribute up to 25% of your compensation if successful with the claim. You would not need any ATE insurance for such a claim, so you would not have any other deductions or costs other than the 25% deduction upon success.


My husband was shot while he was at work. He was taken to Hospital to undergo an emergency operation. He later required physiotherapy as he was shot from the back, with the wound next to his spine and also in the neck. The bullet went through under his left arm.

After surgery, he stayed in the hospital for 7 days. He is still off work, recovering at home but has had complications. He is attending check ups now and then. Can he claim compensation from the employer as he was at work when he got shot?

Ian Morris

I cannot see how you could hold his employer responsible for the fact that he was injured in a shooting – unless your Husband works in a known ‘hazardous role’ where such an incident were to be expected and the employer didn’t provide adequate protective equipment.

In this matter, it would appear that the incident was the result of criminal activity. If so, the only route to claiming compensation in the UK is via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) – a government funded statutory body that may compensate the victims of criminal injuries. Therefore, if your Husband was shot in the UK, he can contact us to make a CICA claim as long as he has cooperated with the police.


Hi, I have had a claim for criminal injuries compensation rejected, as they said I was uncooperative with the police by dropping the charges. I did this as I was led to believe by the police that there was not enough evidence for them to get the case to court. I was also getting more and more depressed with panic attacks. Is it worth me asking for my case to be reviewed? I feel so angry that I have had justice and I have had to go back to have therapy.

Ian Morris

You should certainly appeal and provide a written explanation as to why you didn’t press the charges – it seems that you were almost advised to do so and this should give food for thought to the CICA authorities when considering your appeal.

Sarah Cook

Are you able to help me on how to ask for a review. The solicitor I was using is not willing to help me with a review and says they will send the information from cica back. If you can’t help can you forward my details onto a solicitor that would be willing to help even just the wording.

Ian Morris

It is difficult for a Solicitor to get involved with CICA appeals due to the cost (to the Solicitor) of them doing so and the strong possibility that they would not be able to recover the cost incurred. We realise that this sounds harsh, but of course, Solicitors when considering acting on a No Win No Fee basis have to risk assess the prospects of a claim.

In many cases, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority look more kindly upon appeals that are made directly from a claimant rather than via a Solicitor. In your case, you should appeal directly in writing to them and as soon as possible. You should address each of their reasons for rejecting your initial claim and detail why your circumstances and the attitude of the Police officers dealing with the case lead to you not pressing charges against the person responsible.

Given the awful trauma that you were subjected to, it is understandable that you may not have been in the right frame of mind to understand the consequences of not pressing charges or being in a position to fight the negative attitude of the Police officers handling the case. You should explain how these issues lead to you perhaps making the wrong decision. You should also cite the details of how you have been injured – physically and emotionally and list what treatments and discussions you have had with your GP and other health professionals.

Of course, you could also return to the Police and request that your case be re-opened and again, cite that you feel that you were encouraged to ‘leave’ the case on the basis that the Police Officers were not positive about the case. If so, it would be good to add that in to any appeal that you were to send to the CICA.


Hello, I don’t know if I am on the right path here or if you will be able to help me. It will be 3 years in September my partner was attacked in our home after answering the door, he was stabbed numerous times in the arm which left him having to under go 4 hour surgery. This has made me terrified of answering the door and under no circumstances will I open the door if I am home alone. I don’t like been in the house alone either. This has had a great impact of my day to day living. Thank you and look forward to hearing from you.

Ian Morris

Dear Jamie

I am really sorry to hear about your situation and I can understand why you feel the way you do. There is a government funded scheme to compensate the victims of criminal assaults – it’s called the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). They have very strict guidelines regarding who they will and will not compensate, so I cannot at this stage say whether or not you will have any chance of claiming from them. You would certainly have had to report the details of your anxiety and distress to your GP and sought medical treatment.

At Direct2Compensation we do not run CICA claims – because of the changes made to the legal system and claims process as a result of the Governments LASPO Act 2012.

I will email you directly with a link for the CICA so that you can contact them directly to pursue this further. You do not need a Solicitor to pursue a CICA claim – you simply fill in an application and submit it to them.

Best wishes

Ian Morris

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