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Can I make a criminal injury compensation claim?

If you have suffered an injury, physical or psychological, due to a criminal act, you may qualify to make a criminal injury compensation claim under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

It is common knowledge that if you were to suffer an injury in a public place, or in your workplace you may be able to make a claim for Personal Injury. What is less well known is that you can also make a claim for compensation if you suffer an injury due to a criminal act.

For example, if you are assaulted, suffer sexual assault or suffer any other physical or psychological injury because of a violent crime committed against you, you can make a claim for compensation for the injury suffered from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

What is the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority?

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, or CICA, is an organisation which administers the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 2012. This was set up as quite often it is not possible to pursue a claim in the Civil Court against the perpetrator of a crime. The Scheme allows victims of violent crime to claim compensation for injuries suffered.

How do I know if I am eligible to make a claim?

Any victim of violent crime can make a claim under the CICA. The police should inform you that you are eligible to make a claim when you report a crime or when they have completed their investigations.

Even if no one is convicted of the crime, you could still be eligible to make a claim but you will only be successful in certain circumstances, for example if the perpetrator is never found. However, there are certain criteria that need to be met for your claim to be successful, the most important of which are:

  1. You must make a claim within 2 years of the crime being committed or, if you are under 18 when you are a victim of the crime, prior to your 20th birthday.
  2. CICA will not pay compensation for crimes involving vehicles, unless the vehicle was used with intent on causing injury. These will be covered by the insurance company of the driver or the Motor Insurers’ Bureau where a driver is not insured.
  3. You must meet one of the criteria on residency and nationality.
  4. You must not have received compensation through any other source for the injury.

How do I make a claim?

You can make a claim yourself, or seek legal advice to assist in making a claim. To make a claim, you have to fill in a Claim Form to apply for compensation. Once you have done so, CICA will consider your request and, in more complex cases, will require medical reports be prepared and considered.

You may also have to make an application for special expenses and compensation for lost earnings. If you require assistance in making a claim, or need further advice, please do not hesitate to contact our experts in the Dispute Resolution Department.


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