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Does The CICA Pay Compensation For Historic Sexual Abuse? – A Guide To Historic Sexual Abuse Criminal Injury Claims

Does The CICA Pay Compensation For Historic Sexual Abuse? – A Guide To Historic Sexual Abuse Criminal Injury Claims

October 25, 2019 12:00 am4 comments
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If you were the victim of historical sexual abuse, you may be entitled to seek compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme. However, to qualify, your case must meet all the rules and criteria associated with CICA historic sexual abuse claims.

To find out more about this type of CICA claim and whether your case meets the criteria for historic sexual abuse cases that are submitted to the CICA, please read on.

What are the CICA Rules for Historic Sexual Abuse Claims?

For your historic abuse claim to be considered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, you must have reported the abuse to the Police and been issued with a Crime Reference Number. Should the abuse have been reported when you were still a minor, you would have to give the CICA a good reason why you did not apply within the strict 2 year deadline for making a CICA claim. The authority would not accept that you missed the time limit because you were unaware of the Scheme.

However, a historic claim that is reported to the Police years after the abuse took place and which falls within the 2 year rule which begins from the date the abuse was reported, would be eligible. With this said, CICA rules and eligibility are complicated as and such, it is far better to discuss a historic sexual abuse claim with a legal expert prior to submitting a claim to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

Would the Same Roof Rule Affect My Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

If you were denied compensation through the Scheme because the abuse you were subjected to occurred prior to 1979 and your assailant lived under the same roof as you, this would have been because of the Same Roof Rule that was associated with this type of claim in the past. However, this rule has now been abolished which means that even if your case was rejected in the past, you are now entitled to reapply for compensation through the 2012 CICA scheme.

A criminal injury solicitor would provide essential legal advice on how best to proceed and would help you fill out your application before submitting it to the CICA which would ensure that all the relevant information and evidence of the abuse you were subjected to, is included in an application from the outset. This can reduce the risk of unnecessary delays or worse still, your application for compensation through the CICA scheme being rejected.

Do I Need a Crime Reference Number to File a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

You must have a Police Crime Reference Number which you would have been given when you reported to abuse to the Police if you want to make an application for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme. Without a reference number, the CICA would not consider your case. However, if you live in the area where the abuse occurred and you had reported the abuse to the Police, you may still be able to retrieve the Crime Reference Number by getting in touch with your local Police station. They would assist you in tracking down the Police Crime Number (PCN) you were issued with. Should you no longer live in the same area, you may still be able retrieve the PCN by contacting the central Police authority.

With this said, if you are finding it hard to retrieve the Police Crime Reference Number you were given, a legal expert may be able to do this for you when they begin their investigations into your historic sexual abuse claim. The reason being that once you instruct a criminal injury lawyer to represent you, they have the right to act on your behalf.

How Long Would the CICA Take to Come to a Decision on a Historic Sexual Abuse Claim?

The length of time if would take for the authority to come to a decision on a historic sexual abuse claim would depend on several things which includes the following:

  • The Police evidence relating to your case
  • Whether the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority deems you are eligible to file a claim through their Scheme
  • Whether a more in-depth medical report is required

With this said, should your CICA claim be straightforward and all the required Police evidence is available to the authority from the outset, a decision may be arrived at in 3 months at which time the CICA would make you an offer. Should your historic sexual abuse claim be more complex, it could take anything from 12 to 18 months for a settlement to be offered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

What Level of CICA Compensation Could I Receive in a Historic Sexual Abuse Claim?

If your case meets all the necessary criteria for claiming compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme, the level of compensation you may receive for a successful historic sexual abuse claim could be anything from £6,600 to £44,000.  It is worth noting that due to the fact that many victims are subjected to this type of abuse over a period of time which can be anything from months to years, the higher amounts are awarded to victims who suffer severe internal injuries and who may as a consequence of the sexual abuse they experienced, develop psychological issues throughout the rest of their lives.

The amount that the CICA would award you, is based on the 2012 tariff of injuries. Should you not be happy with the amount you are offered, you have the right to request that the decision be reviewed which is best left up to the legal expert who represents you.

Would a Criminal Injury Solicitor Represent Me If I Make a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

When you contact a solicitor for advice on making a historic sexual abuse claim through the CICA Scheme, they would typically offer you a free, initial consultation which allows them the chance to assess whether you are eligible. You would be under no obligation to continue with a criminal injuries claim if you feel that you don’t want to. Should you decide to pursue your claim through the Scheme and the solicitor establishes that your case and your injuries would entitle you to so, they would agree to begin their investigations by offering you No Win No Fee terms.

Is There a Time Limit to Making a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

If your case involves historic sexual abuse and you did not report the abuse to the Police in the past, once you do file a report with the Police, the CICA deadline would begin from the date the abuse was reported. In short, even if the abuse occurred decades ago and you just reported it to the Police, you would be entitled to file for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme, providing your case meets all the other necessary CICA criteria. The reason being that you would not have “breached” the CICA 2 year time limit.

With this said, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority would need to see evidence that you were unable to report the abuse to the Police any earlier which could be for the following reason:

  • The abuse you were subjected to left you with severe psychological issues – should this be the case you would need to provide medical reports that either a consultant psychiatrist or psychologist provided. The CICA would not accept reports provided by a GP or a therapist

If you are worried that you may have missed the CICA deadline for filing an application through the Scheme, you should discuss things with a legal expert who would look into your case before offering essential advice on how best to proceed.

What Benefits Would A Criminal Injury Solicitor Offer When Making a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

There are many benefits that a criminal injury solicitor would bring to the table when making an application for compensation through the CICA Scheme for historic sexual abuse. These cases are complex and applications need to be filled out correctly from the outset to avoid any unnecessary delays or a case being turned down by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.

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Many historic sexual abuse CICA claims involve victims who suffer from psychological issues and to be eligible, you must provide medical evidence to support your claim. This means providing the CICA with medical reports that must be issued by qualified clinical psychiatrists or consultant psychologists. Without the necessary medical report, your historic sexual abuse claim would be rejected by the authority.

Other benefits a criminal injury solicitor would provide when making an application to the CICA would include the following:

  • A solicitor would ensure that you are eligible to claim compensation through the Criminal Injuries scheme before you submit an application to the authority
  • The strict time limit of 2 years from the date of reporting the abuse to the Police would be respected
  • The required Police report would be submitted from the outset to the CICA
  • The necessary evidence and medical reports would be included in an application
  • The solicitor would handle all aspects of your claim which includes assisting you in filling out the CICA application form, managing all correspondence with the CICA claims officer who handles your claim and keeping you appraised of the progress of a claim
  • That the offer the CICA makes is acceptable
  • The solicitor would handle any reviews of a CICA decision should this be necessary
  • A criminal injury lawyer would also deal with an appeal against a CICA review should you not agree with their decision

The above are just some of the advantages of having a legal expert manage your CICA claim for compensation for historic sexual abuse.

What Does No Win No Fee Terms Mean When I File a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

Conditional Fee Agreements were set up so that innocent victims of crime can seek the compensation they may not otherwise be able to receive through other legal routes. The Scheme is to be considered as a “last resort” for victims to be awarded compensation for any pain and suffering they endured having been “blameless” in the crime that was committed against them. Solicitors typically agree to represent you when you file an application for compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme by offering No Win No Fee terms which means you would not have costly legal fees to find.

The agreement you sign with the solicitor you contact would set out the amount that would only be payable if your historic sexual abuse claim is successful and the fee due would be taken out of the money the CICA awards you. Should for any reason you lose your CICA claim, you would not have to pay for the legal representation the criminal injury solicitor provided.

Can I Ask a Solicitor to Represent Me on a No Win No Fee Basis if I Make a Historic Sexual Abuse CICA Claim?

As previously mentioned, providing a criminal injury lawyer can establish that you are eligible to seek compensation through the Criminal Injuries Scheme and that you have sufficient evidence to support your case, they would be happy to work on your case on a No Win No Fee basis. The solicitor would need to see the Police report before taking on your case. They would also need to establish that you are seeking to file an application within the 2 year time limit that is associated with this type of claim. The time limit begins from the date that you reported the abuse to the Police.

If it is found that you reported the incident years ago but did not pursue your claim through the CICA scheme within the required 2 year deadline, the solicitor may not take on your case because the authority would reject it. With this said, if you can prove “good reason” for not having made an application within the time limit, the CICA may consider your case. As such, the solicitor you contact could offer you No Win No Fee terms when representing you in a historic sexual abuse claim through the CICA scheme.

Informative Links

If you would like more information regarding the time limit that is associated with historic sexual abuse claims, please follow the link that is provided below:

More information relating to historic sexual abuse CICA time limits

Should you have been the victim of historic sexual abuse and need help and support, please follow the link below which takes you to the Victim Support website:

Help and support for victims of historic sexual abuse

To find out how the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority can help you seek compensation for the pain and distress you suffered as a victim of historic sexual abuse, please click on the link below:

How the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority Helps Victims of Violence and Abuse

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