Criminal Injuries Compensation Payouts for Abuse Explained

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Nathalie Swanwick

Abuse Claims Solicitor

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The amount of compensation you can claim through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme will depend on the type of abuse and injuries you’ve suffered, but no amount of money can make up for what you’ve been through.

The Criminal Injuries Scheme is a government-funded scheme set up to compensate victims of violent crime including physical abuse, sexual abuse and sometimes emotional/psychological abuse. To make a claim for compensation, your abuse must have been reported to the police.

There are strict rules about who is eligible to claim and strict time limits about when you can claim. You can read about the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme yourself, but the rules can seem complicated.

We have a team of specialist Abuse Claims Solicitors, who are happy to talk through your situation and tell you if you’re eligible to make a claim under the Scheme.

We will look through your case to help us understand the physical and emotional injuries you sustained as a result of your abuse. We will listen to your story and all the details, making sure you feel understood in your experience. We can advise on whether you can make a claim, and the best way of going about this..

We understand that every experience of abuse is different, as is people’s reaction to this abuse, which is why we always aim to listen to you fully  before advising on your eligibility to make a claim.

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To find out more about how we can help with a criminal injuries claim, get in touch with our compassionate and experienced team.

Why Use a Solicitor to Make a Criminal Injuries Compensation Claim?

We often find that valid claims are refused or low payments of compensation are offered when people making CICA claims aren’t represented by a Solicitor. This is why getting legal advice and representation can be so helpful

We represented a man who was sexually abused by his mother’s partner as a child, over a 2 year period. Because of the abuse he suffered, he had serious psychological problems. He applied to the CICA for compensation, but they didn’t get a medical report from a Psychiatrist, which would have helped them value his claim properly.

They only offered him £6,600. When he came to see us, we took on his case and his final settlement was £80,000.

We’re also often instructed where people have had their claims rejected by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. The scheme has a strict criteria which means many complex cases are rejected in the first instance. We use our detailed knowledge of the Scheme to make representations why a claim is eligible under the Scheme to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority and we are often successful.

We do understand how difficult it is to take the step of talking to someone about your abuse, but a specialist Solicitor can really make a difference in your claim and our team will always give you honest, open and straightforward advice.

With our legal team behind you, you can make steps towards getting the result you deserve when it comes to claiming compensation.

How is the Criminal Injuries Compensation Calculated?

The scheme has a tariff that sets out the different levels of compensation for each type of abuse, which we discuss in detail below.

Criminal Injuries Compensation for Sexual Abuse

If you’ve suffered sexual abuse, you’ll be offered an amount of compensation that’s either based on the nature of your abuse or your psychological injuries, depending on which tariff is valued higher. You won’t receive a payment for both. This is because the tariff for a sexual assault takes into account the mental trauma.

The compensation awards for sexual abuse are based on the type, duration and seriousness of your abuse. It can range from £1,000 to £22,000, with the highest amount being awarded for serious abuse lasting for 3 years or more.

The compensation you’ll get for psychological injuries will range between £1,000 and £27,000. £27,000 is awarded if a person has suffered a permanent disabling mental illness that is severe, such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or a depressive disorder. Your diagnosis has to be confirmed by a Psychologist or Psychiatrist under the scheme.

Our experienced Abuse Claims Solicitors can help you get the necessary medical evidence and diagnosis to support your claim and will advise you on the best compensation award for your case.

If you’re continuing to suffer with psychological injuries, we can also recommend organisations who can support you with any long-lasting effects you may be suffering with.

Criminal Injuries Compensation for Physical Abuse

For physical abuse, compensation can be paid for both your physical injuries and psychological injuries. If you have two or more injuries listed under the scheme, you will be entitled to:

  • 100% of the tariff amount based on the most serious injury
  • 30% of the tariff amount for your injuries, with an equal or second highest based on the tariff
  • 15% of the tariff amount for your injuries with an equal or third highest value based on the tariff

For example, you could be awarded £1,000 compensation for minor abuse under the scheme, and another £1,000 if you’re also diagnosed with a disabling mental illness that lasts 6 – 28 weeks. The compensation that would be awarded would be £1,300 as 30% is payable of the second award.

£13,500 compensation is awarded for the most serious physical abuse, where a person has suffered a persistent pattern of repetitive violence, causing severe multiple injuries.

Like sexual abuse, any compensation award for a psychological injury needs to be supported by a diagnosis from a Psychologist or Psychiatrist.

Criminal Injuries Compensation for Emotional/Psychological Abuse

If you’ve suffered emotional abuse which has caused you to be in fear of immediate violence, and it has been reported to the police, you could still make a claim. Again, a diagnosis from a Psychologist or Psychiatrist is required, as you could receive an award under psychological abuse on the tariff.

You can be awarded anything from £1,000 to £27,000 compensation for psychological injuries. If you’ve been diagnosed with a severe, disabling mental illness such as PTSD, you could be awarded the highest amount of £27,000.

Can I Claim for Loss of Earnings?

If your abuse has left you unable to work, or you have a limited capacity for work, then you could be eligible for a loss of earnings payment.

Loss of earnings is paid at a fixed rate, based on Statutory Sick Pay rates. If your loss lasted longer than 28 weeks, you may be entitled to claim loss of earnings from week 29. You might also be eligible for a special expenses award if you qualify for the loss of earnings payment.

Our Abuse Claims Solicitors can advise you on whether you can make a claim under the Criminal Injuries Compensation scheme and how much compensation you’re likely to receive.

We’re passionate about supporting and representing survivors of abuse, and helping them get the closure and justice they deserve. Contact us for confidential legal advice and we’ll be happy to discuss your case with you.

Get in Touch

Our team of Abuse Claims Solicitors are friendly and approachable. We are a safe space for you to come and speak to us to obtain some legal advice about making a claim. We will be able to walk you through the process, so that we can make the legal system open and accessible to you, regardless of how much you may or may not already know.

We are fully committed to getting you the result you deserve and we will work hard to fight your case and make sure that you can get justice, so that you are able to continue with your life.


Healthline. (n.d.). The Effects of Emotional Abuse on Mental Health. Healthline.

Nathalie Swanwick

Abuse Claims Solicitor

Areas of Expertise:
Abuse Claims

Nathalie began her legal career in 2009 after completing her law degree at Manchester Metropolitan University in 2008. She has specialised in abuse claims since 2010, and went on to qualify as a Solicitor in 2013.

Following her qualification Nathalie specialised in a range of personal injury claims including abuse claims and criminal injury claims. She has acted for clients who have suffered life-changing injuries such as brain injuries.

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